Blaze seek Cup points in Cardiff
Genting Casino Coventry Blaze travel to South Wales today to take on the Cardiff Devils in a Challenge Cup encounter at Ice Arena Wales.
Blaze began the cup campaign well beating Nottingham Panthers on home ice before two losses this past weekend to Sheffield Steelers at the Skydome and Manchester Storm on the road.
With two points on the board from three games, Blaze sit ahead of this evening’s opponents, Cardiff Devils who following defeats to Manchester Storm and Nottingham Panthers find themselves bottom of group B with no points from two games played so far.
Blaze Head Coach Danny Stewart, who welcomes back Canadian forward Matt Marquardt to his line-up said (here), “I think we have to stick to our strengths but we need to be aware of their offensive power and traditionally they’ve had a good powerplay so staying out of the box will be key, especially in their rink. We need to limit our errors and not give them odd-man rushes as they are a team that will make you pay with a lot of offensive and skilled guys up front. We have to play a smart game, but not a safe game. We have to go after them when we can and play to our strengths as well.”
With Cardiff getting off to a slow start in the cup competition which they reached the final, and won the year before, player/coach of the Devils Andrew Lord said to the Elite League website (here), “We look at it one game a time. (With table toppers Sheffield Steelers on Sunday) we definitely can’t overlook Coventry. They are a very good team, they compete, they have a lot of gritty players and high end skill along with a very goalie in (Brian) Stewart. Obviously we want to compete on all fronts and having the Challenge Cup final at home is a nice treat if we can get there but we have to take care of Saturday night and then go from there.”
This will be the third meeting of the two this season, but the first competitively. In pre-season, Devils prevailed both times over the Blaze, 2-3 in Coventry (highlights) and 7-6 on home ice in overtime (highlights).
There will be a live stream of the game courtesy of Ice Time TV for a cost of £8.
If you are unable to travel to Cardiff or watch online, updates will be provided on Twitter via @CovBlazeLive