ILess than four minutes were played in Nuremberg on Tuesday evening, as Löwen striker Carter Rowney put his body in the limelight, shielded the puck from the defender and scored to make it 1-0. Despite Frankfurt’s 2-3 defeat in the German Ice Hockey League (DEL), the Hessians have gained a lot of quality with Rowney.
Less than three weeks ago, the Canadian was still sitting near Detroit with his wife, two children and a dog. “In the end I had two days to pack all my stuff,” Rowney told the FAZ. Sports director Franz-David Fritzmeier had announced that he would still be active on the transfer market before the start of the season. In the week before the first DEL game, Rowney, who played in the National Hockey League (NHL) for Anaheim, Pittsburgh and most recently with the Detroit Red Wings, was introduced in Frankfurt.
Get out of the glittering North American ice hockey world and into training in the less than glamorous ice rink. “I found out about the league. Ice hockey is played in Germany a bit like in North America,” says Rowney. He hadn’t had any contact with Germany before, only a few former teammates told him about his new club.
The Lions are now ninth in the table with seven points from five games. Rowney’s on the ice has played a significant role in the solid start to the season. Because the striker works unpretentiously on the entire ice surface, even deep in his own half. His six assists in five games show he has an eye for his team-mates.
It’s no surprise to the sports director that Rowney is free of airs and graces. “Carter Rowney didn’t play in the NHL from a young age. He had to work his way up,” says Fritzmeier. It wasn’t until 2016, at the age of 27, that the Canadian striker played his first games in the NHL. The appreciation is mutual. “The art of how he and the fans get excited about the club drew me to Frankfurt,” says Rowney. On Friday evening (7.30 p.m.) the Löwen will play EHC Red Bull Munich. For a former NHL player like Rowney, that’s a normal game rhythm.