The Devils are pleased to confirm the re-signing of Toms Rutkis for the upcoming 2018-19 season.
Rutkis has been signed on a two-way agreement with the Swindon Wildcats, one of the top teams in the NIHL. Rutkis only played 8 games for the Wildcats last season due to a serious facial injury that saw him miss two months of the season.
When he returned to full health, he played in 40 games for the Devils. At 20 years old, the Devils see his best years still to come and are looking for him to continue to improve this season with the hopes of him taking a regular spot in the lineup in the next year or two.
“Toms has had a great summer with us in the gym and on the ice,” said Devils’ coach Andrew Lord.
“I think he is going to have a big year. The plan is for him to start the season with us for pre-season games and the CHL but we want him getting as much ice as possible, so the likelihood is that he will play the majority of games for the Wildcats.
“The great thing about Swindon is they have a proven track record of developing young talent and we know he will get more ice time and hopefully continue to improve.
“Players need ice time to get better and we feel he is going to develop more with the Wildcats in games. We still are going to have him training with us all week and he is living and going to school in Cardiff so it is a great fit.”
Player/Coach of the Swindon Wildcats Aaron Nell said:
"This is a great situation for all parties involved and we are delighted to be part of Toms development. He’s a great person and I know everyone here hopes he progresses and has a great career as a Devil in the Future. As a club Cardiff are a team we look up to and we are trying to emulate them but at our own level.”
20-year-old Rutkis falls under the Under-23 rule for the EIHL for the next 3 years. At 6’0 and 175 lbs, he has the tools to become a regular in the EIHL and the Devils are committed to working with the Wildcats to make that happen.