Tyler Burton is one of the better stories you will see in the National Lacrosse League. He made the Rochester Knighthawks roster on an open tryout and went on to win two titles as a defenseman with the club.
Now a member of the Vancouver Stealth, Burton is playing with some of those Rochester teammates thanks to big draft day trades.
“Joel [McCready] has been a really good friend of mine for a long time. We have always played on the same team for a number of years except for last year, so it will be great to be on the same team again this year,” he said. “Joel is just an amazing guy on and off the floor, team first attitude and does whatever it takes. It’s a privilege to be able to play with him again. Johnny [Powless] is another guy I have enjoyed playing with, just seeing his intense emotion for the game will make you play harder and better. Johnny is an amazing lacrosse player and extremely humble, so again just another privilege to be wearing the same jersey as him again.”
Burton has played in 41 games in his NLL career and has 162 loose balls overall. He also has 30 forced turnovers and a 38 percent in the faceoff dot. The Stealth added him to bring in more depth on defense.
“It feels great to be a part of the Vancouver Stealth organization,” Burton said. “Moved out here to the west coast in Victoria full time, and it’s great to start playing close to my new home now. It’s great to see the organization making big moves, trying to get the right pieces of the puzzle together, bringing guys like Rory Smith and Tyler Hass is always a plus because they are great players and team guys, that do what it takes to get the job done.”
Burton is a member of the Victoria Shamrocks in the Western Lacrosse Association and he has played in two Mann Cup finals, where they lost both times to the Six Nations Chiefs.
“I expect my role to be what I always bring to any team I play on,” Burton said. “Team first guy, consistent hard work, very physical and will go out and do whatever it takes and whatever is asked of me. Always learning and growing as a player, so as the game keeps growing and evolving, I expect myself to do the same.
Last season Burton signed on the practice roster with the Edmonton Rush, but in that historically good defensive unit he only played one game. Instead, he spent most of his season with the Canadian Lacrosse League as a member of the Southwest Cyclops.
“Last year definitely wasn’t an easy pill for me to swallow, was part of a great team in Rochester, but I just felt like it was time for a change there, and I signed with Edmonton with the thought I would get my shot and take advantage of it, but they were a great team with the nearly perfect season, and things just didn’t go my way there. Playing in CLax helped change my game a little bit more, got to play a little more offense and step up my transition game. But I am the type of guy that won’t force anything, learned to read the opportunities better and take advantage of them. Also forced me to take more faceoffs that year and this summer, which with more reps I believe I have learned more and grown that part of my game. But I still know my role as a defensive guy, and I am always about protecting my own end before anything else.”