The expansion draft for the Panther City Lacrosse Club has come and gone, and the Saskatchewan Rush are saying good-bye to defender Matt Hossack after four seasons.
What the Rush will be losing, and Panther City will be gaining, is a young defenseman that has proven he can play at an elite level in the pros.
Hossack was drafted by the Rush 14th overall in 2016. In his rookie season in 2017, Hossack suited up in six games for the Rush and who can forget him scoring five goals in his first five shots as a pro lacrosse player.
While he’ll be missed in Saskatchewan, its a win-win scenario for both Hossack and Panther City.
While Panther City gets an elite young defender, Hossack will be going to an up-start team that will allow him to get more floor time and a chance to flourish. Hossack has played 51 games in the NLL, with 38 points and 216 loose balls. I anticipate those numbers will just get better in Fort Worth.
It’s not to say he was struggling in Saskatchewan, but when you have the likes of Ryan Dilks, Kyle Rubisch, Chris Corbeil and Travis Cornwall on defense, it’ll be hard to unseat those veterans.
Now, where does this draft pick leave the Rush?
Heading into the draft, the pick really came down to two players: Hossack and the aforementioned Corbeil.
Hossack was the safe bet because you knew what you were getting.
Corbeil, on the other hand, has a complicated contract situation. Because of his age, Panther City couldn’t guarantee that they’d have him long-term. By not choosing him, Panther City passed on a proven leader in the locker room and out on the floor. Picking Corbeil would have been a major gamble.
While Hossack is a proven player, it just goes to show that General Manager Derek Keenan drafted well, anticipating scenarios like this. Saskatchewan still has young guys like Jordi Jones-Smith, Justin Robinson, Holden Garlent, Connor McClelland and Keenan even brought back veteran Adrian Sorichetti to add to the depth on defence.
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.