Brush up on your trivia knowledge of the National Hockey League's St. Louis Blues. These seven trivia questions and answers will take you on a journey from the team's NHL beginnings in 1967-68 to the present.
The St. Louis Blues came into the National Hockey League in 1967-68. They were one of six expansion teams that doubled the NHL in size. Because the league was aligned in two divisions consisting of the established, or ‘Original Six’ teams all in the East and the expansion teams in the West, one expansion team was assured a visit to the Stanley Cup finals. For the first three years of their existence, the St. Louis Blues were that team. Unfortunately, they were swept on all three occasions.
What follows are seven trivia questions and answers that will allow the reader a quick journey through the history of the St. Louis Blues.
Q. Who was the first team captain of the St. Louis Blues?
A. Al Arbour played for the Blues from their inception in 1967-68 until his retirement during the 1970-71 season. Arbour was team captain until he hung up the blades and moved behind the bench to take over as head coach of the team. He served as head coach until 1972-73. Of course, he went on to coach the New York Islanders four-time Stanley Cup winning Dynasty of the early 1980’s.
Arbour’s playing career began in 1953-54 with the Detroit Red Wings. In the end, he played a total of 626 regular season NHL games with the Red Wings, Chicago Black Hawks, Toronto Maple Leafs and Blues. Al has been a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame since 1996 for his accomplishments as a builder.
Q. The number 24 is retired by the St. Louis Blues in honour of what player?
A. Bernie Federko, over 20 years after his retirement as a player, remains the Blues all-time leader in games played (927), assists (721) and points (1073). Federko was the seventh overall pick by St. Louis in the 1976 NHL Amateur Draft. He was also drafted sixth overall in the WHA Amateur Draft in 1976 by the Edmonton Oilers.
Bernie played with the Blues from 1976-77 to 1988-89, serving as team captain in that final season. He played one more season in the NHL with Detroit in 1989-90. Federko surpassed the 100 point plateau in a single season on four occasions with the Blues. His number 24 was retired in 1991 and he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2002.
Q. From 1967 to 2010, the St. Louis Blues chose the first overall pick at the NHL Amateur/Entry Draft on just one occasion. Which player did they choose?
A. St. Louis chose Erik Johnson first overall in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. Erik began playing with the Blues in 2007-08 and was traded this past season, 2010-11, at the trade deadline to the Colorado Avalanche.
The year before joining St. Louis, Johnson played for USA at the 2007 IIHF Under-20 World Hockey Championships. The team won bronze and Erik was the tournament’s top point-getter with ten in seven games, the first time a defenseman has led the tournament.
Q. In what NHL season did the St. Louis Blues win their only President’s Trophy as the team with the best record during the regular season?
A. In 1999-00, St. Louis led the NHL with 51 wins and 114 points. It was the only time in team history to date that the Blues have surpassed the 50 win plateau. Unfortunately, the President’s Trophy curse hit them hard. In the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, St. Louis lost in seven games to the eighth seed San Jose Sharks. The President’s Trophy curse sees many leaders during the regular season never hoist the Stanley Cup.
Q. Who is the only St. Louis Blues player to win the Calder Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s rookie of the year?
A. Defenseman Barret Jackman won the award in 2002-03, four years after St. Louis took him 17th overall in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. Jackman is currently still a member of the Blues.
Q. Who is the only St. Louis Blues player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player of the Stanley Cup playoffs?
A. The Blues reached the Stanley Cup finals in their first season in the NHL, 1967-68. Goaltender Glenn Hall became the second player in league history to win the Conn Smythe despite being on the losing side of the Stanley Cup final. To this date, only five players have won the trophy in this fashion.
Hall was the goalie for the Blues in their first four years of existence. Glenn’s NHL career began in 1952-53 with the Detroit Red Wings. He starred with the Chicago Black Hawks in the 1960’s and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1975.
Q. What player holds the St. Louis Blues individual single season record for most goals?
A. Brett Hull scored 86 goals in 1990-91. That mark stands today as the third highest single season total in NHL history. Wayne Gretzky holds the number one and two spots with 92 in 1981-82 and 87 in 1983-84. Three times as a St. Louis Blue, Hull had 70 or more goals in a single season.