Manchester Storm coach Ryan Finnerty says his players are out to prove a point and show what they can do on the international stage.
Storm have had a decent start to the Elite Series so far with three wins from five games so far, ahead of Wednesday’s meeting with Nottingham Panthers.
And he believes the watching fans will get a better feel of what his team will be all about as the competition’s ‘regular season’ stage reaches the halfway point.
“Our squad is full of players with and wanting international experience, so I know a few of the guys have a real point to prove in this mini-series,” he told the Manchester Storm website. “They want to throw down the marker to Pete Russell.
“On the ice, I would say going forward its nearly clicked. Obviously, Ciaran Long has been doing what he does in this jersey and score goal after goal.
“The all-round player of Scott Simmonds and Jacob Lundell Noer has been exceptional and you can see why both these guys were sought after in Europe.
“I think after five games you get a good feel for how any season will go, how the guys are bonding and what tweaks you need to make going forward.
“I feel like the next couple of games will be a more accurate reflection of what we can bring to this series, some of our goal scorers are getting the feel back now and all the guys are well accustomed to the Olympic ice sheet.”
Finnerty also spoke of the privilege in being able to be involved in such a competition and how turning to familiar faces has been the key to helping his roster bond.
“It’s certainly different playing in the same venue and living on-site, but I know how fortunate we are playing this sport for a living and the world is still not back to normal, so we can’t complain too much,” he added.
“It’s helped our dressing having the likes of Dallas Ehrhardt, Cam Critchlow and Tyson Fawcett back as our leadership group, then you add in a bunch of guys who I have worked with before and you don’t really have to do much in terms of breaking the ice.”