Originally posted on Lacrosse The Web  |  Last updated 4/17/13
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. 
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Garoppolo remains 'long shot' to be traded

Report: Packers coaches upset with GM Ted Thompson

Rondo fined $25K for attempting to trip Crowder

Logan Morrison curses out umpire CB Bucknor mid at-bat

Raptors jab Bucks on Twitter after Game 4 victory

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: NBA GMs not hesitant to draft Lonzo Ball due to father LaVar

DeShone Kizer changes course, stands by Tom Brady-Cam Newton quote

Nick Saban doesn't offer much praise of team for 'adequate' spring game

Dennis Schroder admits Mike Budenholzer wants him to avoid trash talk

WATCH: Miguel Sano throws punch as benches clear in Twins-Tigers game

Glen Coffee making NFL comeback after four years in Army, seven years away from game

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Best of Yardbarker: David Fizdale and the Grizzlies won't go down quietly

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

25 times Mother Nature disrupted sports

In some ways, Dan Rooney was just another NFL owner

Box Score 4/20: When Westbrook isn't enough

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The '♫Happy Birthday Simpsons. Simpsons, it's your birthday♫' quiz

White House championship visits over the years

Biggest needs in the draft for every NFL team

The 'Baseball has been very, very good to its players' quiz

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.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

In some ways, Dan Rooney was just another NFL owner

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The '♫Happy Birthday Simpsons. Simpsons, it's your birthday♫' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: David Fizdale calls B.S.

Kris Bryant can become the next Derek Jeter — and more

The 'Baseball has been very, very good to its players' quiz

NHL youth movement: How the 2016-17 rookie class fared

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker