Wayne Gretzky Returning to the NHL?

Chris ReadContributor IApril 5, 2010

GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 28:  Head Coach Wayne Gretzky of the Phoenix Coyotes manages his team from behind the bench during his game against the St. Louis Blues on February 28, 2009 at the Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

According to a report in the Dallas Observer , Wayne Gretzky, along with Brett Hull and Mike Modano, have teamed up to place a bid to purchase the Dallas Stars.

The report notes that although nothing is finalized, the trio have definitely "gone past kicking the tires."

The news seems to make sense for Hull, who is the Stars' executive vice president and Modano, who is the Stars franchise leader in virtually every offensive category, and is set to retire at season's end.

Gretzky, however, is a different story. 

He sold his minority stake in the Phoenix Coyotes when the NHL purchased the franchise following the team's bankruptcy and also stepped down as the team's head coach.

The "Great One" had also made comments during the Olympics that had most believing his return to hockey could be a long way away. 

After what went down in Phoenix, who could blame him.

Current owner Tom Hicks, who also owns shares in English Premier League giant Liverpool as well as Major League Baseball's Texas Rangers, has recently hired Galatioto Sports Partners in an attempt to find new owners for the Stars.

The Observer also suggests that the proceedings will not begin until Hicks is able to complete the sale of the Texas Rangers to incoming owner Chuck Greenberg.  That deal is expected to be finalized in mid-April.

If this deal were to go through, it could only mean good news for the NHL.  While most owners are in it for the hobby of owning a franchise, it will benefit the league to have real hockey guys running the show. 

It would also bring the game's greatest player, Gretzky, back into the spotlight.

This time for the right reasons. 

If the NHL knows whats good for them, they will do everything in their power to make sure this deal gets done.

On top of that, the ever vocal Brett Hull as an owner brings to mind images of Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban running up and down the court yelling at officials and players.  It may sound like a P/R nightmare, but the NHL could use the press to shake off the head shot debacle...and the Coyotes mess...and the expansion talk, etc.

I'm not a Dallas Stars fan, but I find it hard to see a downside in having people who know what it takes to win, running your franchise. 

And it's not like Gretzky will be the coach...we hope!

The only thing that may be stopping these three from purchasing the Stars is the current NHL standings.  Knowing that the Coyotes are playing so well and are in dire need of an actual owner, would at least garner my interest.

On second thought, just stick with the Stars Wayne.