COLT King has launched a broadside against Sheffield Steelers - as a picture starts to emerge of his troubled spell at the club.
The Canadian was fired by coach Ryan Finnerty before the Play-offs - and no reason was ever given.
King seemed to go with good grace, tweeting it was an “honour and a privilege to wear a Steelers jersey”. He also claimed: “I’d have liked to return to Sheffield for a 2nd season.” However, yesterday, the dumped winger’s attitude suddenly changed.
Referring to Tom Squires leaving the club, King tweeted: “Good for you Tom. You’ll be better off. #Zeroprofessionalism. I could write a book on the garbage we had to deal on and off the ice all season.”
The background of why King was paid off and sent home has never been revealed. But The Star understands that coaching staff at the club felt King’s attitude changed as the league title began to slip away and the cluttered February fixture-programme started to take its toll.
Staff felt he became a negative influence, on two fellow imports, in particular.
Finnerty, who has not commented on the issue, felt slighted when King apparently walked off the ice before a training session had been completed.
Matters came to a head after a fans’ event at the Holiday Inn, Rotherham.
Finnerty had become concerned about King’s attitude and performance levels, asking him to attend a 9am meeting the following day, also inviting bench coach Neil Abel and assistant coach Ashley Tait. King, aged 28, failed to show up for the meeting and turned up for the noon training session with just 15 minutes to spare.
Finnerty deemed it another challenge to his authority. He was also underwhelmed at King’s on-ice contribution.
With Steelers heading into the Play-offs after yielding their Elite League title to Belfast Giants, Finnerty felt he had to remove from the roster someone he saw as a negative influence. In doing so, he hoped to send an electric charge through the line-up...something which failed, according to team-mates like Mike Ramsay.
When King left, it is fair to say the club were left with some utility bills from King’s rented accommodation they were not expecting.
King was unarguably a fans’ favourite at Sheffield - but his Twitter barrage may now mar memories of his tenure.