Belfast Telegraph

Cameron Hughes ready to party on for Belfast Giants

By Stuart McKinley

It's not just flying pucks that fans will have to look out for at the Odyssey Arena this weekend.

If they're not careful a t-shirt may unexpectedly come winging at them.

What they can expect though is to be whipped up into a frenzy, no matter what's happening on the ice.

Belfast Giants general manager Todd Kelman has recruited professional sports entertainer Cameron Hughes for the weekend games, against the Fife Flyers tonight and the Sheffield Steelers tomorrow.

The Canadian, who describes himself as a 'spark' squeezes himself into as many t-shirts as he can and still manages to dance his way through the game.

No wonder he peels them off as the night goes on to make sure at least some fans go home with a souvenir.

And he is vowing to ensure that those who pay into the games this weekend will get value for money, irrespective of whether the Giants can stretch their four-point lead at the top of the Elite League table..

"I promise you won't need your whole seat, I promise that you'll need some throat drops, I promise that you'll have an awesome time no matter what happens on the ice and I promise I will give it every single ounce of energy, and sweat into t-shirt tossing that I have," said Cameron.

"People ask me why I am crazy all the time and I say it's why I'm hired. I'm not going to come and only give it half.

"I know some of these players now. I have kept in touch with them. I have emailed and tweeted and then you care more.

"You put that out there and I think that fans can feel that.

"I'll be throwing a lot of t-shirts out. I just can't tell you how many I'm going to be wearing.

"I'll be making a lot of fans happy. The t-shirts are always a great way to do that.

"If you only go to a game one weekend this season, then make sure that this is it."

This trip to Belfast is a return visit for Hughes, who has also been employed to pump up the atmosphere at the 2010 Winter Olympics as well as the 2011 US Open when he got Novak Djokovic to dance on court.

He was also here in January and caught everyone by surprise with his crazy antics.

This time, however, the Giants have been using his presence at the game as a marketing ploy with the slug line #PACKTHEO (that's pack the o, not a reference to former Giant Theo Fleury.

"The first moment I got up was one of the best because everybody in there just had no clue what was going on," said Cameron.

"That moment is something that you try to bottle and capture because all you are doing is showing them something different.

"The second night when they were 3-0 down and came back to win in a shoot-out and I was announced as the man-of-the-match and then I slid across the ice right into the players.

"No other team has ever brought me onto the ice to thank me for my efforts."

On the ice Darryl Lloyd returns to boost the Giants attack after his three-week lay off, but Jeff defence Mason remains out.

Belfast Telegraph

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