SHEFFIELD, UK – The Elite league got under way on Friday night with all eyes on events at a sold out National Ice Centre in Nottingham where the Panthers were looking to extend their lead at the top of the table. In their way, was second place and fiercest rivals Sheffield Steelers. Close to 7,000 fans were on hand to witness Nottingham extend their lead with a 4-2 victory in, what turned out to be a penalty filled game.
Nottingham wasn’t the only city to kick off the weekend action early though; in Braehead the Clan could only claim a point against Coventry thanks to James Griffin’s goal 52 seconds from the end of overtime enabling the Blaze to take home the extra point.
Saturday dawns with three of the four games taking place north of boarder.
Braehead will be looking to bounce back from their overtime defeat when they take on Nottingham at the Braehead Arena in a matchup that sees the twos team sitting atop of their respective conferences do battle. After defeat to top of the table Panthers the Steelers will try their hand against the third place Belfast Giants. The Giants will be looking to put their office issues behind them and reclaim second place from the Steelers. Coventry remains in Robbie Burns’s country with a game against Edinburgh and Hull will rekindle their rivalry with the Flyers at the Fife Ice Arena.
Sunday sees the return of the battle of capital cities as Belfast venture across the Irish Sea to take on the Cardiff Devils while Coventry will conclude their trip around the rinks of Scotland with a trip to Fife and the awaiting Flyers.
It’s the Sheffield Steelers turn to play three games in three nights and end their bumper weekend road trip with a bus ride to Dundee.
Finally Braehead will need to pay the Humber bridge toll before they can go up against the Hull Stingrays and try to make Hull’s quest for a playoff place that much tougher.