Cardiff Devils sign Canadian forward Matt Pope for next season

Matt Pope
Matt Pope scored 33 goals in 46 games for Tohoku Free Blades last season

Elite League champions Cardiff Devils have strengthened their squad for next season by signing Canadian forward Matt Pope on a one-year deal.

The 32-year-old right winger arrives after a season in the Asia League with Japanese club Tohoku Free Blades, where he was the competition's top scorer.

Pope has also played in the American Hockey League, Denmark and Italy.

"Pope is a power forward and wins battles all over the ice," said Devils player-coach Andrew Lord.

"He can score, make plays or grind it out in the corners. I see him as a real complete player.

"He led the league he was playing in last season in scoring and has been a top scorer wherever he goes. I expect him to bring that offensive ability to the Elite League this season."

Pope will also be studying at Cardiff Met's School of Management while playing for the Devils.

After four pre-season games, the club's first competitive game of the season will be their Champions League tie away to Swiss team HC Davos on 24 August.

They will also face Bili Tygri Liberec of the Czech Republic and Sweden's Vaxjo Lakers in Group E.

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