Man, I bet right now the St. Louis Blues are really wishing they'd manage to hold onto the top spot in the Central Division. Their late season collapse gave the Avalanche the division, so while Colorado got to square off with Minnesota, St. Louis got stuck with the defending champions, the Chicago Blackhawks. Now, the Blackhawks are moving on to round two, while the Blues are going home in the first round yet again.
This was a very good series, and both teams played well. Until the final game of the series, Chicago's 5-1 game six win, this was a really close contest. The first game went into triple overtime. Three more games went into overtime as well. It was hard hitting and intense and a lot of fun to watch, if you weren't a Blues fan. There was even controversy, with Brent Seabrook hitting David Backes in the head, getting Seabrook a three-game suspension, and Backes a concussion that cost him a couple games.
Ryan Miller struggled down the stretch of the regular season, but he was serviceable in this series. Still, the Blues paid a price to get him, and to get Steve Ott, and they still didn't get out of the first round. Facing the Blackhawks was tough, but it was tough for Chicago to face St. Louis as well, and Chicago came out ahead.
The Blues have to go back to the drawing board, but they still have talent. The Blackhawks will get to face, presumably, the Avalanche, which is a series I will very much favorite them in. Chicago's path to returning to the Stanley Cup Final is looking pretty good right now.