Cannons Fall to Rattlers; Have a Long Way to Go

The Boston Cannons will not be in the playoffs for the first time since 2006. With their loss to the two win Ohio Machine last weekend, they sealed that fate. With an aging roster, this team might need to regroup for the future.The future of Major League Lacrosse is bright; despite the potential failure of the Rochester Rattlers, an Atlanta team is obviously in the future and Florida along with Philadelphia also look positive. The game of lacrosse is growing as much as ever, and that includes in New England.

Some bright new stars emerged for the Cannons this season. Rookies Will Manny and Cameron Flint have shown they are more than capable in this league along with rookie defenseman Scott Ratliff. Mike Stone is emerging as one of their best scorers while Ricky Pages appears to have been a terrific acquisition.

Other young players like Marty Bowes, Craig Bunker and Michael Maggio might be the franchise’s future as well. However, other parts of the team might need to be addressed.

Paul Rabil didn’t nearly re-emulate his 2012 season that saw a league record 72 points, and he was held scoreless in two games while playing through a sports hernia. Kevin Buchanan also took a step back from his 42 point season last year with just 31 in 2013, while Matt Poskay’s 29 was his lowest total since 2009.

Veteran Ryan Boyle, who just retired from International play, scored the lowest point total of his career with just 27. Now at 34 years old, there has to be question of what he has left in the tank as well.

This team might see some turnover after an off season where they saw barely any. Stephen Berger came in at the trade deadline and is the player he is, and even though he has seen move in the past two seasons he is likely to stick around. But what about the rest of that main squad?

Another concern has to be with the goaltender Jordan Burke. Burke had a goals against average of 14.82, the highest of his career and two goals higher than his career average. He allowed 16 goals or more in his last three games of the season, and at one point even allowed 20 goals in a game. He was last in the league in GAA, more than two whole goals behind the next goalie, Brian Phipps of last place Ohio.

The Cannons have a lot of improving to do before the start of 2014. The question is, where to begin?