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Davidson looking for challenge from next job

Saturday, 10.06.2012 / 3:59 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

John Davidson has one plan for his future.

"If the phone rings, I'll answer it," Davidson told the Bellevue News-Democrat on Friday, after his parting ways with the St. Louis Blues was officially announced.

The Hall of Fame broadcaster turned successful front-office executive is back on the market after agreeing to a buyout of his contract as Blues president.

The 59-year-old, who reportedly interviewed with the Columbus Blue Jackets after Tom Stillman's purchase of the Blues became official in May, said he has no intention to retire.

"I want a challenge," Davidson told the Columbus Dispatch. "I'm interested in hearing what might be out there. There's lot of energy in this old broken-down body."

Six years after being hired as President of the St. Louis Blues, John Davidson helped bring a Central Division championship and a second-place finish in the Western Conference in 2012. The remaining three years of his contract were bought out this week. (Photo: Getty Images)

Davidson joined the Blues as president in 2006 and his rebuilding project reached its highest point last season when the team won the Central Division with 109 points, finished second in the Western Conference, and reached the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, where they lost to the eventual champion Los Angeles Kings.

The Blues had 57 points the season before Davidson arrived. The Blue Jackets had 65 points in 2011-12.

"If [my next stop] is Columbus, I can tell you this: That hockey club is better than the one we took over in St. Louis," Davidson told the Columbus Dispatch. "That club was way, way down the ladder. But this Blue Jackets team is not that far away. There are some pieces there to work with, absolutely. They’ve got some real players there, boy."

He spoke to Blue Jackets majority owner/governor John P. McConnell and president Mike Priest on May 29, the Dispatch reported.

"I'd meet with them again, absolutely," Davidson told the newspaper. "We had a very productive discussion, just sharing thoughts and getting an understanding for what they feel about their franchise. I liked what I heard from them, and I liked what I saw that day. It’s an absolutely beautiful building, it’s in a great area, and it’s really got a chance to be something special."

Davidson said he has spoken only to the Blue Jackets.

"I haven't talked to anybody else, period, despite some things that were written and said," Davidson told the News-Democrat.

The 2009 recipient of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for outstanding contributions as a hockey broadcaster did not rule out returning to the booth.

"That intrigues me, but I'm not sure," Davidson told the News-Democrat. "I just don't know. We'll see what comes along and see what makes the most sense for my family."

What that is, he does not know.

"I haven't got the faintest idea," Davidson told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "The phone can ring ... I'm listening. [I've] just got to make sure that whatever it is, it's a good situation."

Once again, it shows character in this dressing room. Once again, there's no quitting in here. We all wanted this so bad and we worked so hard to get home-ice advantage and we weren't going to let this one slide.

— Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog on his team's OT Game 1 win vs. Minnesota Wild