I’ve missed out on a lot of today’s Mike Modano news as I’ve been running around for family events all day but one thing jumped out at me that really has very little to do with him.
With his usual #9 out of circulation, Modano is leaning towards becoming the first Red Wing to wear #90 (in fact, it was on the jersey he donned at today’s press conference). That wasn’t his first choice, however.
“I wanted No. 6, but they told me about Larry Aurie,” said Modano, referring to Aurie, who played between 1927-39, and had his number retired by former Wings owner James Norris. “I thought it would be easy to just flip 9 to 6,” Modano said. “I would have loved 6, but maybe 90.”
If possibly the greatest American hockey player in history can’t have #6, then it’s time to get that number into the rafters.
The Ilitch family doesn’t even make excuses for Larry Aurie to not be recognized with a banner anymore. They used to say it was because he’s not in the Hockey Hall of Fame but then Steve Yzerman’s number was raised before his HHOF induction, voiding that line of reasoning.
Aurie was the team’s first star, their leader before they were even called the Red Wings. James Norris removed his number from circulation and it’s time that this team gave that honor the same weight as it’s given to the stars of the ’50s and today.