Hexagon sponsored Telford Tigers are pleased to announce the signing of 24 year old netminder Sam Gospel on a two way contract with Nottingham Panthers. Sam is no stranger to Telford having been a key part of two EPL winning sides in his three years here before joining his hometown Nottingham Panthers in the Elite league. Sam originally joined Tigers from NIHL North rivals Nottingham Lions in 2013 and in his previous spell with Tigers we also saw Sam play once for Sheffield Steelers in 2015 – when he backstopped the Yorkshire outfit to a Challenge Cup win.
When Sam decided to leave, at the end of 16/17 season, he found it difficult to tell Tom Watkins he wasn’t coming back, but the decision was all about career progression and he was pleased to leave on good terms, saying the team and Tom “supported me fully” and wished him good luck for the future. He has found opportunities with Panthers limited over the last couple of years but has iced in the Champions League and a number of Elite League games so far this season and last.
Sam averaged a 0.91 save percentage for Tigers over his previous 73 league and cup games across three seasons and we are looking forward to him adding competition to the Tigers 1 back stop position.
We asked Tom Watkins, head coach for a comment and he had the following to say “This is a great pick up for us at a time when we don’t know the length of time Denis will be out of action. Sam joins us on a two way from Nottingham Panthers, similar to the arrangement we have for Joe Hazeldine, Panthers will be his first port of call but he will be available regularly to be part of the Tigers Team. We know Sam very well, he’s a very good netminder, he has put in some outstanding performances for us previously and was the catalyst to us winning the League Championship in 2016/17. Tom Hovell has been in excellent form of late, but we need that support. I’m a firm believer of having two talented guys that can play and encourage each other.”
When asked about his return, Sam said “I’m very excited to be signing with Telford for the remainder of the season, the more ice I get can only help me develop my game. I had a great time last time I was in Telford, and also had a lot success, so I aim to emulate that. I’m looking forward to meeting the team and getting on the ice.“
Sam will be icing in #29 and his own and loans shirts are now available to order:
- Christmas Jersey – £75
- Home – White – £100
- Away – Black – £100
- Individual Player Sponsorship – Limited Edition Orange Cup Jersey – £400