After a successful breakout year in the Western Hockey League (WHL), Josh Davies looks to make a name for himself on the next stage.

Airdronian Josh Davies is taking the next step in his hockey career and will either be playing for the Stanley Cup-winning champions the Florida Panthers or their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate the Charlotte Checkers next season.

Just this week, Davies got to watch the team that drafted him in 2022 and signed him to a three-year, entry-level contract, the Florida Panthers win the Stanley Cup.

"Watching them from afar, and also being next to them, whether it's main camp or pre-season, getting to know those guys and seeing their dreams come true. It makes it a reality for yourself. It's the biggest trophy in sports everyone wants to win it, so knowing that I'm right there, it's pretty cool."

Over the hockey season with the Portland Winterhawks, Davies had a total of 68 games played, in those games he had 41 goals and 31 assists for a total of 72 points.

"I asked for a trade out of Swift Current and went to Portland, and the grass was greener on the other side. Personally, going from 36 points to over 36 goals in one year was pretty awesome."

This year Portland made it to the WHL Championship where they lost in the final to the Moose Jaw Warriors.

AirdirePhoto of Davies celebrating a goal. Photo provided by Keith Dwiggins - Portland Winterhawks

While Davies does have one year left where he could play with the Winterhawks, his Head Coach Mike Johnston told Davies it's time for him to take the next step.

"The next step for me is going to the AHL for the Charlotte Checkers, which is Florida's farm team, and trying to make a name for myself there. Hopefully, if I'm good enough next year, I'll get that called up to the NHL for my first-ever game."

Last year Davies spent some time with the Checkers when his season was over in the WHL.

"Now that it's finally time for me to make the full jump to the AHL, and begin my pro career, I'm excited for it and a little nervous, but nerves are good."

Davies has a development camp with the Florida Panthers starting on July 6 and runs through July 12. After that he will be back in Florida on September 12 for rookie camp and then the main camp before the season starts.

"The goal at the end of the day is to try and make the full team roster in the NHL with the Panthers."

Davies also recently participated in the Kalix Legacy Foundation Charity Hockey Classic.

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