Sheffield Steelers new-boy Aaron Brocklehurst completes defensive line-up for EIHL title challenge
Steelers' last defensive skater has been signed up - and he's coming to South Yorkshire to win a championship.
Canadian Aaron Brocklehurst completes the Sheffield defensive line-up for the 2019/20 campaign, and with another import forward already signed up, but not announced yet, it means Aaron Fox has just one more skater to deliver the club.
Brocklehurst is completely focused on the task of reviving the fortunes of the club.
"Last year wasn't a year to remember for Sheffield but to be part of building a new team is a great opportunity for me" he said.
"As a person I am easy-going and one who looks forward to coming to the rink and being around the team.
"But once I am on the ice I am a hard working competitor who will be trying to provide leadership. I want to help Sheffield win the championship."
The 34-year-old says he is a two-way d-man, who is solid on the blue line but likes to join the rush when he can.
Coach Fox is relieved to have him - he has had to be patient in the negotiations.
“I’m really happy we could finally get this done" he said.
"This one obviously tested my patience but at the end of the day he was someone I felt brings a lot to the table and was willing to wait on.
Brocklehurst studied at St Cloud University and played for four years in their NCAA hockey programme.
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Turning professional in 2008, Brocklehurst joined Florida Everblades in the ECHL and split his time between them, Victoria Salmon Kings (ECHL) and the Lake Erie Monsters in the AHL.
Gwinnett and Reading (ECHL) were the destinations the following season before moving to Europe.
First up was the Finnish Elite League with a two year spell in Lukko and then Pelicans.
In 2012 came a move to Germany and Wolfsburg, which was the start of a three-year stint in the DEL with Ingolstadt being his later destination.
For the last four seasons Aaron has played in the EBEL, first with Fehervar and then with Vienna, where he helped the Capitals to a play-off championship in 2017. Last year saw Aaron move to Linz where in 58 games he registered seven goals and 25 assists.
Fox said: “Aaron is a very skilled two-way d-man that skates really well and plays the game the right way.
"He seems to let the game come to him always making good smart decisions and can also play against other team’s top players.
“He led his team in playoff scoring for a d-man the year they won the Championship in Vienna and think his character will be a huge positive to our Room.”
“With this signing I think we have six defenceman that can match up against any other six in this league.
"We will try a few different combinations in practice but think this will allow us to keep Benny (O'Connor) and Davey (Phillips) together to start the year as well and we can give Ben some match-ups where he can play the style of game which suits him.”