It hasn’t even been two weeks since Chris MacFarland succeeded Joe Sakic as Colorado Avalanche general manager. Today, MacFarland’s successor as Avalanche assistant GM was named. His name is Kevin McDonald and he has been in the St. Louis Blues organization the last 21 years.
McDonald, a native of Wellesley, Mass., had been the GM of the Blues’ AHL affiliate, the Springfield Thunderbirds, who made the AHL final this year.
Here’s a St. Louis Post-Dispatch story on him, with a quote from Blues GM Doug Armstrong on his departure.
I don’t know much at all about McDonald, so will hope to do so more in the coming days.
But I did text him and got this response:
”I am very excited to be joining the Avalanche and look forward to working with Joe Sakic, Chris MacFarland and the entire hockey operations staff.”
I also asked Blues TV analyst Andy Strickland about McDonald and here’s what he said:
“He’s among the most underrated hockey Execs in the game. Stays completely under the radar. Can build depth in an organization as well as anybody. Able to identify talent and sign players to two-ways that appear to be nothing signings at the time but then the player ends up impacting the NHL roster throughout the season. Look at all the players the Blues have relied on from their farm system over the years. Kevin is responsible for basically all of this.”
From the Avalanche release:
The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has named Kevin McDonald as Assistant General Manager.
McDonald was the recipient of the 2022 Thomas Ebright Memorial Award, which is annually presented for outstanding career contributions to the American Hockey League. He has served as the General Manager of the Blues’ American Hockey League affiliate since Aug. 28, 2018 and in that role, was also a pro scout for St. Louis. With his guidance and input in team personnel decisions, McDonald played an important role in the Blues capturing the 2019 Stanley Cup Championship.
The Lawrence, Massachusetts, native joined the Blues organization prior to the 2001-02 season as a professional scout and was promoted to Director of Professional Scouting within two seasons, taking on the role in 2003. McDonald took on the role of General Manager of the Blues’ former AHL affiliate, the Peoria Rivermen, in June 2005 before being named an Assistant General Manager for St. Louis in May 2009.
McDonald began his career in professional hockey in 1988 as a member of the New York Rangers’ communications department. Following the Rangers’ Stanley Cup Championship run in 1993-94, he moved into the Rangers’ hockey operations department and worked as an assistant to Rangers General Manager Neil Smith during the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season.
McDonald resides in North Andover, Massachusetts, where he lives with his wife Lauren, his two children Sean and Kayleigh, and his three step-children Joseph, Jenna, and Daniel.