Battle is for points not personal bragging rights

Ice Hockey: Latest news, reports and more.
Ice Hockey: Latest news, reports and more.
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THE two toughest ice hockey players in Britain face each other across Sheffield Arena ice on Sunday.

Sheffield Steeler Colt King against Belfast Giant Matt Hoffman.

It could be an exhilarating, if painful, spectacle.

But Steelers’ coach Ryan Finnerty is wasting no time thinking about a possible punch-up.

“Both these players are more than just heavyweights,” he says. “They are the toughest guys in our league, but they are not one dimensional; they can play too.

“I feel sure both of them would rather win the game than run around trying to prove who is the toughest. If we need to impose ourselves to change a game it will happen, but it’s points we want not any personal glory.”

Steelers, who face Hull Stingarys tomorrow before their clash with the league leaders 24 hours later, have no injury worries.

Stingrays’ coach Sylvain Cloutier believes Sheffield have American Hockey League standard quality running through their lines.

He said: “Sheffield are the hottest team in the league right now. We have to play a solid defensive game against them and stay out of the penalty box as they have an excellent powerplay.

“Finner has put a top team together which battles every night. They have a lot of AHL experience, they have some top GB internationals, they have a solid defence and a good goaltender. They do not have any weaknesses.

“We have competed with them at times this season and have had a couple of close matches but we will need to be at it for 60 minutes.

“They are contending for the league title and are in a good position but we want to show what we can do too.”