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Major League Lacrosse
Major League Lacrosse logo.svg
MLL logo
Sport Field lacrosse
Founded 1999
Inaugural season 2001
No. of teams 6
Country(ies) United States United States
Canada Canada
Most recent champion(s) Toronto Nationals
Most championships Philadelphia Barrage (3)
Official website MajorLeagueLacrosse.com

Major League Lacrosse is a professional men's field lacrosse league that is made up of five teams in the United States and one team in Canada.

Contents

History

The MLL was founded by Jake Steinfeld, Dave Morrow and Tim Robertson in 1999, and began regular season play in June 2001. Steinfeld is well-known for creating the Body By Jake line of exercise equipment and videos. Morrow is a former All-American lacrosse player and the president of Warrior Lacrosse.

The league was originally divided into the American Division — Boston, Bridgeport (moved to Philadelphia in 2004) and Long Island — and the National Division — Baltimore (moved to Washington after the 2006 season and to Annapolis after the 2008 season), New Jersey, and Rochester — from 2001 until 2005. The MLL played a 14-game regular season its first two years; in 2003, the schedule was cut to 12 games. The league's playoff format has the top teams in each division advancing to the New Balance MLL Championship Weekend, with two wild card playoff spots going to the teams with the best remaining records regardless of division.

MLL announced on March 9, 2005, that the league would expand to Los Angeles for the 2006 season, and that the team would play its home games at The Home Depot Center. AEG, Inc. was confirmed as the franchise's owner/operator. On July 2, 2005, MLL officials revealed that Denver, Colorado would also be home to an expansion franchise, with a team playing at Invesco Field at Mile High. The league subsequently added teams in the Chicago, Illinois and San Francisco, California markets, creating a western conference for these teams. MLL Western Conference play began with the 2006 season.

In an effort to test markets as potential expansion/relocation candidates, the Philadelphia Barrage franchise played all of its 2008 "home" matches in other cities; Cary, North Carolina, Hillsboro, Oregon, Irving, Texas, St. Louis and Virginia Beach.[1][2][3] In addition the Barrage's "home game" against Boston was played in Boston.

At the end of the 2008 season four teams (Los Angeles, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and San Fancisco) folded due to financial problems thus forcing the MLL to form one conference. At the start of the 2009 season, the Toronto Nationals were added to the MLL after they bought the rights to the Rochester Rattlers. The Toronto team thus gained the staff of the Rochester team as well as the players, but the Rochester name and the team colors were left in Rochester for the possibilty of a future team.

Format and rules

The season runs from May to August. MLL rules that differ from traditional lacrosse rules include a two-point goal line 16 yards (15 m) from each goal, a 60-second shot clock, and the elimination of the restraining box. From the inception of the league in 2001 to 2008 there was a limit of three long-stick defensemen per team. Beginning in 2009, the league conformed to high school and college lacrosse rules and allow four long–stickman per team on the field at any one time.[4] The shot clock was originally 45 seconds before it was changed to 60 seconds for 2005.

Major League Lacrosse Progression
Year Teams Games Played
2001 6 teams 14 games
2002
2003 12 games
2004
2005
2006 10 teams
2007
2008
2009 6 teams
2010

Television coverage

Fox Sports Net televised games in 2001 and 2002. ESPN2 has televised games since the 2003 season. On March 14, 2007 the two agreed to a television contract that will run until the 2016 season.[5]

Teams

MLL Championship Games

Year Champion Score Runner-up Venue Location Game MVP
2001 Long Island Lizards 15-11 Baltimore Bayhawks Kennedy Stadium Bridgeport, CT Paul Gait (Long Island)
2002 Baltimore Bayhawks 21-13 Long Island Lizards Columbus Crew Stadium Columbus, OH Mark Millon (Baltimore)
2003 Long Island Lizards 15-14 (OT) Baltimore Bayhawks Villanova Stadium Villanova, PA Kevin Lowe (Long Island)
2004 Philadelphia Barrage 13-11 Boston Cannons Nickerson Field Boston, MA Greg Cattrano (Philadelphia)
2005 Baltimore Bayhawks 15-9 Long Island Lizards Nickerson Field Boston, MA Gary Gait (Baltimore)
2006 Philadelphia Barrage 23-12 Denver Outlaws The Home Depot Center Carson, CA Roy Colsey (Philadelphia)
2007 Philadelphia Barrage 16-13 Los Angeles Riptide PAETEC Park Rochester, NY Matt Striebel (Philadelphia)
2008 Rochester Rattlers 16-6 Denver Outlaws Harvard Stadium Boston, MA Joe Walters (Rochester)
2009 Toronto Nationals 10-9 Denver Outlaws Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Annapolis, MD Merrick Thomson (Toronto)
2010 Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Annapolis, MD
2011 Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Annapolis, MD

League Officials

Name Years Title
Gabby Roe 1999-2002 Executive Director
Matthew Pace 2002-03 Executive Director
David Gross 2003-04 Chief Operating Officer
2004-present Commissioner

Main League Offices

References

  1. ^ May, Shaun (2006), Slash Magazine, pp. 5
  2. ^ "MLL Expansion". Major League Lacrosse. http://majorleaguelacrosse.com/teams/mllexpansion/. Retrieved 2007-10-11. 
  3. ^ "Overview". Major League Lacrosse. http://majorleaguelacrosse.com/aboutmll/overview/. Retrieved 2006-12-02. 
  4. ^ "League announces expansion of rosters to 19 and addition of fourth long pole for 2009". Inside Lacrosse. October 22, 2008. http://www.insidelacrosse.com/page.cfm?pagerid=2&news=fdetail&storyid=192176. Retrieved 2008-10-24. 
  5. ^ majorleaguelacrosse.com: Press Releases

See also

External links

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