The St. Louis Blues are at a crossroads as an organization, but one thing seems to be clear: Martin Brodeur is rising up their executive ranks. The team signed him to a three-year contract to be their assistant general manager on Wednesday.
After playing a few regular season games with the Blues in 2014-15, Brodeur moved into a role as a “special adviser” during that same campaign. The 43-year-old told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that such a job merely made him want more.
“I really enjoyed it, but we had a conversation that I’d like to do more,” Brodeur said. “I want to learn as much as possible. I think it was a great opportunity for me to be around the team advising. But now after doing that for six months, I’d like to do a little more.”
It looks like his wish has been granted, and one assumes he’ll have at least some say in a key offseason for the franchise. Will they stick with head coach Ken Hitchcock? Should the Blues trade any core members to shake things up? Brodeur won’t be the one to make final decisions, yet he could whisper in GM Doug Armstrong’s ear on plenty of matters.
The New Jersey Devils announced today that Martin Brodeur, Scott Stevens and Claude Lemieux would be among the participants in a March 7 alumni game that will comprise part of the 20th anniversary celebrations of the club’s first Stanley Cup title.
Others scheduled to participate include Jacques Lemaire, Jacques Caron, Tommy Albelin, Sergei Brylin, Bob Carpenter, Shawn Chambers, Tom Chorske, Danton Cole, Ken Daneyko, Jim Dowd, Bruce Driver, Bill Guerin, Bobby Holik, John MacLean, Chris McAlpine, Randy McKay, Mike Peluso, Brian Rolston and Chris Terreri.
But it’s the recently retired Brodeur that led the release.
Brodeur, of course, raised more than a few eyebrows last week when he announced his retirement in front of a backdrop featuring the logo of the St. Louis Blues, the optics of the press conference leaving many wondering about his relationship with New Jersey president/GM Lou Lamoriello, and the Devils franchise in general.
“For anybody that thinks that me and Lou are not on the same page, everybody’s wrong,” insisted Brodeur.
It’s possible, we suppose, that the Devils could stage their own retirement ceremony for Brodeur as part of the 20th anniversary celebrations.
Related: Here’s why Brodeur is working for Blues (instead of Devils)
Martin Brodeur has hung up his skates, but he certainly hasn’t slowed down. The 42-year-old former goaltender spent three straight contests in the press box with Blues GM Doug Armstrong as he learns to evaluate the game from a distance and adapts to his new role as a senior advisor to the general manager.
“It’s fun,” Brodeur told NHL.com. “I’m learning, asking a lot of questions. It’s something that has really interested me. The last three days have been fun, being involved.”
Armstrong sees Brodeur as a valuable addition given the legendary netminder’s wealth of playing experience and three Stanley Cup championships.
“What I’m trying to gain from him is his knowledge of the Eastern Conference, gain his knowledge on how he sees the game,” Armstrong said. “There’s as much teaching as learning from both of us now. That’s what makes it a really exciting relationship. With us we’re just trying to tell him what we look for in players, what we want to do at the trade deadline, how our philosophy of evaluating players is, what we look for. And then I get his input on how he looks at things and how he looks at players.”
The game looks slower to Brodeur from above, which he feels makes it easier to judge the players. At the same time, he’s interesting in learning what the best approach would be when it comes to evaluating talent.
He’s also enjoying his new role in life and while it’s too early to say for certain, Brodeur might have years ahead of him of work within the NHL, even if his days between the pipes are over.
Brodeur announces retirement, leaves ‘the game with a big smile on my face’
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Here’s why Brodeur is working for Blues (instead of Devils)