ScoreBoardTX had a chance to spend a little one-on-one time with Mike Modano this week, to chat about his very busy year and his upcoming induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
ScoreBoardTX: First off a big congratulations on being selected as a member of the 2014 Hockey Hall of Fame class. A honor well deserved.
Mike Modano: Thank you I appreciate that.
SBTX: So what was your initial reaction when you received the call?
MM: First reaction was one of shock and relief at the same time. Very unexpected.
SBTX: Who was the first person you called to tell the news to?
MM: The first people we called were our families, both Allison’s and my parents were so excited.
SBTX: It was a great day, but it was also a sad day, as you attended the funeral of your friend Richard Durrett that morning. Richard and you had a good relationship from his years of covering the Stars with the Dallas Morning News. What will you remember most about Richard and your friendship with him?
MM: It was truly sad – losing such a good person at such a young age. What I’ll remember most about Richard was how personable he was – he always wanted to know how the wife and kids were coming along (Mike’s wife Allison is expecting twins in a few weeks). Just an all around good man.
SBTX: You have said how Bob Gainey was such an inspiration to you as a player throughout your career, and had mentioned on Monday he’d be a natural to introduce you into the Hall. What advice did he give you over the years that you always remember and has stuck with you?
MM: Bob Gainey just wanted me to be the best I could be. He taught parts of the game to allow me to be able to be used in all areas of the game – and to be responsible and to be respectful of the game and it’s history.
SBTX: Seems like a great class of players to go in with – all contemporaries with yourself. What are your thoughts on Blake, Forsberg and Hasek?
MM: The other inductees are all so deserving, they were all hard guys to play against and competed so hard every day. Couldn’t ne any more thrilled then to be forever linked to those three.
SBTX: There are several young American hockey stars who are helping USA take that next step in growing the game and making their mark. Which of them stand out most to you?
MM: I’d say the two that really standout to me are Zach Parise and Patrick Kane. Those two guys are the future and the present of USA Hockey. They’re respectful hard working guys.
SBTX: Must be a little surreal when its all said and done – being immortalized with the likes of Bobby Orr, Rocket Richard, Bobby Hull, Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe – how does that make you feel?
MM: Just being mentioned with the other Hall-of-Famers doesn’t seem real, it’s so humbling to be recognized as such a player.
SBTX: When the induction ceremony rolls around in November you’ll be a new dad twice over – add in the jersey retirement and you will have had quite a year. Any thoughts on everything that’s happened in the last year or so?
MM: This last year-and-a-half have included experiences you only dream of having. I’ve been so lucky to be able to live it. But having twins on the way so soon I’m sure will trump everything.