2018 NLL Awards & All-Pro Teams Recap

Mark Matthews. (Photo credit: Cliff McCaig)

PHILADELPHIA – The National Lacrosse League (NLL), the largest men’s professional indoor lacrosse league in North America, announces the conclusion of the 2017-18 NLL Season Awards.

The Saskatchewan Rush’s Mark Matthews was named the League’s Most Valuable Player for the 2017-18 season following the Rush’s NLL Finals victory. Matthews finished with a stat line of 32 goals, 84 assists and 116 total points during the regular season. His 84 assists set a NLL single season record.

On the business side, Matt Hutchings, EVP & COO of the Colorado Mammoth won Executive of the Year. Under Matt’s leadership, a young Mammoth staff increased revenue by 7.8% and increased paid tickets by 3% year-over-year. In addition to staffing changes in 2018, the Mammoth underwent significant team changes. Even so, the Mammoth improved their record by two wins and made their 15th playoff appearance in 16 seasons.

Additionally, Derek Keenan of the Saskatchewan Rush won the “Les Bartley” Head Coach of the Year award and since led his team to a 3rd NLL Finals victory in the last 4 seasons. This year, Keenan set a record 13th NLL Finals appearance and 9th victory as either a player, coach or general manager.

The complete list of 2017-18 NLL Season Award winners are as follows:


Most Valuable Player

Mark Matthews – Saskatchewan Rush


Sportsmanship Award

Lyle Thompson – Georgia Swarm


Defensive Player of the Year

Graeme Hossack – Rochester Knighthawks


Transition Player of the Year

Joey Cupido – Colorado Mammoth


Goaltender of the Year

Matt Vinc – Rochester Knighthawks


Teammate of the Year

Craig England – Buffalo Bandits


Rookie of the Year

Jake Withers – Rochester Knighthawks


Head Coach of the Year (Les Bartley Award)

Derek Keenan – Saskatchewan Rush


General Manager of the Year

Curt Styres – Rochester Knighthawks


Executive of the Year

Matt Hutchings – Colorado Mammoth


Media Person of the Year (Tom Borrelli Award)

Stephen Stamp – IL Indoor & host of Boxla Beat Podcast, NLL Draft Analyst


All-Pro First Team

Kevin Crowley, New England Black Wolves – Forward

Mark Matthews, Saskatchewan Rush – Forward

Robert Church, Saskatchewan Rush – Forward

Joey Cupido, Colorado Mammoth – Transition

Graeme Hossack, Rochester Knighthawks – Defense

Matt Vinc, Rochester Knighthawks – Goalie


All-Pro Second Team

Curtis Dickson, Calgary Roughnecks – Forward

Joe Resetarits, Rochester Knighthawks – Forward

Lyle Thompson, Georgia Swarm – Forward

Zach Currier, Calgary Roughnecks – Transition

Kyle Rubisch, Saskatchewan Rush – Defense

Dillon Ward, Colorado Mammoth – Goalie


All-Rookie Team

Josh Byrne, Buffalo Bandits – Forward

Eric Fannell, Rochester Knighthawks – Forward

Austin Shanks, Rochester Knighthawks – Forward

Zach Currier, Calgary Roughnecks – Transition

Colton Watkinson, New England Black Wolves – Transition

Jake Withers, Rochester Knighthawks – Defense