Barret Jackman will officially begin his off-the-ice career in the Blues organization as a player development coach.
As a defenseman who wore No. 5, played with a hard-nosed aggressive style, and spent nearly his entire pro career with the St. Louis Blues, it’s long seemed like Barret Jackman could become the Bob Plager of his generation. Jackman came one small step closer to following the path of one of his biggest role models on Friday, as the Blues announced that the 36-year-old will officially join the organization as a player development coach.
Jackman, who played for the Blues from 2002-15, is second all-time among Blues players in games played with 876, and after playing one season for the Nashville Predators, he retired as a member of the Blues late last summer. He lives in St. Louis and was a frequent presence at games last season, being honored at his own night and then delivering some memorable words at Plager’s jersey retirement ceremony in February.
Jackman won’t be a day-to-day member of Mike Yeo’s NHL coaching staff, but he’ll help with the development of prospects, particularly the organization’s young defensemen. He’s got the potential to be an extremely strong influence as young blueliners like Jordan Schmaltz, Vince Dunn, Jake Walman, Petteri Lindbohm, and Niko Mikkola are moving through the system.
This position could be Jackman’s first step toward replicating Plager’s lengthy stint in the Blues’ organization, during which 74-year-old has served as a player, coach, scout, player development executive, broadcaster, and ambassador.