Sheffield Steelers hot shot happy with team chemistry

Robert Dowd - more goals and assists, please. Pic Dean Woolley
Robert Dowd - more goals and assists, please. Pic Dean Woolley

Robert Dowd racked up more Elite League points last season than in any of his previous three campaigns at Sheffield Steelers.

So no pressure, then, as the winger prepares for the forthcoming campaign, where fans would love to see him improve further on that.

The chances of that have improved now centre Andreas Valdix has re-signed to join Dowd and Levi Nelson on a line which flourished for the Play Off winners in 2016-17.

“It was a decent year for scoring” reflects Dowd. “I usually set myself a target of 25-30 goals and I’m sure it will be even harder next season the way the League is going. A big part of why I got 44 League points was to do with the chemistry, our line clicked well most of the year.

“When Levi first arrived at Sheffield (2015) Thommo tried us in different combinations and we were bounced around a bit for a month or so.

“Then we paired up with Freddy Vestberg, who did a similar job to what Vally went on to do.

Andreas Valdix v Belfast Giants

Andreas Valdix v Belfast Giants

“This Summer, I was over the moon when I heard Vally was coming back - I knew Levi was returning - we all love playing together.

“From the very first practices last season, Vally fitted in well in the middle of us - that was not always the case with others, so we felt good about it.

“Vally knows what me and Levi are going to do. And Levi knows what I am going to do...if I am on the half wall and looking to pass I am pretty sure I’ll see Levi streaking down the middle.

“Me and Levi like to hunt the puck rather than sit in a trap, we like to hit guys and get under the skin, he and I have the same mentality that way” said Dowd.

Levi Nelson

Levi Nelson

The GB regular, who turned 29 this Summer, knows there can be no complacency in his Sheffield line - they cannot merely expect to pick up where they left off.

“We can’t just turn up and wait for it all to happen again, we are just not like that.

“We know we have to graft and that if one of us takes a night off, it’s not going to do us or the team any good.”

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