Two Sheffield Steeler starlets get world championship experience

Kieran Brown and Jordan Griffin
Kieran Brown and Jordan Griffin

Sheffield Steelers’ two stars of tomorrow have had their places confirmed in the Great Britain Under-20s squad for the IIHF World Championship Division II Group A in the capital of Estonia.

Kieran Brown, the exciting 17-year-old forward prospect, is joined in Tallinn by defenceman Jordan Griffin, who is in his debut year as an apprentice. He is 16 years old.

In October, Brown signed on a two-way deal with Blackburn Hawks.

Last season, he scored 29 goals and 16 assists in 21 games for the Hawks.

Some Steelers fans would like to see more of him at the Arena.

But club owner Tony Smith explained: "Kieran is a fantastic young talent but like all young players, just wants to be on the ice every weekend.

"He thoroughly enjoyed his experience playing at Blackburn last season, joining up with players he came through the youth system at Bradford with.

“The deal will be beneficial for both Steelers and Hawks as he gets more ice time and continues to develop.”

Barrasso has hinted that, if the team brings in another player, they may have enough to ice a fourth line, with Brown and Brandon Whistle.

GB, including ex Steelers winger Liam Kirk, meet hosts Estonia, as well as Korea, Lithuania, Romania and Spain from 13th to 19th January 2019 at the Tondiraba Ice Hall.

Head coach Slava Koulikov said: "I think we have a very strong squad and we have strength all across the ice.

"The camps over the last few months have been very competitive and picking the final roster was a tough job for the coaches.

"It shows the strength in depth we have in the Great Britain junior set-up at the moment.

"The squad will now undergo final preparations before January's World Championship."

Neither of the Steeler prospects have seen a lot of ice with the Elite League club, but both are very much on head coach Tom Barrasso's radar.

*Britain start the six-team tournament against Lithuania on 13th January and then play Korea the following day.

After a rest day, Britain go head-to-head with Estonia on 16th January and then meet Romania on 17th January.

The second rest day follows before GB play their final match when they take on Spain.