Ice hockey: an enforcer snarls, and an NHL signing coup for Manchester Storm
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Manchester Storm grabbed the headlines with the signing of former NHL defenceman, Joe Morrow. It came out of the blue, and it will be fascinating to see how the man who spent five years in the show with Boston Bruins, Winnipeg Jets and Montreal Canadiens adapts to life in the slightly more humble surroundings of Storm’s Altrincham rink.
His CV is second to none - first round draftee in 2011, 162 NHL games, and then on the KHL. Since then Morrow has iced in Finland, Kazakhstan and, more recently, Moscow. His presence in the dressing-room will certainly light a spark among his team-mates, and coach Matt Ginn was delighted to land his man after months of negotiations.
“To be able to sign a player of Joe’s calibre is huge for our group,” he said. “When he became available we jumped at the opportunity to better ourselves. His experience in the top leagues around the world, including the NHL, will be invaluable to our group. Joe will be relied upon on both sides of the puck, and I’m thrilled to bring him onboard.”
Morrow joins Storm who snapped a five-game losing streak - four in pre-season - with a 3-2 league win at Nottingham Panthers on Sunday. His debut looks like being against Dundee Stars this weekend.
The first sounds of an enforcer snarling came south of the border at the weekend after Coventry’s Blake Thomson was tossed for boarding Sheffield Steelers’ Patrick Watling. Team-mate Kevin Tansey was not impressed, and got his message across as the defenceman headed to the dressing-room.“"I got out there on the ice and chased that (number) 44 off the ice. I just wanted him to know that we will remember who he is," he told the Sheffield Star.
That could make the return on October 8 slightly tasty. Wonder if DOPS will study the verbals …
Steelers swept the points in their opening league games, winning 3-2 in overtime against Blaze and then skating to a 3-1 win at Guildford. Danny Stewart’s side got off the mark the following night with a 4-2 win over Cardiff Devils.
Dundee Stars opened their Challenge Cup with back to back losses at the hands of Belfast Giants, going down 6-2 on home ice, despite leading 2-0, and 4-1 across the Irish Sea.