NIHL North round-up: Dragons add French forward, Weaver agrees Tigers return

Deeside Dragons have appointed Mike Brodin as the club’s Player/Assistant Coach.

The French forward heads to NIHL North having previously iced for Reims, Amiens, Dijon, Caen and most recently Morzine-Avoriaz, where he was the captain for four consecutive seasons.

Other notable players to have iced for Morzine-Avoriaz during that time include Colin Shields, Ben O’Connor, Peter Szabo and Matic Kralj.

The 34-year-old also represented his country at both U18 and U20 level, playing in three World Championship tournaments for France.

Dragons’ boss Scott McKenzie said: “What can I say about this signing – it is a massive one for our club.

“Mike is a true professional and we are very lucky to be able to see him in a Dragons jersey. He is loyal, hard working and I’ve had nothing but great feedback about him.

“He played alongside a friend of mine a few years ago and everything he told me about Mike was extremely positive.

“Not only is Mike a leader with a wealth of experience, but he is a gifted hockey player. He will add grit, hockey smarts and hopefully a few points along the way too.

“I’m really excited about bringing Mike to Deeside and I urge the fans to get behind us with this one.”

Brodin added: “I’m really pleased to be joining the Dragons. I contacted Scott a while ago and we hit it off. We stayed in touch over the spring and it all just fell into place.

“I went to watch the Dragons play Solway at the end of the season which was a critical game and allowed me to experience the spirit of the team.

“I’ve had a long hockey career playing in the Elite League in France, so I hope I can bring my experience to Deeside.

“They’re a promising young team so I’d like to help develop their potential wherever I can – in agreement with the coach, of course!

“I’m genuinely excited to be playing for my first ever UK team and to start the next adventure.”

Elsewhere in D1, it’s been a busy week for Telford Tigers with head coach Tom Watkins adding five players to his roster.

Top of the list is Great Britain defender Jonathan Weaver who has agreed a fourth season with the club.

Watkins said: “There has been a lot of talk about this season’s Tigers team from a lot of people, but we have now retained eight guys from last season, plus guys with both Elite and EPL experience.

“Then you add a Jonathan Weaver to the mix, a current GB international, who was part of the gold medal winning team in April. I think that’s a pretty exciting team for the fans to get behind.

“With this signing alone our team just got a lot better, and I mean a lot. His ability is unquestionable and for me he is one of the best British players of this generation, if not the best. It’s as simple as that.

“You can watch ‘Weaves’ play and marvel at how good he is on the puck, how smooth he is, but if you actually watch him, you will see how hard he competes, how much he is willing to sacrifice to win.

“He has consistently led the Tigers team in blocked shots over the last three seasons.

“He hates to lose, and makes everyone around him a better player, that’s what makes the very good players special – they make everyone around them better.”

Rick Plant and Dale White have also agreed another year with the club, while Joe Miller returns after a brief spell with Basingstoke Bison. Jordan Stokes has joined the Tigers on a two-way deal with Elite League side Coventry Blaze.

Former Great Britain forward Warren Tait has signed for Nottingham Lions, while defender Elliot Perrin has agreed another season with the club.

Solihull Barons have added seven more players to their roster including returnees Tomas Janak and Ed Eaton. Philip Mulcahy has also joined the club from Blackburn Hawks.

Defender Tim Smith has agreed a fifth season with Sheffield Steeldogs, while Billingham Stars’ goalie Mark Watson returns for a seventh year with the Teessiders. Defender Darren Stattersfield has also signed for the Stars.

Solway Sharks’ netminder Calum Hepburn has agreed another season with the Dumfries outfit.

In D2, Joe Greaves and Corey Lee have signed for another year with Altrincham Aces. Daniel Bullock returns for his fourth season with Widnes Wild.

Telford Tigers 2 have added forwards James Smith and Ben Washburn to their roster. Carl Price has been appointed as the Player/Coach of Blackburn Hawks 2.

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