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Happy Anniversary

10 Years Ago, Brett Hull Joined the Stars and Helped Bring a Stanley Cup to Dallas

Thursday, 07.3.2008 / 1:00 PM CT / Feature
By Dallas Stars Staff
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Happy Anniversary

Ten years ago today, the Dallas Stars made one of the most significant moves in franchise history. It was move that, in effect, put them over the top and (literally) won them the Stanley Cup.

Brett Hull wasn’t seen as the typical “Dallas Stars player” back in the summer of 1998. Becoming an unrestricted free agent after 10 seasons in St. Louis with 554 goals to his credit, there was no question that he was a big fish on the market.

Chicago was very interested, a natural move since father Bobby made his name with the Blackhawks. Montreal was also very interested in signing Hull, as were the Toronto Maple Leafs.

But a conversation between Stars owner Tom Hicks and President Jim Lites set up the pursuit and eventual landing of Brett Hull by the Dallas Stars.

Dallas had just been defeated by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1998 Western Conference Finals. Hicks approached Lites immediately after the series was over.

“I guess I assumed it would be, ‘Good job’ – the kind of thing you don’t want to hear at that moment,” said Lites.

Instead it was the planting of a seed.

“Meet me and (General Manager )Bob (Gainey) next week and tell me exactly what you need to beat this team next year,” Lites recalls Hicks saying.

“That’s exactly what you want to hear,” said Lites. “Tom has always been a great owner and he proves it in the way he supports his teams and allows them to do what they need to do.”

Mr. Hicks spent $17 million in the off-season to sign Hull to a three-year contract, signing on July 3, 1998. Of course he went on to score the biggest goal in Stars history in triple overtime of Game Six of the 1999 Stanley Cup Finals in Buffalo that netted the franchise its first championship.

“It was the beginning of a great time in my life,” said Hull. “I love living in Dallas. I met my wife here and we call it home. Playing for Mr. Hicks was a great experience and now working with him has been as well.”

Now Hull wants to bring another Stanley Cup to Dallas. This time, as co-GM.

“I’ve always had this dream of taking a team photo with the Stanley Cup, sitting in the front row and wearing a suit,” said Hull. “We’re working toward that goal here with the Stars and I have enjoyed the process so far.”

It’s ten years later. Brett Hull is with the organization once more. The Stars are again coming off a 4-2 series loss to the Detroit Red Wings in the Western Conference Finals. Could history repeat itself?

Mr. Hicks, Hull and the entire Stars organization is hoping that the answer is yes.

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STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 CHI 58 36 18 4 160 134 76
2 DAL 55 35 15 5 178 147 75
3 STL 56 30 17 9 133 130 69
4 LAK 53 32 18 3 146 124 67
5 SJS 53 28 20 5 154 143 61
6 ANA 53 26 19 8 120 125 60
7 COL 57 28 25 4 153 158 60
8 NSH 54 25 21 8 139 144 58
9 MIN 54 23 21 10 133 134 56
10 VAN 54 22 20 12 125 144 56
11 ARI 53 24 23 6 139 163 54
12 CGY 53 25 25 3 143 156 53
13 WPG 54 24 27 3 139 157 51
14 EDM 56 22 29 5 138 168 49

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Benn 55 28 34 16 62
T. Seguin 55 28 32 11 60
J. Klingberg 55 10 36 14 46
J. Spezza 52 18 22 5 40
P. Sharp 55 16 24 -2 40
A. Goligoski 55 4 20 16 24
C. Eakin 55 10 13 0 23
M. Janmark 55 10 10 14 20
J. Demers 48 7 12 16 19
V. Nichushkin 52 6 13 7 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 20 10 5 .908 2.52
K. Lehtonen 15 5 0 .912 2.79
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