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In my Philadelphia GM years, I became friends with a few sets of parents who were connected to the team and able to travel to all home games. The parents of Kevin Galbraith and Bryan Barrett were proud of their U of Delaware grads and the families made every home Nike Vapormax Blue Black game, and Doug Barrett made more than just a few on the road. The effort from the Baltimore and Long Island travelers was outstanding! There were local Philadelphia supporters like Jeff's Spano's family and also Jake Bergey's family which included legendary NFL player and father Bill Bergey.

I stood around waiting patiently outside the ACC after the Jan. 25 Swarm vs. Rock game to see some of the old players with ex Swarm head coach Mike Lines. While waiting I was approached by Swarm captain Andrew Suitor's father Greg, who I know from my last year with the Swarm. The Suitor clan were in full representation.

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Wayne and Yolanda Cousins are the kind of parents any lacrosse hopeful would want to have. They have the right balance of discipline, freedom and encouragement from years of them both being in the teaching profession. My closer look at home life for Ryan revealed the source of his ability to captain the Swarm and also manage a seven year position as the Swarm PLPA rep without much strife between us. I was very happy to see Ryan win a championship last year after a 11 years of NLL action.

just drafted. Many young NLL players still live at home, so dialogue with the parents became a regular occurence.

true for other former parents and players to some degree.

Mr. Watt commented on some of my writing and we reminisced about the 2011 season when an RV full of the Watt family came to Minnesota in April and camped a week in the underground bat cave parking of the Excel Energy Arena. They were in St. Paul for the week to catch back to back Swarm home game weekends. A story that speaks volumes about family and their part in every NLL player's experience and every lacrosse players experience.

For those families I've personally experienced and all the families from other teams and countless NCAA tailgates I've witnessed but never known, I salute you. The experience is more than just a game for your sons and it will be all the richer for him in the rear view mirror because you were there.

None was more impressive than our first year captain, who led the Swarm charge for years to come, in the now retiredRyan Cousins. After an initial meeting with the Cousins family in Toronto during Swarm Year 1, I headed east for a summer scouting run. What started out as an offer to have dinner and stay the night turned into a yearly ritual with me taking up residence in Ontario at the Cousins household for a few days each visit.

This theme continued into my Swarm years, with many Swarm originals coming from the hearty Ontario GTA region, making them warriors of travel. The families of Brock Boyle, Scott Campbell, Eric Pacey, Chad Culp and Sean Pollock were regular visitors to Minnesota during that first season. The support was a big part of the family we built ourselves within the team in Minnesota and it was apparent from the onset that these guys were shown the way by their supportive families.

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I've been invited to weddings and take great pride in the fact that so many Swarm originals count me as much more than their old boss. From the expansion year Swarm team I have continued contact with Cousins, Chad Culp, Riley Kemp, Sean Pollock, Eric Pacey, Spencer and Andrew Martin, Mike Kilby, Jamie Taylor, Nick Inch, Brock Boyle, Jon Sullivan and others who I now count as friends, not lacrosse players. I have watched them grow from green to experienced, young men to husbands and fathers. Nothing special I suppose, but nonetheless a big part of my experience and connection to the sport itself.

I remain friends with Wayne and Yolanda and Ryan, as lacrosse was just a vehicle for us to gain insight into the others' lives and become more than just acquaintances. This situation holds Nike Vapormax Plum Fog/Elemental Rose/Particle Rose/Plum Fog

I draw many similarities with Ryan Cousin's parents and extended family to Suitor's family. It was no mistake when the Swarm passed the torch from Cuz to Suits, a couple of guys who were groomed to lead.

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´╗┐Bring the family

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Another run in with Andrew Watt's father Al got me thinking about this story. Al Watt was elaborating on the busload of friends that had trucked in from Barrie, Ontario, to watch Swarm defenseman Dan Ball. The Swarm theme of supportive Ontario parents was still thriving. Discussions were rampant between the fathers' Suitor, McIntosh, Ball and Benesch about what Minnesota home games they were attending or who were actually headed to Minnesota the next night for the Swarm home opener vs. Washington.

a recent trip out East to watch a few games and see some old friends, I realized something I had temporarily forgotten about the National Lacrosse League and most junior lacrosse and senior lacrosse in Canada. A lacrosse game is a game, but it is also a family event. There is usually no shortage of family involved around an a NLL game. During summer ball and minor lacrosse, it's a given that family will be in attendance when playing close to home or in your community backyard. The NLL, however, is a travel league. Working as an NLL GM and being connected with more than just teammates as I was as a player, I eventually got to know the parents who attended games and after parties of the teams I managed.

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Eventually my scouting process got to a point that I needed to know about player's parents and family background as many of my most reliable players over a decade came from a granite background of family support.

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Heck, I even had to call parents houses more times than not to reach a new player or someone Nike Air Vapormax New

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