Last year on September 23, 2011, Mike Modano announced his retirement from hockey. This summer on June 4, 2012 Modano joined the Allen Americans as a minority owner with former teammates Craig Ludwig, Richard Matvichuk and Ed Belfour. He was also inducted into the USA Hockey Hall of Fame in Dallas along with Eddie Olcyzk and Lou Lamoriello on October 15 in front of his family and friends.
“It felt great. It was great that they even asked to have it here in Dallas,” Modano said about the ceremony being in Dallas, which holds a special place in his heart — where he helped his team win the cup in 1999. “To be honored and such, it was a lot fun with family and friends. It was a great night for everybody.”
To be the all-time leading scorer in goals and points amongst American-born players in NHL is a big accomplishment for someone like Modano and with his parents, Mike and Karen Modano, supporting his career it made his path easier. “They always been there with the sacrifices they always made and the things they had to do in order make me to be able to play hockey,” Modano replied.
Growing up in Livonia, Michigan, Mike started playing hockey at the age of 7. He idolized players like Phi Housley, whom he broke the American-born points record on November 7, 2007 against the San Jose Sharks when he scored goals 502 and 503. He said that was also his meaningful record that he has achieved during his career. “The points record, with passing Phil Housley and all that. He was my idol and such.”
While he was breaking records and making a huge impact on the game of hockey, he also made a huge impact outside of Dallas when he started the Mike Modano foundation in 2000, where he has teamed up with Jonathan’s Place, a shelter for abandon and neglected kids. “I got introduced to some people that were involved with Jonathan’s Place. We loved the idea of helping out abandoned and neglected kids at that infant age. We started building cottages for babies and newborns that were in some trouble homes.”
After being away from the game for a year now, he is now taking part of the minority ownership with the Americans and trying to help this team win their second championship in franchise history. “It’s less stressful and no pressure to play in front of a crowd,” Modano said about the difference from being a hockey player to an owner.
“We try to,” Modano said about bringing any knowledge to the game of hockey while being an owner. “We try to bring over the stuff that we learned from the past coaches, teammates and owners and things like that. We try to implement that a little bit.”
Hopefully what Modano brings to the Allen Americans this season will rub off on the players and help this team become better. As of right now, the Americans are sitting at top of the CHL with a 14-5-1 and have some of the younger players like Jarret Lukin and Ludwig brothers, Tyler and Trevor, to help them out.
OTHER FACTS ABOUT MIKE MODANO
Born: June 7, 1970
Birthplace: Livonia, Michigan
The North Stars selected Modano as the first overall draft pick in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft
Besides hockey, what other sport do you like? I love tennis and golf.
If you could visit anywhere in the world at the moment, where would you go? Italy.