American forward Pat Dwyer joins Belfast Giants

American forward Patrick Dwyer.American forward Patrick Dwyer.
American forward Patrick Dwyer.
The Stena Line Belfast Giants have announced the signing of Patrick Dwyer for the 2018/19 Elite League season.

The American forward arrives in Belfast from SønderjyskE of Denmark’s Metal Ligaen.

Dwyer said: “From early on in my career, Belfast was always a place that I was intrigued to come and play in. We almost came to an agreement last Summer and unfortunately it did not work out.

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“However I am excited this year to get to go and play for the Giants.

“I am a hard working guy whether it is not he forecheck or on defence. I can put up points too and enjoy helping on the powerplay.

“I am willing to do whatever we need to do to hoist some championships in Belfast.”

Dwyer, who becomes the 199th player to ice for the Giants, played for the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes in seven straight seasons between 2008-2015. The 35-year-old posted 42 goals and 51 assists.

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Dwyer made Sweden home for the 2015/16 season with MODO of the Swedish Elite League.

After a professional tryout in 2016/17 with the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, Dwyer returned to the Hurricanes organisation with their AHL affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers.

In 58 games with the Checkers, Dwyer scored 14 goals as well as 26 assists and helped Charlotte into the AHL playoffs.

The six foot, 176 pound forward was a fourth round NHL draft pick by the Atlanta Thrashers in 2002 and then spent four seasons in the NCAA at Western Michigan, captaining the team in his senior year.

Dwyer also iced at international level in the 2012 IIHF World Championship for Team USA and scored in their famous 5-4 win over Team Canada.