If Steelers fans were frustrated after seeing their side fall to their first Elite League defeat of the season... get used to it.
“The team that wins the League this year will probably lose 20 games” says Sheffield coach Paul Thompson.
Such is the standard of the Elite League that any below-par performances will be punished.
And Steelers were collectively dreadful for much of Sunday’s 5-2 home defeat to Cardiff Devils - the second time they have lost to them in the Arena in 21 days.
Coach Paul Thompson blamed fatigue as one of the factors behind last weekend’s failure on home ice - the players had returned to Sheffield at 4am on the same day after beating the Welsh 5-4 at Cardiff Arena.
But he was also honest enough to accept the true scale of the inferior performances which blighted most of the squad.
“It wasn’t one or two having a bad night it was 10 or 15” he admitted.
“Cardiff are a good team and if you don’t come to play, you are not energised, you won’t win.
“We were still on the bus for the first 30 minutes of the game. Everything in our game was lacklustre.
“Offensively we could not get shots through, they did a good job of blocking, we just had nothing we had no fizz in our game.
“It is a little bit frustrating, we played such a fabulous game on Saturday.”
Steelers were without Levi Nelson and Ben O’Connor, players Thompson regards as “key” to the side.
“I am disappointed that we didn’t show up in front of our fans, that is two games in here that Cardiff have been the better club. We were the far better club on Saturday” he said.
“But if we are going to lose one game in six by the end of the season I think we will be holding quite a lot of silverware.
“We will come to back and we will get better.”
Steelers’ defencemen looked lethargic on Sunday and up front there were far too few shots (24) on Devils’ second-string netminder.
Cardiff managed 33 efforts on target at the other end.
“They were solid defensively and they did get in front of a lot of pucks. We must have missed the net 20 times” said the coach.
The team boss said he was looking forward to the raising of the championship banner on Saturday, when Fife Flyers’ Russ Moyer returns to the rink where the won the League.