Steelers’ owner Tony Smith is reeling from two body-blows.
The Sheffield boss was told that their scheduled October 26 date - an Arena home match with Fife Flyers - was no longer available to the club.
That came after the Arena had informed Smith that a new financial handling charge would be passed on to fans buying tickets for games with cash.
“To say I am gutted is an understatement” said Smith. “We were told that a five per cent charge on all methods of payment, including cash, would be brought in. We were told that just a week before our home opener tickets (Nottingham Panthers) went on sale.
“I made our fans a promise in 2011 that we’d try and find a way of keeping our tickets from as low as £15 for five years, but now that looks like being null and void”
Steelers fans will now be charged 75p for making cash payments at the box office. All other methods of payment will bear the same levy.
“We spoke to our solicitors but the rise is connected to legislation that has been passed, apparently” said Smith.
“We even considered if there was a way we could suck up that extra 75p ourselves, but really we have no option but to pass it on.”
On top of that, the Arena’s decision to cash in on Kell Brook’s next high profile boxing match, came at the expense of the Steelers v Fife game.
“Fife fans make a weekend of trips like this and had booked 40 bedrooms and two coaches for the match. I couldn’t do anything other than move the match to iceSheffield. That means that people who have bought our six-ticket iceSheffield deal will have to pay for that game as well. All of this hurts us as a business.”
Meanwhile, Steelers intend to unveil the signing of a new d-man later this week.