The Dallas Stars welcomed a sellout crowd to American Airlines Center Saturday night, but team owner Tom Gaglardi almost didn’t make it to his opening night bash. Attempting to ride up to the flagship level of the arena prior to the game, an elevator attendant asked to see Gaglardi’s ticket. A befuddled expression crossed his face as he sorted through the badges on his lanyard to see what might work instead. After being informed that Gaglardi was the team’s owner, the attendant eyed him with suspicion, but begrudgingly let him ride.
Gaglardi and team president Jim Lites hosted an “ownership party” on the deck of the Audi Club prior to the game. Among those attending were former Stars owner Norm Green and Don Carty, former American Airlines chairman who has just been named to the team’s new ownership advisory group. “It’s nice to see hockey back!” Carty said.
The game wasÂ the first for the Stars since the NHL lockout ended earlier this month. Lites said there was a mad scramble to get digital tickets to season ticket holders.
Led by 40-year-old Jaromir Jagr, the Stars prevailed, beating the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3.
Also at the pre-game party was Jason Farris, executive vice president of business operations and development. He mentioned that he was talking with officials at Klyde Warren Park about putting in an ice rink later this year.
Farris and his family moved to Dallas from Canada last January. He’s a former bank president and financial software company executive who’s also a certified hockey official. He’s the founder of a media company and the publisher of several hockey books. He also studied classical violin in Vancouver and produced a short film called “Chaconne in G Minor.” Farris has a master’s in science degree from MIT, a bachelor’s of arts in political science from the University of Toronto, and a bachelor’s in physics from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. So, he’s pretty much an underachiever.