5th Jul, 2022

All-Star goalie Motte returns to Blaze

Liam Moakes 3rd Aug, 2020 Updated: 3rd Aug, 2020

GENTING Casino Coventry Blaze head coach Danny Stewart is thrilled to have secured the signature of 28-year-old American netminder C.J. Motte to return for the 2020/21 Elite League season.

The 6ft St. Clair, Michigan native arrived in Coventry in December and made a stunning impact as his 92.68 per cent save percentage led the league – helping Blaze to third place before the season was cut short due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

With an impressive 2.52 goals-against-average, Motte recorded 15 wins in 24 Elite League games including a streak of 17 consecutive games without losing before the season was prematurely halted.

He earned three shut-outs and was named in the fans’ first All-Star team.

Before joining Blaze last season, Motte spent time in Austria with HC Innsbruck for whom he played 16 times.

He has consistently produced outstanding numbers over near 200 games in the AHL and ECHL, notably being named an ECHL All-Star in 2016/17 whilst with Quad City Mallards.

Prior to turning professional, Motte was a regular award-winner and All-Star in the NCAA with Ferris State University.

Stewart said: “I’m sure the fans will be thrilled with this news. It goes without saying there has been a lot interest in C.J. from within our league and around Europe.

“So, we’re really pleased to have got a deal done and know he is as committed to us as we are to him.

“He came in last season and completed our puzzle. It’s a cliche, but he truly gave us a chance to win every night. The consistency that he brought, with the level he played at, created another level of belief from the guys playing in front of him.

“Behind the scenes C.J. is a great pro and competitor. He works to get better every day and he wants to win at all costs. His will to win and attention to detail is infectious in the room. Getting him back gives us the best chance to build on last season and compete with anybody.”

Motte said: “I’m really excited to return to Coventry. We have a good group of guys coming back and I enjoyed Danny as a coach so that made my decision easier to come back.

“I think there’s a feeling of unfinished business so I’m looking forward to coming back and continuing what we had going.”

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