Mike Yeo’s tenure as the head coach of the St. Louis Blues will begin earlier than expected.
On Wednesday morning, Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong announced that Ken Hitchcock has been relieved of his duties as head coach. Yeo, who was hired last summer as the team’s associate coach and was to take over as head coach of the Blues next season, was promoted effective immediately.
In addition, Goalie Coach Jim Corsi was also relieved of his position. Assistant GM Martin Brodeur and Goalie Development Coach Ty Conklin will share those duties.
The decision comes as the Blues have lost five of their last six games and finished 5-8 during the month of January. With a 5-3 loss to the Winnipeg Jets at home on Tuesday night, the Blues find themselves in the final Wild Card position in the Western Conference.
Hitchcock served as the head coach of the Blues since Nov. 8, 2011. Over six seasons, he led the Blues to a 248-124-41 regular season record and ranks second on the Blues’ all-time regular season wins list and fourth in NHL history overall with 781 career regular season wins.
Yeo, 43, is in his first season with the Blues after spending the majority of his career as the head coach of the Minnesota Wild. Yeo led Minnesota to a 173-132-44 record, which included three consecutive postseason appearances, including back-to-back appearances in the second round in 2014 and 2015. Prior to his stint in Minnesota, Yeo spent one season as the head coach of the American Hockey League’s Houston Aeros, where he led the club to the 2011 Calder Cup Final.
Yeo also spent 10 seasons in the Pittsburgh Penguins organization, including four as an assistant coach with the Penguins, where he captured the 2009 Stanley Cup.
Armstrong will hold a press conference at the team’s official practice facility Wednesday at 10 a.m. Comments from Armstrong and Yeo will be available on stlouisblues.com following that press conference.