I was fortunate enough to be in Vancouver when the Tri-City Americans won their first Western Conference title on April 25, 2010.
Drew Owsley watched from his own crease, a full sheet of ice away from the final faceoff of the game with less than a second on the clock. The smallest man on the ice was biggest Giants killer of them all in a 5-2 victory. Drew was named the Western Conference Finals MVP, and he deserved every vote bestowed upon him.
Many, including myself, were skeptical when Drew was named the Americans starter that season. He'd had little ice time the year before behind Chet Pickard, but it didn't take long for him to gobble up pucks and win over the fans.
In his first season as a starter, he was 33-11-1-1 during the regular season with a sterling .918 save percentage, a 2.51 goals against average and four shutouts.
He was just as impressive last season, but the Americans fell short in the playoffs to rival Spokane in the second round.
Thursday, Ams GM Bob Tory traded Drew to the Prince George Cougars. It was a move that had to be made. With six overage players on the roster, somebody had to go. Two more still have to find new homes before the Oct. 13 overage deadline. Whoever those players are — minus Matt MacKenzie — they also were part of the Ams Western Conference title team.
Tri-City's loss is Prince George's gain. Ams fans will get to see Drew play at Toyota Center in March, but it just won't be the same.