He’s done it before to a Dallas area team. Now, owner Tom Hicks is at it again as he looks to destroy the proud and successful Dallas Stars.
After a frugal decade by Hicks prevented the Texas Rangers from contending for an AL pennant, the team was dragged through a time consuming and drama-filled bankruptcy process. After MLB stepped in to control the finances of the team, the Rangers were eventually sold to a group led by Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan.
As the Stars enter the offseason without a playoff appearance for the third consecutive year, it’s clear that the team is headed down a similarly gloomy path. Less than two months after the Stars season ended, the team announced that they would no longer be able to retain their one and only true star, center Brad Richards.
“There’s really not any point because we know that he is not going to sign without an owner,” said Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk.
In an interview with ESPN.com’s Pierre LeBrun, Richards spoke about the Stars’ situation.
"Obviously I have to move on," Richards said. "I had fun in Dallas and I like the city. But the (ownership) situation is unclear so I really didn’t have a chance to stay there.”
On Monday, ESPNDallas.com reported that the Stars are expected to name Glen Gulutzan as the new head coach by the end of the week. Gulutzan comes to Dallas after a successful stint managing the Texas Stars of the AHL for the past two seasons. He also had success as the head coach of the Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL over six seasons, compiling a record of 254-124-55.
But the fact remains; he has never experienced the NHL as a player or coach. The team will sell him as an energetic, successful, and young coach who is a perfect fit for a young and developing roster. But others will see it for what it is…an inexpensive option.
Rumors have swirled over the sale of the Stars. But as Hicks proved before, months will likely pass before any resolution is reached.
But there is hope for the Stars after all…The Rangers got out from under Hicks and promptly reached the World Series. But with the damage Hicks is causing now, the Stars should just hope for the former.