As you are reading this editorial, we are coming to the last games of the Major Series Lacrosse tournament – MSLClassic. A tournament that was put together in five days, that gave us starving lacrosse fans four live games per week for over a month. In these games we watched a lot of the future of the game mixed with the veterans, showing us that the game is in good hands for many years to come.
Future stars like Jonathan Donville, Alex Simmons, Ryan Lanchbury, Cam Milligan, John St. John, and Kedoh Hill just to name a few, mixing with bonafide stars like Austin Staats, Jordan Durston, Brandon Slade, and many others gave us heart stopping finishes, with last second winners, and overtime battles.
Commissioner Doug Luey and his staff at Major Series Lacrosse should be commended at the job that was done. The games were pretty much flawless, with new rules (closer to the National Lacrosse League model) in place, referees being much more firm about extra curricular activities on the floor, and on the benches, making for more streamlined games being played in under two hours.
Once again JVI Video Production should be given props for the exceptional job they did with broadcasting every minute of the tournament. Excellent video, with top notch play by play made for an enjoyable experience if you weren’t able to attend.
For the first time in Ontario since the Covid-19 lockdown, fans were allowed to attend games. Although 300 fans was the limit (400 if the second floor was in use), we were finally allowed to see live lacrosse again. The league did a great job following Covid-19 protocols, to ensure both players, and fans were kept safe at all times, and a safe environment was provided.
What’s next for Lacrosse fans:
The upcoming weekend has the NLL holding their 2021 entry draft. Although this was supposed to be a grand soiree, which would also have had NLL Hall of Fame inductions (with of course a crowd of people), the league decided that there were too many moving parts to this plan for the time being, and made major changes for the safety of all involved.
This is now a virtual entry draft, which will be broadcast to the fans, but gone are the Hall of Fame inductions. Commissioner Nick Sakeiwicz said that these men deserve a ceremony with all the bells and whistles, and to induct virtually just wouldn’t cut it. It has been postponed to a future date when there can be friends, family, and fans to help celebrate their big night.
In the not so distant future is NLL training camps, followed by the 35th NLL season, which begins the first weekend of December. Fans have many dates to circle on their calenders, and lots to look forward to very soon once again.
Gary Groob has been involved with Lacrosse for the majority of his life, whether playing, coaching, or covering the sport for the media.
An avid fan, with a real drive about helping to “grow the game”, Gary became part of podcasts about the game 10 years ago. Through the podcasts, Mr. Groob had an opportunity to write about lacrosse, and the rest as they say, is history.
Through many miles (flying and driving) Gary has made inroads with the National Lacrosse League, Major Series Lacrosse League, the Ontario Lacrosse Association, as well as the Arena Lacrosse League, covering the leagues, their teams, and players, working for, and in concert with all of them.
In the year 2020, Mr. Groob was made the media person for the Arena Lacrosse League, voted onto the board of directors of the Brampton Excelsiors Lacrosse Club, as well as being made administrator of the Lacrosse page “Global Lacrosse” with a membership of 9000 members in over 90 Countries. Gary was also made an administrator of Lacrosse History Past Present and Future in 2022.
Mr. Groob co-hosts a weekly Lacrosse show on Spanglish Sports World, and ZingoTV channel 250, as well as writes a weekly lacrosse column for La Portada Canada News (both in print, and online).
Mr. Groob also hosts a Lacrosse talk show and podcast for The Edge of Philly Sports Network, seen live Sunday nights at 9pm (ET), and archived on the Edge of Philly YouTube page, as well as Spotify.
Mr. Groob’s other sports interests include Hockey, Football, Boxing, Wrestling, and Baseball, competing competitively in Boxing and Wrestling for many years.