Steve Downie

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For those of a similar name, see Stephen Downey (disambiguation).
Steve Downie
Steve Downie Lightning3 2012-02-12.JPG
Downie with the Lightning in 2012.
Born (1987-04-03) April 3, 1987 (age 27)
Newmarket, ON, CAN
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 191 lb (87 kg; 13 st 9 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Right
NHL team
Former teams
Pittsburgh Penguins
Philadelphia Flyers
Tampa Bay Lightning
Colorado Avalanche
National team  Canada
NHL Draft 29th overall, 2005
Philadelphia Flyers
Playing career 2007–present

Steve Downie (born April 3, 1987) is a Canadian professional ice hockey player currently playing for the Pittsburgh Penguins in the National Hockey League. He has also played for the Philadelphia Flyers, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Colorado Avalanche.

Playing career[edit]

Downie grew up in Holland Landing, Ontario, the younger son of John and Anne Downie. He has a brother, Greg. He attended Sacred Heart High School in Newmarket, playing hockey for the York-Simcoe Express AAA organization of the OMHA. He also attended St. Joseph's Catholic High School in Windsor, Ontario in 2004. Downie led his Express Bantam team to the All-Ontario AAA Championship in April 2002. He was drafted in the 1st round (16th overall) by the Windsor Spitfires in the 2003 OHL Priority Selection.

Junior[edit]

Downie was selected in the first round, 29th overall, in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft by the Philadelphia Flyers. Not long after being drafted, Downie was suspended for five games early in the 2005–06 OHL season for an on-ice altercation with teammate Akim Aliu. During a practice on September 28, 2005, Downie blindly cross-checked Aliu in the face without warning, knocking out 3 of his teeth, and then proceeded to fight his younger teammate.[1] The incident stemmed from 16-year-old Aliu's refusal to take part in a hazing incident, where he would have been forced to stand naked in a cramped bus bathroom with other rookies. The team suspended Downie for five games and Aliu for one, and Downie was told to undergo professional counseling. Head coach Moe Mantha, Jr. was suspended by the OHL and later fired by the team, and the team was fined $35,000 by the OHL.[2] Downie left the team, requesting a trade, and was eventually traded from the Windsor Spitfires, going to the Peterborough Petes in exchange for Peter Aston.[3]

Brent Sutter named Downie to the Canadian World Junior Team for the 2006 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships. He made a name for himself in Vancouver where he was a contributor to Canada’s gold medal-winning effort, scoring two goals and four assists in six games and being named to the all-tournament team.[4]

On May 30, 2006, the Philadelphia Flyers announced that they had signed Downie to a three-year entry-level contract. “It is unbelievable,” said Downie in a Flyers press release. “[Signing with the Flyers] was one of the goals that I had set at the beginning of the year and I am just very thankful for this chance. I’m a gritty, physical player and I also am an offensive player as well.”[5]

After attending Flyers' training camp in the fall and playing in several pre-season games, the club returned Downie to Peterborough. Downie returned to the international stage yet again in December 2006. He participated at the 2007 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships in Leksand and Mora, Sweden. On January 5, 2007, Team Canada won the gold medal for the first time on European ice since 1997, with a 4–2 defeat over Team Russia. Throughout the whole tournament, though, Downie was involved in trade rumors. On January 8, 2007, Downie was traded to Kitchener in exchange for Yves Bastien, the Rangers' second-round picks in the 2007 and 2008 OHL Priority Selections, as well as the 2007 second-round pick of the Brampton Battalion.[6]

Professional[edit]

In his first full professional season in 2007–08, Downie's professional career got off to an inauspicious start during a preseason game against the Ottawa Senators on September 25, 2007. He was involved in an incident in which he checked unsuspecting left winger Dean McAmmond into the boards, while his feet were off the ice.[7] Due to the extent of McAmmond's injury and having left his skates during the hit, Downie was suspended by the NHL for 20 games three days later for deliberate injury to McAmmond, as the NHL were cracking down on any play resulting in a head injury. To date, it is the fifth longest suspension given by the league.[8] One day after the NHL suspension was announced, the Flyers announced they had sent Downie down to the team's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms. Per AHL by-laws, Downie was considered automatically ineligible to play pending a review by the AHL (as the AHL honors NHL suspensions). AHL President David Andrews suspended Downie for the first month of the AHL season as a result of the injuries to McAmmond.[9]

After serving his suspension in the AHL, Downie made his long awaited National Hockey League debut with the Flyers on December 5, 2007, against the Minnesota Wild. He scored his first NHL goal against Andrew Raycroft of the Toronto Maple Leafs on January 5, 2008. During the game, Downie got into a scuffle with Leafs forward Jason Blake. While the linesmen were attempting to keep them apart, Downie got his left arm loose and sucker-punched Blake in the left eye while Blake's arms and hands were still tied up by the other linesman.[10] During a game against the New York Rangers on February 9, 2008, Downie was hip-checked by Rangers defenseman Fedor Tyutin, and his skate hit linesman Pat Dapuzzo in the face. Dapuzzo required 60 stitches to reattach his nose, suffered 10 facial fractures and was forced to retire. In game three of the Eastern Conference Finals on May 13, 2008, Downie hit Petr Sykora as the play ended on Ryan Malone's goal that gave Pittsburgh a 3-1 lead. Sykora did not have the puck when Downie hit him.[11]

Steve Downie with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2010.

In the following season in 2008–09, Downie initially made the Flyers opening night roster, before being later demoted to Phantoms. On November 7, 2008, Downie was traded by the Flyers to the Tampa Bay Lightning along with Steve Eminger for defenceman Matt Carle. He was immediately assigned to AHL affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, before he was recalled and made his Lightning debut in a 4-2 defeat against the Minnesota Wild on November 28, 2008.[12] Downie continued to split the season between Norfolk and Tampa Bay and his reputation for unnecessary aggressive behaviour was further developed on February 28, 2009, after he slashed a linesman, Mike Hamilton, in the shin following a controversial empty-net goal in a game against the Hershey Bears, receiving a game misconduct for physical abuse of an official. Under AHL rules, the penalty carried an automatic 20-game suspension, which was Downie's second lengthy suspension.[13][14] He would later made his return in the season finale game for the Lightning.

In the 2009–10 season, with the intention to curb his on-ice aggression positively, whilst under the influence of former agitator and Lightning head coach Rick Tocchet, Downie played his first full season in the NHL and recorded a career high 22 goals and 46 points. Downie also became the first player since Theo Fleury in 2002, to notch 20 goals and over 200 penalty minutes in a single season.[15]

In March 2010, Downie was fined for a hit on Sidney Crosby. Downie stated that Colin Campbell, league disciplinarian, told him it was a "dangerous play".[16] Downie finished his first full season with 46 points in 79 games. After a successful season he was selected to participate in the 2010 World Championships.[17]

Prior to the 2010–11 season, on August 25, 2010, Downie re-signed with the Lightning on a two-year contract worth $3.7 million.[18] Having established himself offensively with Tampa, Downie's versatility and checking game helped provide 32 points in 57 games, whilst finishing with 171 penalty minutes to place 10th in the league. In contributing to the Lightning's return to the playoffs, Downie led the team in Plus/minus and finished fourth in team scoring with 14 points, as the Lightning reached the Eastern Conference Finals.

At the commencement of the 2011–12 season, Downie appeared in his 200th career NHL game against the Washington Capitals on October 10, 2011.[19] He later set a Lightning franchise record for two quickest goals by an individual, by scoring two goals in the span of 11 seconds, against the Pittsburgh Penguins on February 12, 2012.[20] Whilst in the final year of his contract and with the Lightning under-performing, Downie was traded to the Colorado Avalanche for defenceman Kyle Quincey, who was traded later that same day to the Detroit Red Wings, on February 21, 2012.[21] The next day he made his Avalanche debut in a 4-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings.[22] Immediately placed on the Avalanche top line alongside, Ryan O'Reilly and Gabriel Landeskog, Downie provided instant success and coincidentally became the first Avalanche player since Theo Fleury in 1999, to score 7 points in his first 4 games with the club.[23] Downie continued to score 13 points in 20 games whilst hampered by a lingering shoulder injury as the Avalanche failed to qualify for the playoffs. He achieved a career high combined 27 assists for the season, before he was shut down to endure off-season surgery to repair a separated shoulder.[24]

On June 29, 2012, the Avalanche re-signed Downie to a two-year deal worth $5.3 million.[25] Having used the NHL lockout to recuperate from off-season surgery, Downie entered the shortened 2012–13 season in full health, only to suffer a season ending knee injury in just his second game. He was injured trying to hit Davis Drewiske of the Los Angeles Kings, requiring surgery to repair a torn ACL in his right knee.[26]

On October 31, 2013, after producing 7 points in 11 games with the Avalanche, Downie was surprisingly traded back to the Philadelphia Flyers for Maxime Talbot.

On July 2, 2014, Downie was signed as a free agent by the Pittsburgh Penguins to a one year, $1 million contract.[27]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2002–03 York-Simcoe Express OMHA 14 5 13 18 27
2002–03 Aurora Tigers OPJHL 34 12 13 25 55
2003–04 Windsor Spitfires OHL 49 7 9 16 90 4 0 1 1 27
2004–05 Windsor Spitfires OHL 61 21 52 73 179 11 4 5 9 49
2005–06 Windsor Spitfires OHL 1 3 0 3 4
2005–06 Peterborough Petes OHL 34 16 34 50 109 19 6 15 21 38
2006–07 Peterborough Petes OHL 28 23 36 59 92
2006–07 Kitchener Rangers OHL 17 12 21 33 32 9 8 14 22 15
2006–07 Philadelphia Phantoms AHL 1 0 0 0 0
2007–08 Philadelphia Phantoms AHL 21 5 12 17 114
2007–08 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 32 6 6 12 73 6 0 1 1 10
2008–09 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 6 0 0 0 11
2008–09 Philadelphia Phantoms AHL 4 1 7 8 23
2008–09 Norfolk Admirals AHL 23 8 17 25 107
2008–09 Tampa Bay Lightning NHL 23 3 3 6 54
2009–10 Tampa Bay Lightning NHL 79 22 24 46 208
2010–11 Tampa Bay Lightning NHL 57 10 22 32 171 17 2 12 14 40
2011–12 Tampa Bay Lightning NHL 55 12 16 28 121
2011–12 Colorado Avalanche NHL 20 2 11 13 16
2012–13 Colorado Avalanche NHL 2 0 1 1 6
2013–14 Colorado Avalanche NHL 11 1 6 7 36
2013–14 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 51 3 14 17 70
NHL totals 336 59 103 162 766 23 2 13 15 50
Medal record
Competitor for  Canada
World Junior Championships
Gold 2007 Sweden
Gold 2006 Canada

International[edit]

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2004 Ontario U17 6 3 3 6 8
2006 Canada WJC 6 2 4 6 16
2007 Canada WJC 6 3 3 6 16
2010 Canada WC 7th 7 2 0 2 28
Junior totals 18 8 10 18 40
Senior totals 7 2 0 2 28

Personal Life[edit]

  • Downie's father, John Downie, died in a car accident in 1996 while driving Steve to a hockey practice.[28]
  • He is deaf in his right ear due to the hearing disorder otosclerosis and wears a hearing aid.[28]
  • On the road while playing for the Lightning, he shared rooms with linemate and friend Steven Stamkos.[29]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Downie fights own teammate". YouTube. 2005-09-28. Retrieved 2005-09-28. 
  2. ^ "Moe Mantha, Jr. suspended, later fired". CBC Sports. 2005-10-18. Retrieved 2005-10-18. 
  3. ^ "Petes gets stronger with Downie's arrival". The Sports Network. 2005-11-12. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  4. ^ "Flyers prospects make their mark at World Junior Championships". Philadelphia Flyers. 2007-01-07. Retrieved 2012-02-22. 
  5. ^ "Flyers sign three draft picks". Philadelphia Flyers. 2006-05-30. Retrieved 2012-02-22. 
  6. ^ "Rangers land Downie from Petes". Kitchener Rangers. 2007-01-08. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  7. ^ "Steve Downie's controversial hit on Dean McAmmond". YouTube. 2007-09-25. Retrieved 2007-09-25. 
  8. ^ "Downie suspended 20 games for hit". TheStar.com. 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-09-28. 
  9. ^ "Downie barred from AHL after NHL suspension". The Sports Network. 2007-10-01. Retrieved 2007-10-01. 
  10. ^ "NHL investigating sucker punch on Blake". National Post. 2008-01-06. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  11. ^ "Pens Sykora plans revenge on Downie". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  12. ^ "Wild 4, Lightning 2". CBS Sports. 2008-11-28. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  13. ^ "More trouble for Steve Downie". National Hockey League. 2009-03-01. Retrieved 2009-03-01. 
  14. ^ "AHL suspends Downie 20 games for striking official with stick". The Sports Network. 2009-03-05. Retrieved 2009-03-05. 
  15. ^ "Tampa Bay Lightning's Steve Downie adds new wrinkle to tough guy routine: scoring goals". Tampa Bay Times. 2010-03-25. Retrieved 2010-03-25. 
  16. ^ "Campbell warns Downie on "dangerous play"". ESPN. 2010-03-02. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  17. ^ "2010 World Championship squad announced". The Sports Network. 2010-04-01. Retrieved 2010-04-01. 
  18. ^ "NHL update Downie signs contract with Lightning". National Hockey League. 2010-08-25. Retrieved 2010-08-25. 
  19. ^ "Capitals beat Lightning in playoff re-match". CBS Sports. 2011-10-11. Retrieved 2011-10-11. 
  20. ^ "Downie sets Bolts mark with 2 goals in 11 seconds". CBS Sports. 2012-02-12. Retrieved 2012-02-12. 
  21. ^ TSN staff (2012-02-21). "Lightning Acquire Quincey for Downie, then deal him to Wings". The Sports Network. Retrieved 2012-02-22. 
  22. ^ "Avs complete season sweep of Kings". CBS Sports. 2012-02-22. Retrieved 2012-02-23. 
  23. ^ "Downie re-signs with Avalanche". National Hockey League. 2012-06-29. Retrieved 2012-06-29. 
  24. ^ "Avalanche's Steve Downie had shoulder surgery". Denver Post. 2012-05-05. Retrieved 2012-05-05. 
  25. ^ "Avalanche Signs Downie". Colorado Avalanche. 2012-06-29. Retrieved 2012-07-01. 
  26. ^ "NHL notes: Blues end Wade Redden's two-year exile". Canoe.ca. 2013-01-23. Retrieved 2013-01-23. 
  27. ^ "Penguins sign forward Steve Downie". Pittsburgh Penguins. 2014-07-02. Retrieved 2014-07-02. 
  28. ^ a b "Downie dreaming of invite". Slam-Canoe.ca. 2005-11-29. Retrieved 2005-11-29. 
  29. ^ Burnside, Scott (26 November 2010). "Inside the NHL's 'odd couple'". ESPN - NHL. Retrieved 22 February 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Mike Richards
Philadelphia Flyers' first round draft pick
2005
Succeeded by
Claude Giroux