There is no prayer that this could be considered a "step forward". In the end, they won two fewer playoff games, and lost four in a row AGAIN. This was a major, major step backwards and a sign that this team as currently constructed has no prayer of winning the Cup. We've been told to wait for the kids to develop for years now. They've developed into a team full of role players and third-line forwards.
I wouldn't call it a 'major, major step backwards.' I think for that, we would have had to miss the postseason. But we made the playoffs for the second straight year, the first time that had happened in a decade. Yes, they lost in the first round, but they hung in every game against the defending Cup champs, a team that absolutely steamrolled them a year ago. The Blues could have won this series, they just missed too many of their own chances. It was a tough draw, for sure. I think if anything, the Blues didn't take the step forward we thought they would.
I do expect some changes this offseason as I don't think Army is going to stand for this.