DALLAS — At Tuesday night’s Dallas Stars event at the AT&T Performing Arts Center, the 2,400 in attendance saw the team’s new logo and uniforms unveiled, eliciting a highly positive reaction from those in the crowd. And while the reaction to the new logo on the Internet is mixed, one thing’s for sure, the new logo and uniforms signal one thing — a focus on the future.
Gold will no longer be part of the Stars’ color scheme, something it had been almost since the club arrived from Minnesota in 1993. And new to the front of the jerseys will be a brand new crest featuring a silver D set inside a star featuring green trim.
It was definitely fitting that new Stars owner Tom Gaglardi was the one who introduced the new logo and uniforms since almost from the moment he took over as owner in November 2011 he preached the importance of focusing on the present and future while still remembering the past.
Well, the Stars executed that beautifully in introducing a new logo and somewhat new color scheme while also keeping an integral part of that scheme, green, in the fold. Gaglardi talked about how the club had come up with a new shade of green, appropriately named Victory Green, a hue that is not currently used in the National Hockey League.
And one reason green remains a player is because of Stars franchise icon Mike Modano has a longtime affinity for the color dating back to his early days in Minnesota.
“I came from up north. I came from Minnesota and it’s just something people recognize. Over the years, we got away from that. It’s a good color. It’s different. Obviously, no one has it and that’s the way it was with the North Stars,” Modano said. “Green was kind of unique and different. It shows well on TV. It pops good on the white ice. When you see it, you know it’s us.”
Modano was one of two players modeling the new uniforms and current Stars center Jamie Benn was the other. The choice of Benn and Modano was also a big part of this focus toward the future. On one hand, Stars fans saw Modano, the iconic face of the franchise, modeling the club’s new look. But on the other side, there was Benn, the future of the Stars, a player who many see as someone who could one day become an immortal player in Dallas, much in the same way Mikey Mo did during his legendary tenure with the Stars.
And while Benn might not be known as the most talkative member of the Dallas Stars, his fun-loving demeanor came through when he was asked about what he thought about his club’s new look.
“Look good, feel good, play good, right? I think they look great,” Benn said. “They’re sharp and it’s an honor putting on a new jersey. It [the color is] pretty unique. Like we talked about, it was a different color. It’s our own color, Victory Green. I think it’s going to look sharp out there on the ice.”
Search for a new coach
A new logo and uniforms aren’t the only changes in the works for the Stars. New general manager Jim Nill is working feverishly to find the club’s next head coach, a process he’d like to see concluded by the 2013 NHL Draft on June 30.
“We’ve interviewed a lot of people and I’ve got more coming up. We’re looking at every angle, whether it’s top NHL coach or the top guys down in the development leagues,” Nill said after Tuesday’s event. “We’re just taking our time and waiting for things to happen.”
Nill said hiring a coach with NHL experience is not a prerequisite for his first big hire since becoming Dallas’ GM in late April. He cited as an example a coach he knows quite well, Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock, who before coming to Detroit had spent two seasons in Anaheim, where he got the job following a successful run both in the Western Hockey League as well as in the American Hockey League.
And while the new face of the Dallas front office said he’d like to have a new coach in place by later this month, he added that the last thing he’ll do is get in a hurry and make what he terms as a rash decision.
“There’s no set deadline. I’d like to have it done before the draft. It’d be nice. It’s nice to have your coach there during that. But I’m not going to rush into something that’s not going to make sense. I’m going to be careful that way,” Nill said.
Speaking of the draft, the new Stars GM recently attended the NHL Combine and with Dallas picking 10th overall and also having a pick late in the first round thanks to the pre-NHL trade deadline deal with the Boston Bruins that sent Jaromir Jagr to Beantown, he and the rest of the Stars scouting staff are doing their due diligence to make sure they pick the right players later in the month in Newark, N.J.
“We know who we’re looking at. We’ve narrowed it down to three or four players and we have that extra pick in the first, which we can do a lot of different scenarios with that. So, we’re excited about it,” Nill said.