The St. Louis Blues missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season. And that failure had to hurt. Especially given the fact that this team is not far removed from their incredible run to the Stanley Cup in 2019. St. Louis has a talented roster and can surprise people. So far this season, we've seen glimpses of that.

As of this writing, the Blues occupy the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference. However, they aren't exactly secure in their standing. St. Louis could jump the Arizona Coyotes for the first wild card by earning two points. However, five teams are within five points of the Blue Notes in the wild-card chase.

If the Blues want to make the playoffs, they need reinforcements. It is early to be talking trades, but we can at least identify a few potential targets for this team. So here are three early trade targets for the St. Louis Blues in the 2023-24 NHL season.

Sean Monahan could be a sneaky addition

Once upon a time, Sean Monahan was an excellent top-six player. In fact, he is a three-time 30+ goal scorer. And in 2018-19, he scored a career-high 82 points while with the Calgary Flames. Unfortunately, he has struggled with injuries over the last few seasons. This year, though, he seems to have turned the tables a bit.

Monahan has not recorded a point in six games, to be fair. However, he got off to an incredible start. He scored six goals and 13 points in his first 16 games of the season. He has already matched his goal total from the 25 games he played for the Montreal Canadiens in 2022-23.

Monahan is not a top-of-the-lineup contributor anymore. And there is cause for hesitation given his current point drought. However, he is an inexpensive and valuable bottom-six contributor. He has shown he can chip in points when he's healthy. Sean Monahan could provide the Blues with an added offensive punch down the lineup at a low cost.

St. Louis Blues trade target Anthony Duclair at the St. Louis Arch as Blues trade rumors kick into gear

Anthony Duclair is a buy-low option

Anthony Duclair established himself as a solid offensive contributor from 2019-20 to 2021-22. He never emerged as a bonafide top-six option. However, he showed he could chip in a decent amount of offense. This rang true in 2021-22 when he scored a career-high 31 goals and 58 points.

Unfortunately, he missed most of last season with an injury. He returned for the last 20 games of the season, scoring nine points. Duclair then had himself a solid playoff campaign, scoring 11 points in 20 games. In the offseason, though, he was traded to the San Jose Sharks.

With San Jose, Duclair hasn't had the most explosive season. Many players on the Sharks haven't played well, to be fair. That said, the 28-year-old Quebec native has a track record indicating that he can produce offensively in the right environment.

The Blues need offense, as they rank in the bottom half of the league in goals for per game. San Jose, meanwhile, is likely to sell at the deadline. St. Louis certainly could target Anthony Duclair as a buy-low option to provide a scoring punch in the team's middle six.

Patrik Laine would be an eye-raising acquisition

The Columbus Blue Jackets aren't truly a terrible team, but they are far from good. We've seen head coach Pascal Vincent make interesting roster decisions throughout the year. One of these decisions included making sniper Patrik Laine a healthy scratch. Perhaps that could speak to some trouble in paradise between Laine and Columbus.

Laine did miss time after taking a hit from Calgary Flames defenseman Rasmus Andersson. Through 16 games, the 25-year-old has five goals and seven points. Not a promising start, but things could be worse for him.

Laine, like Duclair, has shown he can contribute at a higher level. In fact, he's shown he can meaningfully contribute to a team's top six. He is a two-time 30+ goal scorer and scored 44 goals during the 2017-18 season. Furthermore, he flirted with the 30-goal mark in 2021-22.

If the Blues want to shake up their top six, Laine would be an interesting addition. This certainly depends on whether the Blue Jackets want to entertain this type of deal. In any event, though, St. Louis should certainly target Patrik Laine this trade season.