Welcome to the refreshed Defending Big D! To celebrate the new look and feel of our sports communities, we’re sharing stories of how and why we became fans of our favorite teams. If you’d like to share your story, head over to the FanPosts to write your own post. Each FanPost will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 Fanatics gift card [contest rules]. We’re collecting all of the stories here and featuring the best ones across our network as well. Come Fan With Us!
My love for hockey began in the 70’s with my Dad bringing my brother and I to St Louis Blues and Billikens games. Of course the Miracle On Ice cemented that love.
My love for the Dallas Stars started one year before their first season on December 15 1992. It was announced the league would hold a neutral site game at Reunion Arena in Dallas to gauge fan interest for possible expansion.
Not sure how I heard about the game as I was stationed in New Mexico where they would just announce the winning team but no scores for each night game. It was before the internet and my only other source of hockey news was USA Today and the weekly The Hockey News (but the news would be a week old by the time I saw it.)
December 14th, I was finishing my first semester at Eastern New Mexico University. I had a final exam for one of my classes. I finished by 5 pm and made the eight hour drive to Dallas. My brother and I attended the game between the St. Louis Blues and New York Islanders. The Isles won 4-3. I drove back to Portales, NM for an 8 am final Wednesday morning.
I couldn’t believe when Norm Green announced he was moving the North Stars to Dallas. I liked some of their players like Mike Modano, Neal Broten and Brian Bellows. I even managed to take my three boys to one of the Dallas Stars games during spring break their first season.
I followed the team especially during the 1999 Stanley Cup run. In the latter part of 1999, I moved to Dallas. I started as a temp cashier for concessions at the old Reunion Arena. I could occasionally see some of the action or watch the crews switch between ice and the basketball court. I moved up quickly going from stand manager to concessions supervisor just as the Stars were starting their 2000 Cup run.
I had heard when they had won in ‘99 the Stars had put the Stanley Cup on the ice and let employees take pictures with it, so I was hoping they could win back-to-back. I went to the Stars club for away game watch parties, and I won a pair of tickets to Game 6 vs the Colorado Avalanche. I couldn’t watch them because some other managers had already requested off. So my then-girlfriend and son sat in the seats. When the game went into OT, I did get to sit down and watch. as most of my stands were closed.
My love continues now as a season ticket holder for the Texas Stars, where I get to see players develop before moving on to the big club. Some of the players I have seen move up include: Brett Ritchie, Cody Eakin, Justin Dowling, Reilly Smith, Richard Backman, Alex Chiasson, Antoine Roussel, Ryan Garbutt, Patrik Nemeth, Jordie Benn, Jamie Oleksiak, Jyrki Jokipakka, John Klingberg, Radek Faksa, Gemel Smith, Remi Elie, Jason Dickinson, Curtis McKenzie and Colton Sceviour.
And, of course, watching their 2014 Calder Cup run was awesome.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. SB Nation Why Are You a Fan Reader Sweepstakes starts on 8:00am ET on May 25, 2017 and ends at 11:59pm ET on June 8, 2017. Open only to eligible legal residents of the United States, 18 years or older. Click here for Official Rules and complete details, including entry instructions, odds of winning, alternative method of entry, prize details and restrictions, etc. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. Sponsor: Vox Media, Inc.