Originally written on Lacrosse The Web  |  Last updated 11/15/14
New year, new look for the only MLL team north of the border.  What's Changed: The coaching staff. Regy Thorpe and Gary Gait are gone. Re-enter Dave Huntley, the former coach of the Toronto Nationals, now back with the organization as this year's new headman. He's worked with plenty of Canadian teams in his coaching time, including the Canadian national field team.  Biggest Area of Concern: It's the same old song and dance for the Nationals. They have a talented team, but every player is roughly the same. The offense is filled with a plethora of scorers from a box background, textbook for a Canadian team. This prevents them from having a varied offense. Instead, all the goals should come from somebody finishing inside, typically on a Joe Walters feed to Cody Jamieson, Garrett Billings, or Stephen Keogh. Their 2012 numbers were a testament to their predictability on offense. They have too many inside scorers instead of outside finishers. As a result, Hamilton only had five two-point goals on the season. Five! The next worse team, Boston, doubled that total with ten. The other problem this presents -- for another year -- is the delay of the players joining the team as they join following the NLL season ending. Hamilton has the advantage of getting a first-week bye, but still should have trouble with a limited roster against Boston and Long Island in the first two games. Biggest Strength: Defensive rookies. Hamilton needs top-notch play from its rookies as they shuffle in following the NCAA season. The Nationals drafted very well, picking up All-American defenseman Jason Noble, Virginia middie Chris LaPierre, who is a talented SSDM that can score in transition, and Loyola SSDM Josh Hawkins. All of those guys bring in exceptional talent to force turnovers and generate some offense in transition. As you can deduce from reading the "area of concern" section, that transition offense will be key to offering some variety to produce more scoring. Perhaps the biggest addition could be Johns Hopkins FOGO Mike Poppleton. He's winning an insanely high amount of faceoffs this year -- 67%. That could be a boost to Hamilton's already talented faceoff unit that ranked third in the MLL last season. Overall, this rookie class can help keep the ball away from the defense, but still has the talent to force turnovers and get the ball to the attack. Projected Record: 4-10. New year, same problems plague Hamilton. It'll be a slow start before the Nationals work a split with Rochester, beat Charlotte at least once, and pull off late season home upsets of Boston and Denver. 
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Wolves trade Corey Brewer to the Rockets

Yankees trade Prado to Marlins for Eovaldi in 5-player deal

Brandon Browner fined $8K for throwing Brandon Gibson to turf

Report: Sharper, NFLers called spiked drinks 'horny juice'

Rex Ryan: My wife could coach Tom Brady

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jim Harbaugh won in laser tag by 'hunting' 10-year-old kid

Eddie Lacy is ‘very blind,’ refuses to wear goggles

Michael Phelps pleads guilty to DUI, gets probation

NFL scouts not in love with Amari Cooper?

Report: No teams interested in trading for Lance Stephenson

It is not Chip Kelly's fault if Eagles miss playoffs

Video: Swaggy P elbows Steven Adams in throat, gets ejected

Video: Grizzlies buy car for assistant who had his stolen

Video: LeBron takes pass to the face from Dion Waiters

New video of Ray Rice incident emerges

President Obama calls James Franco “James Flacco”

NBA games of the weekend: Rondo's Dallas debut, Bulls-Grizz

Tuscaloosa students will have two days off if Bama plays in National Championship

Brady scares the **** out of his teammates celebrating

Longhorn Network’s yule log? Five hours of BEVO

Will a Chiefs WR finally catch a TD in Week 16?

Jon Lester and the Cubs

The Toronto Raptors reveal their new logo

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Jon Lester and the Cubs

Report: NFL players used 'horny juice'

Top 10 worst NBA related commercials of all-time

Phelps gets probation for DUI

NFL coaches on hot seat in Week 16

The Roy Williams-Terrell Owens horse collar turns 10

Most underpaid NFL players in 2014

Gronk jokes about Brady compliment

In Matt Kemp, did the Dodgers find a pigeon in Padres?

Why the Saints are legit playoff threat

Impact of U.S.-Cuba relations on MLB

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.