Mike Modano always will be linked to the Dallas Stars. On Thursday, that partnership became solidified as the franchise icon was hired as an executive advisor and alternate governor.
It was one of a number of moves made by the Stars, who officially kicked off the celebration of their 20th season in Dallas.
"We had to get Mike Modano to the Dallas Stars," Stars owner Tom Gaglardi told the team's website. "He's the Wayne Gretzky of Dallas. He's the Wayne Gretzky of U.S. hockey. I'm so elated that Mike is coming on board. I don't think we can be successful in this market without Mike being a part of it."
Modano, the franchise's all-time leader in most significant offensive categories, helped make hockey a success in Texas by leading the franchise to the 1999 Stanley Cup. Now he'll work with Gaglardi and team president Jim Lites in a number of roles, including working with the local business community.
Mike Modano will always be linked to the Dallas Stars. On Thursday, that partnership became solidified as the franchise icon was hired as an executive advisor and alternate governor. (Photo: Getty Images)
"I think it will be to reintroduce the business community of Dallas to this team," Modano said of his role. "We've kind of lost touch with a lot of the businesses we've had relationships with in the past. We're trying to reconnect with those businesses, and get them involved with the Dallas Stars again."
Also added to the organization were three-time Stanley Cup champion Mark Recchi as an advisor to hockey operations, and Marty Turco, who has been added as an analyst on the team's television broadcasts.
Recchi and Gaglardi know each other well -- they're part of the ownership group of the Kamloops Blazers of the Western Hockey League. Recchi already had been helping the Stars informally, as he was a reason the team was able to land free-agent forwards Ray Whitney and Jaromir Jagr in July. Recchi won Stanley Cups with both of them, and was able to explain to them what kind of organization Gaglardi was running in Dallas.
"If you ask Ray Whitney, Mark Recchi was a big part of Ray believing in what we are doing here," Gaglardi said. "It was telling Ray Whitney about what I want, and what it's going to be like here. I think those things made Ray Whitney want to be a Dallas Star."
Recchi said he would make himself available to GM Joe Nieuwendyk in whatever way he wants to use him.
"I'm here to help in any way I can with Joe and Bob [Gainey, senior advisor, hockey operations] and the hockey operations," Recchi said. "Whatever Joe needs me to do."
Turco, who spent the first nine of his 11 NHL seasons with the Stars, holds the Stars/North Stars franchise records for regular-season games played, wins and shutouts. Turco had dabbled in broadcasting by working part-time for the NHL Network, but now goes full-time with the Stars.
"The opportunity to bring the family back to Dallas certainly was an easy one from a family perspective," Turco said. "But being a part of the Dallas Stars family, being a part of the Dallas Stars community is what really tickles me inside the most. With what is happening here with Tom Gaglardi … and to be a part of it, and all I have to do is talk about it on TV, it's going to be fun."