Disclaimer: We don't know if these are Mike Modano's final five (or fewer) games in the National Hockey League. What we do know is this: We don't want them to be. But if they are, then we would be sorely remiss at the end of next week if we did not take the opportunity to mark them as such.
Fives games to go, and some rather cryptic comments from Mo himself this week have put everyone who covers this team (even if it's extraordinarily part time) in a difficult position: To make a big deal or not? I think I'd like to make a big deal. If he comes back, we'll make a big deal again next year.
When you count down the greatest athletes in Dallas sports history, you have to rank him pretty high, even in this football town. He's approached or breached top 25 in all time NHL assists, goals, and overall scoring, which will put him in conversations about the hockey hall of fame. He's established himself as the United States greatest hockey player (or scorer, if you like). He's won a cup, been to a few conference finals, and he's been the face of this franchise since it got here. He deserves more than a mention here or there between the Mavericks trying to hold onto the #2 seed and the Rangers starting their season on Monday.
Nevertheless, these last 5 games are an opportunity for we who love him so to savor the memories and look back at what he did to make hockey so successful here in Texas. So I'd like to take these opponents as they come and see what kind of classic Mike Modano moments we can find.
Follow the jump for a classic Modano/Edmonton moment and his career versus the Oil...
On December 2nd, 1989. Where were you on December 2nd, 1989?
Box scores being hard to come by of games in 1989 (if you know where to get complete boxscores, please email me) and considering that Modano didn't score his first NHL goal until sometime after that, it's hard for me to say when he got his first point against the Oil, but that night it was a 6-1 loss.
- Mike has played 67 career games against the Oilers, notching 34 goals and 42 assists for a total of 76 points and 34 PIM.
- He scored his career high, 4 goals in a single game, against Edmonton on Feb. 16, 1996.
- Set a playoff career high of 3 assists in one game against Edmonton in 1997.
- Scored his 1,300th career point against the Oilers last season on 11/30/2008: