Blues appear less likely to acquire defenseman

A lefthanded shooting defenseman, perhaps a veteran, maybe even somebody who could play with Alex Pietrangelo, was atop the Blues’ wish list last offseason.

General manager Doug Armstrong gauged the trade market in June and made free-agent inquiries in July but came away empty-handed. Perhaps Armstrong wasn’t offering enough to other teams in trade talks, or enough dollars to free agents. But there was another factor at play: the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement was set to expire Sept. 15.

“Obviously we had talked with quite a few teams at the entry draft, quite a few teams over the summer,” Armstrong said. “A lot of people wanted to see how this (new) CBA was going to affect their franchise.”