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The Stena Line Belfast Giants are pleased to announce the arrival of James Desmarais for the 2015/16 Elite League season. The experienced forward signs for the Giants from EHC Visp of National League B, Switzerland (NLB) – a league that Desmarais has spent the past nine consecutive seasons and finished the 2014/15 campaign as top scorer with 68 points in 48 games.

The 36 year old centreman was drafted in the 1999 by the St.Louis Blues and began his European career in 2005 with HC Innsbruck of Austria, posting 66 points before being picked up by HC Ajoie.

The Canadian divided his time in Switzerland between Ajoie and Visp – playing 456 games and scoring 294 goals and adding 445 assists, totalling an impressive 739 points and averaging 1.62 points per game.

Desmarais was voted the NLB’s Most Valuable Player in the 2012/13 season before helping EHC Visp to the NLB championship in 2013/14, scoring 29 points in 23 playoff games.

Steve Thornton speaking on his signing of James Demarais,

“He’s played in a great league in Switzerland, where there is a lot of pressure and he has led the league in scoring on multiple seasons including last season. He can create offence, he is extremely gifted on the powerplay and he’s proven.”

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