Way way behind on Phoenix player announcements but, I am planning a few posts over the next week or so to really catch up. First of those were the two players announced at the Phoenix shirt launch event. Held at the Cresta Court Hotel on the night Andy Murray won Wimbledon. Well done fella! Anyway....over a hundred fans packed the largest conference room at the hotel and waited. After the welcome back messages the first of the two new signings were announced:
A big roar of appreciation went up when James Neil was announced as the first player returning on the night, sporting one of the new Phoenix shirts for the 13/14 season Neil joined the top table to answer a few questions. Im really really pleased James Neil has returned for his 5th season with us. Seeing as though Josh Ward returned to the Panthers I had worried that James would be the next to return to the mother club. He hasn't which is definitely our gain. Now firmly settled on the blue line James is edging into the pool of top Brits in the EPL and a guy who could easily play on any roster in this league. Last season he was slightly down on points but he was consistent none the less. He has developed his game further and is one of the best skaters and stick handlers on the blue line, which more than makes up for his smaller height and build. Welcome back James!
The second and last player announcement on the night was, brother of Tom Watkins, Jack. Quite an un-known player for most Phoenix fans in attendance. Jack has 'played around' quite a bit given his young age. The Phoenix will be his 7th club in his short career. Despite this he is a player with potential, spending the past three seasons in the EIHL playing full seasons with each team he has come to the Phoenix in the EPL, probably, for the guaranteed ice time this level of hockey can provide. With a good season here under his belt im sure the EIHL will come a calling very soon! I will admit to knowing nothing about Jack so, I will be looking forward to seeing him on the Ice come september!
Shirt Launch - Phoenix Article