Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Make Berry Assistant GM Jimmy Roberts Named Associate Coach

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Make Berry Assistant GM Jimmy Roberts Named Associate Coach

Article excerpt

Bob Berry is taking a step backward to move up. And Jimmy Roberts is taking a step forward to move back. It's all part of a plan to ease Mike Keenan's work load as Blues general manager and coach.

In two moves announced by the team Wednesday, Keenan promoted Berry to assistant general manager and Roberts to Berry's old job as associate coach.

Berry had served two seasons as associate head coach under Keenan. Roberts had coached the Blues' American Hockey League affiliate in Worcester, Mass.

"We thought we needed to make a change to alleviate some of the administrative work, to relieve the work load on the management side of things," Keenan said. "Bob does a good job with that, and I'm very fortunate that Jimmy is extremely well qualified and very experienced.

"I thought this was a more efficient way to operate."

Berry, 52, returns to the career track he abandoned four years ago. Berry previously held the assistant GM title under former GM Ron Caron for two months in 1992. At the time, he was promoted from assistant head coach with the idea of eventually replacing Caron.

That plan never materialized. When Bob Plager abruptly resigned as head coach, Berry stepped in and coached through the 1993-94 season. Blues President Jack Quinn then fired him and pushed Caron aside to hire Keenan in the dual role. Keenan ultimately re-hired Berry as an associate coach.

Berry will keep up with the paper work and generally evaluate potential trades.

With two titles, Keenan often had to forgo some GM duties. In December, for instance, he canceled a trip to the National Hockey League general managers meetings to stay with his struggling team.

"He'll do anything that needs to be covered off in any situation," Keenan said. "He'll evaluate some of our people who are turning pro. If we're going to make trades, he can go look at people. …

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