Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 08/04/05 at 02:39 AM ET
The Dallas Stars broke their own rules for center Mike Modano because they needed him, and Modano eventually kept his word because he needed them. Capping a bizarre 24 hours of negotiations, the 35-year-old center signed a five-year, $17.25 million contract Wednesday night. It's the same contract he agreed to Tuesday, then rejected earlier Wednesday, leaving the Stars, their fans and the NHL hanging. A news conference is tentatively scheduled Thursday at American Airlines Center. By signing the contract, Modano virtually assures that he will end his career with the only organization he has ever known. "It's been hectic and nerve-wracking, but, in my heart of hearts, I wanted to stay here," Modano said. "In the end, I knew we would get a deal done. This was my decision." The deal pays Modano $4.25 million the first three seasons, and $2.25 million in the final two. The final two seasons include a $750,000 signing bonus for each that guarantees Modano will receive $1.5 million even if he decides to retire. Under the NHL's new salary-cap rules, the contract averages $3.45 million against the cap for the five years.
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