8th Dec, 2016

PREVIEW: Weber anticipates "back and forth" playoff final as Blaze take on Panthers

Shaun Reynolds 3rd Apr, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

COVENTRY BLAZE head coach Chuck Weber has issued one final rallying call ahead of his side’s season-defining playoff final tie against Nottingham this afternoon (4pm face-off).

After guiding the Blaze to last year’s title, the Blaze came to playoff finals weekend as the only ever team to make the final four whilst officially ranked eighth from the regular league season.

A dominant 6-2 win over league runners up Cardiff yesterday gave the Blaze a perfect ‘dress rehearsal’ for this afternoons grand final, and Weber admits the mood in his camp is strong.

Speaking to Blaze radio prior to their tie against Nottingham, Weber said: “I didn’t want to do any preparation on today’s game before we knew who we were facing.

“When Nottingham beat Fife I then put my hands in my head and started coming up with a game plan.

“The boys have rested well and it’s now up to us to deliver the goods.”

Weber admitted today’s game will be a challenge and added that Nottingham are one of the most talented teams in the league and deserve their place in the final.

“They play direct on all lines and will make adjustments for today’s game, we have to make sure we do the same,” said Weber.

“Wilkman has played fantastically well for the Panthers but we’re staying focused and ready for the challenge.

“It’s an honour to be the only team to return to finals weekend out of the other three that were here last year.

“Everyone’s happy and staying in the moment – last weekend against Sheffield was a 120 minute series with 120 individual shifts and today is the same.

“Chris (Bruton) was fantastic yesterday and got us off to a great start, his shot block in the second period was huge and that’s what I’ve been begging them to play like – though we must not burn ourselves out.”

“I think it’s going to be a back and forth game.”

Picture credit: Scott Wiggins