The Edmonton Rush are getting ready to begin their training camp in anticipation of the 2014 NLL season.
The team will be challenged to replace the Corey Small on offense. Small suffered a knee injury in the summer leagues and won’t be available, leaving the Rush without their top point-getter from last year.
On transition, the retirement of team captain Jimmy Quinlan also leaves an empty roster spot, meaning there are two key positions up for grabs.
The format of this year’s training camp is different from previous seasons. They’ll be involved in an intense four-day camp in the Edmonton area from Thursday, Nov. 28 to Sunday Dec. 1, including an intra-squad game on Saturday. They follow that up with an exhibition game a week later against the Buffalo Bandits in Six Nations, ON.
With Small out of the picture, the battle for a spot on the right side of the offense will be particularly fierce. Ryan Ward, Curtis Knight, Jarrett Davis and Cory Conway are all established forwards looking to move up to Small’s role as top dog on that side, but look for sophomore Mike Burke to make a push to earn playing time as well.
On the left side, 2013 Rookie of the Year Mark Matthews is looking to improve on his first year’s performance. He’s supported by Zack Greer and Alex Turner while Simon Giourmetakis and Adrian Sorichetti challenge for roster spots as well.
First-round pick Robert Church and second-rounder Riley Loewen will also be fighting for a place on the roster and will be looking to contribute to the offense.
Rookie Reid Mydske, younger brother of Rush vet Brett, will be competing to fill Quinlan’s shoes.
The competition to fill the 20-man roster and four practice roster spots begins at the Leduc Recreation Centre on Nov. 28 at 10:00 am and is open to the public.