St. Louis Blues

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This article is about the ice hockey team. For the song, see Saint Louis Blues (song). For other uses, see St. Louis Blues (disambiguation).
St. Louis Blues
2014–15 St. Louis Blues season
Conference Western
Division Central
Founded 1967
Home arena Scottrade Center
City St. Louis, Missouri
WCC-Uniform-STL.png
Colors Blue, gold, navy blue, white

                   

Media FS Midwest
KMOX Newsradio (1120 AM)
Owner(s) St. Louis Blues Hockey Club, Inc.
(Tom Stillman, chairman)
General manager Doug Armstrong
Head coach Ken Hitchcock
Captain David Backes
Minor league affiliates Chicago Wolves (AHL)
Alaska Aces (ECHL)[1]
Stanley Cups 0
Conference championships 0
Presidents' Trophies 1 (1999–2000)
Division championships 8 (1968–69, 1969–70, 1976–77, 1980–81, 1984–85, 1986–87, 1999–2000, 2011–12)
Official website blues.nhl.com

The St. Louis Blues are an American professional ice hockey team in St. Louis, Missouri. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The team is named after the famous W. C. Handy song "Saint Louis Blues", and plays in the 19,150-seat Scottrade Center in downtown St. Louis. The franchise was founded in 1967 as an expansion team during the league's original expansion from six to twelve teams. The Blues are the oldest NHL team never to have won the Stanley Cup.

Franchise history[edit]

Beginnings and three straight Stanley Cup finals appearances (1967–70)[edit]

Original logo of the St. Louis Blues (1967–84).

The Blues were one of the six teams added to the NHL in the 1967 expansion, along with the Minnesota North Stars, Los Angeles Kings, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, and California Seals.

St. Louis was the last of the six expansion teams to gain entry into the league, chosen over Baltimore at the insistence of the Chicago Blackhawks. The Blackhawks were owned by the influential Wirtz family of Chicago, which also owned the decrepit St. Louis Arena. The Wirtzes sought to unload the arena, which had not been well-maintained since the 1940s, and thus pressed the NHL to give the franchise to St. Louis, which had not submitted a formal expansion bid. NHL president Clarence Campbell said during the 1967 expansion meetings that, "we want a team in St. Louis because of the city's geographical location and the fact that it has an adequate building."[2] The team's first owners were insurance tycoon Sid Salomon Jr., his son, Sid Salomon III, and Robert L. Wolfson, who were granted the franchise in 1966. Sid Salomon III convinced his initially wary father to make a bid for the team. Former St. Louis Cardinals great Stan Musial and Musial's business partner Julius "Biggie" Garagnani were also members of the 16-man investment group that made the initial formal application for the franchise.[2] Garagnani would never see the Blues franchise take the ice, as he passed away from a heart attack on June 19, 1967, less than three months before the Blues played their first preseason game.[3] Upon acquiring the franchise in 1966, Salomon then spent several million dollars on massive renovations for the 38-year-old arena, which increased the number of seats from 12,000 to 15,000.

The Blues were originally coached by Lynn Patrick, who resigned in late November after recording a 4-13-2 record. He was replaced by assistant coach Scotty Bowman, who thereafter led the team to a winning record for the rest of the season. Although the league's rules effectively kept star players with the original six teams, the Blues managed to stand out in the inferior Western Division. Capitalizing on a playoff format that required an expansion team to make it to the Stanley Cup finals, the Blues reached the final round each of their first three seasons, though they were swept first by the Montreal Canadiens in 1968 and 1969 and then by the Boston Bruins in 1970.

While the first Blues teams included aging and fading veterans like Doug Harvey, Don McKenney and Dickie Moore, the goaltending tandem of veterans Glenn Hall and Jacques Plante proved more durable, winning a Vezina Trophy in 1969 behind a sterling defense that featured players like skilled defensive forward Jim Roberts, team captain Al Arbour and hardrock brothers Bob and Barclay Plager. Phil Goyette won the Lady Byng Trophy for the Blues in 1970 and New York Rangers castoff Red Berenson became the expansion team's first major star at center. The arena quickly became one of the loudest buildings in the NHL, a reputation it maintained throughout its tenure as the Blues' home.

During that time, Salomon gained a reputation throughout the league as the top players' owner. He gave his players cars, signed them to deferred contracts, and treated them to vacations in Florida. The players, used to being treated like mere commodities, felt the only way they could pay him back was to give their best on the ice every night.[4]

Financial problems and the start of the consecutive playoff streak (1970–87)[edit]

The Blues' successes in the late 1960s, however, did not continue into the 1970s as the playoff format changed and the Chicago Black Hawks were moved into the Western Division. The Blues lost Bowman, who went to Montreal following a power-sharing dispute with Sid Salomon III (who was taking an increasing role in team affairs),[4] as well as Hall, Plante, Goyette, and ultimately Berenson, who were all lost to retirement or trade. The Berenson trade, however, did bring then-Red Wings star center Garry Unger, who ultimately scored 30 goals in eight consecutive seasons while breaking the NHL's consecutive games played record.

Defensively, however, the Blues were less than stellar and saw Chicago and the Philadelphia Flyers overtake the division. After missing the playoffs for the first time in 1973–74, the Blues ended up in the Smythe Division after a realignment. This division was particularly weak, and in 1976–77 the Blues won it while finishing five games below .500, though this would be their last playoff appearance in the decade.

In the meantime, the franchise was on the brink of financial collapse. This was partly due to the pressures of the World Hockey Association, but mostly the result of financial decisions made when the Salomons first acquired the franchise. Deferred contracts came due just as the Blues' performance began to slip. At one point, the Salomons cut the team's staff down to three employees. One of them was Emile Francis, who served as team president, general manager and coach.

The Salomons finally found a buyer in St. Louis-based pet food giant Ralston Purina in 1977, who renamed the arena the "Checkerdome". Francis and minority owner Wolfson helped put together the deal with Ralston Purina, which ensured that the Blues would stay in St. Louis. Only a year after finishing with only 18 wins (still the worst season in franchise history), the Blues made the playoffs in 1980, the first of 25 consecutive post-season appearances. The team's improvement continued into 1981, when the Berenson-coached team, led by Wayne Babych (54 goals), future Hall of Famer Bernie Federko (104 points), Brian Sutter (35 goals), and goaltender Mike Liut (second to Wayne Gretzky for the Hart Trophy), finished with 45 wins and 107 points, the second-best record in the league. Their regular-season success, however, did not transfer into the playoffs, as they were eliminated by the New York Rangers in the second round. The Blues followed their generally successful 1980–81 campaign with two consecutive sub-.500 seasons, though they still managed to make the playoffs each year.

Purina lost an estimated $1.8 million a year during its six-year ownership of the Blues, but took the losses philosophically, having taken over out of a sense of civic responsibility. In 1983, Purina's longtime chairman, R. Hal Dean, retired. His successor wanted to refocus on the core pet food business, and had no interest in hockey. He saw the Blues as just another money-bleeding division, and put the team on the market. The Blues did not pick anyone in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft because Purina did not send a representative; the company basically abandoned the team. It finally found a buyer in a group of investors led by WHA and Edmonton Oilers founder Bill Hunter, who then made plans to move the team to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. However, the NHL was unwilling to lose a market as large as St. Louis and vetoed the deal. Purina then padlocked the Checkerdome and turned the team over to the league. The team appeared destined for contraction when, on July 27, 1983, Harry Ornest, a Los Angeles-based businessman, came in at the 11th hour to save the franchise. Ornest immediately reverted the name of the team's home to the St. Louis Arena.

Logo used (1984–98)

Ornest ran the Blues on a shoestring budget. However, the players did not mind. According to Sutter, they badly wanted to stay in St. Louis because it reminded them of the rural Canadian towns where many of them grew up. For instance, Ornest asked many players to defer their salaries to help meet operating costs, but the players always got paid in the end. During most of his tenure, the Blues had only 26 players under contract – 23 in St. Louis, plus three on their farm team in Montana. Most NHL teams during the mid-1980s had over 60 players under contract.[5]

Despite being run on the cheap, the Blues remained competitive even though they never finished more than six games over .500 in Ornest's three years as owner. During this time, Doug Gilmour, drafted by St. Louis in 1982, emerged as a star.

While the Blues remained competitive, they were unable to keep many of their young players. More often than not, several of the Blues' young guns ended up as Calgary Flames, and the sight of Flames executive Al MacNeil was always greeted with dread. In fact, several of the Blues' young stars, such as Rob Ramage, Joe Mullen, and Gilmour, were main cogs in the Flames' 1989 Stanley Cup win. Sutter and Federko were probably the only untouchables.[5]

By 1986, the team reached the Campbell Conference Finals against the Flames. Doug Wickenheiser's overtime goal in Game 6 to cap a furious comeback remains one of the greatest moments in team history (known locally as the "Monday Night Miracle"), but the Blues lost Game 7, 2–1. After that season, Ornest sold the team to a group led by St. Louis businessman Michael Shanahan.

Brett Hull era (1988–98)[edit]

Right Wing Brett Hull

St. Louis kept chugging along through the late 1980s and early 1990s. General manager Ron Caron made astute moves, landing forwards Brett Hull, Adam Oates and Brendan Shanahan, defenseman Al MacInnis, and goaltender Grant Fuhr, among others. While the Blues contended during this time period, they never passed the second round of the playoffs. Still, their on-ice success was enough for a consortium of 19 companies to buy the team. They also provided the capital to build the Kiel Center (now the Scottrade Center), which opened in 1994.

Hull, nicknamed the "Golden Brett" (a reference to his father, NHL legend Bobby Hull, who was nicknamed the "Golden Jet"), became one of the league's top superstars and a scoring sensation, netting 86 goals in 1990–91 en route to earning the Hart Memorial Trophy as the league's most valuable player. Hull's 86 goals set the record for most goals in a single season by a right-winger (and the third-most overall at the time). Mario Lemieux previously held that distinction, having notched 85 goals in 76 games during the 1988–89 season. Also, only Wayne Gretzky found the net more than Hull during any given three-year period. Despite posting the second-best regular-season record in the entire league in 1990–91, the Blues were upset in the second round of the playoffs to the Minnesota North Stars, a defeat that was symbolic of St. Louis' playoff struggles.

Mike Keenan was hired as both general manager and coach prior to the abbreviated 1995 season, with the hope that he could cure the post-season turmoil Blues fans had endured for years. Keenan instituted major changes, including trades that sent away fan favorites Brendan Shanahan and Curtis Joseph, as well as the acquisition of the legendary but aging Gretzky and goalie Grant Fuhr, both from the declining Los Angeles Kings (Gretzky left for the New York Rangers as an unrestricted free agent following the season). In spite of all he was prophesied to accomplish, Keenan's playoff resume with St. Louis included a first-round exit in 1995 and a second-round exit in 1996, and he was fired on December 19, 1996. Caron was reinstated as interim general manager for the rest of season, and GM Larry Pleau was hired on June 9, 1997. But that did not stop Hull, who had a lengthy feud with Keenan, from leaving for the Dallas Stars in 1998. He went on to win the Stanley Cup with the Stars the next year, scoring a controversial goal on Buffalo's Dominik Hasek to clinch the Cup for Dallas.

Consecutive playoff streak continues through the lockout (1999–2004)[edit]

Defensemen Chris Pronger (acquired from the Hartford Whalers in 1995 for Shanahan), Pavol Demitra, Pierre Turgeon, Al MacInnis, and goalie Roman Turek kept the Blues a contender. In 1999–2000, they notched a franchise-record 114 points during the regular season, earning the Presidents' Trophy for the league's best record. However, they were stunned by the San Jose Sharks in the first round in seven games. In 2001, the Blues advanced to the Western Conference Finals before bowing out in five games to eventual Champions Colorado Avalanche. They remained competitive for the next three years, but never got past the second round. Despite years of mediocrity and the stigma of never being able to "take the next step", the Blues were a playoff presence every year from 1980 to 2004 — the third longest streak in North American professional sports history (all three of which being held by NHL teams).

25-year playoff streak ends; rebuild begins (2005–10)[edit]

St. Louis blueliner Eric Brewer (#4) was named captain in his third season with the Blues in 2008.

Amid several questionable personnel moves and an unstable ownership situation, the Blues finished the 2005–06 season with their worst record in 27 years. They missed the playoffs for only the fourth time in franchise history. Also, for the first time in club history, the normally excellent support seen by St. Louisans began to fade away, with crowds normally numbering around 12,000, a far cry from the team's normal high (about 18,000 in a 19,500 seat arena). Wal-Mart heir Nancy Walton Laurie and her husband Bill purchased the Blues in 1999. On June 17, 2005, the Lauries announced that they would sell the team. Bill Laurie, a former point guard at Memphis State, had long desired to buy an NBA team, and it was thought that this desire caused him to neglect the Blues. On September 29, 2005, it was announced that the Lauries had signed an agreement to sell the Blues to SCP Worldwide, a consulting and investment group headed by former Madison Square Garden president Dave Checketts. On November 14, 2005, the Blues announced that SCP Worldwide had officially withdrawn from negotiations to buy the team. On December 27, 2005, it was announced that the Blues had signed a letter of intent to exclusively negotiate with General Sports and Entertainment, LLC. However, after the period of exclusivity, SCP entered the picture again. On March 24, 2006, the Lauries completed the sale of the Blues and the lease to the Savvis Center to SCP and TowerBrook Capital Partners, L.P., a private equity firm. The Blues are currently the only team in the four major North American sports (ice hockey, basketball, baseball, and American football) to be owned by a private equity firm.

Following the disappointing 2005–06 season, which saw the Blues with the worst record in the NHL, the new management focused on rebuilding the franchise. Under new management, the Blues promptly installed John Davidson as president of hockey operations, moving Pleau to a mostly advisory role. The former Rangers goalie promptly made some big deals, picking up Jay McKee, Bill Guerin and Manny Legace from free agency, and bringing Doug Weight back to St. Louis after a brief (and productive) stopover in Carolina. Weight was again traded in December 2007 to the Anaheim Ducks along with a minor league player in exchange for Andy McDonald. At the beginning of the 2006–07 season, the Blues looked to be competitive in the Central Division. However, injuries plagued the team all season, and the lack of a sniper hampered them as well. Fan support was sluggish during the first half of the campaign, and the end of the calendar year was capped by an 11-game losing streak. On December 11, 2006, the Blues fired coach Mike Kitchen and replaced him with former Los Angeles Kings coach Andy Murray.[6] Davidson also installed a strong development program under head scout Jarmo Kekalainen, using the team's raft of high draft picks in 2006 and 2007 to select highly touted prospects such as T. J. Oshie, Erik Johnson and David Perron. On January 4, 2007, the Blues had a record of 6–1–3 in their previous 10 games, which was the best in the NHL during that stretch. Despite a healthy 24-point jump from the previous season, the strain of playing in a conference where seven teams finished with more than 100 points kept them out of the playoffs for the second year in a row.

Immediately prior to the 2007 trade deadline, the Blues traded several key players, such as Bill Guerin, Keith Tkachuk and Dennis Wideman, to gain draft picks. (They later re-signed Tkachuk during the offseason.) Brad Boyes, picked up from the Bruins in exchange for Wideman, became the fastest Blues player to reach 40 goals since Brett Hull, doing so during the 2007–08 season. During the 2007 offseason, the Blues signed free agent Paul Kariya to a 3-year contract worth $18 million, re-signed defenseman Barret Jackman to a one-year contract, lost their captain Dallas Drake to the Detroit Red Wings, and traded prospect Carl Soderberg to the Boston Bruins in exchange for yet more depth in the goal crease, Hannu Toivonen.

On October 2, 2007, the Blues finalized the season starting roster, which included rookies David Perron, Steven Wagner and Erik Johnson. On October 10, 2007, the Blues introduced a new mascot: Louie. Two months later, they traded Doug Weight, a 38-year-old four-time All Star center, to the Anaheim Ducks as part of a package to acquire 30-year old center Andy McDonald.

On February 8, 2008, it was announced that, after going much of the season without a captain, defenseman Eric Brewer was chosen as the team's 19th captain.[7] The team later traded veteran defenseman Bryce Salvador to the New Jersey Devils for enforcer, and St. Louis native, Cam Janssen. He made his debut two days later, wearing #55 against the Phoenix Coyotes.

After spending the first half of the 2008–09 season at or near the bottom of the Western Conference, the Blues began to turn things around behind the solid goaltending of Chris Mason. After a strong second half run, the Blues made the playoffs on April 10, 2009 by defeating the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1. On April 12, the Blues clinched the 6th seed in the Western conference with a 1-0 win against Colorado.

For the first time in five years (that is, since the lockout), the Blues were in the playoffs. They faced the #3 seeded Vancouver Canucks in the 1st round. Despite the team's tremendous run to end the season, the Blues would ultimately lose the series in a quick 4-game sweep.

The Blues fired coach Andy Murray on January 2, 2010 after a disappointing record (17-17-6, 40 points), sitting in 12th place in the Conference. Especially galling were the frequent blown leads after two periods, and with the worst home record (6-13-3) in the entire NHL. After his duties as interim coach for the rest of the 2009-2010 season, Davis Payne, was named the 23rd head coach in the Blues' history on April 14. Payne was the head coach of the Blues main farm team, the Peoria Rivermen of the American Hockey League.[8]

Turning point (2011-present)[edit]

David Backes, captain of the St. Louis Blues.

On March 17, 2011 it was announced that the St. Louis Blues were for sale.[9] During the 2011 NHL off-season the team signed many key free agents including Brian Elliott, Scott Nichol, Kent Huskins, Jason Arnott, and Jamie Langenbrunner. They fired their coach, Davis Payne, and named Ken Hitchcock as his replacement on November 6, 2011. David Backes was also announced as the new team captain.

On March 17, 2012, the Blues became the first team to reach 100 points and clinch their playoff berth in the 2011–12 NHL season under Hitchcock, qualifying for their first playoffs since the 2008-09 NHL season. They would finish 2nd in the Western Conference, behind the Vancouver Canucks. During the 2012 playoffs, they won their first playoff series since 2002, eliminating the San Jose Sharks in five games. The Blues were swept by the eventual Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings in the following round.

In 2013, the Blues completed a lockout-shortened season finishing in 4th place of the Western Conference. They were eliminated by the Kings in six games in the first round of the playoffs, after having a 2-0 series lead.

The following season, the team hit the 100-point mark for the sixth time in franchise history, and gaining a franchise record 52 wins. Their chance on winning the division title, the top seed in the Western Conference, and the Presidents' trophy would evaporate as they lost their final 6 games as they wound up in 2nd place in the Central Division again, this time to the Colorado Avalanche. The slump hunted them as they blew a 2-0 series lead to the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks, losing the first round series in six. This marked the 2nd straight year the Blues lost in the first round of the playoffs to the reigning champions in 6 games after leading the series 2-0.

Team information[edit]

Arena[edit]

The Blues play in the 19,150 (not counting standing room) capacity Scottrade Center, where they have played since 1994. The arena was previously known as the Savvis Center and before that as the Kiel Center. The team played in the St. Louis Arena (known as The Checkerdome from 1977 until 1994), where the old St. Louis Eagles played, and which the original owners had to buy as a condition of the 1967 NHL expansion.

Attendance[edit]

The St. Louis Blues are one of the more successful NHL teams in terms of attendance. After the 2005 lockout the Blues attendance suffered but has improved every year since its low in 2006-2007. In 2009-2010, despite not having a playoff year, the Blues had an average attendance of 18,883 (98.6% of possible), selling out 34 of its 40 home games, which placed them 7th in the league in attendance.[10] In 2010-2011, the team sold out every home game.

Jerseys[edit]

Like all NHL teams, the Blues updated their jerseys for the 2007–08 season with new Rbk Edge jerseys. The Blues simplified their design, with only the blue note logo on the front. There were no third jerseys for the 2007–08 season. The Blues announced plans for a navy third jersey featuring a new logo, with the Gateway Arch with the Blue Note superimposed over it inside a circle with the words "St. Louis" above and "Blues" below. This third jersey was unveiled on September 21, 2008, and debuted during a Blues' home game against the Anaheim Ducks on November 21, 2008.[11]

Mascot[edit]

Louie

Louie is the mascot of the St. Louis Blues. He was introduced on October 10, 2007. On November 3, 2007, the fans voted on his name on the Blues web site.[12] Louie is a Blue Polar Bear and wears a Blues jersey with his name on the back, and the numbers "00".

Radio and television[edit]

Originally, the Blues aired their games on KPLR-TV and KMOX radio, with team patron Gus Kyle calling games alongside St Louis broadcasting legend Jack Buck. Buck elected to leave the booth after one season, though, and was replaced by another famed announcer in Dan Kelly. This setup—Kelly as commentator, with either Kyle, Bob Plager or Noel Picard (whose heavy French-Canadian accent became famous, such as calling owner Sid Salomon III "Sid the Turd" instead of "Third") joining as an analyst, simulcast on KMOX and KPLR—continued through the 1975-76 season, then simulcast on KMOX and KDNL-TV for the next three seasons. KMOX is a 50,000-watt clear-channel station that reaches almost all of North America at night, allowing Kelly to become a celebrity in both the United States and Canada. Indeed, many of the Blues' players liked the fact that their families could hear the games on KMOX.

From 1979-1981, the radio and television broadcasts were separated for the first time since the inaugural season, with Kelly doing the radio broadcasts and Eli Gold hired to do the television. Following the 1980-81 season, the television broadcasts moved from KDNL to NBC affiliate KSD-TV for the 1981-82 season, produced by Sports Network Incorporated (SNI), owned and operated by Greg Maracek who did the broadcasts with Channel 5 sportscaster Ron Jacober. The broadcasts failed to produce a profit and then returned to KPLR for the 1982 NHL playoffs and the 1982-83 season before returning to KDNL (currently St. Louis' ABC affiliate) for the 1983-84 season, the first under the ownership of Harry Ornest. The Blues skated back to KPLR three years later.

In 1985, Ornest, wanting more broadcast revenue, put the radio rights up for bid. A new company who had purchased KXOK won the bid for a three-year contract and Kelly moved over from KMOX to do the games on KXOK. However, the station was never financially competitive in the market. Additionally, fans complained they couldn't hear the station at night (it had to readjust its coverage due to a glut of clear-channels on adjacent frequencies). KXOK backed out of the contract after just two years, and the Blues immediately went back to KMOX, who held the rights until 2000. Dan Kelly continued to broadcast the games on radio but was diagnosed in the summer of 1988 with lung cancer and died on February 10, 1989. After his death, Ron Jacober (who had left Channel 5 to be KXOK's sports director in 1985 then left for KMOX in 1987) finished the season as the radio play-by-play announcer and was succeeded in that position by John Kelly. Ken Wilson continued the television broadcasts after Kelly's death with former Blues' players Joe Micheletti and Bruce Affleck. During this time from 1989–2000, more games began to be aired on Prime Sports Midwest, the forerunner to today's Fox Sports Midwest (Branded FSBLUES in games).

The long-term partnership between KMOX and the Blues had its problems, however, namely during spring when the ever-popular St. Louis Cardinals began their season. Blues games, many of which were crucial to playoff berths, would often be pre-empted for spring training coverage. Angry at having to play "second fiddle", the Blues elected to leave for KTRS in 2000. However, in an ironic twist the Cards purchased a controlling interest in KTRS in 2005, and once again preferred to air pre-season baseball over regular-season hockey. In response, the Blues moved back to KMOX starting in the 2006–07 season. The season of 2008-09 saw the Blues play their last game on KPLR, which had the rights since the 1986-87 season (except for the 1996-97 season on CBS affiliate KMOV), electing to move all their games to FS Midwest, starting with the 2009-10 season. The Cardinals moved back to KMOX in the 2011 season, restoring the spring conflicts anew, though lessened with the rise of Internet radio, of which KMOX is contractually obligated to only serve the Cardinals broadcasts via MLB's for-pay radio structure, freeing up Blues broadcasts to be carried in some form over the station's web stream, which is allowed by the NHL.

Currently, Chris Kerber and Kelly Chase are the radio broadcast team. John Kelly (son of Dan) and Darren Pang handle television coverage, along with Bernie Federko (on-ice analyst) and Tony Twist and Pat Parris (pre-game and post-game shows).

Traditions[edit]

The Blues have a tradition of live organ music. Jeremy Boyer, the Blues organist, plays a Glenn Miller arrangement of W. C. Handy's "St. Louis Blues" in its entirety before games and a short version at the end of every period, followed by "When the Saints Go Marching In." Boyer also plays the latter song on the organ after Blues goals, with fans replacings the word 'Saints' with 'Blues'.

At the end of the national anthem before every home game, the words "The home of the brave" is drowned out by fans with "The home of the Blues"

The Blues were one of the last teams to add a goal horn, during the 1992-93 season at the St. Louis Arena.[citation needed] All of these traditions carried over to the Kiel Center (now known as Scottrade Center) in 1994. After each goal, a bell is rung and each of the goals are counted by the crowd. Since 1990, Ron Baechle, also known as the Towel Man or Towel Guy, has celebrated each goal by counting with the bell and throwing a towel into the crowd from section 314.[13]

The team also has a long tradition of fan-produced programs, sold outside the arena and providing an often biting, sarcastic, humor-filled alternative to team and league produced periodicals. The longest-running fan publication, Game Night Revue, was created by a group of fans in the mold of the Chicago Blackhawks' Blue Line Magazine. It operated for over 10 years, from 1994 to 2005, when its owner decided not to resume the magazine after the 2004–05 NHL lockout. (One final oversized "goodbye" issue was distributed the first two home games of the 2005-2006 season.) After hockey resumed in 2005, a few months after GNR's final issue, a new publication, St. Louis Game Time, was formed by several former GNR staffers.

Season-by-season record[edit]

This is a partial list of the last five seasons completed by the Blues. For the full season-by-season history, see List of St. Louis Blues seasons

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, OTL = Overtime losses, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against

Season GP W L OTL Pts GF GA Finish Playoffs
2009–10 82 40 32 10 90 225 223 4th, Central Did not qualify
2010–11 82 38 33 11 87 240 234 4th, Central Did not qualify
2011–12 82 49 22 11 109 210 165 1st, Central Lost in Conference Semifinals, 0–4 (Kings)
2012–13 48 29 17 2 60 127 121 2nd, Central Lost in Conference Quarterfinals, 2–4 (Kings)
2013–14 82 52 23 7 111 248 191 2nd, Central Lost in Conference Quarterfinals, 2–4 (Blackhawks)

Coaches[edit]

Players[edit]

Current roster[edit]

Updated on November 15, 2014.[14]

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
34 Canada Allen, JakeJake Allen G L 24 2008 Fredericton, New Brunswick
42 United States Backes, DavidDavid Backes (C) C/RW R 30 2003 Minneapolis, Minnesota
21 Sweden Berglund, PatrikPatrik Berglund C L 26 2006 Västerås, Sweden
19 Canada Bouwmeester, JayJay Bouwmeester D L 31 2013 Edmonton, Alberta
28 United States Cole, IanIan Cole D L 25 2007 Ann Arbor, Michigan
1 Canada Elliott, BrianBrian Elliott G L 29 2011 Newmarket, Ontario
4 Sweden Gunnarsson, CarlCarl Gunnarsson D L 28 2014 Orebro, Sweden
5 Canada Jackman, BarretBarret Jackman (A) D L 33 1999 Trail, British Columbia
23 Russia Jaskin, DmitrijDmitrij Jaskin RW L 21 2011 Omsk, Russia
40 Canada Lapierre, MaximMaxim Lapierre C R 29 2013 Montreal, Quebec
12 Finland Lehtera, JoriJori Lehtera C L 26 2008 Helsinki, Finland
10 Sweden Lindstrom, JoakimJoakim Lindstrom RW L 30 2014 Skellefteå, Sweden
74 United States Oshie, T. J.T. J. Oshie (A) RW/C R 27 2005 Mount Vernon, Washington
9 Canada Ott, SteveSteve Ott C L 32 2014 Summerside, Prince Edward Island
56 Sweden Paajarvi, MagnusMagnus Paajarvi LW L 23 2013 Norrköping, Sweden
27 Canada Pietrangelo, AlexAlex Pietrangelo (A) D R 24 2008 King City, Ontario
32 Canada Porter, ChrisChris Porter LW/C L 30 2007 Toronto, Ontario
75 Canada Reaves, RyanRyan Reaves RW R 27 2005 Winnipeg, Manitoba
17 Canada Schwartz, JadenJaden Schwartz LW L 22 2010 Melfort, Saskatchewan
22 United States Shattenkirk, KevinKevin Shattenkirk D R 25 2011 Greenwich, Connecticut
26 United States Stastny, PaulPaul Stastny C L 28 2014 Quebec City, Quebec
20 Sweden Steen, AlexanderAlexander Steen (A) LW L 30 2008 Winnipeg, Manitoba
91 Russia Tarasenko, VladimirVladimir Tarasenko RW L 22 2010 Yaroslavl, Russia


Team captains[edit]

Hall of Famers[edit]

Players
Broadcasters
  • Dan Kelly, play-by-play broadcaster, 1968–1989, inducted 1989

Retired numbers[edit]

St. Louis Blues retired numbers
No. Player Position Career Date retired
2 Al MacInnis D 1994–2004 April 9, 2006
3 Bob Gassoff D 1974–77 October 1, 1977
8 Barclay Plager D 1967–77 March 24, 1981
11 Brian Sutter LW 1976–88 December 30, 1988
16 Brett Hull RW 1987–98 December 5, 2006
24 Bernie Federko C 1976–89 March 16, 1991
99 Wayne Gretzky C 1995-96 February 2, 2000
Numbers honored

First-round draft picks[edit]

Franchise regular season scoring leaders[edit]

These are the top-ten point-scorers, goal scorers, and assist leaders in franchise regular season history. Figures are updated after each completed NHL regular season.

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games Played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; P/G = Points per game; * = current Blues player

Franchise playoff scoring leaders[edit]

These are the top-ten point-scorers, goal scorers, and assist leaders in franchise playoff history. Figures are updated after each completed NHL season.

Note: Pos = Position; GP = Games Played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; P/G = Points per game; * = current Blues player

NHL awards and trophies[edit]

Presidents' Trophy

Clarence S. Campbell Bowl

Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy

Calder Memorial Trophy

Conn Smythe Trophy

Frank J. Selke Trophy

Hart Memorial Trophy

Jack Adams Award

James Norris Memorial Trophy

King Clancy Memorial Trophy

Lady Byng Memorial Trophy

Lester B. Pearson Award

Lester Patrick Trophy

NHL General Manager of the Year Award

NHL Plus/Minus Award

Vezina Trophy

William M. Jennings Trophy

Franchise individual records[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.kwings.com/newsRelease.php?Kalamazoo-renews-affiliation-with-Vancouver-and-signs-new-agreement-with-St.-Louis-745
  2. ^ a b Jordan, Jimmy (February 10, 1966). "City Gets Big League Hockey; New Team Begins NHL Play In 1967-68 Season". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (p. 24). Retrieved February 14, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Musial Partner 'Biggie' Dies; Political Figure". The Southeast Missourian (4B). June 20, 1967. Retrieved February 14, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Diamond, Dan (2003). Total NHL. Triumph Books. ISBN 1-57243-604-2. 
  5. ^ a b Duhatschek, Eric et al. (2001). Hockey Chronicles. New York City: Checkmark Books. ISBN 0-8160-4697-2. 
  6. ^ http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=188117&hubname=
  7. ^ http://blues.nhl.com/team/app?articleid=352757&page=NewsPage&service=page
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=6225649
  10. ^ http://espn.go.com/nhl/attendance
  11. ^ Pinkert, Chris (September 21, 2008). "Blues Unveil Third Jersey". St. Louis Blues. Retrieved 2008-10-09. 
  12. ^ St Louis Blues - Community - Name the Mascot
  13. ^ Mallozzi, Vincent (October 15, 2006). "In St. Louis, the Towel Man Cometh". The New York Times (The New York Times). Retrieved 20 April 2012. 
  14. ^ "Blues Roster". St. Louis Blues. Retrieved November 12, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Pronger steps aside as captain; MacInnis steps in". USA Today. September 15, 2003. 
  16. ^ Holland, Dave (2003). Total NHL: The Ultimate Source on the National Hockey League. D. Diamond and Associates. pp. 368–69. ISBN 0-920445-86-1. 
  17. ^ http://www.nhl.com/ice/player.htm?id=8470880

External links[edit]