Sheffield Steelers need to start their Play Off campaign early with a snarly attitude

Steelers' coach Aaron Fox says his side must display a mean and moody play off mentality in this weekend's last two regular season matches.
Matt Greenfield can 'steal' the play offs. Picture: Dean WoolleyMatt Greenfield can 'steal' the play offs. Picture: Dean Woolley
Matt Greenfield can 'steal' the play offs. Picture: Dean Woolley

The team's results have been inconsistent since the New Year to such an extent that Fox questioned the team's character after last week's big loss to Belfast Giants.

But form hasn't been bad, other than that defeat, and Sheffield can begin to redeem themselves from this weekend onwards by beating Glasgow Clan at home and Cardiff Devils away.

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That would give them momentum into the Play Off quarter finals of April 8-9.

A rumble in a previous Steelers  Glasgow game, picture by Dean WoolleyA rumble in a previous Steelers  Glasgow game, picture by Dean Woolley
A rumble in a previous Steelers Glasgow game, picture by Dean Woolley

In short, Steelers have to show their teeth over the next four games if they are going to qualify for the play off finals in Nottingham on April 15-16.

Fox said the team had discussed their "play off path, now the league is out of contention.

"Playing play off hockey is not a light switch you can turn on and off.

"We need to build our game back to where we need to be."

Sam Jones suspendedSam Jones suspended
Sam Jones suspended
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Last Sunday's win over Cardiff was "a great first step in that direction" the coach said.

He admitted his team had not been "mentally prepared" for the 2-8 loss at Belfast and "kind of quit."

That result caused a storm online with multiple fans suggesting something must have happened behind the scenes after an 11-game winning streak ended on January 5.

Asked if that had been the case, Fox replied: "No, not that I am aware of."

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Forward Brendon Connolly, who will play his last home league game for Steelers on Saturday, is confident Sheffield can be successful.

"We have the goaltending to do it," said the on-form Great Britain man.

"Greener (Matt Greenfield) can steal a game for us at any point in time.

"I think if we play the right way in front of him we can limit a lot of chances and have guys who can put the puck in the net and are opportunistic. I 100 per cent believe we can do some damage."

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Connolly's attitude and form are certainly pleasing his boss.

"We are getting vintage Conns right now, it is great to see" said Fox.

"He is driving the accountability of our group, it's great to see.

"I think when he is playing as well as he is right now it is a lot easier for him to be able to do that; he is a vocal guy and understands the game so well, he's been great."

Steelers' weekend squad is a movable feast.

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Defenceman Sam Jones is out for the two games, forward Brandon McNally is also suspended but will be available to play at his former team Cardiff on Sunday. McNally has yet to score against his old employers.

Sheffield hope to have injured centreman Brandon Whistle back available for selection, he is "trending in the right direction."

But hope is dwindling that Sebastien Piche and Mason Mitchell will play any part in the rest of the season.

*Sheffield Arena will host Steelers' annual memorial night on Saturday.

Families will celebrate the lives of loved ones on the Tron before the game.