Fortune 500 for Sheffield Steelers' 'snotty-nosed kid'
Robert Dowd will reach a milestone that he and most others may have overlooked when he dons his Sheffield Steelers' shirt on Sunday.
When Dowd lines up at the Arena against Cardiff Devils in the regular EIHL season opener it will be the 500th League game that he will have graced.
"Some going for a snotty-nosed kid from Billingham," said the Great Britain winger, who first arrived on the Steeler scene back in 2006.
Dowd said back in those days he might have had "rose-tinted vision" which might have envisaged him one day reaching that total.
"It actually coming to fruition and happening is a completely different story," he said.
Dowd, who scored in both pre-season games against Nottingham Panthers last weekend, stressed that his team was six bodies short in the line-up.
But when all the team is available for selection, he expects them to be a very fast-paced, offensively-threatening side.
"Once everybody gets in, I think we are going to be a very good hockey team and I am looking forward to playing some fun, offensive hockey.
"I think we are going to be a very fast team. I think we are going to play on the front foot and get after teams."
It should be "fun to play and fun to watch," he said.
There were glimpses of that speed last weekend, with Jonathan Phillips, Evan Mosey and Martin Latal, amongst others, showing tremendous pace.
Dowd has been particularly impressed with utility man Mosey, saying: "He is very fast, he skates exceptionally well.
"The frustrating thing about playing against him is that he plays in many different positions. So to have him on our team is fantastic.
"He doesn't do just a half job, he is excellent in any given position.
"He's rapid, very quick, on open ice as quick as Jonna I would say. I think Jonna is very fast off the mark but once Mosey gets wheeling he's very quick too.
"Speed kills nowadays and he's a very good skater."
Dowd, 33, said it was always "interesting" to blood new members of the squad at Manchester Storm's comparatively small rink - the team plays there in the Challenge Cup on Saturday.
Storm will have plenty to avenge in that meeting.
The last time they locked horns was in the mini-series, the pair pitted against each other in the play-off semi-finals.
Over two legs, Steelers ran out 13-7 aggregate winners.
Storm ended their pre-season on a high on Wednesday night with a 5-4 win over Coventry Blaze.