MLL Championship Preview: Dallas vs Denver

Photo Courtesy of Major League Lacrosse

After last weekends semifinals the MLL championship game is set for Saturday night as the Dallas Rattlers and Denver Outlaws will face off in Charleston, South Carolina. This one should be an instant classic as these two squads might be two of the best teams we have seen in the leagues eighteen year history. Not to mention all the different story lines that surround this game coming into Saturday.

The 2018 MLL Championship game will be the second ever MLL game in South Carolina. It should be a very exciting atmosphere as these are obviously two of the best and most well rounded teams in the league. They both thrive in transition and play very well at both ends of the field.

The Dallas Rattlers come into this game as the overall number one seed and they have dominated for pretty much the entire season. Last weekend they ran right past the New York Lizards with their terrific offense to secure the win.

The Rattlers have been stellar all year long on both ends of the field and may be one of the most complete teams we have seen in league. They can hurt bury you with their offense and disrupt you with their defense. Dallas really plays well at both ends and has all year long. 

Offensivley the Rattlers may have the best attack line in in lacrosse as Ty Thompson, Jordan Wolf, and Ryan McNamara all pose huge threats to any defense. Those guys move the ball and create shots so well it's ridiculous. Then add in more guys like rookie Ben Reeves, Randy Staats, John Rannagan, Cody Radziewicz and more. That is one scary offense at both the attack and midfield positions and they will for sure be playing their best on Saturday. 

Looking at the rattlers defense and they have one of the best goalies ever in cage with John Galloway. This may be Galloway's last ride so if that is true he will want to ride into the sunset like Peyton Manning did in the NFL with a championship. Their short defense is full of studs like Joel White that can go up against the best of the best any given day. then they also have Matt Dunn and John Sexton that are just as good and ca trigger that transition offense as well.

At the faceoff dot Dallas has one of the top guys in the league with Drew Simoneau. He dominated last week and was one of the key guys in the Rattlers semifinal win. He may be underrated by some but he will get a ton of respect from the Outlaws.

The Denver Outlaws are coming into their third straight MLL Championship game. The Outlaws always seem to be able to put all the pieces together no matter what their roster looks like. They are a model franchise for many other teams in the league. Their success and way they operate things is unmatched.

The Outlaws outlasted the Chesapeake Bayhawks last week in their semifinal win. It was very close and they were able to pull through in the end. That really is a test to how well rounded of a team they are. Their offense and defense can really play and cause problems for any team.

The Outlaws are really lead on offense by Eric Law who is their quarterback. Matt Kavanagh, Kylor Bellistri, Drew Snider, and Romar Dennis are just some of the other names that you have to worry about when facing the Outlaws. Denver is missing Rookie of the year front runner Chris Cloutier as he went down with an injury three weeks ago but they haven;t seem too effected by it. Those guys that they will have on offense will need to play like they know how. Denver is a team that moves the ball very well and kills opposing defenses in transition. That will be the x-factor if they want to control this game.

On defense the Outlaws have one of the best goalies in Dillon Ward. Ward is the backup as Jack Kelly went down in the World Championships. Ward is the best backup that any team would want as he is talked about as one of the best, if not the best, in the world. In terms of close defense Denver has a very good rope unit in the league with Matt Bocklet leading that unit. The Denver defense is dangerous as they really initiate the transition. They will defiantly need to play their best as they will have their hands full.

Denver has one of the best faceoff guys in the league in Max Adler. Adler has been dominate all year long and I really don't feel that we will see any different this week. Adler was stellar last week and he should be another x-factor for Denver in this championship game as well. 

Tanner's Pick

  This game is an obvious toss up, but if I had to pick a winner I would say Dallas. The Rattlers have had a ton of energy all year since their move from Rochester to Dallas along with how they have been playing. It would be very cool to see a MLL Championship come to Texas as well. 


  1. outlaws don't have joel white. rattlers

  2. Doesn’t say they do. Must have misread Dallas for Denver


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