New Fife Flyers signing Justin Fox says he’s looking forward to the new season having heard nothing but great things about the team.
The 28-year-old Canadian signed up to play at Fife Ice Arena from ECHL side Quad City Mallards - one of a growing number of new faces coming to the Kingdom for the 2015-16 ice hockey season.
He played 71 games last season, scoring 23 goals and 35 assists for a 58-point season, making him second top in the club’s stats.
The returns were also the best in his pro career to date, catching the eye of Flyers’ coaching staff.
Danny Stewart, associate coach, hailed that as Fox’s ‘‘breakout season’’ adding; “He brings a lot of energy to the wing.’’
Stewart, a player always willing to be as gritty as it needs, described Fox as ‘‘a guy willing to get to dirty areas’’ - and made direct comparisons to highly-regarded Flyers’ Kris Hogg and Jordan Fulton’s style of play.
‘‘He brings us a good combination of physicality and skill and will be in our top six guys to start the year,” summarised Stewart.
That’s a pretty good way of being introduced to a new fan base - and for Fox, the season can’t start quickly enough.
Speaking to the Press, Fox said that asking around about Flyers convinced him that Kirkcaldy was where he wanted to play this season.
“I spoke with a few former teammates who had experience playing in the EIHL and the league - and Fife was a spot that always came up as a great place to play,” he said,
“Players have nothing but good things to say about the fans and the town.
“It’s the UK’s oldest ice hockey team so it will be an honour to be a part of the Flyers tradition.”
Fox said that he was also looking forward to meeting with the fans and was pleased that news of his signing has been positive.
“The fans have been great.
“From what I hear we have some pretty passionate fans and our rink is one of the toughest to play in.
“There’s nothing better as a player then playing at home in front of a full, rowdy crowd.
“I can’t wait to get to Kirkcaldy and experience it first hand.”
The Flyers fans can look forward to seeing some positive play from Fox who said he’s happy to mix it when need be.
“I’m an offensive player.
‘‘I like to shoot the puck and create offense I also don’t mind going to the dirty areas to get one.
“I’ll finish my checks and be dependable in both ends.”
Fox says that as a player he likes to set himself goals at the start of each season and sees no reason why this season can’t be a successful one for the Flyers.
He said: “Every season I set personal goals for myself, things that I aim to accomplish personally but the main goal every night is to do something that will help the team win.
“My main goal for this season is for us to make play-offs and bring a championship back to Kirkcaldy.”
Fox has yet to travel to Kirkcaldy, but says he’s currently training hard to prepare for the club’s pre-season training camp at the end of August.
He admits he doesn’t know too much about the league but added: “From the signings we have so far and the local guys we have returning I think we have a strong club.
‘‘It’ll be a matter of finding chemistry and from there building toward the playoffs every day.
“I like our chances.”