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Czech defender Jiri Gula joins Sheffield Steelers ice hockey club

Jiri Gula
Jiri Gula

So another piece of the Steelers jigsaw is complete with the signing of big Czech defenseman Jiri Gula.

Gula is an experienced, stay at home defenseman with a cannon of a shot. He is also another right handed shot D man to play on the same side of the ice as Davey Phillips and Ryan Martinelli.

This is also the first non North American signing of the summer and Gula’s first experience of hockey outside Czech.

Former goalie Marek Pinc was a reference for the new guy, he has seen him play and came back with great comments that matched what the club had thought after seeing Gula play several games.

Steelers will confirm the identity of another signing early next week, a forward who plays with an edge. That deal has been done for some time and one we are all excited about at HQ.

That’s leaves just three players remaining, a defenceman and two forwards. The club thought they were close to a centre this week but that deal fell through so the search continues.

On Monday the league will announce the Steelers schedule for the 2018-19 season – we think you will be excited as the club and arena have worked hard on providing you with the best fixture list they can. There are a few surprises in there as well, we think you will like it.

Home will certainly mean home in 2018-19 and the 16 new players we will have signed by the time the home opener at the Arena is played on Saturday 8th September will be a huge and very special occasion, wait until Monday to find out more.

You won’t miss that night though. A lot of people wondered why we made such a deal out of the new five-year contract with SIV when it was signed at the back end of last season. Well the relationship continues to grow, a better schedule, more co-operation and the building of a new shop inside the arena. Work is well under way building the shop and this will be an important part of our business going forward.

On Tuesday we all met to discuss the Steelers show, the new intro that Dave Burnham is building right now, the music, the entertainment. We like what we have come up with to make a night at the Steelers even more exciting and enjoyable.

The hockey is paramount but the whole night and the event is critical if fans are to continue to return in the numbers they have been doing in recent years. The arena realise that and are also trying to improve your experience at a home game.

We want a night with us to be different to Football, going bowling, watching a film at the cinema. We think we do that well at the moment and want to crack on and do it even better this next year ahead.

Part of that will be the interaction with the 16 new faces. The personalities of our players has always been massive for us and that won’t change. Huge personalities have left this summer, Zack Fitzgerald, Levi Nelson, Mathieu Roy, Colton Fretter and Ervins Mustukovs. They will be replaced by new names, new stars and we can’t wait.

They will be replaced by new names, new stars and we can’t wait.

Season starts in exhibition play on the 11th and 12th August vs. Swedish Giants Leksands – our home opener is on the 8th September and then we are in full flow. We can’t wait.