Latest Peterborough Phantoms signing Owen Griffiths insists he could not turn down the opportunity to play under coach Slava Koulikov at club level.
The Welsh teenager’s capture from English Premier League rivals Swindon Wildcats was confirmed last night (May 23) and continues the theme of the city club drafting in young players ahead of next season. He is now the fifth member of their 2016/17 roster under the age of 20.
Griffiths is well-known to Koulikov after being part of the Great Britain Under 20 squad which collected bronze medals at their World Championship event last winter. Koulikov was assistant coach.
Griffiths said: “I met Slava when I was away with the GB Under 20s in France and he really stood out as a coach. He noticed parts of the game that not a lot of people do, and that really impressed me.
“When I had the opportunity to come to Peterborough and play for him, I had to take it.
“I didn’t play a lot last season, but with Slava’s help I hope to be in a position to chip in with scoring and push Peterborough to some silverware.”
Griffiths dressed 53 times for Swindon last season. He contributed a single assist while being used sparingly.
He proved himself as a capable forward at National League level in the previous campaign when bagging 36 points in as many appearances for Wightlink Raiders.
Prior to that he came through the junior ranks at Elite League club Cardiff Devils.
Koulikov said: “Owen reads the game well for his age and plays well at both ends of the ice.
“As with other guys who have signed, this is an important summer for him. If he pushes himself out of his comfort zone and comes in for pre-season training in ultimate shape, he will be where he needs to be to push the team forward.”