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Stargazing: Mike Modano's last dance with USA Hockey?

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Stargazing is a daily assortment of Dallas Stars news, as well as a look at what's happening around the Pacific division and the rest of the NHL. Stargazing will run on Mondays and Thursdays, becoming a daily feature once the preseason begins.

I love rooting for the USA. Last summer I stayed up until all kinds of crazy hours in the morning watching the USA play all kinds of stuff like badminton, beach volleyball, fencing, diving, pole vault, speed walking...whatever. If the Olympics are on and the Americans are competing, I am there. But to have Mike Modano, a Dallas Star, on the USA hockey team for all these years has been an incalculable blessing. It is one of the many, many things to celebrate about Mikey Mo this year, as we prepare to say goodbye this season or next.

 

Stars News and Notes:

USA Today calls Mo the "Old Guy for U.S. Hockey"

Many of the hockey players tearing around on the ice at the U.S. Olympic hockey orientation camp were toddlers when Mike Modano was picked first overall in the 1988 NHL draft by the Minnesota North Stars.

One of them, Patrick Kane, hadn't even been born.

Now 39, Modano is hoping to land a spot on his fourth Olympic team. He's the oldest player in camp. And maybe the wisest, too.

Read on as gobs of news organizations point out all the rings inside of Mike Modano's proverbial tree...

 

Sporting News says Mike doesn't have much of a chance, but what about former Star Bill Guerin?

Mike Modano: A long-shot to make it but Modano would provide a wealth of Olympic experience to a young team that could use it.

There were 34 players invited to Olympic orientation camp but that doesn't mean somebody not invited can't make the Olympic team. These three weren't at camp this week, but could still play in Vancouver.
 
Bill Guerin, Pittsburgh: Playing with Sidney Crosby should help him score enough goals to draw consideration.

 

ESPN asks attention loving Brian Burke about Modano's chances...

Burke was asked if a player like Mike Modano, who has scored more goals than any other American-born NHLer, could still make the team if he had a slow start to the regular season. Burke was noncommittal, suggesting that it would be unfair to comment. The upside? Even a future Hall of Famer like Modano cannot assume a spot on this roster.

It is, frankly, the way it should be. Bring it on.

 

And of course no one, including SI.com will let Modano forget about his little rant after the last Olympics:

Mike Modano, of course, had made his own faux pas -- as recently as 2006 while wearing a USA Olympic jersey. Just minutes after an ineptly constructed American team was bounced by Finland in the Turin quarterfinals, Modano verbally carved USA Hockey into bite-sized morsels. The venom and timing of the mixed-zone meltdown were stunning, but to the credit of USA Hockey, it doesn't carry a grudge.

 

And "The Globe and Mail" thought Mo throwing out the first pitch at a White-Sox game was also a good time to remind you that he's old:

 

 The oldest player at the U.S. camp, 39-year-old Mike Modano, will toss out the opening pitch at the Chicago White Sox-Kansas City Royals game at U.S. Cellular Field on Tuesday evening. He’s had to perform ceremonial pitch duties at several Texas Rangers games throughout his career and didn’t anticipate any problems at the Sox game. "I played a little baseball and I think I have the fundamentals down," Modano quipped.

The Morning News has a picture.

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The national television schedule for the Stars was tentatively released yesterday. Courtesy of the DMN blog...

Dallas Stars Games on VERSUS (Central Time)

 

Wed., Nov. 25 - St. Louis at Dallas (game time changed to 7 pm)
Tues., Dec. 29 - Chicago at Dallas (game time changed to 7 pm)
Mon., Jan. 18 - Minnesota at Dallas (7 pm)
Tues., Feb. 2 - Minnesota at Dallas (game time changed to 7 pm)
Mon., Mar. 8 - Dallas at Washington (6 pm)

Dallas Stars Game Possible Flexible Game of the Week on NBC
Sun., Mar. 14 - Colorado at Dallas (2 pm)

Make sure to take note of the change in game times, if you're like me and you plan your life around it.

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Tom Hicks has been in the news. I'm sure you've heard. It seems that his financial distress is finally starting to spill over to the NHL side (aside from the 8 million in cap space that's going unused) of things, and his creditors warn there could be litigation. Next, Mike Heika writes a story with quotes from an unnamed source that leads you to believe that everything is going to be OK. Bob and Dan on The Ticket made this point yesterday: Since when have you ever heard of an unnamed source delivering good news, or the "company line"? Why is that necessary? When people start going out of their way to tell you everything is fine, what does that mean?

How many precursors to Hicks outright saying he wants to sell the Rangers did you read? There are some wondering if this is how it starts. A story here or there and a smile and a wave from Hicks to make everyone feel better about things... I'm just saying: There's nothing to panic about, but be on your guard, Stars fans.

Oh and if you want to purchase a baseball team, please call Tom Hicks.

Here's the run-down if you missed it:

Around the NHL: