Last week, Matt Suderman, then-captain of the EIHL’s Hull Stingrays, announced that he would be leaving the team for a number of reasons, including harassment from the team’s fans, poor officiating in the EIHL, and lack of “having fun”. Most fans suspected that the Winkler, Manitoba native would be calling an end to his hockey career, but this idea was flipped on it’s head when Suderman signed a contract with the Central Hockey League’s newest team, the Brampton Beast, based out of Brampton, Ontario.
Suderman has spent the majority of his career known for his tough grinder style, which he developed as a member of the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades from 1999 to 2003. In his four seasons with the Blades, Suderman had only 23 points in 190 games, but racked up an incredible 356 penalty minutes. Later in his career, Suderman also competed in the Southern Professional Hockey League, Central Hockey League, and the United Hockey League, all low-level professional leagues based in North America. Now, just a week after leaving the UK, he’s returning to the Central Hockey League to edge himself further up the league’s all-time PIM leader-boards. With his new team in Brampton, Suderman joins a few names that may be familiar to some, including former Toronto Marlies forward Matt Caruana, former Toronto Maple Leafs goaltending prospect Grant Rollheiser, and 8-game NHLer Rob Collins, who leads the Beast roster in points after a long seven-year stint in the top-tier German league.
Suderman’s departure from Hull leaves two holes in the lineup, after forward Derek Campbell was suspended 47 games earlier this month for the attempted eye-gouging of an opposing player. When asked about why he left, Suderman gave this quote to the press:
“Things just did not work out for me basically. It’s kind of personal, and I’m not really having fun. Some of the fans are the worst I’ve ever played in front of. They think they’re knowledgeable but they aren’t. Some send me personal messages and all sorts of stuff. There’s a lot of reasons for my decision, but those are the main ones… I feel the officiating could stop the league being considered one of the top ones in Europe”
Something tells me the EIHL won’t be on it’s knees crying for Suderman to return anytime soon. For now, he’ll have to try his luck with the Beast.
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