Hockey, as we all know, is a team sport, which is why success is generally measured by the success of the entire team.  

For that reason, the 2023-2024 season couldn't really be called a successful one for Airdrie's Gary Haden and his professional Scottish hockey team the Glasgow Clan of the United Kingdom's Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL).

But hockey is also a sport where a lot of hardware is handed out for individual success as well.  Just ask Wayne Gretzky, Alexander Ovechkin or Connor McDavid. That's why you couldn't really blame Haden for taking some solace in his individual achievements during the Clan's season which saw them finish last among the ten EIHL teams.  

Glasgow looked like they were headed for the playoffs as the EIHL season wound down recently.  But losing their final five games, including a "must win" contest in their final game of the season to the Cardiff Devils where they lost 8 - 5, saw Glasgow finish the year with 49 points, just three points behind the Coventry Blaze who placed sixth, and just two points out of the eighth and final playoff spot held by two other Scottish clubs, the Fife Flyers and the Dundee Stars.

The success the Clan did have could largely be attributed to Haden's efforts.  The 25-year-old finished seventh in EIHL scoring, recording 27 goals and 29 assists for 56 points, bettering his total in his first season in the league by nine points.  His goal-scoring total included seven power-play goals.  Haden was the Clan's leading scorer for the second year in a row.

At the end of his inaugural campaign, Haden was presented with two awards by Glasgow.  He was selected both the Player's and Coaches Player of the Year, chosen by the players and coaches respectively. His efforts during his second season ultimately resulted in his winning three trophies at the recent Glasgow Clan Awards.

Haden was named Forward of the Season, the OSC Player of the Season, an award presented by the Clan's Official Supporters Club and was once again presented with the Player's Player of the Year by his teammates.      

Haden grew up in the Airdrie Minor Hockey system before spending two seasons with the U15 Airdrie Xtreme.  He split parts of two years with the U16 AC Avalanche and the U18 Bisons before a brief stint in the Alberta Junior Hockey League with the Okotoks Oilers.  He was taken in the ninth round of the 2014 Western Hockey League Prospects Draft by the Regina Pats but started in the league with the Medicine Hat Tigers.  

During his four-year career with Medicine Hat, Saskatoon,  and Victoria in the WHL, Haden scored 80 goals and added 90 assists in 232 regular-season games.  

Before he decided to turn pro in the United Kingdom, Haden spent one year with the University of Alberta Golden Bears of the USports League,  Haden scored 10 goals and added  11 assists, helping the Bears to the Canada West Conference Championship.

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