The Six Nations Pro-Fit Chiefs made a huge splash late Monday night. The defending Major Series Lacrosse and Mann Cup champions completed a huge trade with the Kitchener-Waterloo Kodiaks.
The Chiefs acquired Dhane Smith, Dillon Ward and Jay Thorimbert, in exchange for goalie Evan Kirk.
“This is an exciting deal for us,” Chiefs general manager Duane Jacobs said. “Unfortunately, when these deals happen, players have to leave. In this case we have parted ways with Kirky. He has been a huge part of our team.”
In Smith, the Chiefs get a big man with a great scoring touch.
“Dhane has size, speed, can score, can pass, and can run in transition,” Jacobs said. “He’s the total package.”
And at 23, he solidifies the Chiefs offence and makes the team deeper at that position, joining the likes of Randy Staats, Quinn Powless, and Vaughn Harris, who are all in their early 20s.
“With our right side suffering so many injuries last year and Quinn out for the season, we felt it necessary to add another quality righty,” Jacobs said.
Earlier in the National Lacrosse League season, Powless underwent season-ending surgery to repair a torn left anterior cruciate ligament after playing three games with the New England Black Wolves.
Smith, who played for the Victoria Shamrocks last summer, is in his third season with the NLL’s Buffalo Bandits, and is tied for the lead in team scoring with 29 goals and 41 assists in 13 games.
Ward may be the best young goalie in the game at 24-years-old.
“When I watched him at the World Championships in Denver last year, I thought this guy can only get better in the box cage,” Jacobs said. “Dillon comes from a winning junior program (Orangeville Northmen) and seems to like the pressure. He and Warren Hill will eventually be our future tandem.”
Ward currently plays for the NLL’s Colorado Mammoth, and has seen almost all of the action this season, posting a 6-5 record.
With Mann Cup Most Valuable Player Brandon Miller’s summer work commitments, Ward will see plenty of action early on in the season.
Thorimbert is having a career year with the NLL’s Buffalo Bandits.
Along with his four goals and three assists, Thorimbert leads the NLL in loose balls with 166
“Jay has been the best draw man in the MSL for a number years and is a solid defender with excellent speed out the back end,” Jacobs said. “We haven’t had a dominate draw man since Daris Kilgour, Jay gives us a chance to start with the ball at every face off.”
The Chiefs begin their defence of the MSL and Mann Cup titles on Tuesday May 26 at 8 p.m., at the Iroquois Lacrosse Arena against the Kodiaks.