Dundee Comets’ netminder Matthew Michie expects the reigning champions to be pushed to the limit as they try to retain their SNL title.
The Comets added the play-off crown and Scottish Cup to their trophy haul last season and they have continued in fine form for most of the current campaign.
The only blip on their record this term was an 8-2 defeat at Murrayfield Racers two weeks ago, with a poor third period performance doing the damage.
The Comets travel to play Kilmarnock Thunder in the league on Saturday, before facing Dundee Tigers in the Stuart Robertson Cup (SRC) the following day. Michie says that he expects plenty of tough battles in the league over the coming months.
“A lot of teams are out to beat us after the seasons we’ve had over the past two years,” he said. “We’ve got a lot experience in the team again and our younger guys are improving with getting regular ice time.
“We’ve been quite consistent so far this season and just had that nine minutes of madness against Murrayfield. There are four teams that will push us in the race for silverware this year and I think the Racers are going be the biggest test.”
“As for this weekend’s games, I think Kilmarnock are still finding their feet in the SNL with having such a young team. It is always an awkward game there though, so we’ll have to be at our best.
“Sunday’s match is a nothing game with Murrayfield beating Kirkcaldy (Kestrels) last Sunday, so it could be a good chance to try new things to get us ready for the game against Aberdeen Lynx between Christmas and New Year.
“We’ve got got a lot of fixtures to come against teams at the top end of the table, so we need to be fully prepared for those.”
Aberdeen Lynx v Murrayfield Racers – SNL
Kilmarnock Thunder v Dundee Comets – SNL
North Ayrshire Wild v Dundee Tigers – SNL
Dundee Tigers v Dundee Comets – SRC East
Murrayfield Racers v Billingham Stars – NIHL Cup
Paisley Pirates v Kirkcaldy Kestrels – SNL
(Image permission: Derek Black)