We have just passed week eleven of the season, and it’s time for mid-term reports of how the NLL teams are doing so far. I have decided to do this over two weeks, splitting up the east and west divisions.
This week, we will look at the West Division:
San Diego Seals (6-1)
Although the Seals haven’t been as dominant as everyone expected, they have been able to get the job done. As expected, the tandum of Dickson and Dobbie has been nothing short of spectacular. The only chink in the armour has been the inconsistency in net. Frank Scigliano has been replaced by Christopher Origlieri as the starting goalie, and the Seals hope that will be the shot in the arm they need to roll to a championship.
Calgary Roughnecks (6-3)
This team wasn’t expected to be as successful as it has been this year. With the additions of Jeff Cornwall and, more recently Josh Currier, the Roughnecks have become a dangerous team that can score at any given moment. Goalie Christian Del Bianco has been excellent, also helping the cause with 15 assists. This team has to be considered in the conversation for the championship as well.
Saskatchewan Rush (4-3)
This team shows that with the right people in charge, a rebuild doesn’t have to take years. A nice mix of veterans with you have this team moving forward rapidly. Mark Matthews has looked like the Matthews of old, and with Ryan Keenan, Dan Lintner, and Robert Church have made this offense scary. Rookie Austin Madronic has fit in nicely with timely goals as well. Veteran defensemen Rubisch and Dilks have steadied the flow, helping goalie Alex Buque have a good season so far.
Panther City Lacrosse Club (5-4)
The team that started this year is much different than it is today. Gone is Captain Chad Cummings for Jake Fox. Gone is goalie Kevin Orleman, Colton Lidstone, and Petey LaSalla in exchange for Callum Crawford. With an already potent young lineup of Jonathan Donville, Patrick Dodds, Dean Fairall, as well as Nathan Grenon and Cam Wengreniuk, this is going to be an exciting team for years to come. They are definitely making a push for the playoffs this year.
Colorado Mammoth (4-4)
The championship hangover is in full swing. Injuries have hurt the Mammoth, as well as inconsistent play. The season ending injury to Joey Cupido, as well as Dillon Ward being out for a few games has hurt immensely. The second half will need to see the Mammoth get on a run of wins to catch up to the division leaders, if they hope to repeat as champions.
Las Vegas Desert Dogs (2-5)
For an expansion team, they are getting better with every game they play. With Rob Hellyer, Jacob Ruest, Reid Reinholdt, Marshal King, and Jack Hannah there is plenty of scoring punch. They have a young defense, and a young group of goalies, and will need a bit of time to assimilate. Shawn Williams is the right man to guide this team, and will have them competitive in no time.
Vancouver Warriors (1-8)
This team just can’t catch a break. The GM and Assistant GM stepped down, and Logan Schuss went down with a season ending injury. Troy Cordingley and Phil Sanderson have a lot of work to do and have started to get it done. Mitch Jones was traded for Steph Charbonneau, and more importantly, draft picks. Also, to help sure up the goaltending, Aaron Bold was brought in to help Aiden Walsh adjust to NLL life. There is still a long way to go, but finally the Warriors have made it to the correct road.
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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 in 2010. Through the podcasts, Mr. Groob was given 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).
Gary 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.