Belfast Giants are pleased to announce the signing of American defenceman Tom Dignard for the upcoming season. 24 year old Dignard comes to Belfast from the Tulsa Oilers in the CHL, where he posted 32 points in 48 games in the regular season and gained 5 points in 9 playoff games at the end of the season.
During the 10/11 season, Dignard was also called up by the Lake Erie Monsters of the American Hockey League for a 3 game stint in January 2011. The young defenseman played his university hockey for Yale, regularly contributing to the points tally, averaging almost a point a game in his last school year.
Dignard is joining Belfast as part of the scholarship programme with the University of Ulster. Coach Doug Christiansen is delighted: “Tom is an offensive dman. He had stellar reviews from a number of coaches and former teammates. Twice he was compared to Brian Rafalski, the recently retired defender for the Detroit Red Wings. He plays a smooth skating, puck moving game. Tom is a very intelligent player and is someone who is only going to get better. He finished the year as Tulsa’s top dman and earned his second AHL call-up”.
“I am expecting Tom to be a great asset in all three zones and will be able to join the play to add offense to our team. Looking at the other teams, it will be very important to have great skating dmen in order to compete on a nightly basis.”
Dignard himself on coming to Belfast: “I am very excited for the opportunity to come to Belfast to play for a great organization in the Giants and also to attend the University of Ulster in hope of receiving my Masters. I have heard great things about both the team and the city from past and present players, and am looking forward to coming to Belfast for the season”.