Left-winger Hank Nowak was a utility player for three different teams in the 1970s. A disciplined checker, he was capable of creating scoring chances and finding the net himself on occasion.
Born in Oshawa, Ontario, Nowak played two years with the hometown Generals of the OHA. He was chosen 87th overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1970 Amateur Draft then assigned to the AHL's Quebec Aces in the Fall. The young forward never established himself in the Philly organization. After spending a year each with the Richmond Robins and Hershey Bears, Nowak was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Nowak played 13 games for the Pens in 1973-74 but spent most of the season in Hershey where he enjoyed a fine season with 32 goals in 56 games. In May, 1974, he was traded to the Detroit Red Wings for Nelson Debenedet. Nowak scored 22 points in 56 games for the struggling Wings before he was traded to the Boston Bruins along with Earl Anderson for Walt McKechnie. During the 1975 post-season, Nowak scored a goal and was a solid performer for the team when it was knocked out in the first round by Chicago.
In 1975-76 Nowak was a useful grinder and defensive forward on a line with.....That spring he played ten games for Boston when they reached the semifinals. Nowak split the 1976-77 season between the minors and Beantown. He played three full seasons in the minors toiling in the AHL, Northeastern league and the "I" before retiring in 1980.