Manchester Storm coach Ryan Finnerty revealed latest signing Jacob Lundell Noer reached out to the club, eager to play in the Elite Series.
With the Norwegian league cancelled, many players there have come to the UK to take part in the competition across the four participating teams and the 23-year-old was no different.
And Finnerty says it was a deal that was wrapped up pretty quickly as he added another piece to his jigsaw ahead of Saturday’s opener with Coventry Blaze.
“It is not everyday you get an opportunity to sign somebody like Jacob,” he said. “Once he reached out to the club, we had a deal done within a matter of hours.
“Jacob is one step away from skating in one of the best leagues in the world, so to have him donning the Storm jersey will be very special for the fans and I am absolutely sure they will enjoy watching what this guy can do.
“He will bring speed, great hands and vision to our line-up. I know how eager he is for some big minutes and that’s exactly what we will be wanting from him.”
Lundell Noer has been lighting up Norway’s top division for three consecutive years, with 39 goals and 23 assists in 63 appearances.
He joined Storhamar last year after coming through the Lillehammer junior system and making the grade, which led to representing his country nine times so far.
Storm completed their roster with the addition of forward Martin Gran, another arrival from the Norwegian League.
The 24-year-old has signed from Lillehammer, where he made 66 appearances over the last two seasons, picking up 50 points, made up of 22 goals and 28 assists.
— Manchester Storm | #2021EliteSeries (@Mcr_Storm) March 29, 2021
He originally came through the Storhamar system and went on to play for them for four campaigns before moving to Austrian side Kitzbüheler EC then a year in Italy with Fassa before returning to his native Norway to join Lillehammer in 2019, where he will return after the conclusion of the Elite Series.
“Martin was producing a point-per-game in one of Europe’s top leagues at the age of 24 and has rightly been rewarded with a long-term deal,” Finnerty said.
“As a result, I think it’s a brilliant piece of business for the club to effectively loan a high-end import forward for the Elite Series.
“The competition for import slots is usually high in the Elite League, but with only 8 spaces for the Elite Series and hundreds of players available we wanted somebody extremely talented, Martin most definitely is that player.
“I know he will be a role model for our younger Brit, as he went overseas at a young age to develop himself in the professional leagues and has since returned to Norway as a Top 6 forward and high-end talent.
“In the conversations we have had, Martin knew a lot about the city and franchise, and is extremely excited to put on one of the most famous jerseys in British hockey history.”