Assistant Coach / Video Coach
Chris Durso has coached at all levels of youth and high school hockey in the St. Louis area for the last 15 seasons. For the last five seasons, Durso coached in the St. Louis AAA Blues organization. For the 2022-23 season, he was the head coach for the U16 AAA Blues team that earned a Missouri State Championship and a third-place finish in the Central District. During the 2021-22 season, Durso and his U15 AAA Blues team won a Missouri State Championship, a Central District Tournament Championship, and finished as a quarterfinalist in the USA Hockey Tier I National Tournament. In 2020-21 during COVID, Durso led the U16 AAA Blues team to a Missouri Hockey State Championship and a second-place finish in the Central District Tournament. Durso was an assistant coach of the U16 AAA Blues team for the 2019-20 season and an assistant coach for the U18 AAA Blues team during the 2018-19 campaign. Both teams won the Missouri Hockey State Championship.
From 2017 until 2022, in addition to coaching in the AAA Blues organization, Durso was the Varsity Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations for De Smet Jesuit High School and helped lead the varsity team to three Mid-States Challenge Cup Championship games during his five years at the helm.
Prior to taking over at De Smet, from 2015-17, Durso was the head coach of the 2005 birth year AAA Blues team during their Squirt Major and Pee Wee Minor seasons. From 2012 to 2015 he was the Peewee AA Coach in the Meramec Sharks Hockey Club, and his teams won Missouri Hockey State Championships in 2013 and 2015.
Durso holds various roles on the Missouri Hockey, Inc. Board of Directors and on the Missouri Hockey Youth Division Board of Directors. Since 2018, he has been the Missouri Hockey Director of Player Development, helping to organize and run the local USA Hockey player development festival and has served as an evaluator at the Central District Player Development Festival. He currently serves as President of Missouri Hockey, USA Hockey’s affiliate.
During his coaching career, Durso had the opportunity to coach numerous players who have gone on to play at all levels of professional, junior and college hockey, including the NAHL, USHL, NCDC, NA3HL, ACHA, and NCAA Division I and Division III.
In addition to coaching, Durso is a lawyer and partner at the law firm of Evans & Dixon, LLC and resides with his wife Lauren and dog Widget in South St. Louis City.
About this new opportunity with the Jr. Blues, Durso said, “Coach Ocello and Coach Sanderson have a great vision for this program that will make it a destination for players who want to advance their hockey careers. I am excited to be a part of it and help them achieve that vision for this organization that has so much great history. I am grateful for the opportunity to execute my passion for player development on a daily basis and help the players who come here achieve their goals and dreams. I cannot wait to get started.”
“We are excited to add Chris to our program. His experience at the AAA level as well as working with elite athletes through USA Hockey brings relevant coaching techniques and networking to our players,” added Scott Sanderson, St. Louis Jr. Blues General Manager.