ICE HOCKEY: FORMER EIHL Playoff Champion Ryan O’Marra revealed he felt a tad emotional after making a return to the Skydome on Saturday night to watch Blaze take on Belfast Giants.
The 30-year-old, who skated for the Blaze during the 2014/15 season, watched his former side lose in overtime against a powerhouse Belfast squad.
Saturday was O’Marra’s first visit to the Skydome since switching to join the Stoney Creek Generals at the end of his championship winning season, and he admitted to feeling plenty of nostalgia when stepping out onto the ice prior to face-off.
He said: “I have a lot of great memories at the Skydome. Some not so good but looking back I remember the club, the team, and the fans.
“It was a nice treat for me to watch some of the highlights on the board before I was interviewed in front of the crowd. I got a little emotional.”
Blaze defeated Sheffield Steelers 4-2 in the Grand Final to lift the trophy, and O’Marra remembers a conversation with Mike Edgner after the game which he admitted helped ‘shape his life’.
2The biggest highlight for me was after the game,” said O’Marra.
“Myself and Mike Egener had a personal conversation which helped shape my life. That conversation is something I’ll remember forever.
“When a team wins a championship we like to stay in touch.
“I still talk to Ben (Arnt), Derek Lee, Da Costa, Brian Stewart, Ross Venus, Marc LeFebvre.
“I’ve played with a lot of teams, but that one stands out.”
And Blaze fans can expect to see the Tokyo-born defenceman at the Skydome in the coming months.
He said: “Coventry isn’t too far from London, so in the new year I’ll be back.
“It was a good game, and I thought it was Blaze’s for the taking.
“The team has a lot of grit and character – they played hard for 60 minutes.
“But the EIHL is a great league and one of the hardest for physicality in Europe. The future is bright.”
Ryan O’Marra was speaking to Blaze TV’s Ed Kimberley.
Picture: Scott Wiggins.