Belfast Giants have confirmed the signing of Canadian forward David Rutherford.
The 28-year-old joins Giants from Edinburgh Capitals where he scored 16 goals with 16 assists in 32 Elite League games.
The Giants interrupted a move for Rutherford to the ECHL in North America in order to add Rutherford to the roster for the remainder of the season.
Rutherford, a Central Hockey League all-star, has experience of winning silverware – helping his teams win the CHL Championship in 2011 as well as the ECHL Kelly Cup in 2012.
Steve Thornton, Giants Hockey Operations Manager, said: “When the opportunity came up to bring David to Belfast, the decision was pretty simple. He has put up good numbers already with Edinburgh and I know our fans will love having him in a Giants jersey.
“David has won championships before and he will play a huge part down the stretch this season as we challenge for silverware.”
Capitals’ boss Scott Neil admitted he was disappointed to see Rutherford leave the club: “David approached me and he explained that he wanted to leave to join a Hungarian club,” he said.
“We spoke to that club, but it was unable to provide any compensation for David’s registration costs, travel or equipment.
“David was clear that he wanted to leave and explained that he would also consider a return to North America as an alternative.
“Had he returned there we would have again received no compensation. Realising that we had no option we approached an agent to whom we are close, and he was able to come to an agreement which worked for David, for us and for Belfast.”