Red Wings nice Jimmy Howard article

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  1. G-man

    G-man Starter

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    Red Wings’ Jimmy Howard enjoying fatherhood and finally, NHL stardom Nicholas J. Cotsonika Yahoo Sports

    OTTAWA - Jimmy. It sounds like a kid’s name. But Jimmy Howard isn’t a kid anymore. He’s a man, and that’s why he’s the man in goal for the Detroit Red Wings. That’s why - after three years in college, after four years in the minors, in his third year as an NHL starter - he’s here for the NHL All-Star Game, a drive of slightly more than an hour from where he grew up in the border town of Ogdensburg, N.Y.

    This is a story about lineage, about one generation blending into the next, about maturing in life and in hockey. It starts with family. His full name is James Russell Howard III. His grandfather and father go by Jim, so he goes by Jimmy even at age 27. When he and wife Rachel had their first child Oct. 23, they carried on the tradition. They call their son James - or J-Four.

    Ask Jimmy Howard about his success this season, and becoming a dad is the first thing he cites. You learn patience, something that wasn’t easy while he waited so long for his chance. You gain perspective, and that’s important playing for the Wings, who expect to compete for the Stanley Cup each year - who have been so talented for so long, their fans tend to think they lose because of their goalie and win in spite of him.

    There will be bad games. Witness Wednesday night, when Howard gave up four goals in the first period and got yanked as the Wings mailed in a can’t-wait-for-the-break 7-2 loss at Montreal. But being a pro is about forgetting the bad and the good both, building a body of work.

    Howard leads the NHL with 30 wins; the Wings lead the league with 67 points. Howard has been more consistent - 2.03 goals-against average, .925 save percentage, five shutouts - at least partly because he has more balance in his life.

    After a home game, he might come down to the wives’ room at Joe Louis Arena and find the little guy waiting for him. “Everything else just sort of goes to the back burner,” he said. “I’m not thinking about hockey as much as I used to. I’m not stewing over things.”

    On the road, he might video chat with his family. Rachel might text him a photo of James. “Sometimes if Jimmy has a bad game and there’s a picture of James,” she said, “that will totally turn his mood around.”

    The story goes deeper than that, though. It goes to the Wings’ philosophy of developing players. It goes back to before he was born.

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/news;_y...howard-enjoying-fatherhood-and-stardom-012712
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  2. Nemo

    Nemo Fantasy-Football Snub Forum Donor

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