MLL Stock Report is a week by week look at several of the stand out units, players, and moments in Major League Lacrosse, as well as a few things that stood out in the negative. Grades are given like stocks are traded, with ratings on a scale of +/- 10.
I’m putting the spotlight on the things that stood out throughout the weekend’s match ups as well as giving you some bets for the upcoming weekend. It’s all just for fun. I like betting, but I’m just not a big gambler. There’s a difference!
But first, let’s take a quick look back at Week 14:
Top 10 Plays
Offensive Player of the Week: Paul Rabil
Defensive Player of the Week: Tyler Fiorito
MLL Stock Report – Week 15
+9.9 Jack Kelly: This rookie has done everything asked of him since day 1. He has been amazing at a position that normally requires time to learn and adjust to the pro game. 6-1 as a starter and 2nd in Goals against average. The engraver for Rookie of the Year is already programed.
+9.4 Yozzo!: Tasked with guarding a top offensive threat on Ohio all game long as a SSDM, John Yozzo-Scaperrotta dominated all game and was blatantly harassing the ball constantly. It was hard to find a play where he wasn’t on his man’s hands and forcing bad angles. His team needed a win and he battled for it. Stock Report winner right here.
+9.0 Every Game Matters: We are going into the last week of the season and every games outcome will have an effect on the playoffs. It’s insane. Most teams need to win just to get in but some need a win and the right other teams to lose. In 16 years of MLL we’ve never had this before.
+8.5 Joe Nardella: Left off the All Star game roster Nardella has been huge all season for the Cannons, yet no faceoff he has taken in his career was bigger than the OT face-off vs the Lizards and he won it and helped to hand his team that win.
+7.7 Mike Bocklett: He gets no press at all and was unprotected in the supplemental draft after leading the Outlaws in points last season. He has come back and scored another 44 points this season finishing 2nd on the team in goals and 2nd in assists. Somebody had to show the guy some love!
+6.9 Atlanta’s Canadian line: Randy Staats, Mark Mathews and Stephen Keogh were pretty phenomenal together against Ohio. They combined for 12 points as the ball traveled from one stick to the next like a guided missile.
+5.0 John Ranagan: Almost an afterthought with the Rattlers this season after playing in the NLL, Ranagan might be having one of the best seasons of his career. He had a career high 5 assists in the win over Florida. With 4 coming during Rochester’s 9-1 run to end the game.
+4.5 BJ Grill: The smallest defender in the league showed why he was added to Denver’s roster by shutting down Joey Sankey one-on-one all game long. He covered him better than the news covered the DNC!
-6.2 Ohio’s offense: Steele Stanwick, John Grant Jr, Peter Baum, Kyle Harrison, Tom Schreiber and Mark Cockerton combined for 5 points. That’s less than a point a player. This team is so much better than that. Atlanta’s goalies got hot because they didn’t face many quality shots. It was a sad display in a game that could have locked them up a playoff spot with a win.
-8.0 Thursday night’s Rattlers: They have been destroyed by injuries but this game also had a number of players unavailable and it almost became unwatchable. The offense consisted of Ned Crotty doing everything he could to keep them in it while everyone else waited for Crotty. It was bad. They bounced back on Saturday but a win against Denver would have had them in the playoffs not just hoping at this point.
-9.9 Conduct Unbecoming of a Gentlemen: I know all these games matter, which ups the stakes, and guys get a little bit wilder out there on the field. But some of the cheap shots that have been taken in the last few weeks are atrocious. I love to watch players play with passion, but let’s find that fine line and not cross it so often, please. I’d love to see you guys all making a full-time living at this, but I don’t think that will happen if the league only makes SportsCenter for nasty takedowns.
Final Week Stock Report Locks:
Rochester hosts Atlanta in a big game. Rochester has everything to play for and Atlanta is looking to play spoiler. The only issue is the game is on a Thursday night and we all saw what Rochester did last Thursday. If Jesse King, Dhane Smith and John LoCascio are all unavailable again watch out. Rochester by .5
Florida heads up to Boston for Casey Powell’s last game. Boston is coming off a great OT win against New York and needs this win badly while Florida looked great for 2 1/1 quarters last week against a Rochester team that was far from complete. I don’t see Florida selling out to win this game so I expect Boston to roll. Cannons +4.5
Ohio heads to New York in the most anticipated rematch of the season. Last go around New York looked terrible and got whipped. This time they are at home and need a win. Both teams lost this past week and both need to win to get into the playoffs. This is the clear cut game of the week and what many figured would be a championship preview. This one’s a Toss-Up
Chesapeake heads to Charlotte in the battle of inconsistency. Charlotte needed to win one against Denver to lock up a playoff spot but couldn’t, now they need to win and get some help. Chesapeake is mostly a win and they are in situation but they looked very pedestrian aside from Miles Jones 2-2’s this week. This one comes down to who wants to fight harder. Charlotte +.5
In 7 years covering MLL and 16 years following the league, I don’t remember a week where I looked at 4 games and thought that 3 of them have no clear cut favorite. I said it many times in the Stock Report season: nobody wants to be great. It’s down to the wire as the playoffs have really already started. Win or go home!