Sheffield Steelers recruited a four-year AHL defenceman today as coach Gerad Adams completed his wholesale transformation of the play off champions.
American Cullen Eddy, 25, signed a two-year contract after leaving Adirondack Phantoms, an affiliate of the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers.
His arrival completes the 2014-15 roster which bears only a passing similarity to the team that won the Play Offs.
The completed squad consists of three goalies, six d-men and 11 forwards.
Eddy is the stay-at-home blue liner who the club hopes to play with the steely resolve illustrated by former heroes Steve Munn and Dion Darling.
He is only 6ft, but, says Adams: “he brings an edge.”
The coach said: “This is an AHL d-man who will bring added toughness. His main responsibility was defence in the AHL, but over here we will see him jump in the play too.”
Eddy said: “This will be a new challenge for me and I am looking forward to joining a winning franchise in England.”
Steelers believe they have upgraded the blue line considerably over last year’s team: Eddy and Darrell Hay replace Drew Fata and Chad Langlais, and Rod Sarich fills Danny Meyers’ boots.
Dustin Kohn, Gord Baldwin and Mark Thomas return from last year - Thomas in his testimonial season.
In net Steelers have Frank Doyle back, Geoff Woolhouse returning from injury and Rotherham’s Andy Jaszczyk.
n Mark Thomas says he will be “good to go” after recovering from back problems.
“I suffered a bit with a bulging disc which triggered sciatica down my legs. It was painful and niggling” he said. “I have specific exercises to strengthen the whole area and, hopefully, I can control it. Hopefully, there is plenty left in the tank!”
Thomas said it was inevitable there would be a “gelling-in period” with all the new recruits.
Braehead Clan are expected to announce the signing of last-year Steeler Stefan Meyer, soon.