SHEFFIELD, U.K. – The Sheffield Steelers bolstered their squad today with the announcement that they had signed Simon Ferguson after Austrian EBEL outfit Olimpija Ljubljana had cut him .
The 29-year-old forward can either play on the wing or as a centreman, and has been described by Steelers Head Coach Ryan Finnerty in the mould of current Steelers agitator Tylor Michel.
After an impressive junior career in the WHL with the likes of Lethbridge and Kelowna, the British Columbia native signed for the Greenville Grrrowl in the ECHL, where he played briefly with current Steeler Colin Shields.
In his debut professional season with the Grrrowl Ferguson recorded an impressive 40 points (10+30) in 50 games along with a staggering 244 penalty minutes.
Ferguson’s hardnosed style of play earned him 10 games in the AHL that season with the Edmonton Roadrunners, where he picked up an assist.
The AHL is where Ferguson has predominantly called home for the majority of his career, playing in 372 games for a host of teams including, Edmonton, Portland, San Antonio, Hershey and Syracuse, winning a Calder Cup with the latter of the five teams.
In his 372 American League games Ferguson registered 91 points and a breathtaking 749 penalty minutes, including 64 fights with the Steelers very own Drew Fata and the Devils pantomime villain Devin DiDiomete.
Ferguson then spent last season with Danish outfit Esbjerg EfB where he finished second on the team with 51 points (18+33) in just 40 games along with 136 penalty minutes.
Despite Esbjerg finishing second from bottom in the league, Ferguson and linemate Jordan Lavalee were second and first (respectively) in the point’s charts, demonstrating their ability despite the team not doing so well.
Sheffield Steelers Head Coach Ryan Finnerty spoke about his new 6’0” 200lbs acquisition,” Simon Ferguson is the perfect signing for us. He is hungry to come into a situation and play out the year. He is a hard working, hard-nosed player who will bring a great work ethic and style of play to our team. I see him in the mould of a Tylor Michel. He is another that will intensify and energise to the side,” Finnerty said.
“He will add offence but more importantly add to what we already have here as another very good, very solid hockey player. He is a perfect fit and has a great hockey resume with much top quality experience. I can’t wait to have him available and to work with him, “Finnerty added.
The club are currently working on Ferguson’s visa paperwork and they are hoping that he will be with the team in the next 7-10 days.
The addition of Ferguson means that the South Yorkshire side will now be running a full import quota of 11 overseas players, with the only question mark hanging over Tom Sestito in the team with the impeding NHL lockout negotiations.
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