Ken Hitchcock

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Next winter will serve as a curtain call for the head coach of the St. Louis Blues.

Ken Hitchcock has agreed to another one-year contract with the National Hockey League team and he says it will be his final year as a coach.

“I want one-year deals because it allows me to do the things I need to do,” Hitchcock told reporters gathered Tuesday at Scottrade Center for the Blues' end-of-season news conference.

“But I'm telling you right now, this is my last one-year deal. I'm not coaching after this year. This is it.”

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The man who led the St. Louis Blues to one of the best seasons in franchise history this year will be behind the bench until 2014.

The team announced today that Ken Hitchcock has signed a one-year contract extension, with an option for the 2014-2015 season. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The St. Louis Blues have a new head coach. The team introduced Ken Hitchcock to the media Monday, after firing Davis Payne on Sunday.

Payne had a record of 67-55-and-15 over parts of three seasons for the Blues. Team general manager Doug Armstrong says while they're just 13 games into this year's schedule, it was time for a change.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Updated at 11:10 p.m. to correct name and title of team general manager in caption.

The St. Louis Blues have fired head coach Davis Payne, and hired Ken Hitchcock to take his place.

Payne earned a 67-55-15 record with the Blues, but missed the playoffs in both 2010 and 2011. He was the coach of the team's minor league affiliate, the Peoria Rivermen, before being named the interim head coach of the Blues on January 2, 2010. The team removed the interim title on April 4, 2010.