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San Diego Gulls Name Travis Howe as Club's IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year

April 11, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
San Diego Gulls News Release

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The San Diego Gulls are proud to announce that the American Hockey League (AHL) club has named Travis Howe as the team's winner of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his outstanding contributions to the San Diego community during the 2023-24 season.

Since signing with the club in 2022-23, Howe quickly endeared himself to San Diego, becoming a fan favorite overnight. While his rugged style of play on the ice intimidates opponents, his off the ice personality can quickly bring a smile to all around him. Howe is always one of the first to sign up for community events and is willing to jump in everywhere the team needs him.

This season alone, Howe has participated in hospital visits, rink visits, special hockey team practices, as well as San Diego Gulls Foundation outings such as Gulls Night at Rady Children's Hospital Ice Rink, Gulls Bowling Night, and the Gulls Golf Classic. While his daunting size can be frightening at first, kids and families quickly warm up to him as he becomes the "giant teddy bear" that he's been described as around the hockey ops staff, or "dad" to some of the younger players on the team.

In addition to his off-ice contributions, Howe set a new AHL career-high in games played this season, appearing in 40 games for the Gulls in 2023-24. The Hull, Mass. native collected his first AHL point and assist Oct. 15 at Ontario. He signed a one-year contract extension April 3 to stay in San Diego through at least the 2024-25 AHL season.

Howe is now one of 32 finalists for the AHL's 2023-24 Yanick Dupré Memorial Award, honoring the overall IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year. The league award is named after the former Hershey Bears forward and AHL All-Star who died in 1997 following a 16-month battle with leukemia. The winner of the Yanick Dupré Memorial Award will be announced by the American Hockey League later this month.

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