National Lacrosse League

Finalists for the NLL 2015 Player and Coach of the Year Awards

The National Lacrosse League has announced the finalists for its individual awards for the 2015 lacrosse season. The winners will be announced at the NLL Season Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, September 29 in Toronto, Ontario.

Defensive Player of the Year
Two defensemen from the 2015 champion Edmonton Rush, Chris Corbeil and Kyle Rubisch, join Buffalo Bandits defender Steve Priolo as the top three vote recipients for best defenseman in the league.

Corbeil finished fourth among all NLL defensemen in both points (18) and assists (11), and second in goals (7), in 17 games played. With seven goals on 23 shots, the Rush's captain's .304 shooting percentage was 14th among all league defenseman who played at least 10 games. The sixth-year pro had 13 penalty minutes recovered 94 loose balls, which ranked seventh-most by a defender, 15th among non-faceoff men and 23rd overall. Corbeil's 32 caused turnovers tied for fourth among all NLL players. The two-way player helped Edmonton to a 13-5 regular season record, good for first in the West Division and second overall. The Rush's penalty kill was third-best among all teams at 62%. The Oakville, Ont. native, who attended the University of Western Ontario, was the 15th overall pick in the 2009 NLL Draft.

Priolo was second among NLL defensemen with 15 assists, tied for second with 20 points, and fifth with five goals in 18 games played. The sixth-year veteran's 104 loose balls were sixth-most among defenders, eighth among non-faceoff men and 16th overall. Priolo's 18 caused turnovers were 19th-most for his position while his 48 penalty minutes were seventh-most for a defender. An imposing force at 6-foot-5, Priolo helped the Bandits to an 11-7 record en route to the postseason while allowing the fourth-fewest goals (208) of any team. The St. Catharines, Ont. native played collegiately at Brock University and was drafted 21st overall in the 2009 NLL Draft.

Rubisch, the three-time reigning Defensive Player of the Year and first player in league history to win the award three times, led all NLL defensemen with 36 caused turnovers, good for second-most overall. The fifth-year pro had six points (1+5) and 23 penalty minutes in 18 games played, while his 118 loose balls ranked fourth among all defenders and non-faceoff men. The backbone of the Rush's defense, Rubisch was part of the Rush's defense that allowed only 177 goals, second-fewest of any NLL team, and helped goalie Aaron Bold lead the league with a 9.44 goals against average. The Brampton, Ont. native played collegiately at Dowling College and was the second overall selection in the 2010 NLL Draft.

Transition Player of the Year
The Colorado Mammoth's Joey Cupido, Calgary Roughnecks' Karsen Leung, and Toronto Rock's Brodie Merrill were the top vote recipients for best transition play in the league this season.

Cupido ranked sixth among among NLL transition players in goals (16), seventh in points (31), and ninth in assists while primarily playing a defensive role in 18 games played. The fourth-year pro led the league with 40 caused turnovers and had 117 loose balls, fifth-most among non-faceoff men, eighth-most among transition players, and tied for 12th-most overall. With 16 goals on just 43 shots, Cupido's .372 shooting percentage ranked first among all NLL players with 10-plus goals. Cupido also tied for second in the league with four shorthanded goals. The 24-year-old Hamilton, Ontario native was Colorado's fifth-round (38th overall) selection in the 2011 NLL Draft. He was named to the NLL All-Rookie Team in 2013 and became the first NLL player drafted in the fifth round or later to receive the honor in a decade.

Leung finished fifth for his position in points (35), tied for fifth in assists (24), and tied for sixth in goals (11) in 17 games played. The second-year pro recovered 79 loose balls, 16th-most among NLL transition players and tied for 33rd overall. Leung also recorded 12 caused turnovers and had a .229 shooting percentage which ranked in the league's top 50. The Victoria, B.C. native, who played collegiately at Bellarmine University, was Calgary's second-round (10th overall) selection in the 2013 NLL Draft. The 25-year-old was named to the NLL All-Rookie Team in 2014.

Merrill was sixth among transition men with 32 points, tied for fifth with 24 assists and tied for 12th with eight goals in 18 games played. The 10-year veteran recorded 151 loose balls, which were second-most among non-faceoff men and fifth overall. The 33-year-old had a career-best 32 caused turnovers, second-most for his position and tied for fourth overall. Merrill scored three shorthanded goals, tied for fourth-most in the league, and had a .222 shooting percentage that ranked in the NLL's top 50. The Orangeville, Ontario native, who played collegiately at Georgetown University and was the first overall selection in the 2005 NLL Draft, won back-to-back Transition Player of the Year awards in 2009 and 2010. Merrill won both NLL Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year in 2006.

Goaltender of the Year
The Edmonton Rush's Aaron Bold, Toronto Rock's Brandon Miller, and Rochester Knighthawks' Matt Vinc were the top trio of vote recipients for best goalie play in the league this year.

Bold led the NLL in wins (12), goals against average (9.44) and career-high minutes played (1016:54) while finishing fourth in saves (565) and fifth in save percentage (.779). The 10-year veteran led the eventual 2015 NLL champion Rush to the top of the West Division with a 13-5 regular season record as the team allowed 177 goals, second-fewest in the league. Bold allowed nine or fewer goals in 10 games, including one game with three goals allowed, and had 14 games with 30-plus saves in 18 games played. The 30-year-old Victoria, B.C. native was a third-round (29th overall) pick in the 2005 NLL Draft.

Miller finished third in the league in save percentage (.792), fourth in wins (8) and goals against average (10.36) and was ninth in saves (431) and minutes played (654:10) as part of the Rock's goaltending tandem. With an 8-2 record, the 15-year veteran helped backstop the East Division champions to a league-best 14-4 record during the regular season while allowing the third-fewest goals in the league (185). Miller made 40 or more saves in six of his 10 total appearances and 10 or fewer goals in five of his 10 decisions. The 36-year-old, a native of Orangeville, Ontario, was drafted in the ninth round (70th overall) of the 1999 NLL Draft.

Vinc, the two-time reigning Goaltender of the Year, ranked tied for first in save percentage (.803), second in goals against average (9.62) and saves (655), tied for second in wins (10) and third in career-high minutes played (1003:58). Vinc made 40-plus saves in seven games played and allowed 10 or fewer goals in 10 games including a league-record two goals allowed in one game. Under Vinc's leadership, the Knighthawks allowed a league-low 173 goals en route to a 12-6 record. The 10-year NLL veteran is the only goalie in league history to win the Goaltender of the Year award four times (2010, 2011, 2013 & 2014). The 33-year-old St. Catharines, Ontario native, who played collegiately at Canisius College, was a first-round selection (6th overall) in the 2005 NLL Draft.

Head Coach of the Year (Les Bartley Award)
The Rochester Knighthawks' Mike Hasen, Edmonton Rush's Derek Keenan, and Toronto Rock's John Lovell were the top three vote-getters for their head-coaching roles in 2015.

Hasen helped Rochester to the league's third-best record at 12-6 in his fifth season as the team's head coach. Second in the East Division, the Knighthawks went 7-2 at home and allowed a league-low 173 goals. From Toronto, Ont., Hasen played 13 years in the league including nine seasons with the Knighthawks. Hasen was an assistant coach with Rochester for two years before his promotion in 2011 where he won the Les Bartley Award in his first season as head coach. Hasen, who won a league-record three-straight titles from 2012-2014, was the runner up for the award last year.

Keenan led Edmonton to the top of the West Division for the second-straight year with a 13-5 record, second-best in the league. Keenan, who also serves as the Rush's general manager, went on to win his first-ever Champion's Cup in 2015. Keenan coached two players in the top 10 of NLL scoring while the team allowed the second-fewest goals (177) in the league. Last season, he became the first person in league history to win NLL Head Coach of the Year for a third time. The Oshawa, Ont. native played three seasons in the league and has been head coach of the Rush since 2009. Keenan had five previous years of head coaching experience following his first five seasons as an assistant coach. Keenan won the Les Bartley Award in 2006, was a co-winner in 2010, and took home the honor again in 2014.

Lovell coached Toronto to the league's best record at 14-4 with a 7-2 record both at home and on the road. The Rock allowed the third-fewest goals (185) while scoring the third-most (230) as the team eventually advanced to the Champion's Cup Finals as East Division champs. Toronto started the season with a 9-1 record and did not lose back-to-back games all year. The second-year head coach served as an assistant coach for the Rock for seven years before taking over head coaching duties in 2014. From Elora, Ont., Lovell has over 30 years of coaching experience spanning across all levels of lacrosse.

The NLL Head Coach of the Year award is named in honor of the late Les Bartley, whose contribution to his teams, to the NLL, and to the game of lacrosse is immeasurable. Bartley, who passed away in May 2005 after battling cancer, left behind an illustrious coaching legacy. He won seven championship rings in his 12-year coaching career and tallied an astonishing 93-38 (.710) regular season record behind the bench.

Rookie of the Year
The Edmonton Rush's Ben McIntosh, Colorado Mammoth's Jeremy Noble, and Georgia Swarm's Miles Thompson were voted as the top trio of players from this year's rookie class.

McIntosh led all rookies in goals (37), assists (49) and points (86) during the regular season and tied for second with 69 loose balls. McIntosh's 37 goals were tied for the 12th-most among all NLL players while his 86 points and 49 assists both tied for 14th-most overall. The first-year pro helped Edmonton to a first-place finish in the West Division and eventual Champion's Cup win. The 24-year-old posted two or more points in all 18 of his games played this year, had 11 games with four-plus points and scored hat tricks in five games. The Coquitlam, B.C. native, the first overall pick in the 2014 NLL Draft out of Drexel University, won the NLL Rookie of the Month award in both January and April.

Noble, acquired by the Mammoth in a trade with the Rochester Knighthawks in early March, debuted in Week 11 and recorded 39 points (13+26) to go along with 30 loose balls in nine games played. Noble's 2.9 assists per game average led all rookies while his 4.3 points per game average was second-highest and 1.44 goals per game third-best. Noble had two or more points in all nine games and had four-plus points in six games. The Orangeville, Ont. native, the second overall selection in the 2014 NLL Draft, was a three-time All-America selection at the University of Denver. The 23-year-old was named the NLL Rookie of the Month for March.

Thompson finished second among all rookies in goals (27), assists (35) and points (62) plus tied for second with 69 loose balls. Thompson had three or more points in 13 of his 18 games played, scored at least one goal in 15 games including four hat tricks and had two-plus assists in 11 games. From the Onondaga Nation, Thompson played collegiately at University at Albany, where he was the co-recipient of the 2014 Tewaaraton Award with his brother. The 24-year-old, the third-overall selection of the 2014 NLL Draft, was the NLL Rookie of the Month in February.

Most Valuable Player
The Buffalo Bandits' Ryan Benesch, Calgary Roughnecks' Shawn Evans, and Edmonton Rush's Mark Matthews were voted as the top trio of players in the league this season.

Benesch won the NLL goal scoring title with 55 goals and finished third in the scoring race with 113 points including 58 assists which were ninth-most in the league. Benesch tied for the league lead with four game-winning goals and tied for second with four shorthanded goals while his .229 shooting percentage was ninth among all players with 10-plus goals. Benesch scored at least one goal in all 18 games played, including 11 hat tricks, and had five or more points in 15 games. The nine-year NLL veteran recovered 99 loose balls, which led all forwards, ranked 10th among non-faceoff men and 18th overall. The Kitchener, Ont. native, the first overall selection in the 2006 NLL Draft who won NLL Rookie of the Year in 2007, was named NLL Player of the Month for April.

Evans set the new NLL single-season scoring record with a league-high 130 points, tied the league record with 83 assists, and had 47 goals which were sixth-most overall. The 10-year veteran led the league in shorthanded goals (5) and power play assists (31) while his 96 loose balls ranked third among forwards, 12th among non-faceoff men and 21st overall. Evans scored at least two goals in 15 of 18 games played including nine hat tricks, had four or more points in every game, and four-plus assists in 13 games. The 29-year-old previously won the NLL MVP award in 2013. The Peterborough, Ont. native, who played collegiately at Bellarmine University, was the second overall pick in the 2005 NLL Draft.

Matthews recorded 115 points, which were second-most in the league in 2015 and third-most all-time, while his 53 goals were second-most in the NLL this season. The 25-year-old added 62 assists and 64 loose balls in 18 games played for the Rush, who later went on to win the Champion's Cup with Matthews as the Finals series MVP after leading the postseason in scoring. Matthews scored two or more goals and four-plus points in every game including 10 hat tricks and seven or more points in nine games. The Oshawa, Ont. native, who played collegiately at the University of Denver, was the first overall pick of the 2012 NLL Draft. The third-year pro won the 2013 NLL Rookie of the Year award.

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Edmonton Edges Toronto to Capture NLL Champion's Cup

Rush Take 1-0 Series Lead Over Rock

Rock Rolls to Champion's Cup Final Series

Minnesota Swarm Announce Relocation Plans for 2016

Knighthawks Score at 0:36 to Edge Toronto in Game One

Mammoth Falls to Roughnecks in West Semifinal

Knighthawks Beat Bandits to Advance to East Semifinals

NLL Announces Monthly Player Awards for April

Swarm Top Nighthawks in OT; Rush Top Mammoth

Rock Clinch Champion's Cup Playoffs Top Seed

Knighthawks, Rush, 'Necks Claim Victories

Rock Top Wolves; Mammoth Win as Grant Passes Gait

Knighthawks and Bandits Both Victorious

Toronto, Calgary Pick Up Friday Night Wins

Vinc Saves Knighthawks; Mammoth Streak Halted

Knighthawks Drill Rock; Grant Nets OT Winner for Mammoth

NLL Announces Monthly Awards for March

Mammoth, Swarm Pick Up Sunday Victories

Knighthawks Fall to Rush; Rock Clinch Playoff Spot

Rock 'Rushed' at Home; Mammoth Win in BC

NLL Scores
06/05Edmonton 11, Toronto 10
05/30Edmonton 15, Toronto 9
05/23Calgary 12, Edmonton 9
Toronto 11, Rochester 8
05/16Rochester 10, Toronto 9
05/15Edmonton 10, Calgary 8
05/09Calgary 11, Colorado 6
05/08Rochester 14, Buffalo 11

NLL Computer Ratings
1   Edmonton Rush99.9016-6
2   Toronto Rock99.0215-7
3   Rochester Knighthawks98.7014-7
4   Buffalo Bandits97.9611-8
5   Calgary Roughnecks97.529-12
6   Colorado Mammoth96.589-10
7   Minnesota Swarm95.036-12
8   Vancouver Stealth94.835-13
9   New England Black Wolves94.054-14

NLL Standings
East Division
New England4100.2864140.222
West Division

NLL Schedule
DateMatch-up (Eastern Time)

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