Stars News

Stars By The Numbers - #37
Stars By The Numbers - #37

Brent Krahn (G) 2009-2010
Brad Lukowich (D) 2009-2012

Brent Krahn (G)
Winnipeg, Manitoba
Stars Debut: October 3, 2009 vs. San Antonio
Stars Career Stats: 163 GP, 71 Points (11 Goals, 60 Assists), 109 PIMs

Brent Krahn is the first player to wear No. 37 in Texas Stars history, but his tenure in that number lasted less than a fortnight. The Winnipeg, Manitoba native had been an AHL goaltender for six seasons prior to joining Texas and was given the No. 37 jersey for the inaugural 2009-10 Stars campaign. Krahn wore that number and was in the net for Texas’ first ever regular season game on October 2, 2009 at San Antonio, making 35 saves in a 3-2 loss to the Rampage.

However, the next day, veteran NHL defenseman Brad Lukowich was loaned to the Stars by the Vancouver Canucks. At that time Lukowich had played just under 650 career NHL games, mostly in the No. 37 jersey for various NHL teams. Krahn had 168 AHL games under his belt heading into the 2009-10 season, but just one in the NHL and, in a sign of respect to his vastly more experienced new teammate, approached Texas Stars head equipment manager Brian “Elvis” Garcia about the possibility of a number swap. Krahn offered his No. 37 to Lukowich and chose No. 41 as a replacement. The exchange required some time, because Krahn needed a No. 41 made in the specific “goalie cut” and Lukowich needed a No. 37 without that particular tailoring. So both players remained in their respective numbers for two more games.

Krahn wore No. 37 for two starts and one game as the backup to Matt Climie. When the new jerseys arrived, he pulled on the No. 41 jersey for the first time on October 15, 2009 against Grand Rapids and made his first start in the new number on October 17, 2009 at Houston. We will explore Krahn’s entire pro career in much greater detail in our final Stars by the Numbers article highlighting No. 41.

Brad Lukowich (D)
Cranbrook, British Columbia
Stars Debut: October 3, 2009 vs. San Antonio
Stars Career Stats: 163 GP, 71 Points (11 Goals, 60 Assists), 109 PIMs

Brad Lukowich was the second player in Texas Stars history to wear No. 37, but he has appeared in more games in that jersey number than anyone else. Drafted by the New York Islanders in the fourth round (90th overall) of the 1994 NHL Entry Draft, Lukowich played three seasons of major junior hockey for the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL, where he won back-to-back Memorial Cup championships in 1994 and 1995. On June 1, 1996 he was traded by the Islanders to the Dallas Stars for a third round pick in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft and that fall he made his pro debut with the Michigan K-Wings, the Stars affiliate in the IHL. During his second year with the K-Wings (1997-98) he earned his first call-up to Dallas and made his NHL debut on March 4, 1998 against the Montreal Canadiens. The next year he was recalled to the NHL in March of 1999 and played in 14 regular season games for the Stars before making his Stanley Cup Playoff debut on April 25, 1999 at Edmonton. Lukowich played in eight playoff games that year as the Stars captured the 1999 Stanley Cup Championship; he was on the roster, but did not play in enough games to get his name engraved on the Cup that year. He would not have to worry too much about that, however, as he would win his second Stanley Cup in 2004 with the Tampa Bay Lightning.  After playing his first full season in the NHL with the Stars in 1999-2000, Lukowich was traded by Dallas, along with goaltender Manny Fernandez, to the Minnesota Wild in exchange for a third round pick in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft and a fourth round pick in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft on June 12, 2000. Just 13 days later he was traded by Minnesota back to Dallas on June 25, 2000 along with third and ninth round picks in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft for Aaron Gavey, Pavel Patera and an eighth round pick in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft.

Lukowich was traded six times over the course of his 16 year pro career, which included 658 career NHL games, amassing 113 points (23 goals, 90 assists) and 369 penalty minutes, while also appearing in 71 career Stanley Cup Playoff games and two Stanley Cup championships. He was in the final year of a three-year contract, having been traded by the San Jose Sharks to the Vancouver Canucks on August 28, 2009 along with defenseman Christian Erhoff in exchange for prospects Daniel Rahimi and Patrick White, when he was loaned by Vancouver to Texas on October 3, 2009. Lukowich made his Stars AHL debut that night at Cedar Park Center wearing No. 36 and assisted on Greg Rallo’s overtime winning goal with 15 seconds left in the extra session to beat the San Antonio Rampage 3-2. As described above, his stint in the No. 36 jersey was brief and he made his debut in the No. 37 jersey with Texas on October 15, 2009 vs. Grand Rapids. Lukowich was recalled by Vancouver on January 2, 2010 and he played in 13 games for the Canucks and did not return to Texas for the rest of the season, including the run to the 2010 Calder Cup Finals.

Lukowich was a free agent that summer and signed a one-year two-way contract with Dallas on July 15, 2010. He was assigned to the AHL and named the second captain in Texas Stars history. He played in 67 games during the 2010-11 season for Texas and also appeared in five NHL games for Dallas, returning to the NHL Stars for the first time since the 2001-02 season. Even though he was already the owner of two Stanley Cup rings, Lukowich made his Calder Cup Playoff debut on April 14, 2011 at Milwaukee. He played in all six games in the series loss to the Admirals, scoring arguably his biggest goal in a Stars’ uniform on April 19, 2011 in Game 3 at Cedar Park Center. Trailing 2-1 to Milwaukee in the final minute of regulation and goaltender Richard Bachman on the bench for an extra attacker, Lukowich blasted a shot from the blue line that found its way through the traffic in front and by goaltender Jeremy Smith to tie the game with 20.8 seconds left. Travis Morin tipped in a Maxime Fortunus shot nine minutes into overtime and the Stars won 3-2 to take a 2-1 series lead; they would lose to Milwaukee in six games.

Lukowich re-signed another one-year two-way deal with Dallas on June 28, 2011 and returned to Cedar Park for his second season as Texas’ captain. (Now heading into the 2013-14 season, Lukowich remains as the longest tenured captain in franchise history). He matched his games played (67) from the previous year and fell just one assist shy of exactly equaling his goals, assists and points from the 2010-11 campaign. Lukowich currently ranks fourth on the Stars all-time list for most power play assists (28), he is fifth in assists (60), eighth in games played (163) and points (71), ninth in penalty minutes (109) and tied for 11th in power play goals (7).

After the Stars: An unrestricted free agent after the 2011-12 season, Lukowich faced a difficult situation of trying to land a new contract in the midst of the 2012 NHL Lockout. He retired from playing, having played his final pro hockey game on April 14, 2012 with the Stars against the Oklahoma City Barons. On June 25, 2013 Lukowich was officially hired by the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the WHL and will serve as an assistant coach for the junior team during the upcoming 2013-14 WHL season.

--Texas Stars--

Posted on 09/05/13

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