Yannick Tifu is a guy with heart and determination, one of those guys you love to hate unless he is on your team. He is everything you want in a player and he had quite a few fans who loved him in Reading, PA.
Now, he will return to the fanbase who adored him.
After a successful three seasons with the Royals, which he helped lead the team to 2013 Kelly Cup championship, many wondered if he would ever come back. After failing to score in the 2014 playoffs with Reading, Tifu decided to take a break from ECHL and went to France where he played for Angers. There, he accumulated 35 points in 26 points.
Personally, he got married and moved to Canada with his wife Tiff, but was unsure what he wanted to do. During the recently completed offseason, he was contacted by Brampton Beast head coach Colin Chaulk, who was trying to rebuild Brampton Beast after an unsuccessful first season in ECHL. Tifu eventually signed in Brampton, but was heavily courted by the Royals.
Tifu was originally acquired late in November 2011, coming in a trade from the defunct Chicago Express in exchange for Chad Painchaud. What a trade it turned out to be as he was just what the Royals needed. It didn’t take him long to be awarded the captain “C” for the season. He registered 59 points (20 goals, 39 assists) in 52 games. He finally hoisted the Kelly Cup in 2013 at Stockton Arena. He lead all players in points in the 2013 playoffs, collecting 25 points in 22 games.
During the championship parade he walked down the streets of Reading with the cup and walked into the crowds of people and let them touch and get a glimpse of the shiny trophy he finally got to raise just nights prior. His speech was so moving he put smiles on all the fans who came to the celebration party as he yelled “We have the Cup, we have the Cup, we have the Cup.”
After a 0-4-1 start and a single point in the standings, it was time for a change. Chaulk decided to trade Tifu to the Reading Royals. When the move was announced this past Tuesday by Royals President Drew Bell, fans took to social media with their excitement. The next night, Tifu was in Santander Arena but did not play due to travel. During the game, he was shown on the jumbotron. Fans showered him with a standing ovation and loud cheers. Standing in a nearby zamboni entrance, the returning Royal forward looked around, waived and smiled.
He will make his season debut tonight when the Orlando Solar Bears visit Santander Arena at 7pm. The place will no doubt be rocking in anticipation of fans getting their glimpse of #10 during the pre-game skate. There will be no doubt Tifu will get a standing ovation and cheers when he takes that first step back on Reading ice.