Giants with chance for historic Sunday

January 13, 2019 9:26 am

What a Sunday we have in store, as five Elite Ice Hockey League games take place including the league leaders hosting the team in third. In Belfast, the Giants are bidding to become only the second British team ever to lift the Continental Cup.

1600 Glasgow Clan vs. MK Lightning (Tickets)

Over the last 20 games, with 11 wins the Clan are one of the top three form sides in the EIHL. They head into this game however on the back of two straight losses following last night’s defeat to Cardiff. The Glasgow side are only two points clear in fifth. Milton Keynes on the other hand are winless in three, although their last-minute equaliser against Fife did gain them a point.

I think we’ll start better tomorrow. I think last night will have got our legs back into it. We’ll show MK respect, they’re a dangerous team who score goals, they have goal-scoring and a good goalie . I think we’re playing well, we can’t ask for much more at the moment.” – Pete Russell (Head Coach, Glasgow Clan)

We had a big game last time we played them at home on TV, but it’s a different game in their own rink. We have to be aware of their top line, and with our own numbers of defense we have to manage the puck well on our own.” – Tim Wallace (Player-Coach, MK Lightning)

 

In numbers:

At home On road
Clan Lightning
Av. Goals For 3.94 2.35
Av. Goals Against 3.17 4.45
Win % 55.56% 20.00%

 

1700 Belfast Giants vs. Arlan Kokshetau – Continental Cup (Tickets | Webcast)

It’s winner takes all between the Giants and Arlan of Kazakhstan tonight at the SSE Arena. Both sides have won two games each, and whoever wins, be in it in regulation, overtime or a shootout, will clinch the Continental Cup title for this year. If the Giants win, they’ll also qualify for next season’s Champions Hockey League.

I’m thankful it’s not coming down to a three-way tie and goal difference. There’s not a whole lot I need to say in the dressing room tomorrow. It doesn’t come every day that you get the opportunity to win a trophy on home ice. They certainly play a strong defensive game, similar to Gomel we’ll have to work for our opportunities, and when we get them we’ll have to take then. Our special teams will need to be solid, and we’ll have to be disciplined as they’re a very talented and offensively gifted team.” – Adam Keefe (Head Coach, Belfast Giants)

 

1700 Dundee Stars vs. Sheffield Steelers (Tickets | Webcast)

Dundee host Sheffield with the chance to go above the Steelers in the standings after last night’s three-goal win in Sheffield. The sides played last year in Dundee where the Stars surrendered a two-goal lead late on before going down in overtime. Dundee snapped their three-game losing streak with last night’s win, extending the Steelers’ however to four games. The side who won all of their games between Christmas and New Year have so far not managed a win in 2019.

The boys are happy, a lot of nice words were said after the game. Tomorrow’s a new day, a big game, so now we have to bring it at home as well.” – Omar Pacha (Head Coach, Dundee Stars)

Matt Climie will be back in tonight. I need one of these two guys in net to take the reins for us, get us a win, and get on a run, so that’s what I’m looking for tonight.” – Tom Barrasso (Head Coach, Sheffield Steelers)

In numbers:

At home On road
Stars Steelers
Av. Goals For 2.79 3.06
Av. Goals Against 3.37 3.94
Win % 36.84% 35.29%

 

 

1715 Coventry Blaze vs. Guildford Flames (Tickets | Webcast

After last night’s 15-goal thriller at the Spectrum, one suspects the two teams may be tighter defensively in this evening’s game. However drama have gone with the Blaze and Flames encounters this season – on their last visit to the Sky Dome, the Flames fought back from 5-2 down late on to tie the game and win it in overtime. The two teams are level on 36 points each, but while the Blaze have three home wins in a row, the Flames have lost their last two games on the road.

I think both teams will be stressing to have a little more structure and be better off the puck. I’m sure last night will feel like it got a game from Guildford, but for us it was one where we kept fighting. We have to tidy things up tonight.” – Danny Stewart (Head Coach, Coventry Blaze)

We have to show up for 60 minutes and start playing some good hockey again. We have to dust ourselves down from last night, hopefully play get a full game performance away from home and come out with the points.” – Paul Dixon (Head Coach, Guildford Flames)

At home On road
Blaze Flames
Av. Goals For 3.78 3.13
Av. Goals Against 3.78 2.81
Win % 47.37% 50.00%

 

 

1730 Manchester Storm vs. Fife Flyers (Tickets | Webcast)

Manchester’s shutout win in Nottingham last night means they return to home ice against Fife with the playoff places now only two points behind. Unbeaten in their last two at home, they host a Flyers side that won in Milton Keynes last night to extend their road streak to two games – the Flyers also winning in Nottingham last weekend.

We don’t have a lot of room for error with where we are in the league, so we have to keep getting points and building. We’re finding some consistency at the moment so we have to keep it going.” – Ryan Finnerty (Head Coach, Manchester Storm)

It’s been a good start to the weekend, and we need another two points tonight. We were on the road last night so it makes the trip to Manchester today not as long, hopefully everyone is rested and ready to go.” – Todd Dutiaume (Head Coach, Fife Flyers)

In numbers:

At home On road
Storm Fife
Av. Goals For 3.50 3.47
Av. Goals Against 3.33 3.71
Win % 55.56% 47.06%

 

1800 Cardiff Devils vs. Nottingham Panthers (Tickets | Webcast)

Cardiff hit home ice knowing they have a chance to go five points clear at the top of the EIHL if they can find a way past the Panthers tonight. While the Nottingham side have struggled against Manchester and head into this game on a three-game losing streak, they have won both home games against the Devils this season. On the plus side for Cardiff however is that at the Viola Arena they’ve yet to lose to the Panthers in 2018/19. The Devils have won all bar one of their last ten games, while the Panthers over the same stretch have lost six.

“We’re going to need a full 60 minutes tonight. It’ll be a very physical, hard-fought game that we need to be prepared for. They’re a great team, fast, who don’t give up much. We’ll need a good start and to keep going no matter what.” – Andrew Lord (Head Coach, Cardiff Devils)

They are defending league champions and top now for a reason – and that’s because they do everything right. If we want to get a victory in Cardiff, we’ll have to play a hell of a lot better than we did in our own rink last night.” – Rich Chernomaz (Head Coach, Nottingham Panthers)

In numbers:

At home On road
Devils Panthers
Av. Goals For 4.06 3.24
Av. Goals Against 2.67 3.29
Win % 72.22% 42.86%
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