Slam bang Lloyd is back to excite Giants fans
Doug Christiansen, Head coach of the Belfast Giants has a policy of first having patience, followed by wait, watch and see regarding signings by other teams in the market place. Christiansen’s policy has started to pay off – the last campaign’s fans’ favourite, the hard-hitting Darryl Lloyd is returning to pick up where he left off last season.
His first job is to help defend the Belfast Giants League Title. Ironically he is the first returning import player to resign. Nobody in the Odyssey Arena will forget this feisty forward but neither will any of the other Elite Team players forget either.
Lloyd put ink on his new contract last week which prompted Christiansen to comment, “Lloyd quickly became a favourite with his style of play, thrilling fans with his huge hits and his intensity every single night.
In 43 games last season, he scored 17 goals and 24 assists for 41 points. His back-to-back hat-tricks during the Christmas period last season helped lead the Giants through a crucial run of games, during which Lloyd played his best hockey of the season.”
Todd Kelman the Giants GM had this to say about Lloyd, “When Darryl Lloyd is on the ice, every single player on the other team has their head up making sure they know where he is. He is hands-down the best hitter we have ever had in Belfast,” explained Kelman. “There is no half-speed in his game, he is 100% all out every single time he hits the ice. It doesn’t matter who he is playing, he just has one gear – overdrive.
There were games last year that he carried the team on his back and when we had a lot of injuries and were wondering who would step up to lead the team offensively, there he was to take on that role.
Lloyd was a huge part of our championship season and he already told us that he expects to raise his game to another level next season, which I am excited to see,” concluded Todd.
Lloyd joins the other six non-import players that have already signed for the Giants: Graeme Walton, Stephen Murphy, David Phillips, Mark Garside, Matt Towe and Craig Peacock.
I have wind of more signing news over the next few days as Coach Doug Christiansen continues to build another potential championship winning squad.
With The Stena Line Belfast Giants winning their second Elite League Title in 2012 it was the Giants’ fourth trophy in as many years after winning the Challenge Cup and Knockout Cup in 2009, and the Playoff Championship in 2010.
In the 2011/12 campaign, the Giants set a new franchise record and Elite League record for points earned in a season with 95 which will be hard to follow in the up coming season.
More on this next week with an overview of the forth-coming season and its new team alignment and how it will affect this seasons Elite League Champions.
Written by Wayne Hardman