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Wednesday, 9 May, 2001, 17:13 GMT 18:13 UK
Steelers facing title axe
The Sheffield Steelers
The Steelers during happier times
By BBC Sport Online's Stuart Hughes

The Ice Hockey Superleague has announced that the Sheffield Steelers could be stripped of their Grand Slam titles, for breaching the league's wage cap last season.

Last month, the ISL's Standards Committee fined the Steelers a record 50,000 for gross mismanagement under former owner Darren Brown.

The company which owned the club has since been wound up and the league is considering a number of new applications for the franchise.

Following an investigation, the ISL's Standards Committee has accused the club of a total of 19 breaches of salary cap rules.

These include making illegal payments to 17 players, one charge of making a false declaration about the amount of money spent and another charge of exceeding the 450,000 salary cap by at least 37%.

Andre Mazo
Andre Mazo celebrates in 1999
The Standards Committee is to meet to consider what penalties to impose before putting its recommendations before the ISL board for ratification.

The board, which includes representatives from all nine Superleague clubs, has the right to impose sanctions.

But ISL Secretary Brian Storey told BBC Sport Online that the Standards Committee, made up of external advisors, would make the final decision to avoid any potential conflict of interest.

"The board had originally decided that they would deal with all salary cap breaking matters," he said.

"However it was recognised that at least four of the board members would have an inherent interest in the procedure because if Sheffield were stripped of their titles they would be the beneficiaries and they didn't feel that was correct."

However, it appears unlikely that the league will be able to enforce any financial penalties that may be recommended, following the collapse of Sheffield Steelers Ice Hockey Club Limited.

Meanwhile, former Sheffield forward Kent Simpson has left the club to join Schwenninger Wild Wings in the German DEL. Derek Herlofsky, former goalie with crisis-hit Cardiff Devils, has joined Danish side Odense Bulldogs.

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09 May 01 |  Wales
Skating on thin ice
30 Apr 01 |  Other Sports
Steelers' trophies snatched back
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