Keeton Ellerby targets maximum returns with Sheffield Steelers

When Covid issues led to the postponement of the scheduled Belfast Giants v Sheffield Steelers back-to-back games in mid-December last year, it didn't seem such a big deal for Aaron Fox's men.

Thursday, 10th March 2022, 10:36 am

At the time they were riding six points clear at the top of the table and it hadn't been long since they had battered the Irish 7-1 at the Arena.

Flash forward to this weekend, and Giants have overtaken Steelers at the top of the EIHL division.

Sheffield have a game in hand but have to reverse a disappointing streak despite injuries.

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Just before the Covid-19 protocols led to the postponement at the SSE Arena, Belfast, Sheffield's former NHL defenceman Keeton Ellerby gave his thoughts on the prospective tie.

His remarks were not published as the games never happened - but his views remain pertinent to this day.

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Referring to the 7-1 win Ellerby, 33, said: "I don't think that was near their best hockey when they came here, so we are expecting a lot tougher competition and a hard battle.

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"Those are four big points and hopefully we can go in there and take all four of them."

Since then, the former Florida Panthers' man has been a defensive prop for Steelers, with a modest one goal and ten assists at the other end.

"For sure I would like to score some more goals, that definitely hasn't been my game over my career, but when they happen, they happen," he said.

"They don't happen often but when they do, it is super-exciting.

"I enjoy every single one I get so I'll probably celebrate pretty hard when I get the next one."

Ellerby had warm words to give about the Sheffield fan base.

"The crowd here are second to none in Europe from where I have played in front of and played for.

"The fans here are amazing and we like to win for them."

And as for 24-year-old fellow-defenceman Sam Jones, he added: "I think he has got a very bright future, he works hard, he wants to learn, he is always asking questions, he is last off the ice after practice. The sky is the limit for him, if he keeps doing what he is doing he is going to have a great career."