Although nothing is officially official yet, the Detroit Free Press reports the pending contact that would make Mike Modano a member of the Red Wings.
It’s not really a surprise in two regards. Modano, after talking with Dallas Stars General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk the night before the Stars announced Mr. All-Time Everything would not be back with the team, could have stated his retirement plans and avoided the ignominy of being released. He also grew up just outside Detroit, so he’ll play for the hometown team.
Still, it’s just kind of sickening to a Stars fan, who, by way of sworn oath, cannot wish any level of success to the Wings. The news came out the same day the Chicago Blackhawks signed former Stars goalie Marty Turco, which prompted one Free Press commenter to ask if the Stars are dismantling or rebuilding, and an excellent question, indeed, sir.
It should be interesting, if not downright painful to watch. Nieuwendyk, going into his first year as GM, fired coach Dave Tippett — the Stars all-time coach in terms of regular season wins and winning percentage — and all he did was go on the win Coach of the Year honors behind the Phoenix Coyotes bench.
Going into his second year, Nieuwendyk released Modano, the absolute personification of the team. What’s next, then, for Mikey Mo? The Hart Memorial?
About the only other question is what number will Modano wear with the Wings?