Storm add two and Panthers finish on busy Friday

Andreas Kalvestad (left), Cam Critchlow (centre) and Austin Cangelosi (right) have signed for Manchester Storm and Nottingham Panthers respectively (PHOTOS: Stavanger Oilers/Mark Ferriss/Lillehammer)

Manchester Storm coach Ryan Finnerty says latest signing Andreas Klavestad will bring his team some much needed balance.

The Norwegian defenceman was the second of two signings by Storm on Friday, preceded by returning winger Cam Critchlow as Manchester continue their Elite Series preparations.

And the arrival of the 25-year-old has ticked a lot of boxes for Finnerty and sees Klavestad in a key role during the competition.

“Andreas brings exactly what we need at the back: speed, high hockey IQ, excellent vision and a wealth of experience in one of Europe’s top divisions,” Finnerty said.

“Another bonus is his right-handed shot, as we have needed this sort of player for a while now to balance out the guys we have at the back. I know his ability will only compliment the British guys we have already under contract.

“I will be expecting him to log the type of minutes Dallas Ehrhardt has been doing over the past couple of seasons and I know how excited he is for this opportunity.

“Critch was another guy we had signed for the 2020-21 season and I know how excited he is to be back in Manchester.

“He’s an excellent penalty killer, a great guy to have in the locker room and rounds out our vastly experienced forward group.

“Cam is another player we are looking to build our franchise around in the coming years and his loyalty to the shirt is something I know the fans already love.”

Klavestad has over 300 appearances in the Norwegian league in all competitions and has spent the last two seasons with Stavanger Oilers.

Critchlow made 45 league appearances and racked up 29 points (9+20) for the Storm and arrives from Jacksonville IceMen, following team-mate Sean Bonar.

Their signings capped off a busy day for the four Elite Series teams, who all announced signings throughout the course of the day.

This included Nottingham Panthers, who completed their roster with the addition of forward Austin Cangelosi from Lillehammer.

The American joins team-mates Nick Dineen and Brendan Ellis as part of Tim Wallace’s side and finished the curtailed season as the club’s top scorer, with 26 points (14+12) from his 23 appearances.

And his signing has pleased Panthers Director of Hockey Guillaume Doucet, who has filled a key position in his eyes.

“It was important for me to get high quality centreman and that’s the case with Austin,” Doucet said.  “He played in the DEL last season and can really control the play, as well as make his line mates better.

“The two centre positions were key spots for us so I’m very happy to get Austin with us for the Series.

“He’s going to be relied upon in various situations and if you look at his numbers, you know he’s good and will help us on the scoresheet.

“It helps that he knows Nick and Brendan, having played with them at Lillehammer and they’re game ready.  The situation in Norway has meant that haven’t played, but they’re hungry to play.

“It’s huge to have three guys like this with solid resumes and experience that are willing to come to Nottingham for this series.  I’m really happy with the imports we’ve brought in.”

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