Over the summer the Minnesota Swarm traded Brock Sorensen to the Toronto Rock in exchange for transition Ethan O’Connor and a first round pick in 2017.
For the past two seasons, Sorensen has literally been a big part of the Swarm’s transition unit. At 6’6″, 220 lbs, Sorensen was a major physical presence. He averaged 62 loose balls and 13 forced turnovers during his time with Minnesota. He could also score, notching six goals per season.
O’Connor doesn’t have Sorensen’s size, but he has the potential to be even more effective. In his rookie campaign with Toronto he led the team with 133 loosies, was fourth on the team in forced turnovers with 15, took 113 faceoffs, winning 48 of them, and he also chipped in offensively with five goals and four assists.
On a team that gave up the third-most goals against in the NLL last year (219), O’Connor’s defensive tenacity and ability to turn the ball up the floor will be of critical importance.
O’Connor adds depth to a transition unit that should prove to be pretty strong. With veterans Andrew Suitor, Jordan MacIntosh and Kiel Matisz, O’Connor’s youth and energy should make them more effective at controlling rebounds and pushing the ball into the offensive zone.
So while Minnesota will be smaller this year with O’Connor filling Sorensen’s spot, there seems little doubt that they’ll still be tough to handle.