Last year, the Dallas Stars formed their inaugural Hall of Fame committee to chose the first class for induction. Each year, the committee will choose one Player and one Builder to recognize their contributions to the club.
In the Player category, those considered for induction had to play a minimum of 300 games for Dallas a skater or 200 games as a goaltender, or have won the Stanley Cup or major NHL award as a member of the Stars. Those considered in the Builder category must have been employed by the team for at least 10 years or have won the Stanley Cup or a major NHL award as a member of the Stars. Any person considered for induction into the Stars Hall of Fame must demonstrate exceptional attributes in their area of expertise, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the Stars and/or the game of hockey in general.
All team owners, past and present, will automatically be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Additionally, any player with their number retired will receive automatic induction (Neal Broten, Bill Goldsworthy, Mike Modano, Bill Masterton, Jere Lehtinen, and Sergei Zubov.)
The process for induction included a nomination by each of the 13 members of the committee as well as one nomination chosen by fan vote. The committee then considered all names put forward for consideration and voted to determine the Player and Builder to be inducted in this class.
The inaugural class chosen by the committee for induction includes Derian Hatcher in the Player category and Bob Gainey in the Builder category.
Hatcher is tied for the longest-tenured captain of the Stars in franchise history, serving in that role from 1994 to 2003. (Jamie Benn, the current captain of the Stars, is set to enter his 10th season in that role this coming year.) Over 827 games as a Stars, Hatcher recorded 1,380 penalty minutes. He set the tone of the team night in and night out, never backing down from the physical side of the game. While he put up modest point totals as a defenseman (294 total as a Star), Hatcher was most effective at creating space for his teammates.
The epitome of 90’s Stars hockey, Hatcher embodied the work ethic, confidence, and brutal efficiency the Stars put on the ice night in and night out in what was arguably the most . He led the team to the franchise’s only Stanley Cup in history, becoming the first American-born captain in the NHL to raise Lord Stanley.
Hatcher ranks 7th in franchise history in games played, highest in penalty minutes by a defenseman, 5th in plus-minus rating, 4th in goals by a blueliner, 6th in assists by a defenseman, and 6th in total points by a defenseman. Drafted 8th overall in 1990 by the Minnesota North Stars, Hatcher was an integral component of making Stars hockey popular when the team relocated to Dallas.
The Builder category encompasses coaches, management, executives, or other off-ice positions in either the hockey operations or business side. For the inaugural class, Bob Gainey is the inductee in the Builder category.
Gainey served as general manager of the team for 10 years. He was instrumental in building the Cup-winning team. He also led the team to two President’s Trophies, two conference titles, five division titles, and seven playoff appearances in those 10 seasons. He wasn’t afraid to make changes to the coaching staff, removing himself from the role and installing Ken Hitchcock. He made big trades for key pieces like Sergei Zubov and Joe Nieuwendyk.
In addition to being the engineer of the Cup-winning team, Gainey served on the Dallas Stars Foundation Board of Directors. Even after departing Dallas, Gainey continued to be part of growing hockey in Texas through a scholarship he set up in partnership with his personal charity organization.
The Stars will recognize the inaugural class of the Hall of Fame on Saturday, October 29th when they play the New York Rangers in a 1 PM matinee. The weekend will have a variety of other events to honor the inaugural class, including an awards ceremony on Sunday.