The Winnipeg Jets will now have a father-son duo on the roster for the 2020-21 season. On Monday morning, the team announced that 55-year-old Dave Lowry would be jumping behind the bench as the team’s newest assistant coach following one year with the Western Hockey League’s Brandon Wheat Kings.
Lowry will look to bring his wealth of experience to a coaching staff that saw longtime assistant coach Todd Woodcroft leave for the University of Vermont near the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Dave will slot in alongside head coach Paul Maurice and assistants Charlie Huddy and Jamie Kompon on the bench.
“I’m grateful for my time in Brandon and I really believe I’m leaving a team that has a chance to win,” said Lowry in a Wheat Kings press release. “I’m excited for the Wheat Kings franchise moving forward and I know with the players who are returning, they know how to win.”
Some may recall Lowry from his time behind the bench for Team Canada at the 2016 IIHF World Juniors in Finland. Others may know the 55-year-old as the father of current Winnipeg Jets’ centreman Adam Lowry. Despite whichever way his name ‘rings a bell’, Lowry’s track record speaks for itself as a journeyman NHL pro-turned coach.
“My dad has been extremely important to me,” Adam Lowry earlier told Game On. “He and my mom have been wonderful role models for me. The way he was able to handle himself when he was in and out of the lineup really taught me a thing or two. He always stayed ready and prepared to hear his name called. He’d always get home late, but he’d be up to take us to school in the morning, and he’d spend as much time with us as he could when home. My mom was kind of a single mom for half of the year, every year. With dad on the road she had to coordinate four kids and our crazy busy schedules. She would always be racing around from one rink to another; it was a hectic household, but my parents always made time for us and support us in everything.”
Lowry, a left-winger out of Sudbury, ON. spent his professional career with five NHL teams, beginning with the Vancouver, then moving on to play for the St. Louis Blues, Florida Panthers, San Jose Sharks before finishing his career on the Calgary Flames. In 1084 regular season NHL games, Lowry had 164 goals, 351 points and 1,191 penalty minutes, to go along with 16 goals, 36 points and 181 penalty minutes in 111 postseason games.
“My dad was pretty instrumental in my life as a kid,” Adam said of growing up watching his dad. “Just to see how he worked, how he prepared himself, and the effort he took to help him be a pro for so long. Obviously hockey was important to him, and us. But at the same time, it wasn’t like he was pushing myself or my siblings into sports, it was always about following our passions. My dad coached our baseball teams more than he coached my siblings’ hockey teams. We spent more time on the baseball diamond together than the ice, that’s for sure.”
Following his retirement in 2004, Lowry took one season off before joining the Western Hockey League’s Calgary Hitmen as an Assistant Coach. He spent the next seven seasons in Calgary, working for both the Hitmen and Flames, before moving on to Coach the Victoria Royals from 2012-17. Lowry had been serving as an Assistant Coach with the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons. Lowry spent the 2019-20 season as the Brandon Wheat Kings’ ‘new coach’, to which the team made the postseason on a 35-22-6 record, in his introduction to Manitoba.
“Dave brings a tremendous amount of experience to our coaching staff in a variety of different areas,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice in a team-issued release. “First of all, his success working with young players in their development can’t be denied as he had an excellent season last year in Brandon and has coached the country’s top junior players. He has worked in all aspects of special teams during his time as an NHL assistant coach, and in fact was part of a Los Angeles Kings team that saw a dramatic improvement of 25 goals at 5-on-5 in his first year there. We’re very excited to bring Dave on-board and join our staff.”