The #38. It’s not exactly at the top of who’s who in Calgary Flames history. It’s been worn for a season at the most when it’s been handed out and even then, it’s only been for a few games in the year’s it’s been worn. So when Jeff Cowan put the jersey on for three of his eight NHL seasons, he became the best player to wear the #38.
Cowan went undrafted in 1995, but the Flames saw enough in him that they signed him and sent him right to the minors to get more experience. He would spend three seasons between the ECHL (Roanoke Express) and the AHL (Saint John Flames) before Calgary would call him up for the next three NHL seasons.
Cowan’s NHL debut would come in 1999, where he would split time between Calgary and Saint John, playing 13 games with the big club. He would score four goals and dish out one assist in limited time, leading to a much more permanent home for the next two years. Between 2000 and 2001, Cowan would play in back to back 50+ games with the Flames (51 & 57) and he would put up “OK” numbers during that time. The 2000-01 campaign would be his best with Calgary, scoring nine goals and collecting four assists. The next year would see a decline in his point totals, but see his PIM jump from 74 to 90, a reoccurring theme over his career. Unfortunately for him his time in Calgary was spent on some not so great teams and he never saw the playoffs during his three year stint with the Flames.
The Flames and Cowan would part ways during the 2001-02 season, when after 19 games and only one point, Calgary would trade him to the Atlanta Thrashers for Petr Buzek. Cowan would play parts of five more NHL seasons with the Thrashers, Kings and the Vancouver Canucks before finishing out his career in the minors and Europe.
While not having a long and storied NHL career, Jeff Cowan’s time with the Flames produced the second best point totals of his career. In 83 games he would collect 19 points, with 14 of those being goals, which is the second best total of his eight year NHL journey.
After his career was over Jeff Cowan spent time coaching with his most recent experience being the Interim HC of the Saint John Sea Dogs in 2019.
Other Players Having Worn #38 In Flames History
Patrick Lebeau (1993), Peter Ahola (1994), Todd Hlushko (1995), Jarrod Skalde (1996), Craig Ferguson (1996), Sasha Lakovic (1997), Eric Charron (1999), Robert Dome, Jason Jaffary (2010), Ben Street (2013-14), Byron Froese (2020)
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