As the sun rose in Lansdale Pa, so did 35 hopeful players who have been invited to the Wings camp. Thirty runners and five goalies were on the list, and only 8-10 will be chosen to earn a shot at returning on December 1st when the full team reports.
The players must not of had enough food for breakfast, because they where hungry when hitting the floor. They wanted to start hitting immediately, and Coach Mouradian had to restrain them. Coach said he likes that they are hungry for contact. Contact happened the last 45 minutes and they didn’t disappoint.
During the 3 ½ hour session the players where put through speed and agility, passing drills, transition drills, etc.. After a rough 15 minutes the players began flowing with the passes and drills.
Other then our draft picks, CJ Costabile, Mike Manely & Kevin Randall (was not there), the Wings had 28 other runners, and some of the names will sound very familiar. (G) Erik Miller, (D) Brett Moyer, (D) Jim Forsythe. Before I go into some of the notable players who stood out, let me just say I don’t want to be the coach deciding on the 8-10 to advance to training camp.
The Wings brought in Jimmy Butler during last season, and if the name sounds familiar it should. Jimmy was the Asst GM of the 2011 U.S. Mens National Lacrosse Team, and also the same man who put together the New York/Orlando Titan teams. In 2010 that team went 11-5 but lost to Toronto in East Finals, and in 2009 they finished 10-6, winning the east an falling short to Calgary in the Cup Finals 12-10. So hopefully Jimmy still has the touch for getting the best talent here.
Costabile & Manley did just what the coaches expected, so expect to see them on December 1st. Both players seemed to of picked up the game pretty well so far. Goalie Erik Miller knows the clock is ticking. “Players are stronger and faster then when I first started, you see new things every time” said Miller.
Chad Wiedmaier (Princeton/ Hamilton Nationals-MLL) impressed me completely. This kid is very hungry, and reminds me of a young Shawn Nadelen, he has speed, and a nose for the ball. Not only do I expect him here on Dec 1st, but I see him on the roster to start the season. Will Harrington is another player to find the ball in his stick. Harrington is a true lefty, with a very hard and accurate shot.
The Wings need to fill the opening on the left as Brendan Mundorf will be out of action until at least March as he recovers from ankle surgery in September from an injury he sustained during practice in August during MLL Championship weekend. Mundorf hopes to be back by the end of the season.
Other notable players… Brett Moyer, fresh off LXM summer tour and PLL action, Moyer knows what it takes to make this team and what the fans look for. Brett had a good showing at the camp and will be considered (my opinion) in the mix. Jim Forsythe, last year he made it to the final cut, this year he plans on being introduced on January 11th as the Wings open there season. “Making it that far and just coming up short stings” said Forsythe.
The goalie situation will be tough. Brandon Miller, Steve Fryer, and Scott Komer are under contract. Coach Mouradian brought in 5 more. Erik Miller, Vincent Talbot, Brett Perras, Alex Fortier, & Chris Collins.
I see Erik Miller (6’5 248lbs) and Brett Perras (6’6 215lbs) joining the other three as camp opens. Other then Miller who I have seen play, Perras was very impressive during today’s camp, Vince Talbot was impressive as well. Coaches have a very tough decision.
It’s very hard to watch all thirty players at one time, but I did notice that the coaches did very little correcting of the players today, and they where saying it will be tough to say no.
Full camp opens December 1st 7am. Not only do the 8-10 who will advance have to be even more hungrier then today, but so will the returning veterans and those who may have been on the bubble last season. December will be interesting as all 9 NLL teams will have started camps. What players will be changing there address this season? Who may be sitting out this season? With 9 teams and a talented draft this year, the coaches for the Wings as well as the rest of the league will have very tough decisions.
Look for my next camp update after the December 1st session and also one following the December 2nd .
Keep coming back to www.inlacrossewetrust.com for all camp and preseason as well as all 2013 updates through the NLL season.