So the game didn’t quite go our way… It’s been the best performance by the Steelers against the Blaze all season. I mean, I know I wasn’t the only one sat in the away end hoping for a small reprieve. If only, for one more goal from the Steelers. The men who made us proud to wear our jerseys.
I caught up with Steelers head coach Paul Thompson after the game to get his first thoughts on the game:
CTP: What’s your first reaction to the game tonight?
Thompson: It was a great game of hockey ruined by an official, he gave Blaze a two goal lead because of his inept performance and the league’s got to do something about the officiating. Nothing against him personally, just can’t referee at this level.
CTP: This is the best performance the Steelers have put on against the Blaze this season, having spoken to Fitzy last week about the Blaze being the team that seem to have your number. What’s your take on that?
Thompson: Yeah it is a bit like that. I mean, Coventry were the far better team last week there’s no denying that but I thought we were the better team tonight and we had a lot of chances to take the game but it’s the way it is. The referee can’t give a team a 2-0 lead. One of my players gets tripped and they go in and score and then he blows his whistle and they score two seconds later, it’s a joke.
I also caught up with Guillaume Desbiens, subject of the controversial delayed penalty call and subsequent goal by the Blaze for his thoughts on the matter:
CTP: What was your thoughts on the penalty?
Desbiens: I don’t think we’re allowed to comment too much on that, obviously I disagree but whatever decision was made on the call, I deserve my penalty maybe. I’m not even arguing about that but the goal… Yeah.
CTP: Not happy?
CTP: You’re back here on the 28th February to do it all over again, the team has progressively got better with each trip here. Do you believe that next time could be your chance to take home the two points?
Desbiens: Yeah, I feel like tonight we had a really bad first period, more bad, two bad bounces and bad decisions but as the game went on we wore them down and worked down low and they couldn’t really handle us. So it’s just starting that from the beginning and I feel like it wouldn’t be a problem if we did that for 60 minutes.
CTP: What’s it like going up against [Brian] Stewart? Some might say he’s one of the best in the league.
Desbiens: He’s a very good goalie. I think he is… He’s played unbelievably against us. I think in our heads we’re seeing him as better than he really is. I think our confidence against him was a little low but today we were able to exploit him a little bit and you know, score four goals against him. It’s pretty good. So I think, we kinda know what to do to make him move and be able to score those goals, so if we can just do that next time.
So there you have it, poor officiating, not enough confidence this time around and a slow start meant the Steelers lost out. However, could five be the lucky number at the Skydome for the Steel City boys? Stay tuned, they play again in 3 weeks time. 28/2/2016 could be the day we finally defeat the Blaze this season.
For a blow by blow of the game itself, click here.