ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)– In our late summer heat wave, thoughts turned to hockey in St. Louis, Monday.
Blues legend, Brett Hull, is back with the team.
The Blues made the announcement at a 6:16 p.m. news conference; the time selected in honor of Hull’s retired #16.
He was introduced as a new Blues Executive Vice-President of operations.
His new job is to help new ownership get the team on firm financial footing, something the team has really never known in its 46 year history.
Former player and now Blues President, Bruce Affleck, introduced Hull, saying, “I’m proud to finally have you back where you belong, in St. Louis, come on up Brett!”
The event was open to the public. There was a crowd of 400-500 joining Hull’s family (his wife and 2 of this 3 children) and about a dozen Blues players.
Long after his rise to hockey stardom in St. Louis, #16 was still adding to the highlight reel.
His on-ice Blues records – 86 goals in a season – 27 hat tricks, 527 goals are in the past, but hewas still the same old Brett.
When the blues gave him a new 16 sweater a voice from the mass of 400-500 fans at the news conference yelled for him to put it on. So he did.
It felt much like it did when the Blues retired his number his number in 2006 and later
dedicated a statue and renamed the street in front of Scottrade in his honor.
“I never wanted to leave 15 years ago. I’m glad I’m back, I can tell you that,” Hull told the cheering crowd.
“When Brett Hull is in town, there’s just a buzz and people are excited. There’s something special about his effect on St. Louis,” Blues owner, Tom Stillman, told Fox 2.
Hull was signing autographs and posing for photos during media interviews.
Sure it was great for his new job of selling luxury suites and sponsorships.
But Brett the businessman was as endearing here as Brett the sniper was on the ice.
When he says he loves this team, and this town, fans can tell it’s from the heart. He means it.
“Just listening to those highlights that I couldn’t see (backstage) I had goose bumps and actually a little tear came to my eye reliving those memories,” Hull said.
Though he was part of two Stanley Cup Championship teams elsewhere, he said that even then, thoughts were of winning one in St. Louis.
“Especially with the 2 Stanley Cups I was always daydreaming, whether I was working out on the bike or whatever, how wonderful it would be to be going down Broadway in a Stanley Cup parade,” he beamed.
“You believe it. Absolutely you believe it,” said Blues fan, Farilyn Hale of Chesterfield, after Hull posed for a photo with her. “[Hull’s hiring will] bring back money to the organization so we can keep the players that we have. It’s just awesome to have him back.”
“I am proud to be part of the Blue note again and let’s go Blues,” Hull said, before walking away from the podium, the crowd cheering him, one more time.
Stillman, said even though Hull would be working on the business side of things, the Blues business was all about winning on the ice; winning a the team’s first-ever Stanley Cup remained priority #1, Brett Hull’s return was a sign, Stillman “meant business”.
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