Thursday, April 13, 2017 - Submitted by Peter Lambert
This year, in Newcastle, Canadian Matt Marantz will be doing what he’s loved since he was old enough to strap on skates in Calgary, Alberta – play hockey.
The 183cm (6’0”) 83kg centre describes himself as a “big guy” who plays a “power forward and two-way forward” game, most recently for five years with the University of Western Ontario Mustangs.
The criminology major heard about the AIHL from several friends, and made the decision that the Newcastle Northstars was the team for him.
“I was first attracted to the Northstars after hearing that my buddy, Steven Kuhn, was going to play for them," Marantz said.
"After researching the team myself, the Northstars seemed like a great team that any competitive player would want to play for, given their strong history.”
It wasn’t just Kuhn tha Marantz was linked to. He’s been friends with 2015-2016 champion Scott Swiston for many years.
Neither of these relationships were known until after Marantz was recruited by Northstars coach Andrew Petrie.
"Matt was recommended by a buddy with legit hockey knowledge," Petrie said.
"It wasn't until I asked Steve Kuhn if he'd heard of him that I found out they're best friends.
"Matt will be very good for us."
Marantz had his best season with the WU Mustangs in 2015-2016 where he scored the most assists in his team (21 of his 26 points).
Prior to the Mustangs, Marantz played five seasons of WHL, three of those with the Spokane Chiefs.
“I come from a family of hockey fans and grew up around the sport," Marantz said.
"As soon as I was old enough my parents put skates on me and I have loved the game ever since.
“My favourite team is the Calgary Flames, the team I grew up loving from my hometown of Calgary.”
Marantz’s goals for his time in Australia are simple and to the point. “I know the season ahead is very important as the Northstars are coming off of two consecutive Goodall Cup wins and have proven themselves to be strong leaders in the AIHL," he said.
"I am very excited to be a part of this team, and help bring the Northstars another championship.
“I am also looking forward to new experiences off the ice as I have never traveled to Australia before and am eager to see the country and try new things.”
The Proski Newcastle Northstars look forward to Marantz's arrival in Australia and sharing in a successful 2017 campaign for a seventh Goodall Cup championship.