Hedley returns to Milton Keynes
Net minder Jordan Hedley has returned to MK Lightning after a year at Swindon Wildcats.
The 19-year-old is a true product of the Milton Keynes youth system having learned his skills with MK Storm, before making his Lightning debut in 2012.
The following season he signed a full time contract with Lightning as backup to Stephen Wall - but matched the respected veteran keeper for save percentage. In 2013-14, Hedley selected for international duty as first choice between the pipes for the U18 team.
Another season at MKL followed, with more international action but a step up to U20 level - returning home with a gold medal. However the summer of 2015 saw Hedley move to EPIHL rivals the Swindon Wildcats as backup to vastly experienced Stevie Lyle.
But Hedley now returns to Milton Keynes with a view to becoming Pete Russell’s number one in the next few seasons.
“Milton Keynes is my home,” he said. “I used to watch the Kings play when I was just three years old, standing on a step to see over the plexi!
“I want to thank Swindon, the fans and in particular Stevie Lyle. Playing there was a fantastic experience for me and my development - throw in the fact I was living away from home for the first time which I feel made me stronger person, on and off the ice.
“I can’t wait to get training and for the season to start. I know I’ve still got a few more years to grow and develop yet and I intend to do everything I can to be the best I can be. It feels good to be home!”
Lightning’s Head Coach, Pete Russell added: “I’m delighted Jordan is back in Milton Keynes, where he belongs, as part of a really strong goalie partnership.
“Jordan is one of the top young goalies in the country and we want to help him continue to develop his game. At just 19 years old he is still very young and has many years ahead of him.
“He spent last season working with one of Britain’s best ever goalies in the shape of Stevie Lyle - this year he is going to work and learn even more from Przemyslaw Odrobny. To get to work with two goalies like Stevie and Przemyslaw is a great learning curve and can only benefit Jordan in the long term. To have him back here for at least the next two years is great for our organisation.
“When Jordan and I met to discuss him returning, we spoke about him being patient and not to get disillusioned - the game in the UK has changed short term, but it will all come good for him in the end. I feel very fortunate to have him here and he has a real drive to continue his personal development - and more importantly he wants to do it here with us in Milton Keynes.”