The Lone Star Brahmas begin reporting for training camp on August 16 and that means a 5,700 mile trip for veteran defenseman Alexey Solovyev. The Moscow Russia native will be entering his third and final season in the NAHL.
Alexey joined the organization as a member of the Texas Tornado midway through the 2012/13 season. In 39 games that season Solovyev put up 1G – 8A during the regular season before adding 1G – 4A in six playoff games. “I think it gave me a tremendous experience as coach Curtale was giving me a lot of ice time, considering that I was a rookie that year,” said Solovyev.
After getting his feet wet that first season with the Tornado, Solovyev had a breakout year with the Brahmas in his second campaign. He finished the season with 20 points on 6G – 14A, good for second on the team in defenseman scoring. “I thought I had a decent offensive year last year, of course not without the help of my teammates and coaches. I know it could be much better,” Alexey said of last year’s performance. Solovyev has a very heavy shot from the point that can be a major weapon. “This upcoming year, I’m planning on using my shot a little more than I did last year and not hesitate with the puck. I’m going to try to bring even more offense to the team than last year and at the same time improve my game in the defensive zone.”
While he was able to put up some impressive numbers, last season was a trying time for Solovyev and the rest of the Brahmas. “As a team, we had to learn to control our emotions, especially in the first few months of the season, when we were losing a lot of the games,” he remembered. “Towards the trading deadline, coaches knew that they had to make some changes. It for sure was really hard for us to say goodbye to some of our teammates that got traded, but in the long term, it was a beneficial thing to do.” The vets who had been through the battles before bought into the system and helped turn the season around after a dismal first two months. “Older guys, who had some experience dealing with those things and they tried to help some younger guys and lead them in the right direction.” The team will look to carry those lessons and momentum into the coming season.