Archive for August, 2008

Signs of Change in the MLL

August 30, 2008

http://blogs.insidelacrosse.com/2008/08/29/new-jersey-pride-close-team-offices/

The New Jersey Pride are minimizing operations. This is in addition to the nomad Barrage looking for a new place to play in 2009, and a rumored third team looking to move as well. For the record, here are my predictions:

1. New Jersey Pride to North Carolina

2. Barrage to Portland or Seattle

3. Chicago Machine to St. Louis (I am guessing that the Machine are looking to move…unless its the Dragons.

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The Space Between

August 28, 2008

The MLL season is over, and fall ball has yet to begin for another few weeks. Even then, the good scrimmages won’t come until later in the fall. This is the most boring time of the year for a lacrosse fan. I often find myself getting excited when seeing a new 2009 product, or watching a Division I powerhouse like Syracuse or Hopkins mop the floor with MCLA wannabes Michigan and BYU in a fall scrimmage. It gets so ridiculous that I will resort to watching the first few games of the National Lacrosse League.

MLL Offseason Predictions

August 27, 2008

Relocation: The MLL will move the Barrage to Seattle or Portland. Giving each conference five teams. The MLL will also move the Pride out of New Jersey and put them in either North Carolina or Virginia Beach.

All Star Game-Boston, Los Angeles or Rochester

MLL Championship Game: Denver, Rochester, or Boston

Jacksonville is the New Bryant

August 26, 2008

http://blogs.insidelacrosse.com/2008/08/25/coaching-updates-maryland-harvard-jacksonville/

As far as up and coming programs go, Bryant is most interesting because they not only have the former Duke coach Mike Pressler locked in for seven years, but they will have the NCAA all-time leading goal scorer Zack Greer for 2009. After that? Jacksonville is the place to be. Not only does it have great weather, but they have some great coaching candidates for their first lacrosse coach. One of them is former Hobart coach Matt Kerwick, who lead the Statesmen to some big wins in his tenure, including Syracuse. There is also former UNC coach John Haus, who is the lacrosse equivalent of Bob Huggins or Ralph Friedgen. A career coach who should get this or any lacrosse job, but for some reason can’t get to the top. (Although the Maryland football program isn’t even close to being USC or Miami, not Ralph’s problem).

Regardless of who gets the job, look for Jacksonville to be a top program in a few years. They already have a good location and will have a good coach.

No Contest: Rochester Destroys Denver by 10 in Championship Game

August 25, 2008

http://blogs.insidelacrosse.com/2008/08/24/mll-championship-rochester-16-denver-6/

I was playing with my 7 month year old daughter through most of this game, but I did get to see the Rochester Rattlers lay a smackdown on the Denver Outlaws. After going into the half leading 6-5. Rochester went on a 10-1 run in the second half to win the game with ease, thanks to Brett Queener in the cage, a sock trick by Jeff Zywicki, and four goals by John Grant Jr.

Denver either learned nothing from the day before when Grant was shut down most of the game, or they were just fatigued and ran out of gas.

This is Rochester’s first title in their first title game appearence, Denver is 0 for 2 in the MLL championship. No Western Conference team has won a title since the MLL added a Western Conference in 2006.

About 8,500 fans were at the game in Boston, which is decent considering the hometown Cannons were not a part of any of the games. Boston is a good choice for the MLL Championship. Denver might be, but having the semifinal games the day before seem like it would be expensive…Who knows. Denver is good for the All-Start game. Other cities that do well with the special events are Rochester, and Los Angeles. It will be interesting to see what happens in the offseason.

Trudie’s Steinfeld Cup Pick: Rochester vs. Denver

August 24, 2008

http://blogs.insidelacrosse.com/2008/08/23/mll-championship-rochester-vs-denver-five-storylines-to-follow/

Tomorrow is the big game between Rochester and Denver for all the MLL marbles. Rochester proved they are the team to beat as they won their semifinal game. Denver proved that they can beat Western Conference teams by beating the LA Riptide in their semifinal game.

Rochester looked vulerable in their semifinal game as John Grant Jr. was pretty much shut off the whole game, but the Rattlers have to many weapons for that to be a realistic strategy to win. The Outlaws probably still want to put their best defenseman on Grant.

Denver has its share of weapons as well, but I don’t think they can hang with the Rattlers.

Trudie’s Pick- Rochester 20 Denver 15

MLL Semi #2: Denver Oulasts Riptide

August 24, 2008

Due to the cutoff of the first semi-final, I went to look online to see who won the first game, and wound up seeing who won the second game before getting to watch it. So I only watched the first quarter of the second semifinal before turning it off. I have little patience when I am sick.

So the Outlaws will be going to their second title game. They went in 2006 and lost to the Barrage.

MLL Semifinal- Rochester Beats Barrage

August 23, 2008

http://blogs.insidelacrosse.com/2008/08/23/mll-championships-rochester-16-philadelphia-15-ot/

Due to a fever, I recorded this game on my DVR so I could sleep. I watched this game a few hours after it was played to find out that the last two minutes of the game and OT were not recorded. From what I did get to see, I thought that the Barrage did all they could to win the game. They kept the score low, and got a lot of points from their role players. The Barrage kept production from John Grant Jr. to a minimum, but Rochester showed they had a lot of other talent on the field. They weren’t going to be denied.

Offensive Player Of The Year: John Grant Jr.

August 23, 2008

http://www.insidelacrosse.com/page.cfm?pagerid=2&news=fdetail&storyid=191593

This was a no brainer. John Grant Jr. not only leads the MLL in scoring by 12 points, but even if he didn’t have the most points scored in the league he would be a contender because of his flash. This was the third time that Grant has won the award. Hopefully it will pay off this weekend and get him that elusive MLL championship.

Final Week: Championship Picks

August 21, 2008

No news coming from any of the teams that might impact Championship Weekend, so unless something major comes out. This may be my final picks for the Steinfeld Cup.

Denver Outlaws vs. Los Angeles Riptide-Both teams lost their final regular season games. I think Denver is more likely to have an emotional turn around and be ready to play for a chance to go to the championship game. Plus they have a lot of seasoned vets who have played in big games like Ryan Powell, Jesse Schwartzman, Geoff Snider, and Brian Langtry.

Trudie Picks: Outlaws will win by three!

Rochester Rattlers vs. Barrage-Rochester is the hottest team in the league. The Barrage are the surprise team in the playoffs even though they have won the past two championships. Both teams are stacked with talent. The Barrage have more vets, plus they just added Kevin Cassese a few weeks ago. However, I think the Canadian power of Grant and Merrill, plus Alex Smith will take them not only to the Championship Game, but to the title.

Trudie Picks: Rochester by five