Dorr insists Flyers can beat the tough guys with speed and skill

Jeff Lee tangles with Edinburgh's Craig McCallum. Pic: Steve Gunn
Jeff Lee tangles with Edinburgh's Craig McCallum. Pic: Steve Gunn

Michael Dorr insists that Fife Flyers are tough enough to handle the physical side of the Elite League.

In a league packed with tough guys, one notable absence from the Fife roster this season is an enforcer - a player with a reputation for fighting.

The enforcer issue is a hot topic of debate among fans online, but Dorr believes that Flyers can handle themselves without one.

“Every hockey player is tough - that’s what the game is,” Dorr told the Press.

“I think we’re fine. If teams want to get tough with us, we can hang right with them.

“I think we are a little bit more of a skilled team, but if people want to start hitting - that’s fine - we can beat them with speed.”

While Flyers may not have a Matt Nickerson-type in their line-up, they have had players willing to drop the gloves in recent weeks.

Matt Delahey took on Dundee’s big enforcer, Doug Clarkson, last week while Phil Paquet scrapped with Andrew Hotham after the full-time buzzer in Cardiff on Sunday.

“I’ve got to give credit to both those guys for fighting two big opponents - that’s no easy task,” Dorr said.

“Testosterone levels were high in Cardiff on Sunday. Nobody likes to lose and I think that’s just what happened at the end of the game.

“I happened to be on the ice and guys were running their mouth, and sure enough, they dropped the gloves and squared up for a fair fight.

“It’s the first time I’ve ever seen the refs allow that after the final buzzer, but the fights and physicality are all part of the game.

“I’m a smaller guy so wouldn’t say that I’m a fighter or that I ever will fight - although if I have to, sure.”

Dorr was delighted with Flyers comeback win against Edinburgh on Saturday but admitted the team failed to perform in Cardiff on Sunday.

“I thought we had a character win on Saturday night,” he said. “We let those two goals in early but then we responded.

“Cardiff is a smaller rink, things happen quicker, and the long bus ride isn’t really an excuse - you get two hours to prepare for the game.

“They just came out and were better than us. We were flat and we made a few costly mistakes.

“They jumped on it and got an early lead. Maybe this weekend we’ll focus on getting better starts to give us a better chance of coming out on top.”

Saturday’s win over Edinburgh continued the varied spread of goals so far this season with five goals again scored by five different players.

“It means we have some depth on the team,” Dorr said. “If one guy is having a bad game another can step up.

“It’s nice to see other scorers, but at the same time, you want to be out there scoring too.

“Everyone has that drive and competitiveness that they want to score which makes the team push itself harder.It pushes others to want to score as well.”

Manchester Storm are next up at Fife Ice Arena on Saturday, before Flyers make the trip to Dundee Ice Arena in the Challenge Cup on Sunday.

“Our goal every weekend is to obtain four points,” Dorr said.“We’re home on Saturday and we’ll be looking to use the energy the crowd gives us to come out hot.

“In both games we need better starts, then stick to the game plan from there and things will take care of itself.”