St. Louis Blues Fire Ken Hitchcock

| February 1, 2017 | 0 Comments

We all knew this moment was inevitable with the past six weeks of garbage play. Ken Hitchcock deep down probably did, too.

The Blues announced Wednesday morning that Ken Hitchcock has been fired and replaced by former coach in waiting Mike Yeo.

The decision comes following a 5-3 loss to the Winnipeg Jets Tuesday, the club’s fifth loss in its last six games. The Blues are 24-21-5 for 53 points, which currently puts them currently in the second wildcard spot.

Before we all start going off on the blame game, I think we should take a moment to reflect and appreciate Ken Hitchcock and his Blues tenure. I was one of his biggest critics early. Over the past 2 years, I’ve grown to appreciate him beyond mere wins and losses.

The head coach since Nov. 8, 2011, Hitchcock led the Blues to a 248-124-41 record over six seasons. While we can piss and moan about the playoff failures, the Vladimir Sobotka fetish, and the stale offense, we should also be appreciative that Hitchcock was the one responsible for leading this team back to relevance.

The Blues were an after thought in this city and nationally for years before Hitchcock’s arrival.

Listening to Ken Hitchcock talk hockey and life in general was a treat. We should strive to know at least 1% of what that man has forgotten.

I was one several years ago that wanted him canned. I was very vocal and definitely wrong.

Hitchcock gave the Blues an identity. Hitchcock made the Blues relevant again. Thanks for everything, Hitch.

Now that we got the warm and fuzzy’s out of the way…

This was the right move that should’ve been a hell of a lot heavier than just Hitchcock and overrated goalie coach Jim Corsi.

Doug Armstrong should’ve been on the chopping block with his best bud Hitch. No way around it.

 Well #NoShit, Doug. You tried bringing your old crony back for one final lap into the sunset thinking that the Winter Classic and Conference Finals appearance would distract the fan base and it blew up in your face.

Bringing back Hitchcock in a transition season did not make sense.

Having Ken Hitchcock’s successor named and present every day did not make sense. Spare me the Yeo gets “chance to learn” from Hitch bullshit.

Weeks back I dove into some of Armstrong’s recent magic, but let’s dig deeper.

Armstrong started his tenure on fire with the Jaro Halak trade, hiring Hitchcock, and trading for Kevin Shattenkirk, but the past few years have been marked with more question marks than successes.

For example:

  • Jay Bouwmeester extension: Yes, he had a nice 30 point season but did you really think a guy that has played nearly 750 consecutive games wouldn’t hit a wall?
  • Jake Allen extension: I get the Blues wanted to make a commitment to Jake Allen, but trading Brian Elliott should’ve been that commitment and let the guy play his next contract.
  • Jori Lehtera: Yeah, enough said.
  • Alexander Steen extension: If you were hesitant to give David Backes 4 or 5 years, then why go down that same path with Steen?
  • Vladimir Sobotka saga: Putting all your eggs in the Sobotka basket the last two off-season’s should be a fireable offense alone.

Here’s another tidbit from the press conference this morning courtesy of Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) of Yahoo Sports.

Which leads me to the next question…

If you thought that this was going to be a rebuilding season, then what the hell are you doing with Kevin Shattenkirk?

You can’t honestly believe that there was not a good enough offer that could help jumpstart this transition over the summer?

Of course not. Doug knew that selling Shattenkirk in the summer meant his buddy Hitch would be in for a longer winter and the shiny object of the Winter Classic would be quite dull if fans were told that this was going to be a rebuilding season.

The Blues knew the minute the horn sounded after Game 6 in San Jose they were in for a rebuilding year. But unfortunately their one crack at making a shit load of money for a change was also coming up at the same time.

The Blues tried their hardest to polish this turd of a roster and it succeeded momentarily. They got their season ticket renewals, their Winter Classic cash cow, and now they have momentum to get their building some much needed upgrades.

If Doug Armstrong couldn’t turn his first rebuild and transition with the club back in 2010 with a Hall of Fame coach into a Stanley Cup contender, what makes us believe that the second time will be any better?

Armstrong had his chance, now it’s time for the Blues to get 5% better at the General Manager position.

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Category: Art Lippo, Blues

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Here to call out the good, bad, and ugly. God bless the old St. Louis Arena, line brawls, and $5.00 arena beers. Contributor to ending the #PussificationOfAmerica and the #PussificationOfSports #ForeverCheung

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