The Nigerian winger arrived at the Britannia Stadium from Cardiff City during the January transfer window in a switch that saw Kenwyne Jones move in the opposite direction.
Reflecting on that elevation, former Stoker defender Higginbotham has told Sports Mole that the 32-year-old's influence should not be underestimated.
"Earlier in the season, I said that the formation and style was changed too quickly. They didn't have an abundance of pace in the team and either Peter Crouch or Kenwyne Jones ended up being isolated up front - the midfielders couldn't get there," he said. "Now, bringing in Peter Odemwingie, you saw with one of the goals against Villa [last weekend] a perfect example. The ball went up to Crouch, who flicked on to Odemwingie and he left two or three players behind him to put the ball into the net.
"The full-backs are now starting to get involved as well. Erik Pieters set a goal up at Villa and Geoff Cameron scored, but they are also being covered by the defensive midfield players. They've got a great opportunity now to finish within the top 10 and the team really is starting to evolve.
"The players have adapted [to Hughes's tactics], while the addition of Odemwingie has made a big difference. He gives the side that extra boost of pace."
Next Saturday, Stoke will travel to title-chasing Chelsea.