Nic Dowd played with the Wenatchee Wild in their inaugural 2008-2009 season in the NAHL.

Nic Dowd (2009) CREDIT: Wenatchee Wild
Nic Dowd (2009) CREDIT: Wenatchee Wild

It was his first and only year here in the Wenatchee Valley.

After his productive season that caught the attention of scouts from the LA Kings in the NHL. He was drafted in the 7th round - then went on to play a season in the USHL.

Nic eventually played four college hockey seasons at St. Cloud State in Minnesota. 

33-year-old Nic Dowd, an NHL vet with the Washington Capitals, was recently featured in a USA TODAY column.

Nic credited his future success to his parents - Alan and Liz Dowd

His mom and dad both grew up in England and earned a career in the medical field. Nic dad was a doctor, and his mom was a nurse - in Huntsville, Alabama.

Alan and Liz got all three boys into ice hockey.

Washington Capitals v New York Islanders
Nic Dowd #26 of the Washington Capitals CREDIT: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Four Important Factors of Raising Kids in Sports


1) Let kids try out multiple sports

Nic played several sports as a kid: Hockey, baseball, soccer, basketball, and golf.

“If I didn’t like it, I moved on...I believe playing multiple sports is the best thing for a kid. You don’t want to burn him out too early and, on top of it, you just get so much better at all three sports.” -Nic Dowd via USA TODAY


2) Build confidence through love and support

"We try and let (our son) Louie know we love him every single day and how big a piece of our life he is. I don’t need Louie to love me every single day, but I need him to know that he’s loved every single day.” -Nic Dowd via USA TODAY


3) Put in the time, traveling to practices, and games.

Nic remembers his mom picking him up for soccer and taking him straight to hockey practice. He’d go right from a baseball game to a hockey game.

By the time he finished ninth grade, he was an elite travel player in all three sports. After deciding that hockey would be his focus - his parents sent him to the Culver Military Academy in Indiana to pursue his dream.

4) Turning travel time and long weekends - into lifelong memories.

'I rarely ever felt any pressure from my parents to succeed at sports at all. Sports for me, and then for them, was looked upon as something that should be enjoyed rather than work.' -Nic Dowd via USA TODAY

Nic is a strong believer in kids not specializing in one sport too soon - but rather playing multiple sports, to not burn out too early.


Build confidence through love and advocacy


'It’s not as much about raising a child as it is about cultivating a kid and allowing them to grow in the direction that they want to grow but also providing them with the ability to be safe and responsible and be loved.' -Nic Dowd via USA TODAY


After 9th grade - Nic Dowd was an elite travel player in all three sports. His parents sent him to Culver Military Academy in Indiana to focus on hockey.

If you bring up his youth, Nic mentions putting in the work.

'There’s gonna be people that are better than you, but what you lack in talent, you can make up with a work ethic and a lot of people don’t want to work. So you can build your career on outworking people. And not even in sports, but in life.' -Nic Dowd via USA TODAY



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