hen Mike Modano stepped off the plane from Minnesota in May of 1993, there wasn't a shred of evidence that hockey even existed in Texas.
A quick tour of the Stars' practice rink showed a dilapidated building in Irving that was being refurbished. The only real usable ice was in malls. Tradition of the sport was nowhere to be seen.
Now, there are Dr Pepper StarCenters scattered across D-FW, two CHL teams, a high school hockey league, and plenty of skaters throughout the area. There are even three AHL teams in the state, as well as a handful of minor league teams at various levels.
"It's come a long way," Modano said. "I do feel a certain pride in being a part of that."
Modano could be playing his last home game tonight, as he turns 40 in June and his contract is up at the end of the season. The Stars' all-time leader in just about every offensive category said he will wait until the summer to decide if he wants to retire, but he acknowledged that this indeed could be the end.