Howden makes return
Tribe captain back on ice after missing couple of weeks with upper-body injury
smiles on the kids’ faces.”
That popularity comes from a very valid place — not only has Howden played with the team the past four seasons, he’s emerged as one of the top players in the Western Hockey League with 95 goals and 216 points in 215 career games. That includes the 10 goals and 24 points he’s racked up in 16 games this season.
In addition, he’s become one of the faces of the franchise through his constant work in the community. As a result, getting recognized on the street is a common occurrence for players like himself and his fellow multiple-year veterans.
“It’s pretty cool. Our team are role models in this town, we’re well known and it’s really fun to go around town and see the odd kid or fan recognize me,” Howden said. “It’s pretty cool that the town follows the team that much that they recognize us.”
That Howden was back in practice on Thursday was especially positive given he returned from injury during Tuesday’s contest against the Saskatoon Blades. The upperbody ailment occurred when Howden took a hard hit during the Canada-Russia Series game at Mosaic Place on Nov. 6.
“It’s never fun to be on the sidelines and when you’re unable to be in that same setting as them, it’s really upsetting,” Howden said. “So you try to do everything you can to try and get back into the line-up.”
The injury bug has been a consistent issue over the last month, with several of the team’s top players finding themselves sidelined for multiple games, with others battling through minor injuries just to stay in the line-up
It’s something general Alan Millar acknowledged during the press conference announcing the Warriors agreement with Mosaic Place earlier Thursday.
“I don’t know if I can truthfully sit here and tell you I’d thought we’d be 19 and 5, especially with the injuries we had,” Millar said. “(Standout defenceman) Josh Brook hasn’t played a game, Brett Howden has missed eight of our first 24 games and as you know, we’ve been really banged up on the back end. We just came through a stretch of seven games in 12 days with a lot of injuries and came up six and one.
“We’re pleased with where we’re at, we have a process that we built on from last year in December in a seven game series lost to Swift Current.”
That process continues Saturday as the Warriors look to win their fourth game in a row and ninth of their past 10 when they host the Prince Albert Raiders (7 p.m., Mosaic Place).
“I’m really excited to get going this weekend again,” Howden said. “We have a lot to improve from the Saskatoon game, I know we came out with the win but that’s not how we want to play. So we’ll be better and hopefully come out with another win.”