TODD Dutiaume believes that results over the festive period could make or break Fife Flyers season.
Starting this Saturday in Nottingham, Flyers face a hectic period of five games in nine days leading up to New Year.
With crucial points up for grabs in both the Elite League and Gardiner Conference, the player-coach knows positive results are crucial.
“Our games between now and the end of January can make or break our season,” Dutiaume said. “This is when everyone has to show up.
“Hopefully we can get positive results this weekend and ride a winning streak right through Christmas and New Year.”
After travelling to Nottingham on Saturday, Flyers have four conference games in a week, starting with Dundee Stars away on Sunday.
Flyers are currently bottom of their conference with 10 points from 11 games, but have four games in hand on Braehead, who sit top on 18 points.
Strongest-placed in the section are Dundee, who have six points more than Fife having played a game less.
“The conference is definitely up for grabs,” Dutiaume said. “But if we want to give ourselves a chance of winning it we need to take points off Dundee and start winning on the road.”
Flyers are currently on a 10-game losing streak away from home.
“We’ve got to start believing in ourselves on the road,” Dutiaume stressed.
“We’ve played pretty decent in most away games, but it’s not performances we need, it’s points.
“Positive mentality and belief in yourself goes a long way, and we’re riding a wave at home right now.
“We seem to feel a bit more pressure on the road but if we want to make a serious run at a play-off spot we’ve got to start winning away games.”
The knee injury suffered by Kris Hogg in the win over Cardiff on Sunday is not as bad as first feared.
However, he is rated doubtful for the weekend.
“Hogg is a key player for us,” Dutiaume added.
“He’s on the first line powerplay, he’s our second top scorer, and he achors that second line for us.
“If he doesn’t make the weekend it will be a big blow, but Jamie Wilson stepped in for him on Sunday and did well.”