Anxious wait for fitness improvements inside Sheffield Steelers’ camp

Brandon Whistle
Brandon Whistle

Sheffield Steelers may have 10 days for their injuries to clear up – but coach Paul Thompson isn’t 100% confident he will have a full line-up for the opening match of the season at Nottingham Panthers on September 1.

Mark Matheson, Robert Dowd and Matt Rupert won’t be training much on the ice, this week.

And the severity of Brandon Whistle’s foot bruising is such that he is still on crutches and, says Thompson, remains a doubt for the trip to Panthers.

Chris Lawrence – now his full kit has arrived from Canada – is skating and should catch up with the other fit players in terms of conditioning.

Steelers have been monitoring the close-season additions to the Nottingham side.

One asset they now have on board is 27-year-old defenceman Dylan Olsen, whose father Darryl played for Panthers in season 1996-97.

Dylan looks a solid signing – he played 124 games in the NHL with Chicago and Florida.

His capture was a major boost for new Panthers’ head coach Rich Chernomaz.