Moose Jaw Warriors

Hughes Growing as the Season Progresses

February 27, 2024 - Western Hockey League (WHL)
Moose Jaw Warriors News Release

Spokane, WA - At five-foot-seven, there's not too many nights that Ethan Hughes isn't the smallest player on the ice.

That doesn't stop the Moose Jaw Warriors forward for going toe-to-toe with anyone on the ice.

"I can't be scared out there, if I'm scared that's when you get hurt and hit pretty bad, so I just go out there I think I'm the same size as the bigger guys and it's fun," Hughes said after practice on Tuesday in Spokane.

Hughes is part of a group of eight rookies on the Warriors that has been growing over the course of the season.

He said he feels he's adjusted pretty well over the course of his first season with the Warriors.

"The pace of the game is a lot faster, you've got to think a lot quicker, be a lot smarter and, obviously, the size of the players is a lot bigger, but I thought I've gotten to know the game a lot better and it's been fun to be here.

"After Christmas, I've felt a lot more comfortable, before Christmas was just time to get adjusted and feel the play and now I'm feeling good."

Through 41 games this season, Hughes has a goal and three points and has found his footing in different roles up and down the lineup.

Hughes came to the Western Hockey League knowing what to expect with three older brothers who all still play hockey, including his brother Ryan, who played for Portland, Kamloops and Saskatoon in the WHL.

"It's been pretty fun watching where he's went and now I'm in this league is pretty cool," he said.

Hughes credits his older brothers for helping inspire him to want to be a hockey player.

"They've been massive, I don't think I'd even be playing hockey without them, I've been following them my whole life and wanting to be where they're at and it's cool to be where I'm at right now," he said.

The Warriors are in the middle of an eight-game road trip with four games in five nights on tap this week, starting on Wednesday in Portland.

"This trip is a grind, but it's also fun, we're having fun along the way," Hughes said.

"It's been lots of fun just to be with the guys for two weeks."

The Warriors won both games last week, scoring 21 goals in victories over Tri-City and Spokane. They face off with the Winterhawks in Portland at 9 p.m. Saskatchewan time on Wednesday.

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