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NHL's Mike Modano Retires After 21-Year Career

Lauren Ammatuna |
September 24, 2011 | 11:18 a.m. PDT

Staff Writer

Mike Modano scores against the San Jose Sharks.
Mike Modano scores against the San Jose Sharks.

After 21 seasons, Mike Modano officially announced Friday that he has decided to hang his skates up for good.

The American-born NHL star will be greatly missed, but he can retire knowing that he has left an indelible mark upon the history of hockey. Once a Minnesota North Star, Modano played a key role in the move from Minnesota to Texas – where the Texans embraced Modano and the Stars more than the team could have imagined. Modano went on to play for 16 years in the Lone Star State before spending this past season in Detroit.

Modano retires after playing 1,499 NHL regular season games and 176 playoff games, in which he scored 561 goals, made 813 assists, acquired 1,374 points and served 926 PIM. He was an All-Star eight times, and won the Stanley Cup with Dallas in 1999.

He holds the records for goals by a player born in the US with 561 goals, points by an American-born player with 1,374 points, playoff points by an American-born player in his career with 145, and games played by an American-born forward with 1,499. In a league where the majority of players hail from Canada, Eastern and Western Europe, Modano helped pave the way for American NHL players and put them on the map.

Modano was emotional throughout his announcement as he thanked all those who impacted him as a player and all those who have helped make his career the amazing one that it was.

He recounted his memories of when he first found out that he would be moving from Minnesota to Texas, and the anxiety he and his teammates felt moving into such uncharted territory back in 1993. That anxiety quickly subsided as the state embraced him and the team with open arms.

"To be one of those original Dallas Stars and watch hockey grow in the state of Texas is beyond belief," he said. "When we first came down here, we never thought it would grow into something like this. It simply is great to see.”

Modano spent his last playing year with the Detroit Red Wings. By signing the special one day contract with his true hometown team, Modano was given the honorable and memorable retirement he so deserves. You can view his announcement here.


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