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Modano was drafted first overall by the North Stars in 1988, and after the team moved to Texas he helped the Stars win the Stanley Cup in 1999.Modano played his final NHL season with his hometown team, the Detroit Red Wings.Modano was the second American to be selected first overall in the draft, after Brian Lawton in 1983; since then Bryan Berard (1995), Rick Di Pietro (2000), Erik Johnson (2006), Patrick Kane (2007), and Auston Matthews (2016) have also been taken first overall.
Modano would sign a five-year contract extension with Dallas on August 5, 2005.Despite that, the Stars failed to qualify for the 1996 Stanley Cup Playoffs, and Gainey stepped down as head coach, while remaining GM.Ken Hitchcock was hired on January 8, 1996 as Dallas' coach, installing a defensive-minded system while requesting Modano to concentrate on his offense and using him more routinely - from the 15–18 minutes under Gainey, Modano routinely played twenty-five minutes with Hitchcock.Modano averaged 78 points per season from 1996–2002, and was also one of the NHL's top forwards in plus/minus over that span (his 43 in 1997 was second only to John Le Clair's 44 mark). Selke Trophy (2001), and the Lady Byng Trophy (2003).Modano's career high for points in a game is six (2–4–6) against the Anaheim Ducks, and he has seven career hat tricks. As the long-time face of the Dallas franchise, he has recorded over 1,000 NHL points and became the captain of the Stars in 2003.
He controversially lost to 31-year-old Sergei Makarov, who had already played professionally in the Soviet Championship League for over 12 years; this led to an age barrier of 26 for Calder candidates from the following year to the present.