After several months of speculation and drama on where the Dallas Stars' all time Star was going to end up, he has signed a one year contract with the Detroit Red Wings where he may ultimately end his career in his home town.
From the Detroit Red Wings Press Release: http://redwings.nhl.com
Mike Babcock expressed his firm belief that the Red Wings would sign Mike Modano when he gave an exc. interview to the National Hockey League Website last month. Now that it has come true, with the team announcing Thursday that he signed a one year deal and that it would welcome Modano in a News Conference Friday, Babcock is not the least bit surprised.
"We think he would be a good fit for us and excited to play for us and we think he'll have a real good year," Babcock said. "If he comes to us I'm a big believer he'll end up playing again next year too, too. I think he's got that kind of legs left in him. And, remember, he's not coming here to be the guy; he's coming here to be one of the guys."
Modano became a free agent when the Dallas Stars opted not to resign him. He reportly drew interest from other teams, but in the end, he decided to return to the city where he played his youth hockey.
"Detroit pushed very hard from the start," Modano told the Morning News Mike Heika. "There want me there, they think I can help, and they're very open about it. That was neat. It's such a good org. and they really really believe they're going to have a great team this year. They said the injuries were ridiculous last year, and they're ready to bounce back from that. I really think they're a team where you can think about winning it all."
Modnao confirmed to the Dallas Morning News that he'll be in Detroit on Friday for a news conference to announce the signing. Red Wings GM Ken Holland told http://redwings.nhl.com that Modano a unique niche with the Wings.
"I've been patient, I guess, because it's not like saying, 'We need a player and it's not Mike Modano we're sitting on the sidelines and players are moving,"' Holland said. "We're probably going to the Helm and Abdelkadar anyway. I just though when Mike Modano hit the market back on July 1 that it was a unique situation, because he's a local Little Caesars' player that is one of the greatest American Born players ever, and he can still skate."
Babcock, who has been stumping to get Modano to get on the roster for a while now, sees his options for line combos and power play units growing. He also sees the Red Wings getting back to being the puck possession team that won the Stanley Cup in 2008 and Played in Game 7 back in 2009.
"We're trying to get back to being the Red Wings, not like last year when we were taped together all year, had no depth and we rode people too hard so when we got the playoffs we were exhausted," Babcock said. "We think Nick Lindstrom has some left in him, but not if we're defending all the time. We need to get the puck and go. Our goal is to be loaded up."
Modano fits into that philosophy because he would give the Wings another scoring option. In 1,459 career games, he has 1,359 points - more points then any other U.S. Born Player in NHL History.
"What he is just another guy that can score, another guy that you have to worry about a little bit," Babcock said.
Modano said he's looking forward to playing for Babcock.
"He's such a great coach," he told the Morning News. "You talk to guys like Brenden Morrow who played for him at the Olympics, and they say he runs practices and the way he makes desicions in a game, it just gives you a lot of confidence. You just feels like you're playing on a winning team."
To see the Full Press Release, Click Here
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