SWINDON WILDCATS: Elite League improved me, says Nell
5:30am Friday 24th January 2014 in By Andy Warren, Deputy sports editor, firstname.lastname@example.org, @AndyWarren_
STAR forward Aaron Nell believes he returned to Swindon Wildcats a better player for his time with Elite League Sheffield and is hopeful his impressive form at the Link Centre is catching the attention of his top tier bosses.
The Great Britain squad member left his hometown club in the summer for the bright lights of the Steelers but found it difficult to earn time on the ice. Nell returned to Wiltshire on a two-way deal just before Christmas but he still trains with his parent club during the week.
During his return to the EPL, which has so far consisted of nine games, Nell has scored 15 goals and believes the improvements he has made in training with Sheffield, in the way he works off the puck, have played a big part in his impressive form.
“It’s been nice being back here and we’ve done pretty well although it would be nice to get our away form going a bit because that would really help us,” he said.
“I’m up at Sheffield all the time and practice with them a lot and whenever they need me I’m there and ready to take my chance. I hope this spell works out for me, for Sheffield and for Swindon too.
“I could have come back and things might not have gone as well as they did last season but thankfully I’ve come here and done well and it’s helped us kick up the table a bit.
“It’s more for Ryan (Aldridge, head coach) to say but I think I’ve come back here a better player and have worked on plenty of things which have helped me. Hopefully that can help the boys and the team.
“To be honest I think I’ve improved off the puck because that’s all about work ethic and I think I’ve put in something extra there and hopefully it shows.”
Aldridge also believes Nell has made strides during his few months away from the Link Centre but still thinks the Brit has more to work on.
“Aaron has been struggling with a bit of an illness for the last few weeks but in the small areas and the grey areas he has been phenomenal,” he said.
“Those are the areas where coaches want to see their players working and he’s been great for us. He’s definitely come back a better player for us having been at Sheffield and, because we know he’s always going to score, any improvements he can make in his defence are going to really help us.”