STEELERS’ terrier Tylor Michel believes his side’s camaraderie can help them to three victories in remaining games against Nottingham Panthers and shave the league leaders’ seven point lead over them.
Panthers, visitors to the Arena, tomorrow, also play Michel’s mates on February 22 and March 9. Those games are critical - but then so is tonight’s road trip to Braehead Clan.
Michel said: “Nottingham may be favourites and right now it’s in their hands, but we play them three more times. We focus on ourselves not other teams but, that being said, if we beat them it’s going to get close and come down the wire.”
Michel said team spirit will be essential in the mission to come from third place to winner’s spot.
“It all starts in the dressing room. And we carry that on to the ice. We’re not in first place but we’re working for that and have a place in the Challenge Cup semi final.
“We’ve played Nottingham a few times and we like our team against them. They have some scary guys who produce a lot of points but we play a more defensive style. We’re not worried about getting five goals against them, we just want to win 2-1 or 3-2.
“We have not been as intense as we should be at the start of games, recently. I don’t think it is preparation or commitment it’s just one of those things we’re not great at. It made a difference against Dundee (last Thursday) when we began two goals down (aggregate) we should adopt that and maybe we’ll have better starts!”
Goalie John DeCaro believes the midweek walloping of Dundee was a morale-booster. “That was a good performance to go in the weekend with. Every game against Nottingham is a four-point swing. I don’t see them as clear favourites to win. It is not over until every other team is mathematically out.
“Maybe they don’t slip up this year. But if they do, we can win the games needed to come back.”
n Jordan Krestanovich, who wanted to join Steelers, is likely to play against them, tonight, after patching things up with Braehead. Clan claimed he was absent due to “illness.”