SCORING back-to-back winners capped a memorable first full week at Fife Flyers for new signing Denis Kadic.
The Slovenian sniper scored the game-winning goal in Braehead Arena last Wednesday night in only his second Flyers match, and followed it up with the decisive penalty shot against Coventry Blaze in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Saturday.
And after tasting the unique atmosphere of Fife Ice Arena at its best during Saturday night’s televised match, he admitted being blown away by the Flyers supporters.
“It was incredible,” he told SportsPress after the 3-2 victory over Coventry. “The atmosphere was unbelievable.
“The fans were great – they were our sixth player – so it’s thanks to them that we won.
“When we were losing 2-0 they lifted us up so they deserved the win as much as us.
“Zemlak was awesome in the net and we played well defensively, so I think we deserved to win.
“It’s a great win to get because we’re vying for play-offs, so every point counts.”
Kadic stepped forward to take Flyers first penalty against Blaze, taking the puck very wide before firing past Peter Hirsch for the only goal of the shoot-out.
“I don’t have a specific style for the shoot-out, it’s a 50-50 so I just make it up as I go along,” he said.
“I had the luck this time but it doesn’t matter who scores, as long as we’re winning it’s great.”
Having made the step up from Slovenian league, Kadic admits it will take him time to get used to the frantic pace of the Elite League.
“I love the town, the people are nice, everything is great and I enjoy playing here,” he said.
“I’ve just got to get used to the hockey because it’s much faster than back home, but I’m getting there and hoping for the best.
“It’s a big step from Slovenian hockey, but it’s similar to the French league I played in last year, although it’s still quicker and faster here.”
Flyers player-coach Todd Dutiaume was delighted that his team managed to put on a show for the Sky Sports cameras.
“This gives us the confidence that we can pick off the top teams,” he said.
“You could tell that the guys were up for it, and that was the best atmosphere I’ve seen in the building all year.
“That makes a huge difference. The fans appreciate that this club has been playing good hockey.
“We’re still in last place, but the last month has been really enjoyable.”
Dutiaume also praised Kadic for keeping his cool in the shoot-out.
“He’s been a little bit quiet but he plays a quiet unassuming game,” he said.
“I‘ve seen him in practice and he has good hands, so I thought the shoot-out was a good chance for him to go out and prove himself – he was obviously the right pick.”
The coach was also encouraged to see his team battle back from two goals down.
He added: “In games before we’ve seen heads go down in that situation, so maybe that’s a turning point for the club.
“You have to look at Coventry as a top scalp and the boys can be proud of what they’ve done.”