Danny Stewart recruitment update - June 2016
Genting Casino Coventry Blaze Head Coach Danny Stewart has confirmed that the club’s next signing announcement is “imminent.”
Speaking to Media Manager Rob Plaister this morning, Stewart said:
“We have a signed contract back so we’re just going through the league to make sure everything is in order so we’ll have an announcement shortly. Other than that we have a couple of other offers out so we're definitely busy.”
The upcoming signing announcement will be the first for a number of weeks, since Robin Bergman was confirmed in late May but the Head Coach has again stressed the need for patience.
“I can understand the fans frustration but I think they have to keep in mind that we have 14 guys in place, 15 with the new guy. So, we’re almost there. We obviously had a lot of returning guys that were announced earlier in the summer and guys on two-year deals who weren’t announced again, but we’re very happy with the way things are going and where we’re at.”
Stewart’s recruitment plans were altered recently with the announcement that American forward Drew Fisher had decided to retire from the sport rather than return as intended for a second year in Coventry.
“It throws you off a little off course because as part of the puzzle he was slotted into that position but in saying that we are confident we can find a suitable replacement. We are completely understanding of Drew’s decision. It is a long-term decision and what’s best for his family so we are happy for him.”
One player who is yet to decide on his future is forward Chris Bruton who posted an impressive 30 points in 20 games after joining Blaze from the Braehead Clan last season.
“We have done everything in our power to stay in contact with Chris and get him back here in a Blaze jersey. Chris doesn’t know where he’s at, not just with coming to Coventry but in his hockey career. He is not ready to commit to come back at this time and what he does long-term, that’s in the air and up to him to reveal but as of right now it doesn’t look like we’ll get him back any time soon and in that sense we have to move forward and find a suitable replacement.”
So as the search continues, Stewart concludes to explain:
“It’s a bit of a funny period right now, the East Coast League (ECHL) has until today to offer all their guys qualifying offers and after today there are a lot more guys possibly looking for jobs. The bigger leagues in Europe get going around mid-July so once the door closes on players in those leagues you see a whole new big pool of players come along, so it’s important to stay patient. I truly believe recruitment is a huge part of having success in this league, that doesn’t mean if the right guy comes along we won’t jump at it though and as I say we have a couple of offers out right now and hopefully they come to light.”