Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Giants have it all to play for: Thornton

By Stuart McKinley

Steve Thornton has told his Belfast Giants players that nothing less than a win will do when they face the Hull Stingrays this evening.

And given that the Giants have an unbeaten record when they’ve played at the Dundonald Ice Bowl he has every reason to demand two points.

As well as that, the plan is to keep the pressure on Elite League leaders Coventry Blaze as much as possible, despite the fact that they opened up a five-point gap on the Giants when they beat the Belfast men on Sunday night.

“We’ve given ourselves work to do and we’ve found ourselves in a position now that I didn’t want to be in,” said Thornton.

“We need to rely on other teams now and that’s never ideal.

“All we can do is win our own games and that’s what we have to do against Hull, if we don’t win our own games then we’re not helping ourselves.

“We won’t give up on the league, we still have a chance to take points off Coventry in the last game of the season and it would be great if we could turn things around and go into that one with everything to play for.

“It might take us to win all of our remaining games to win the league, but we are a team that is capable of going on a seven-game winning streak and hopefully we can start that now.”

The Giants will be playing a new team next season, with Braehead Clan enter the league, playing out of Glasgow’s Braehead Arena. And Giants general manager Todd Kelman sees the addition of an eighth team as a major boost.

“I was over in Braehead Arena a few weeks back and the set up is great. Ice hockey has a rich tradition in Scotland and we are happy to have another team so close to Belfast to compete against,” said Kelman

“I am already anticipating a great rivalry between Braehead and Belfast because they have now become our closest rival.”

Belfast Telegraph

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