Contract Extension for
The St. Louis Blues have given head coach Ken Hitchcock a contract extension to keep him with the team through 2013-14. The deal also has an option where both sides can mutually agree to extend that would keep Hitchcock in the St. Louis organization through 2014-15.
Ken Hitchcock was already under contract for 2012-13 but the Blues wanted to ensure that his contract status wouldn't be a distraction during the regular season by signing him to an extension.
Hitchcock's extension is well deserved. As we all know, Hitchcock transformed the Blues from a sputtering team to a legitimate Stanley Cup contender. His demeanor resonated with the St. Louis roster, specifically with the young group of St. Louis forwards that looked a bit lost under Andy Murray and Davis Payne.
On Twitter, fans have questioned why the Blues didn't give Hitchcock more years in his new extension. Here the answer is fairly simple. Hitchcock has seen similar success in the past in his first year with a team only to have the success trail off. This isn't to say Hitchcock hasn't been a good coach in the years after his debut with a team but it is to say that Hitchcock has only spent four years with each of his last two clubs (Philadelphia - 2002-03 through 2006-07 and Columbus 2006-07 through 2009-10). Both Philadelphia and Columbus fired Hitchcock in the fourth year.
The current deal with Hitchcock will potentially keep him with the team for four years, assuming his option is picked up. This will allow the team to evaluate Hitchcock's effort after three years and make a decision based on his results in the second and third year.
For Hitchcock, the extension was earned. For the Blues, the extension was an obvious one to give to the Jack Adams Trophy winner.