When word came down that Jeff Cogen, till today the president of Your Dallas Stars since 2007 and before that president and chief operation officer of Your Texas Rangers, was decamping for the Nashville Predators, where he'll be chief executive officer, I called his cell hoping that maybe he'd find time to talk about the why-come. Between press conferences and radio interviews, he called back and had just enough time to answer three questions about his departure.
Folks with whom I've spoken in the Stars organization today said they didn't see this coming. Your contract expired at the end of June -- how long have you known you were leaving Dallas?
When my contract wasn't extended, that was a pretty good sign. And I don't mean that negatively. They're in the middle of a sale, and why encumber a new owner with my salary? I understand that. But I have a responsibility to my family too. And Nashville's a tremendous market and a great hockey town, and I am excited about the opportunity. It's as much an opportunity as it is a resolution to a problem.
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When you told Stars higher-ups you were leaving, did they try to keep you, despite the ownership issues?
When you look back at your tenures with the Rangers and Stars, what will you remember most? What are you most proud of?
I think the thing I am proudest of are the people. Dan Fine [senior vice president of sales and services] is the poster child. He never sold a ticket in his life, and now he's selling 450,000. [Executive vice president of sales and marketing] Geoff Moore, [Rangers spokesman] John Blake, Chuck Morgan and on and on -- the people. The people. Developing people that hopefully, from a management style, that made them a little better. That's the answer to that question. What will I remember most? The same answer.