Ice hockey column: Firing Bois was a message to all Sheffield Steelers players

Danny Bois - out the door
Danny Bois - out the door
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We may never really understand the full story behind Danny Bois.

He was the player who was going to underpin Sheffield Steelers’ hard working, direct ethos, when he arrived from north America in November to join what was then a gung-ho, title-hunting roster.

In his first game, jet-lagged and slightly bewildered after spending most of the previous day detained in a London airport cell over red tape anomalies, he failed to protect himself in an on-ice scuffle and was badly beaten up and concussed.

That meant the one-game NHL winger had to sit on the sidelines and watch his new team for the next six games. He eventually returned to the ice and Sheffield Arena fans watched him make his home debut against Cardiff Devils. Surprisingly, we watched him take his position on the third line.

Coach Gerad Adams implied that the player, who scored an assist that night, needed time to absorb his new team’s philosophy and his surroundings. In his third game, the fans perked up their interest in him as he scored two goals against Hull Stingrays.

Adams, on occasion, would subsequently promote Bois on to the second line, hoping he would be the influence he had been in Germany, on top of 419 games in the American Hockey League with Binghamton Senators and Rockford IceHogs.

He seemed to work hard enough, but it soon became clear he wasn’t going to be the player who scored, blocked shots, made big hits, fought, or made goals for others.

In fact, some fans were asking questions about why he was recruited in the first place.

The answer to that is his résumé and references - he had cut the mustard in higher leagues. But at 31, the Canadian, seemed to illustrate his best was behind him. His dismissal may seem harsh after just 15 games- it was a calculated message from Adams: give 100% or find another club.