Chesterfield star signs for Sheffield Steelers!
Sheffield Steelers' hopes of building a faster, more goal-hungry team than last season took a step in the right direction today.
The club announced the impending arrival of 32-year-old Michael Davies.
He will be new to the Elite League but has played alongside ex Steelers Mark Matheson, Guillaume Desbiens, Matt Climie, Devin DiDiomete and Mike Duco, at Chicago Wolves in the AHL, and Mathieu Roy at Hamburg Freezers - so he has had no shortage of people to ask about hockey in South Yorkshire.
Davies, who is just 5ft 9ins, is a creative right shot who can play on either wing or centre and is being thought of as an asset on the first or second line.
He became an unrestricted free agent after leaving the Austrian league side EHC Linz, after they tumbled out of the play offs at quarter final stage.
Davies comes from Chesterfield...but that is the Missouri version rather than the Derbyshire version.
“Michael is a high end skilled forward who skates very well and can play both Wing positions” said coach Aaron Fox.
“He has put up elite numbers at the AHL, DEL, and EBEL and will be a guy we will count on in a top-six role here.
"He should really help our Power Play as well and is another veteran guy who will have a very positive impact in our dressing room.
“He’s really looking forward to coming in here ready to compete and help us attain our goals.”
Matheson and Desbiens gave Davies plenty of advice about Sheffield - Matheson doing the honourable thing as he prepared to embark on a new career at rival club Nottingham Panthers.
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“That was a huge help having Desi and Mark as references," said Davies.
"They told me that Sheffield was the number one place to play and I’d be happy there, that was the start I needed when doing my research.
“Then it was about the coach and style of game he wanted to play, that’s so important for me.
"The good news was that Aaron wanted to play a fast, high tempo game and that’s what I like.
"My agent and I were very impressed with Aaron and we certainly liked the team that he is building for the Steelers, it made you want to be a part of it.
“The coach is the key, he guides the team, I know I can play for Aaron and collectively we can be successful. I can’t wait to get over there and start playing.”
Having played 222 AHL games mainly in Chicago, Davies moved to the German DEL with Dusseldorfer for the 2014-15 season, the following year saw him at Hamburg before signing a two year contract with Augsburger between 2017-19.
Last season at Linz he scored 17 goals, 33 points in 45 games.
The numbers are promising considering the high quality of the European leagues, and suggest he is a set-up man rather than a shooter.