Head coach Andrew Lord insisted his Cardiff Devils had ‘broken the last curse’ as they made up for disappointment last season by beating Sheffield Steelers to win the play-off final for the first time since 1999, their maiden win in the Elite League era.

Elite League champions Cardiff lost 6-5 to the Steelers in the 2017 final, but they took the lead when Matt Pope fired in off the bar in the second period.

Pope then set up Andrew Hotham, who cut in from the right wing to score.

Eric Neiley’s solo goal gave Sheffield hope, but Jake Morissette scored into an empty net to seal the win.

Cardiff shut the game down in the closing stages, despite finishing the game shorthanded, Sean Bentivoglio sent to the penalty box for roughing with just under two minutes to play.

And Morisette’s goal with 17 seconds remaining ensured there would be no repeat of the heroics that had seen Steelers come back from 4-2 down in the final period against Nottingham in Saturday’s semi-final.

In front of a packed crowd, which carried out an impromptu “Let’s go Broncos” chant in tribute those involved in a deadly bus crash which included a junior ice hockey team in Canada earlier this week, Cardiff safely saw out the final few seconds to condemn Sheffield to a trophyless season.

Cardiff Devils player-coach Andrew Lord

Earlier, Nottingham beat Fife Flyers 8-2 in the consolation final.

Reflecting on a dream end to a dream season, Lord said: “I think we just broke the last curse.

“It’s unbelievable.

“The season we had last year, it as just so strange to lose on the final day and have to carry that for basically the last year.

“To get back here, we’ve won two Elite League titles in a row, we’ve been in every final for two years and now this. It doesn’t get any better than this.

“I’m so fortunate to have this group of guys and this organisation. It’s been fantastic.”

The Devils also swept the board in the Elite League awards with Joey Martin named forward of the year and player of the year, Lord winning coach of the year, Andrew Hotham defenceman of the year and Ben Bowns netminder of the year and British player of the year.

Bowns, Hotham and Martin also made the Elite League All Star team.