Around the rinks: Clubs thank fans, restart hopes dashed & Long proposal

Ciaran Long is playing a different kind of game on Thursday (PHOTO: William Cherry/Press Eye)

Your Christmas look around the rinks.

Hang your hat on February?

Hopes of a January restart for the Elite League and NIHL clubs appear to be remote, with work now looking at getting something on the ice in February. A report in the Sheffield Star says: “Steelers’ owner and EIHL chief Tony Smith remains confident that action will resume, although his projected start date of January now seems extremely unlikely.”

Cardiff focus on the fans

The Devils have posted an informative article on “things they have learned in lockdown” which focuses on how they have put the fans at the forefront of their work, in the absence of hockey. They also reveal their upcoming plans, including the launch of a new official club website.

If you’re needing to find something to take up your spare time in the absence of live hockey, have a go at online casino Australia, which can provide some Christmas cheer and help fund those ice hockey merchandise purchases.

Phillips back from Hungary

Great Britain defenceman Davey Phillips has returned home following a spell playing in Hungary, which he admits was difficult. He played 12 times for Dunaujvarosi Acelbikak, who are struggling at the bottom of their league and recently parted with their coach. Phillips told the Sheffield Star: “You get used to winning in Sheffield – we didn’t win a game when I was there, in 60 minutes, just a couple of overtime wins.” He was one of a number of EIHL players who went to Europe to play, after the EIHL campaign was postponed.

Pacha’s bold aim for Dundee

Dundee Stars coach and GM Omar Pacha believes ice hockey has the potential to be the second favourite sport in Scotland, once it is able to return following the coronavirus pandemic. He told the Dundee Telegraph: “From what I’ve seen in Scotland, it is a no-brainer that hockey can be the number two sport in the country behind football. If you come to a hockey game in Dundee, we’re privileged to be based in a facility that’s warm and has a friendly vibe – I think we’re the only sport in Dundee that can offer that!”

Clan provide update

Glasgow Clan are one of a number of Elite League clubs leading the way with their innovation to keep fans engaged during this tough period. Director of hockey Gareth Chalmers said in an update: “The past 9 months have been an incredibly testing period for the club, we’ve had to very quickly adapt to the ever developing situation around us.”

Steelers lead the way

Sheffield, who say they can’t thank their fans enough, are at the forefront of fundraising, and their efforts don’t go unnoticed in the wider sporting arena too.

A Giant proposal

Belfast Giants’ Ciaran Long proposed to girlfriend Hannah Kempton in a quite extraordinary setting, reports the Belfast Telegraph. He popped the question at a deserted Commercial Court, outside the Duke of York pub where they first met, providing a quite unique and incredible photo opportunity. Congratulations!

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