More desire required on the road

Todd Dutiaume Fife Flyers. Pic: Steve Gunn, shotbyagunn photography
Todd Dutiaume Fife Flyers. Pic: Steve Gunn, shotbyagunn photography

FIFE Flyers player-coach Todd Dutiaume has admitted that his players need to show more desire away from Fife Ice Arena.

Flyers home record makes for good reading, but seven defeats from eight on the road has left the club rooted to the bottom of the Gardiner Conference.

Dutiaume said: “The guys go into every game wanting to win, but we’re just lacking that desire to do whatever it takes to get that win.

“To win on the road you need guys sliding in front of pucks, blocking shots, and making hard hits in the corners.

“We’ve not done enough of that, and that’s a huge problem.

“Don’t get me wrong, we’re playing hard, but we don’t have the same edge on the road that we do at home.

“We’ve spoken to the guys about it and they know it’s something that has to change.”

While demanding more from his players, Dutiaume is also prepared to alter team tactics in order to find a winning formula away from home.

“We’ll be adding a few different systems in the upcoming weeks,” he said.

“We play a demanding high-energy system that tires guys out, so we’ll look at tweaking a few things strictly to find a way to win games on the road.”

Until they find an answer for their away blues, Flyers must continue to rely on their impressive home form. Dundee Stars are the visitors this Saturday and Dutiaume expects a tough game.

“They have an incredible goalie in Riopel who will win them games,” he said. “We have to find a way to get some traffic in front of him because if he sees the puck he’ll stop it.”

Flyers travel to Wales on Sunday for a first meeting of the season with Cardiff Devils, who were the latest Elite League club to sign a locked out NHL star last week when they captured Paul Bissonnette from Phoenix Coyotes.

Dutiaume added: “Cardiff’s tiny little building is always a tough place to go.

“However, I think our imports will enjoy it - the size of the rink is something they will be more accustomed to. It will allow someone like Jason Pitton to put himself about a bit more.”

Dutiaume confirmed that he is still pushing club directors for a 10th import signing.

“If we are going to make a move I would rather it happened a lot sooner than later,” he said.

“We don’t want to slip away and then try to patch ourselves up later.”