’Dub Weekly: Lowry thrilled to play for dad and against him

 

Swift Current power forward Adam played in Super Series for Dave and will play against him on roadie to Victoria

 
 
 
 
Adam Lowry, in white, seen in action against the Saskatoon Blades during a 2010 game for the Swift Current Broncos, is one of the Western Hockey League’s grittiest players.
 

Adam Lowry, in white, seen in action against the Saskatoon Blades during a 2010 game for the Swift Current Broncos, is one of the Western Hockey League’s grittiest players.

Photograph by: Gord Waldner, The Star Phoenix

Adam Lowry had to go back — way back — to figure out when the last time his dad stood behind him on the bench, yelling in his ear.

“Peewee,” said the six-foot-five, 201-pound chip off the ol’ block. “I think.”

He’s 19 now, turning 20 next spring, so that would have made it 2004-05 — a season after Dave Lowry had been to the Stanley Cup finals as a player with the Calgary Flames, the end stop to his 19-year National Hockey League career, and a few seasons before he’d be named head coach of the Calgary Hitmen, his first head coaching gig in the Western Hockey League.

But for the recent Subway Super Series, the annual battle between the Russian junior squad and the Canadian Hockey League, father and son were reunited; Dave, the head coach of the Victoria Royals and an assistant with Team WHL, and Adam, captain of the Swift Current Broncos and a forward on Team WHL.

Same last name, same bench.

“Something special,” agreed Adam, after Sunday’s stop the Scotiabank Saddledome to face his dad’s old team in his dad’s old barn. “It was fairly business-like, just like any other coach. It was nice I had him back there. Just having him on the same bench, pulling for the same thing, it was something I was excited to be a part of.

“When we were both named to it, it was something we were very proud of and looking forward to it.”

A neat experience and definitely worth a picture.

Because the whole family knows that next time father and son meet — Dec. 8 at Victoria’s Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre, Royals vs. Broncos — the stakes will be different than those of the Subway Super Series.

Likely, Momma Elaine/Mrs. Lowry is already dreading that day.

“I think that is going to be the first time I’ve actually played against my dad,” said Adam with a grin. “I’m looking forward to that. His first year with the Flames (as an assistant, the position Dave held from 2009 until his contract expired in the spring) was my first year with Swift Current, so I just missed him.

“It’s almost easier he’s in the other conference so we don’t have to face-off too often. I know that would be pretty stressful on my mom. She’s probably going to hope (the game between Swift Current and Victoria) goes to a shootout.”

Yet the meeting hardly comes as a surprise.

Both he and his brother Joel, a Los Angeles Kings draft pick and forward for Cornell University, have naturally drawn from their dad’s experiences — good and bad — and, like many raised in the game, have applied the lessons learned. Following dad’s footsteps was inevitable. So was an eventual head-to-head clash when Dave took over the Royals this past summer.

But, the truth is, having a WHL coach as a father while you’re an elite player in the same league isn’t so bad.

“Anytime, I can call him and get advice from him,” said Adam, a third-round selection of the Winnipeg Jets. “He knows how to deal with junior players. I think he knows, first-hand, the struggles or ups and downs or sometimes how we can pout.

“I think he knows how to deal with that and I think it’s allowed me to further my game.”

For Adam, specifically, his game is part skill, part hard work — and, apparently, part irritating.

Take a game in Cranbrook earlier this year against the Kootenay Ice. Fans there, typically, give opposing teams polite applause, but when Lowry’s name was announced, the boo birds came out in full-force.

He later expressed his dismay on Twitter ( “I’m not sure the stat on this, but I feel like I may be the first player ever booed by the Kootenay Ice fans in the starting lineup #ouch.”

However, unapologetically and admittedly, his game isn’t exactly hard to ignore.

“Anytime I can be hard on other team’s players, I’m going to be,” said Lowry, who has a two fights and a team-leading 26 points (10 goals, 16 assists) in 25 games this year. “I know I get under the skin of a lot of players on other teams. I don’t know if that’s just the way I play or they are just trying to get me off my game. I tend to draw the ire of a few other teams players each night.

“But I think for me to be successful, I have to play hard and other players aren’t going to necessarily like how I play.”

ICE CHIPS . . .

Colin Smith of the Kamloops Blazers picked up the WHL player of the week nod with a goal, six assists, and a plus-five rating in two games over the weekend.

It was the centreman’s second time earning the award in 2012-13 while four out of nine of the weekly recognitions have gone to the hotshot Blazers.

Smith’s linemate J.C. Lipon won it back-to-back weeks at the beginning of October.

Lipon leads the Blazers and the WHL with 21 goals and 29 assists in 25 games, scoring at a 2.00 points-per-game clip.

Smith, meanwhile, has 16 goals and 33 assists in 25 games and isn’t far behind scoring at a 1.96 PPG rate at No. 2.

Kamloops is still the No. 1 team in the league with a 19-5-0-1 record, although the group is 5-5-0-0 in the past 10 games. Portland (17-4-1-0) has the second-best record in the league while Tri-City (15-7-1-1) and Prince Albert (15-7-0-2) each have 32 points.

After Sunday’s 4-2 win over the visiting Swift Current Broncos, Calgary (14-5-1-2) has 31 and sit No. 2 in the WHL’s Eastern Conference behind the Raiders.

THEY SAID IT

“It’s a little frustrating. I’m just praying to the hockey gods.”

- Edmonton Oil Kings forward Curtis Lazar on his nine-game scoring slump

“Now that was one lame SO attempt by Yakupov. Oy. Shinkaruk shows him how to do it. Oiler fans gotta be wondering watching Yakupov tonite – is that all there is?”

- Damien Cox, Toronto Star columnist via Twitter (@DamoSpin), covering the Subway Super Series in Vancouver. Team WHL won 1-0 over the Russians in a shootout

“How does my muzzie look in black?”

- Moose Jaw Warriors Morgan Rielly to teammate Sam Fioretti, referring to his Movember moustache and black Warriors jersey. The Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick was mic’ed up before Sportsnet’s broadcast of the first game of the Subway Super Series between Team WHL and the Russian junior team.

“Wow these WHL kids are skilled #Subwayseries.”

- former Calgary Hitmen captain Karl Alzner via Twitter (@karlalzner)

“Jesse Wallin will be back behind a #WHL bench very soon. Interested to see how long ‘interim’ tag will last for Brent Sutter.”

- Global Calgary sports anchor Brendan Parker via Twitter (@globalparker). Former Calgary Flames head coach and Red Deer Rebels owner/general manager Brent Sutter assumed coaching duties after firing Jesse Wallin last week

kodland@calgaryherald.com

Follow on Twitter/KristenOdlandCH

 
 
 
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Adam Lowry, in white, seen in action against the Saskatoon Blades during a 2010 game for the Swift Current Broncos, is one of the Western Hockey League’s grittiest players.
 

Adam Lowry, in white, seen in action against the Saskatoon Blades during a 2010 game for the Swift Current Broncos, is one of the Western Hockey League’s grittiest players.

Photograph by: Gord Waldner, The Star Phoenix

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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