Despite a three-year layoff from ice hockey after taking a puck to the face, 25 year-old CBR Brave Canadian import Kelly Geoffrey is playing like he never left the sport, and adjusting well to the Australian Ice Hockey League.
Geoffrey has proven himself to be an asset for the Brave already, the left winger has already racked up 12 points this season, averaging two points a game. He has also scored in all six of his appearances for the side thus far.
Geoffrey decided to come down to Canberra and play for the CBR Brave after speaking to coach Brad Hunt, and stayed after having positive experiences with management.
“I came to Canberra because I really hit it off with coach Brad (Hunt) through Skype and emailing back and forth, that sort of thing,” he said.
“He told me it (Canberra) was a great place and that the team and management would treat me well.
“So far they have done that and that’s why I’ve stayed, they’ve treated me really well the coaches and players and it’s been great.
“It’s hard not to stay here the place has been great so far, it’s definitely different but it’s a lot of fun, the team that I’m in has a lot of great guys and a lot good players and it’s been real easy to fit in.
“So far we have had some success, I know we can get better but so far it’s been great.
“I’m just taking it a game at a time, I’ve had a great time here and the fans are definitely the best in our barn so it’s been amazing”.
Despite travelling the globe to be here in Australia, the style of play in the AIHL remains similar to how Geoffrey played back home.
“It’s definitely similar, there are little differences but overall it’s still a rough and tough hockey league,” he said.
“That’s what I’m used to, a lot of hitting and that sort of thing and I think the game out here has a lot of intensity”.
The biggest difference of the AIHL for Geoffrey came as a result of the rink.
“Playing in a rink without glass is definitely really weird,” he said.
“I’ve never played in a rink without any glass in it in my life before this, it’s been weird adjusting to that.
“Other than that, I’ve played in small rinks before and it always brings in a nice crowd and good game and with the crowd we have this rink is definitely the best to play in”.
Geoffrey has shown impressive form so far, and is proving himself to be a key player for the CBR Brave this season.
The Brave host the Adelaide Adrenaline this Saturday for a second time, their first match ended 5-3 in favour of the Brave.
Puck drops at the Phillips Swimming and Ice Skating Centre in Canberra at 5:30pm AEST.