Last weekend was a toughie for the Phoenix, saturday night saw a trip down to play the Bison, who have been in some good form of recent. Then a home game against the Slough Jets, bonafide title chasing teams. Going into the weekend I would have been happy with 3 points, an OT loss in Basingstoke and a home win against the Jets.
Saturday night's game also saw the debut of Joe Miller in a Phoenix shirt, and it sounds like he had the desired effect. Scoring our first goal and helping the boys to a 5-4 overtime win. A great result in a tough place to play! What sounded even better was the performance and determination to come from behind on 4 occasions. Pleased to see Tom Duggan also drop the gloves, squaring up against ex Phoenix player Carl Graham. Highlights can be seen on the Basingstoke Bison website.
Sunday saw the Jets head north including new signing Adam Calder, of ex Coventry Blaze fame. After what could have been a devastating loss of Blaz Emersic to the MK Lighntning, Calder has come in and filled that gap. In fact in his first five games, I think Calder is on something like 5 goals and 5 assists. An impressive return for one of the best players to ever play in the EPL! Anyway the Jets got off to the best possible start scoring after 30 seconds. Thankfully for the other 59min 30sec of the game the Phoenix dominated. I have always thought if you can shut Slough's top line down you shut Slough down. The Phoenix managed to do so very well and neutralised the threat of Calder for the whole game. On the Phoenix side, Kristoffersson had another blinder, scoring goals with ferocious force! Joe Miller bagged another goal with a superb drive through centre ice straight at Greg Rockman.
The Phoenix skated to a deserved 5-1 victory capping an excellent 4 point weekend. Importantly two wins against fellow title chasing teams. As I mentioned on the Phoenix forum, the biggest plus for me, was the performance. This was a return to the Phoenix best, and I really think the introduction of Joe Miller helped boost the team. Hopefully Sharp will return soon to add the extra toughness he brings.
So a fantastic weekend for the Phoenix and some form they must continue. Next up for the Phoenix is a home game against the Bracknell Bees, just the one game next weekend.