Next up for the All-time Devils team is the Superleague era, a short-lived but very successful period in Devils history.
NETMINDER: Derek Herlofsky - For 4 years of the Superleague era, Herlofsky led the Devil’s high quality netminding duos - first with ex-NHL’er Frank Caprice and then Cardiff’s own Stevie Lyle. Herlofsky was the league’s top performing netminder in 1999 playoff campaign and was victorious in the playoff final, missing out on a shutout by 12 seconds in the 2-1 victory.
DEFENCE: Mike Ware - Versatile Canadian Mike Ware featured as both a forward and defenceman for the Devils over 5 seasons, with 3 as Captain. Nicknamed ‘The Terminator’ for his physical style, Ware was a dominant player in the league and captained the Devils to the inaugural Super League title in the 1996/97 season.
DEFENCE: Jason Stone - Cardiff-born Stone competed in an incredible 21 seasons and leads the Devils in all time appearances with 1,167. During that time, Stone won 12 major trophies as well as being named the 1996/97 Best British Defenceman. In 2014, his number 10 jersey was retired in honour of his remarkable achievements.
FORWARD: Ivan Matulik - Slovakian-born Matulik’s Devils career spanned across 8 seasons with 4 of those as Captain. The powerful winger helped the Devils to success, winning the inaugural Superleague title in 96/97 before putting in a true Captain’s performance in the 1999 play-off final victory - scoring both goals in the 2-1 win.
FORWARD: Vezio Sacratini - Spending 8 seasons with the Devils, Sacratini’s combination of high skill and intense work rate made him a key part of Devils' success. Featuring prominently in the ISL league and playoff winning teams in 96/97 and 1999 respectively, Sacratini returned to the Devils during the Elite League era, culminating with a starring role in the comeback Challenge Cup victory against Coventry in 2006.
FORWARD: Steve Thornton - Initially recruited midway through the 1996/97 season to strengthen the title-winning charge, Thornton went on to play a further 4 seasons in Cardiff, frequently as the team’s top points scorer. In 1999 he added the playoff trophy to the aforementioned league victory, assisting on both of Matulik’s goals.
COACH: Paul Heavey - As a player, Heavey Captained the Devils to back to back League and Playoff winning seasons, adding the B&H Cup to make it a Grand Slam in the 1992-93 season. Heavey was appointed to the Head Coach’s role following the shock departure of John Lawless in the summer of 1995. Heavey responded by guiding Cardiff to the Superleague regular season and playoff championships.
So there you have it, the all-time team selections made by you the fans, from the Superleague era in Cardiff.
Next week: The All-time Team selections from the first decade of the Elite League.