St. Louis Blues' Hitchcock And Staff To Coach Team

11/07/12 - PRESS RELEASE / SPRINGFIELD, MO - The Missouri State Ice Bears Coaches and Players will be hosting the Head Coach of the St. Louis Blues, a 23 seasons NHL veteran and member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, a former NHL goaltender and current St. Louis Blues color analyst and NBC “NHL on NBC” reporter and the St. Louis Blues Video Coach as these members of the St. Louis Blues organization meet Ice Bears fans at 7:45pm and lead an 8:15pm Ice Bears practice session at Mediacom Ice Park on Thursday night, November 15th.

“We are honored to have Coach Ken Hitchcock, Al MacInnis, Darren Pang and Coach Danny Brooks coming to Springfield to meet our Ice Bears fans and lead our players in a team practice session,” said Missouri State Ice Bears Head Coach Bob Bucher.

The practice is free and the Ice Bears are asking fans to bring a food item or a toy to the team practice session to be donated to The Kitchen organization in Springfield.

“We invite our fans to come out to join us and watch these highly regarded NHL veterans and members of the St. Louis Blues organization share their knowledge and skills with our Ice Bears players and coaches.”

“It will be a very exciting and productive experience for our players and coaches,” Bucher said, “and we want our fans to share in this very unique experience.”  

St. Louis Louis Blues Head Coach Ken Hitchcock went behind the Blues bench on November 7th last season and lead the Blues to their second best season in team history finishing with a 49 W, 22 L, 11 T team record with a total of 109 points winning the NHL Central Division title and playing into the second round of the NHL Stanley Club playoffs.

Coach Hitchcock was named the NHL 2012 Jack Adams Trophy winner as the NHL’s Best Head Coach. In his 15 seasons as an NHL Head Coach with the Philadelphia Flyers, Dallas Stars, Columbus Blue Jackets and currently the St. Louis Blues, Coach Hitchcock has recorded 576 wins in 1,110 games behind the bench. Coach Hitchcock also lead the Dallas Stars to a Stanley Cup Championship in the 1998/99 season.

St. Louis Blues Senior Advisor to the General Manager, Al MacInnis completed a 23 seasons playing career as an NHL Defenseman for the Calgary Flames starting in 1981/82 (13 seasons) and the St. Louis Blues (10 seasons) retiring in the 2003/04 season. MacInnis was named to the NHL Hall of Fame in 2007 and his jersey #2 has been retired by the St. Louis Blues.

MacInnis was a 13 seasons member of the NHL All-Star teams and was named the NHL Norris Trophy winner as the NHL’s best defenseman in the 1998/99 season. MacInnis won a Stanley Cup Championship with the Calgary Flames in the 1988/89 season and is well known as having one of the hardest slap shots in the NHL.

Fox Sports Midwest – St. Louis Blues Color Analyst Darren Pang was a Chicago Blackhawks goaltender during his playing career and was named to the NHL All-Rookie team following the 1988/89 season. A knee injury ended Pang’s NHL playing career and he initiated a long time NHL games broadcasting career.

Pang works currently on the St. Louis Blues broadcasts when the NHL season resumes and also serves as an “Inside The Glass” reporter for NHL on NBC games. Pang also served 13 seasons as an NHL Hockey Broadcasts analyst with ESPN and ABC while also working on hockey games broadcasts in 3 Winter Olympics games.

St. Louis Blues Video Coach Danny Brooks will also be making the trip to Mediacom Ice Park. Coach Brooks previously served as Assistant Coach for the St. Louis Blues American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Peoria Rivermen.

The Ice Bears ACHA Div. 2 (Varsity) team currently stands at 12 W – 4 L in the 2012/13 season and their next games will be vs. the St. Louis University Billikens on November 16-17, 2012 at Mediacom Ice Park in Springfield.

The games will be broadcast on KBFL 99.9 FM and WebSportsRadio.com.