Robert Dowd feels he is back at home now he’s been reunited with his regular linemates - but accepts this season has not been one to remember, so far.
The winger has been out with a medial collateral ligament injury for weeks but returned for Sheffield Steelers at Braehead Clan last weekend. He didn’t get a lot of ice time in the first two periods, where he paired up with Tim Wallace and Levi Nelson. But coach Paul Thompson, looking for a spark in his goal-challenged lines, started the third period with Dowd back on his traditional unit with Andreas Valdix and Nelson.
“It felt like we clicked right back” said Dowd. “I had a bit of tenderness in the leg, but no real adverse effects.
“It has been frustrating, so after the game I was as happy as I was going to be, considering the result (2-5 defeat.)”
Steelers had outshot Clan 42-29 but couldn’t execute.
“We had some good chances that we didn’t take and their goalie stood on his head. The empty net goal at the end made it an absurd scoreline and while it was good to be back that alone took the wind out of my sails.”
Dowd hopes to have better luck this weekend, at Nottingham Panthers and then at home to Cardiff Devils.
“This has not been the season we had expected it to be” he said. “We have been inconsistent. Some weeks we have been excellent and then others we have dropped off. The League may be out of reach for us but we have to have momentum going into the Play Offs and we have to make a statement” he said.
“We have to put doubts in other teams’ minds. Nottingham have been similar to us, playing well in patches. They had a good start but then hit some speed bumps. But they have picked up and always build well towards the Play Offs.”