Czech twins Ondrej & Jakub Pniok are the latest names to be added to the Nottingham Lions roster for the 2017/18 season.
Forward Ondrej needs no introduction to the Lions faithful, having spent the past two seasons at the Den, scoring 28 goals & 33 assists in 45 games.
Head coach Matt Bradbury was delighted to secure Ondrej’s services for the coming season, saying:
“I'm looking forward to Ondrej linking up with us for his third season. He has improved year on year with his performances and his statistics. He works hard every game and is a good team mate and role model. Ondrej is a very versatile player and can play most positions across this ice both even handed and on special teams.
“His work off the puck is a major strength of his and his vision over the ice is great to see as he really brings team mates into the play. We know what we will get with Ondrej in the line-up and again will add even more balance to our team and style of play.”
Ondrej himself is excited by the challenge that awaits in his 3rd season in Nottingham, saying:
“The new season means harder training on the ice, harder training off the ice and we have to be ready for mostly professional players. My last two seasons in the Lions organisation was good and I enjoyed them. Hopefully that’s going to continue and if we stay positive and keep a good spirit inside the locker room it’s going to be a great season.”
You can see Ondrej’s career profile by clicking here.
Joining Ondrej in the forward ranks for 17/18 will be his twin brother Jakub, who will be spending his first season in the UK after playing in his native Czech Republic.
Of Jakub’s signing Bradbury said:
“When I was advised by Ondrej that his brother Jakub was interested in playing this season we were keen to see him on the ice. He looks to have similar traits of Ondrej however I already see that he has more grit and appears happy to get his nose dirty, he also looks very direct which is exactly what we need to help us by when the season gets under way.
“He is getting better each week linking up with his team and line mates and that's all we can ask as part of our preparation for the forthcoming year. Jakub is definitely hungry and keen to play and he will definitely add another dimension to our line up in what will definitely be our toughest challenge since we played in the EPL in 2000/2001.
“One thing’s for sure the team we are pulling together will be another step up from what our fans saw last season and it should be a real draw to get more fans to our home games to watch some real quality hockey for a great value ticket price.”
After a couple of years without a team Jakub cannot wait to get back on the ice, saying:
“Ice hockey is a really important part of my life. Before I came to England I had stopped playing for 2 or 3 seasons, because of many reasons and it was a hard period for me. I missed hockey very much so when I got the opportunity to play for the Nottingham Lions in the NIHL I was very happy. I am very excited to be a part of this team and I'm looking forward to lots of new experiences such as the different style of playing and playing in a different country. I will give everything, 100% of my skills and powers for Lions to show how grateful I am to be playing hockey at a high level again.”
You can see Jakub’s career profile by clicking here.
With the new season drawing ever closer we still have more signing and re-signing news to come, keep your eyes on the club’s website and social media for all the latest updates.