#OnFire – Miner Barron | maz

Alex Miner Barron joined the Blaze this month to bolster the D, on the recommendation of his good friend Ben Arnt, who he played with while at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. I caught up with him after his first home game, to see why he had made the decision to come to Coventry.


Why did you start playing hockey? Alex explained, “I’m from California, I was born in 1991, the year that Wayne Gretzky came to California so there was a big wave of hockey in the LA area. My older brother, myself, my friends were all drawn to it; we played roller hockey outside in the streets and I…

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Lightning Strike – Mele | maz

Tommy Mele joined Lightning about eight weeks into the season, as Head Coach Pete Russell looked to strengthen his forward lines. The New Yorker has significant experience in the tough North American hockey leagues, and joined Lightning from the Cincinnati Cyclones in the ECHL – having played over 300 games in that league.

He has a solid record of progress, having worked his way through the ranks from junior hockey in New York followed by four seasons in the US collegiate hockey system whilst majoring in Management at university.  Post-study, he has played in not just the ECHL but also the…

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#OnFire – Vallerand | maz

Marc-Oliver ‘Marco’ Vallerand is a 28 year old Canadian who joined the Blaze this season from HC Bolzano, Italy. He’s played in a lot of countries during his 13 year professional career, and has a tale to tell of hard work and persistence, and a love of scoring goals. Along the way he’s iced in the AHL and so far, looks to be a solid addition to the Blaze squad.


As ever, what attracts a Canadian with European playing experience to the UK. Vallerand explained, ‘I spoke to my agent about finding somewhere to play where I would be able to have fun playing, and be able to be a goal scorer….

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Lightning Strike – Wiikman | maz

When Lighting’s starting netminder, Shemmy Odrobny, got injured during a preseason friendly, Pete Russell moved quickly to bring in Miika Wiikman, a known quantity to fans of the Elite League, as he played the previous two seasons with Nottingham Panthers.  A quick look at Wiikman’s Elite Prospects page shows that he has been lucky enough to play hockey across the world, in Finland, North America and Slovakia, as well as the UK.


How were you still available at to cover for injury? “Panthers didn’t want to keep me”, he said. “I would have loved to stay there, in Nottingham. I had no…

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#LightningStrike – King | maz

As published in the Lightning Strike magazine, Sept 2017


Kevin King has joined Lightning from Gap, who were the French champions last season. The Canadian right winger has worn a letter of responsibility several times over his career and is looking to bring a level of leadership to his role on the new team.   On signing the forward, Pete Russell said, “I’m really pleased to have signed Kevin King; I went after Kevin in March – he was one of my top targets. Kevin is a powerful player and plays hard every night. He is comfortable in the middle or on the wing and has put good numbers up…

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