User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto Racing
Horses
Boxing/MMA
More
Betting Tools

 
Blues part ways with team prez Davidson

New Sportsbook.com customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

   

ST. LOUIS (AP) - John Davidson, who spent six years rebuilding the St. Louis Blues as president of hockey operations, is leaving the team.

Advertisement
Davidson, 59, and the team agreed to a buyout of his contract, which has three years and approximately $6 million remaining on it. Terms were not disclosed Friday.

``We would like to thank JD for his commitment and dedication to the Blues organization over the past six seasons,'' team Chairman Tom Stillman said. ``He has been instrumental in revitalizing the Blues franchise and has built a strong foundation for our organization, which will ensure the club's success well into the future.''

Davidson was hired by the previous ownership group, led by Dave Checketts, on June 30, 2006, to revitalize a franchise that had seemingly become disconnected with its fan base. The Blues were fresh off a last place finish in the NHL (21-46-15) coming out of a lockout year in 2005, and Davidson instantly became the face of the Blues' franchise.

Still, the Blues have been forced to reduce costs after reportedly losing $20 million a season ago. Stillman, who led a group in purchasing the team from Checketts this past summer, had to make concessions.

``There's no animosity at all,'' Davidson said. ``When you see new ownership purchasing pro sports clubs, there's always going to be change. Tom and I have had a number of discussions. It took a while, but we found some common ground with our discussions ... we chatted about expenses and contracts and we just came to a conclusion that my contract would be a burden on the club.''

Davidson, fresh from his television analyst job with Madison Square Garden, was faced with a tall task when he first came to St. Louis.

Seven years later, the Blues were among the league's best a season ago by building from within, and fans began to come back.

``His savvy, his connections, his ability to connect with people is remarkable,'' Blues captain David Backes said. ``He'll still have that wherever he goes or whatever endeavor he finds next. It'll be big shoes to fill for whoever tries to jump in them. The position that we're in now compared to when he got here the year before me and since I've been here, it's been phenomenal. It's definitely been aided by his work, his efforts ... not just the work he does around the arena but it's heartfelt with all the work he does with the animal rescue stuff. He's got the same sort of jungle running around his house that I do. It's sad to see him not be part of the Blues and the St. Louis community anymore, but a great man and hopefully we can find somebody that can pick up the slack.''

The team went from 30th in the NHL in Davidson's first season to finishing with the second-most points in the league last season (109) before bowing out in the second round of the playoffs to eventual champion Los Angeles. During his tenure, the Blues made two postseason appearances (2009, 2012), won the 2011-12 Central Division championship, and experienced a revival in the community that saw their average attendance rise from 12,520 (30th) in 2006-07 to 18,809 (9th) in 2011-12.

Davidson, who was a goalie during his playing career, was a first-round pick of the Blues in 1973, where he played for two seasons before being traded to the Rangers. He would finish out his abbreviated career there before moving over to the Rangers' broadcast booth for the next three decades.

``There's a lot of guys that learned a lot from JD,'' said Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo. ``It's tough to see a guy like that go. He's the one that brought me here. I know there's a few guys that have been here since he's been here, so it's a bit of a change for us.

``Any time you develop a relationship with somebody, it's tough to see him go, whether it's a player or someone in management.''

Davidson said he's still undecided on what he wants to do but he does have that burning desire to stay in the game from a management perspective.

``I leave all doors open,'' he said. ``I sit back and wait for the phone to ring.''

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

  
HEADLINES
News: First Round Cheat Sheet
Getzlaf leads Ducks past Stars in Game 2
Wings get late goal to stun Bruins, 1-0
Habs top Lightning for 2-0 series lead
'Hawks, Blues set to go distance again
Kings stay calm after defensive debacle
Pens wary of Jackets after Game 1 escape
Getzlaf plans to play in Ducks' Game 2
Rangers' Lundqvist has records, wants ring
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NHL Pro Hockey Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NHL Hot Streaks
+3,179 NHL This Year
26-13, +1,342 Last 39 Run
7-3 L10 Picks, +1,177 This Year
5-2, +625 Last 7 Guarantees
NHL Pro Hockey Expert Sports Picks
2013 NHL SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 3079
Joe Williams + 1282
Doc's Sports + 521
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Joe Williams + 470
Gary Bart + 122
   
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 1501
Bill Marzano + 620
Joe Williams + 264
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 928
Bill Marzano + 641
Doc's Sports + 610
Yesterday's Leaders
Handicapper Money
Gary Bart + 387
Joe Williams + 105
   
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 2026
Joe Williams + 1808
Bill Marzano + 989
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!