IF CORY Pecker hadn’t previously grasped the significance of a Sheffield Steelers fixture with Nottingham Panthers, he certainly knows about it now.
The Canadian forward and seven other new Steelers had the importance of the box-office busting event drummed into them in a social event with fans on Tuesday.
The rivals collide at the NIC tonight - their first meeting this year.
“I first heard about the rivalry in the summer when I was talking to Ryan Finnerty (coach) and (team mate) Danny Wood has since told me how important it is to the team,” said Pecker, 31, who is joint leading points scorer with Tylor Michel. “This is all the fans seem to care about!”
Pecker, who has had to overcome a groin injury and a virus in the early weeks of the Elite season, admits he made a “nervous” start to his UK campaign.
“In my second game, I started to do do a bit better but now I want to get on and do more,” he said.
Of the trip to former club Nottingham, Pecker added: “I am telling Finner a few of their tricks but I have no doubt they have a few new ones. It is going to be a great game.”
Steelers host last year’s championship-winner Belfast Giants tomorrow.