Nottingham Panthers coach Tim Wallace insists it’s just another weekend as his team get ready for a European adventure.
Panthers are back in the Continental Cup as they travel to Denmark for the third group stage, where they’ll take on host SønderjyskE, French side Gothique D’Amiens and Ferencvarosi of Hungary.
It’s a tournament they know well, having won it in 2017 and Wallace is looking forward to the challenge as his team go in with a run of five straight wins and six victories from their last seven.
“It’s just another day at the office for me. It’s not any different. Playing back to back to back means extra preparation time, but it’s another game and we’re focussed on Friday.” he said.
“We won’t prepare any differently to how we would normally. We’ve been going well recently and if we stick to that, we should do alright.
“Panthers are the only team from the UK to win this competition so it’s a big feat and we may as well try to make it two.
Big weekend coming up for @PanthersIHC as they head to Denmark today for their @IIHFHockey Continental Cup group. Where do you think they’ll finish in the group as they take on @LesGothiques @SEishockey and Ferencvarosi TC?
— British Ice Hockey 🏒 (@BritIceHockey) November 14, 2019
“It’s really important to get past this stage and with the team we have and knowing how good they are, I see no reason why we couldn’t.
“The first game is huge and sets the tone. I may be wrong but they (first opponents, Amiens) may be the best team we face so it’s good to get that one out the way early.
“If we can get that win, then the confidence will start rolling. We’ll concentrate on that game and we’ll look to go in at full pace on Friday.”
After a rocky start to the season, the Panthers seem to be finally hitting their stride and their two wins at home over Belfast took it to five consecutive wins and leave them in a good place right now.
Wallace gave an insight into why he thinks his team have turned things around and insists he was confident his efforts would eventually pay off.
Now he’s keen to carry that into the weekend where the top two will qualify for the final group in January.
He added: “The guys have started buying into the systems. Reiterating them over and over has helped, plus we’ve got players that have come in, who have helped things.
“They’re doing the things that hurt, like blocking shots and doing what they can to win and we’re having fun and winning as a team.
“I was confident that these systems work and I had to stick with them, so, for me, it was about talking to the leaders and individuals and finding out what was getting them going.
“I can do so much. It’s down to the guys doing the little things that have stepped up and it looks like they’ve bought in. Now it’s rolling and we just have to keep it going.
“The mood in the room is night and day compared to a month or so ago and to beat a team like Belfast over the weekend gave us a really good feeling.
“The guys are happy and know what it takes. They’re starting to realise that and get this feeling more often. They hate to lose and really enjoyed it.
“It was four points and we have to keep that going heading into the weekend in Denmark now.”