Sheffield Steelers hope to silence the vociferous Nottingham Panthers crowd as they look for their third straight win in their rink, tonight.
Coach Gerad Adams is demanding a win in regulation time to keep on course for the league title.
But he knows his team need to dictate play from the first puck drop. “I assume it will be a sell-out crowd and Nottingham with try and push the tempo from the start” said Adams.
“But if you keep them out for the first ten or 12 minutes of the game, that is always a good sign.
“You can take the crowd out of it if you counter what the home team is doing, successfully. But to do that we have to be at our best defensively.”
One player to focus on in that regard is Guillaume Doucet, who has scored six goals in the last three games.
“He has been a major reason why Panthers have won their last five and are the League’s form team.
“They are a dangerous team especially on the offensive side of the puck and Doucet is a very good, dynamic and opportunistic player who shows that by scoring short-handed.”
Steelers have their own on-form forwards, including Rob Dowd, who has been a real leader recently.
“This is his time” said Adams. “At the end of the year his numbers go up and he scores the big goals. He is much stronger for us now.”
Swedish netminder Mattias Modig will face Steelers tonight, after another injury to Craig Kowalski.
*Steleers supporters are in mourning today after the death of young fan and cancer victim Amy Usher, from Wath.