Image: Scott Wiggins
Image: Scott Wiggins

Ross Venus returns for eleventh season with Coventry Blaze

Ross Venus will return to the Skydome Arena for an eleventh season with the Coventry Blaze, a club statement confirmed on Wednesday (7 July).

Since making his Elite League debut in 2010, Venus has amassed 660 appearances for the Blaze – making him the third most-capped player in the organisation’s history. Typically deployed on the left or through the centre, the 26-year-old has registered 124 assists and 73 goals in the blue and white of Coventry.

Moreover, Venus’ return finalised Coventry’s British core ahead of the 2021/22 season, with Jordan Hedley, David Clements, Alex Forbes, and Luke Ferrara having already committed to another year with the Blaze.

“Ross completes our strong British core and will be looking to build on his best season in Blaze colours during the 2019/20 season,” Coventry head coach Danny Stewart explained, “we saw a lot more production from ‘V’ during last season, and we really liked him in the middle.”

“He’s a big part of this club on and off the ice. He’s been here for over a decade now and is fully bought into the organisation. He’s part of our leadership group and after finalising his deal, we are thrilled to have retained our British core for another season.

“They have played a huge part in our success the past couple seasons and will do again for us next season.”

The Solihull-born forward’s form saw him return to Team Great Britain’s roster

The Blaze academy graduate celebrated his testimonial season in 2019/20 by producing career-high offensive production. In 47 regular-season appearances, Venus registered 15 goals and 22 assists to end the campaign with 37 points.

A year later, Venus played an important role for Coventry during the Elite Series, accumulating five points in 14 games.

The Solihull-born forward’s form saw him return to Team Great Britain’s roster, earning caps at the 2021 World Championship and 2020 Winter Olympic Qualifiers.

An associate captain for the Blaze since 2018, Venus scored the game-winning goal to secure Coventry the Elite League Playoff Championship in 2015.

With the Coventry Blaze finalising their British core, the 2021/22 season feels as though it is inching closer and closer.

Now, the news that Ross Venus is returning to the Skydome Arena is not a surprise – he’s a product of the club’s academy with ties to the area and organisation. However, the announcement does provide clarity about Coventry’s plans for the year ahead.

With Venus becoming the fifth member of Blaze’s British contingent, it seems unlikely (although not impossible) that (m)any of Coventry’s Elite Series draftees will return.

That, though, isn’t a problem given the quality of the Team GB-eligible group already at Danny Stewart’s disposal.

Having impressed in 2019/20, Venus will be hoping to improve further next time out – perhaps by earning a role higher up the Coventry roster at centre.

However, the bottom line is this. Ross Venus’ long-standing association with the Blaze will continue next season, and that is simply tremendous news.

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