Colton Fretter’s resilience after a potentially career ending season - and his uncanny understanding with linemate Mathieu Roy - has led to a fresh contract with Sheffield Steelers.
After winning two league titles and last year’s Play Off trophy, the 35-year-old Canadian has signed up for a fourth season at the Elite League club.
Fretter played only 19 League games in the 2015-16 campaign because of a double hernia.
The club stood by him and he responded in 2016-17 with 26 goals in 48 league games and a Play off final goal against Cardiff Devils.
The burly winger commented: “After the season ended I thought about what direction I was going to go. It didn’t take me long to decide I wanted to keep on playing and keep on playing here at Sheffield
“I’ve been treated so very well here by ownership, management, coaches, team mates and fans.
“I feel a part of what we have built and continue to build. I love to win and we have been successful here in the last three years. I don’t see that changing. I see a hunger throughout the club and especially inside the dressing room.
“We are not long into the summer but I’m looking forward to walking back into the room and being part of that great group once again.
“We set the bar for many years and now Cardiff have taken that mantle. Its up to us to go get it back”
Being part of that ‘great group’ is significant...coach Paul Thompson wanted to re-sign the best players and core from last year.
The coach is an admirer of Fretter’s relationship with Roy and the fact he scores goals from range.
Thompson said “Colton is a very good player and person. He buys into how we do things here and has become one of our leaders.
“He is one of those players who can make something out of nothing. The modern game means teams keep things tight, he is a player who can unpick a lock and finish.
“His record here with the Steelers speaks for itself. He sees himself as a Steeler, the club is important to him and he is important to us, he has earned his new contract.
“Continuity is important, of course we are going to have new players but I felt that he was someone on and off the ice that would be hard to replace.”