From Penn State to the Dallas Stars, the Good, Bad and Godawful News in This Day in Sports

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Courtesy G+
Don't think for a second this small attempt to resurrect a sports blog is an afterthought. We'll get there ... sooner than later. But on a day like today: Where to begin? Penn State, no doubt, far from home for most but not for all, and certain top of mind on this day as news comes of riots breaking out over Joe Paterno's firing. "The media is responsible for JoePa going down," says a freshman. Right -- not, say, Jerry Sandusky.

But there is brighter news: The Dallas Stars sale has been moved up to a week from tomorrow, as Tom Gaglardi is the lone bidder for the bankrupt, best-in-the-NHL franchise. Reports Brandon Worley, all things go according to plan, Your Dallas Stars will be in new hands some time in December. Happy Christmas.

By that time, though, Mike Maddux may be the new Chicago Cubs manager. Hate to see the Rangers' pitching coach go; he was, after all, no Tom House. As he tells ESPN, there's much to consider before he packs his bags again:
"We have a lot of things to think about and a lot of things to weigh," Maddux said. "Family is very important. I played for a long time and when I finished playing my kids were 10 years old and 8 years old. I said what happened? So I got into coaching right away, and we moved the family to Wisconsin. At least we were together.

"Then I went to Texas. For the first two years my wife and youngest daughter stayed in Wisconsin. My oldest daughter was with me in college in Texas. As of June my family resides together. That had not happened in three years, and that's pretty special. There does come a time when you have to stop and smell the roses. There are a lot of tough decisions that would have to be made."
Then, finally, this just arrived in the inbox: an infographic showing the real loses resulting from the NBA lockout -- everyone from small-market teams to shoe manufacturers to cities losing millions in sales tax revenue from drinks and meals not sold.

Show Me the Highlights: Sorry, Kid, But You Can't Watch ESPN Right Now. Maybe Later.

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For the last year, my 8-year-old boy's had a morning routine that involves watching SportsCenter and reading SportsDay over breakfast. Today he wanted to watch highlights from last night's Stars win over the Capitals, 5-2, making Dallas tops in the NHL -- big news 'round our house in the absence of pro basketball, which doesn't appear to be in any rush to return to the hardwood. But we had cancel the boy's programming plans, given the Penn State sex-abuse story that now dominates the network -- all others too.

He follows along just enough to know the name Joe Paterno, now on the verge of retiring, according to most reports; he's aware of the coach's stature, his legend. But yesterday the boy asked what the ESPN anchors meant by the "inappropriate touching" of young boys; and so, off the TV went while we fumbled for an explanation. Then he wondered why basketball players and owners can't agree on how to chop up their millions. Sigh. I suggested perhaps we just go outside and throw around the football till first bell. Said he, "Good idea."

Sure Mike Modano Has a Spot on Dallas' Mount Sportsmore. Well, Doesn't He?

Categories: Dallas Stars

Mike Modano is on Facebook. And out of hockey.

The legendary Dallas Star used social media  to announce his retirement from the NHL yesterday, ending a 21-year career as one of the sport's all-time greatest skaters and its most prolific American-born scorer.

Feels like we've delivered these eulogies before -- remember the video tribute, the tears and the on-ice farewell in April, 2010? -- but Modano has meant so much to hockey in Dallas, what the heck?

On the ice, he was the coolest player you ever saw skate. Blinding speed -- with an unmatched gliding fifth gear -- with that shirttail trailing him like a jet stream. Always in the right place at the right time and usually there a half-second before anyone else.

And off the ice, he was the impossible combo platter of wildly popular and mildly humble. With good looks and great play, he was the man in Dallas in the '90s. Every guy wanted to be him; every girl wanted to do him. We went to Reunion Arena to watch him play and went to Primo's to play with him.

He'll retire with a Stanley Cup championship, a World Cup gold medal, an Olympic silver medal and the staggering scoring totals of 561 goals and 1,374 points.

Considering he was Usain Bolt on skates and Brad Pitt in bars and assuming we'll forgive him for pulling on that sweater of the Detroit %^&*$#@! Red Wings, Modano will officially retire in good standing Friday with a press conference at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel.

He'll do it as easily the all-time best Dallas Star. But what about his place alongside the local giants on Dallas' Mount Sportsmore?

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Chuck Greenberg Wants to Own Another Metroplex Sports Team: Your Dallas Stars

Categories: Dallas Stars

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Just talked to a National Hockey League source who confirmed what the News reported last week: that former Texas Rangers' CEO Chuck Greenberg is seriously interested in buying your Dallas Stars.

The Stars have been for sale since Tom Hicks' sports empire went kaput, and for a long time it appeared that Vancouver businessman Tom Gaglardi would wind up with the team. But after Gaglardi's exclusive negotiating window expired in May, he asked for and received an extension into June. After that one expired he asked for another extension and was denied, opening the door for tire-kicking, due-diligence-doing from potential buyers such as Greenberg, Mavs owner Mark Cuban, oil man Billy Quinn and minor league Allen Americans owner Doug Miller.

The source said Greenberg has filed the necessary paperwork and is already approved as the Stars' potential owner.

This, of course, would be great news for the Stars. And an ironic twist to last year's Rangers court proceedings.

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Baseball Goes Bonkers: The Top 5 Championship Celebrations in Sports

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Watched South Carolina win their second consecutive College World Series last night. Their celebration -- gloves and hats flying in a giant infield dog pile -- got me to thinking:

Does baseball over-celebrate? Or, perhaps, do they do it just right?

Think about the Mavs' reaction after a 31-year wait to win the NBA Finals. Reduced to tears of joy Dirk Nowitzki left his teammates, who hugged and smiled but otherwise were humble and civilized.

You'll see more joyous, raucous celebrations on any given night in Major League Baseball after a walk-off win.

The Rangers had a dog pile after beating the Yankees to win the ALCS. The Stars wildly threw gloves and sticks upon winning the Stanley Cup. The Cowboys lifted coach Tom Landry after a ride after Super Bowl VI.

So, what's the best way to celebrate a championship?

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Ed-die's Bet-ter ... Clap-Clap-CLAPCLAPCLAP!

Categories: Dallas Stars

We've seen the Rangers in the World Series and the Mavs win the NBA Finals, and on Tuesday I was reminded just how great a Stanley Cup run can be when former Stars' goalie Ed Belfour and current GM Joe Nieuwendyk were elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

They'll officially be inducted into the Hall November 14 in Toronto.

When Jason Terry hit the long 3-pointer over LeBron James to clinch Game 5 of The Finals it's the loudest I've ever heard American Airlines Center. But still the most frenzied building I've experienced was Reunion Arena during Game 7 of the Stars-Avalanche '99 Western Conference Finals.

From the outset the Stars were more aggressive and Belfour thoroughly outplayed Colorado counterpart Patrick Roy. During the third period fans serenaded both with "Ed-die's Better!" Still get chills.

I know, with the current state of the Stars -- a new, no-name coach, no owner and a star player in Brad Richards who'll be the most coveted player when NHL free agency commences Friday  -- we don't have much these days. But we'll always have '99.

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The Champion of Championships: Where Does the Mavs' Title Rank?

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Great. But is it the greatest?

When Dirk Nowitzki accessorized his lefty layup in the final minute with private tears of joy and accomplishment last Sunday night in Miami, the Dallas Mavericks symbolically threw Don Carter's 10-gallon hat in the ring.

After years of sheepishly having Brad Davis' No. 15, A.C. Green's Iron Man streak and a couple of old Midwest Division banners hanging from the rafters at American Airlines Center, suddenly they're included in the argument. And their point is a pretty strong one.

Of the seven major professional sports championships won in the Metroplex, where does the Mavericks' NBA Finals upset of the Heat rank?

The Cowboys have five to choose from, the Stars one and now the Mavs are boasting their fresh entry.

Follow me to fight about it...

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The Greatest Individual Playoff Performance in the History of Dallas-Fort Worth Sports. Is Dirk's Dominant?

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The Mavs can play better than they did in Game 1 of the NBA's Western Conference Finals.

For the first time in the playoffs they allowed 100 points, 112 to be exact. The Thunder grabbed 11 offensive rebounds and, according to Mavs' coach Rick Carlisle, corralled 13 of the game's 20 loose balls. In the fourth quarter it felt like Dallas was trading Dirk Nowitzki free throws for Serge Ibaka uncontested dunks.

Oklahoma City will play better in tonight's Game 2. Russell Westbrook will make more than three shots and coach Scotty Brooks will not simply be content to sit and watch his team foul Dirk one-on-one. But if certain aspects of Game 1 repeat, won't mean a damn thing what OKC does.

J.J. Barea and Jason Terry both scored 20+ plus, the first bench duo to accomplish that in a conference finals since way back in '91 with the Pistons' Vinnie Johnson and Mark Aguirre. But while Dallas' bench bewildered the Thunder, Dirk buried them with a playoff performance we've rarely -- if ever -- witnessed in Dallas-Fort Worth.

Started pondering this yesterday: Is Dirk's Game 1 the greatest individual playoff game in the history of our local sports?

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Stars Fire Coach Marc Crawford For ... Underachieving?

Categories: Dallas Stars
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​Not that we care too much, considering the Mavericks are on the verge of the playoffs and the Rangers are in panic mode, b

ut I'm not exactly sure why the Dallas Stars fired head coach Marc Crawford yesterday.

Did the Stars underachieve in 2010-11? They amassed 95 points and were in playoff contention until the final minute of the final game. Would GM Joe Nieuwendyk have retained Crawford had Dallas beaten the lowly Minnesota Wild on Sunday and sneaked into the playoffs?

"This decision didn't come today," Nieuwendyk said at a Tuesday press conference. "I have a responsibility -- even though I am proud of what we've accomplished and I am proud of our players of the way they hung together -- I have to make a decision on how we get to the next level. We do have a lot of good things in place. I think that is probably the hard thing for Marc, is that he realizes that I don't have the confidence that he is the guy, for me, to get to the next level."

I was wrong about one thing ...

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Falling Stars: Dallas Earns Its Early Vacation

Categories: Dallas Stars
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So who crumbled worse Sunday: Rory McIlroy at Augusta or your Dallas Stars in Minnesota?

Hours after McIlroy ruined a four-shot lead with an 80 at The Masters, the hockey team fanned on a tap-in and missed the NHL Playoffs.

After the Chicago Blackhawks lost at home to Detroit earlier in the day, it was all set up for the Stars. Win and they were in. Against the lowly Minnesota Wild, no less. I know it was Dallas' sixth game in nine days, but you couldn't ask for a better do-or-die opponent. The Wild entered with wins in only three of the previous 14 games.

Somehow -- for the third consecutive season -- there will be no playoff hockey in Dallas.

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