After announcing the return of top scorer Chad Smith, Head Coach Steven Lynch has moved quickly to grab the signature of Chad’s linemate and second top scorer, Joel Gautschi. Joel was captain of the team last season and was a leader out there on the ice. He popped up with big goals throughout the season, one of the reasons why Coach Lynch wanted to have him back onboard as quickly as possible.
Joel has played the majority of his career in Edinburgh. He is also one of the top all-time scorers in the SNL with well over 450 points. Joel finished the 2022-23 season with 21 goals and 21 assists for 42 points in 26 games.
The centre man can’t wait to be back on the ice come September, “I wanted to return this season as I feel we have unfinished business. We came up short recently, but speaking to Lynchy I know we want to change that next season.
I’ve played most of my career here in Edinburgh, and it was a no-brainer to sign up for the 2023-24 campaign. It’s been great playing in front of big crowds each week here at Murrayfield and it just shows you that the SNL is growing both on and off the ice.”
Coach Steven Lynch could not hide his delight to have Joel back and signed up early, “Our second re-signing of the season is another big one where we welcome the return of our captain and on-ice leader. It’s another signing that I was keen to get agreed early and I’m glad he’s on board for another year.
I liked working with Joel as I strangely see a lot of myself in him when I was his age. He brings a lot of good attributes to the table. He sets a high standard and brings a lot of intensity and accountability to the team and he’s another one that feels bad about how this season ended on a sour note and wants to make amends. Having Joel lead us again next season gives us a better chance of winning each night.
We now have our top two scorers back in Caps colours and two of our leadership group also which is a great start in building our squad for the new season. We’ll continue to build a squad capable of challenging for and hopefully winning the SNL next season.
It’s also a testament to the club and how well it’s being run that players like Joel & Chad Smith want to return without spending too much time persuading them. Conversations with the two went on for about two minutes each before they both said that they’d be back. It’s great to know that we’re getting things right for players on and off the ice and that players want to play here in Edinburgh.”
Stay tuned to our media channels for more signings in the coming weeks.
LET’S GO CAPITALS!