Six years later, he looks to be headed back.
And it's a deal months in the making. General manager Craig Waibel has publicly expressed interest in recent months, saying in November that RSL would remain interested in Movsisyan, should he ever become available.
Now in his expected return to RSL, Movsisyan is what the club's supporters hope is the experienced, all-around forward capable of producing double-digit goal marks each season. The club has been on the prowl for a striker of these qualities since the dip in form of the club's all-time leading scorer, Alvaro Saborio, who was dealt last summer to D.C. United.
Movsisyan signed with Danish club Randers FC after helping RSL win its first and only MLS Cup title in 2009. All he's done overseas is produce as a versatile central forward. Since 2011, Movsisyan had played in the Russian Premier League. He moved from Randers to Krasnodar where he scored 23 goals in 50 league appearances.
Spartak Moscow soon came calling, reportedly spending $9.7 million on a transfer fee to acquire the Southern California product. In four years at Spartak, Movsisyan scored 25 goals. But the draw to return to the U.S. was always there.
McCabe told The Tribune last summer that Movsisyan, who spent two and a half seasons at RSL, expressed interest in being closer to his family in Pasadena, Calif.
Movsisyan and wife Marianna have two young children.
Most recently, Movsisyan was part of the American Armenian Rose Float in the 127th Rose Parade on New Year's Day in Pasadena, Calif.
He broke into MLS in 2006 with the then-Kansas City Wizards. In Sept. 2007, former RSL general manager Garth Lagerwey traded for Movsisyan. He scored 15 goals in 53 appearances and played a part in the equalizing goal in the 2009 MLS Cup final against the L.A. Galaxy.
Ethnically Armenian, Movsisyan was born and raised in Azerbaijan. When he was 12, he and his family left the war-riddled country, emigrating to Southern California. Movsisyan was a standout striker at Pasadena High School before going on to enroll at Pasadena City College. He was drafted fourth by Kansas City in the 2006 MLS SuperDraft.