It was all smiles as the Saskatchewan Rush returned to the floor once again after the long layoff to begin the 2021 training camp.
Week one is already under wraps from Saskatoon as they resume week two in Oakville at the Toronto Rock Training Centre.
As first-year head coach Jeff McComb described the first few days of training camp to the Saskatoon Star Phoenix’s Kevin Mitchell, it was a “rebirth, Christmas day and birthday all rolled into one.”
Heck, even general manager Derek Keenan came down to the floor to shoot around with the boys.
Heading into this season there will be a lot of news faces for fans to get used to. Of the 31 players invited to camp, 16 are either rookies or acquired from trades and are playing for the Rush for the first time.
Some of the new faces include Josh Currier, Dan Lintner, and Mike Mallory.
With losing Jeremy Thompson to free agency, the Rush will likely be using Mike Messenger more often at the face-off dot. He was seen working on face-offs with newcomer Tristan Rai.
The Rush are also coming into camp with three goaltenders. Losing Evan Kirk to free agency, Adam Shute will be making the jump to the starting position. Backing him up are Cameron Dunkerley and Lucas Nagy.
As they hit the floor for the first few days, it was obvious the boys were kicking off some rust after 20 months off, but it didn’t take long to kick things up to high gear.
The Rush will see pre-season action on Saturday, Nov. 13 against the Toronto Rock and Sunday, Nov. 14 against the Buffalo Bandits. Both games are not being streamed or televised, but there will be updates on the Saskatchewan Rush social media accounts. The Rush will return back to Saskatoon for the final weekend of training camp before they open the season on the road in Halifax against the Thunderbirds on Dec. 4.
Shawn Slaght has been a sports reporter across the Canadian prairies for over 10 years and has experience covering everything from junior hockey to World Cup skiing to all levels of lacrosse. He is the Saskatchewan correspondent for All Lacrosse All The Time.