ICE HOCKEY - Coventry Blaze snap up Canadian goaltending duo - The Coventry Observer

ICE HOCKEY - Coventry Blaze snap up Canadian goaltending duo

Aaron Sutcliffe 2nd Jun, 2023 Updated: 2nd Jun, 2023   0

COVENTRY Blaze have signed Canadian goaltending duo Taran Kozun and Nolan Kent to their squad for the 2023/24 Elite League season.

Kozun and Kent complete Blaze’s goaltending department for the forthcoming season alongside British netminder Will Bray.

And the duo’s arrival means both Paavo Holsa and Miklós Rajna will leave the club.

Kozun joins Blaze after two campaigns with Elite League rivals Cardiff Devils whilst Kent is embarking on his first professional season after spending last year in the NCAA with the Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves.

Head coach Danny Stewart said: “Getting Taran is a big move for us. His numbers over the past two years speak for themselves and he has been up there with the top goalies.

“His consistency in stopping pucks and winning games is so valuable in how our league is set up. He has done it at every level that he has played at, and that pattern shows.

“When called upon to be the guy, he has had success. He has a calm presence back there, and his ability to play the puck on top of everything else is such a bonus for us as well.

“Nolan is entering his first year as a pro after five years at the NCAA level.  An injury disrupted his mid-college career a bit, but he finished strong with a good year at UAA.

“He gives us a great secondary option to provide depth and competition in goal.

“He’s a great shot blocker and competitor who had phenomenal junior numbers, and really good college numbers when he was healthy and consistently playing.

“We have seen the benefit of having three goalies at the deadline last season, and it’s a big move for us to start with three from the beginning.”

Kozun registered a 92.80 save percentage and 2.20 goals-against-average (GAA) in 25 starts last season to rank amongst the league’s best shot stoppers.

The 28-year-old also appeared three times in both the Champions Hockey League and Continental Cup for the Devils.

Kent posted a .906 save-percentage in 14 games in what was his senior collegiate season with the Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves.

The 24-year-old spent four years with a fellow NCAA hockey programme at Northern Michigan, where he appeared in 48 games, prior to his transfer to Alaska-Anchorage.

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