Shock as Sheffield Steelers star is found dead at home after signing new contract for club
A Sheffield Steelers' star has been found dead in his home country of the Czech Republic.
Precise details of how Marek Troncinský died have not yet been made public.
But it is thought the 32-year-old had not been physically ill and there was no criminal aspect to his death.
Nobody else was involved.
Troncinský did not speak a lot of English, but he had been a popular team-member in the Sheffield Arena dressing room.
He liked socialising and frequently had a smile on his face, say clubmates.
But the husband and father of a young daughter is known to have passed away this weekend - shortly after signing a new contract for the EIHL club.
A statement from the EIHL club said they wished to “pass on their condolences to the family of Marek Troncinsky who passed away yesterday in his homeland of the Czech Republic. Marek leaves a wife and young daughter."
It added: “'Tron' had recently completed his season with Gyergyoi in Romania and only last week had agreed to return to the Steelers for a second spell following his first stint with the club before the pandemic in helping us win the Challenge Cup.”
Head coach Aaron Fox commented: “Marek was such a pleasure to have with us last year. He had a light hearted character and seemed to always be smiling and joking around with the guys.
“From the hockey side he could do it all. He was a big Heavy D (defenceman) who skated so well and could play in all situations.
“I was absolutely devastated to hear the news last night and my thoughts, prayers, and condolences go out to his family, and all his friends.
“This is a very sad day and the hockey world has lost a really good one, RIP Tron”.
Troncinský's living conditions in Romania had not been perfect.
A Steeler team-mate, Davey Phillips, remarked recently that he would not have wanted to have lived in the area.
Troncinský only arrived there when Covid 19 ended chances of a full season at Sheffield.
However, he had returned home from Romania to reunite with his family.
A news platform in the Czech Republic described him as "one of the funniest and at the same time the wildest players" in his time in the national league.
The iSport organisation reported that there "has been speculation about debts and addictive substances."
The published a quote attributed to the Czech international as saying: "I'm not an angel, I'm being honest. But on the other hand, a lot of the stuff they say about me is inflated."
Steelers' Czech former goalie Tomas Duba is said to be devastated by his friend's loss.
In 43 games for the Steelers the d-man scored almost a point a game.