2006 NLL season
LeagueNational Lacrosse League
SportIndoor lacrosse
DurationDecember 30, 2005 – May 13, 2006
Number of games16
Number of teams11
Regular season
Season MVPSteve Dietrich (Buffalo Bandits)
Top scorerJosh Sanderson (Toronto Rock)
Eastern championsBuffalo Bandits
  Eastern runners-upRochester Knighthawks
Western championsPortland LumberJax
  Western runners-upColorado Mammoth
Champion's Cup
ChampionsColorado Mammoth
  Runners-upBuffalo Bandits
Finals MVPGavin Prout (Colorado)
NLL seasons

The 2006 National Lacrosse League season was the 20th season in the history of the league, which began as the Eagle Pro Box Lacrosse League in 1987. The season began on December 30, 2005 and concluded with the championship game on May 13, 2006.

The defending champion Toronto Rock were once again the favourite to win the Champions' Cup,[1] but a slow start plus a dismal performance in the semifinal game against Rochester removed the Rock from contention. The Colorado Mammoth, under first-year head coach Gary Gait, won their first title since winning the first ever title in 1987, as the Baltimore Thunder.

Highly touted Portland rookie Brodie Merrill lived up to his hype, winning both the Defensive Player of the Year and the Rookie of the Year awards. Portland continued its domination of the post-season awards with Derek Keenan, himself a former Rookie of the Year Award winner (1992 with Buffalo), winning both the Les Bartley Award for coach of the year and the GM of the Year Award, and owner Angela Batinovich winning the Executive of the Year Award.

Team movement

The season featured the debut of two expansion teams; the Edmonton Rush and the Portland LumberJax, both in the Western Division. Portland beat the expansion team odds and won its division, finishing with an 11–5 record, while Edmonton did not fare so well. The Rush finished the season 1–15, their only win coming at the hands of their provincial rivals, the Calgary Roughnecks.

Before the 2006 season, the Anaheim Storm folded not being able to attract enough fans in their two years in Southern California moving from their original home of New Jersey after the 2003 season where, for two seasons, they were not able to attract enough fans.


Final standings

Regular season

Reference: [4]

East Division

1Buffalo Banditsxyz16115.6880.06–25–3193167+2612.0610.44
2Rochester Knighthawksx1697.5622.06–23–5196180+1612.2511.25
3Toronto Rockx1688.5003.05–33–5182179+311.3811.19
4Minnesota Swarmx1688.5003.03–55–3158171-139.8810.69
5Philadelphia Wings1688.5003.05–33–5184184011.5011.50
West Division

1Portland LumberJaxxy16115.6880.05–36–2188177+1111.7511.06
2Colorado Mammothx16106.6251.06–24–4200172+2812.5010.75
3Calgary Roughnecksx1697.5622.04–45–3183178+511.4411.12
4Arizona Stingx1688.5003.04–44–4198199-112.3812.44
5San Jose Stealth16511.3126.03–52–6151174-239.4410.88
6Edmonton Rush16115.06210.00–81–7150202-529.3812.62

x: Clinched playoff berth; c: Clinched playoff berth by crossing over to another division; y: Clinched division; z: Clinched best regular season record; GP: Games Played
W: Wins; L: Losses; GBGames back; PCT: Win percentage; Home: Record at Home; Road: Record on the Road; GF: Goals scored; GA: Goals allowed
Differential: Difference between goals scored and allowed; GF/GP: Average number of goals scored per game; GA/GP: Average number of goals allowed per game
Toronto won the 3-way tiebreaker with Minnesota and Philadelphia


Divisional Semifinal Divisional Final Champion's Cup Final
1 Buffalo 11
4 Minnesota 10
1 Buffalo 15
Eastern Division
2 Rochester 10
3 Toronto 8
2 Rochester 16
W2 Colorado 16
E1 Buffalo 9
1 Portland 10
4 Arizona 14
2 Colorado 13
Western Division
4 Arizona 12
2 Colorado 18
3 Calgary 17

All-Star game

The 2006 All-Star Game was held at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario on February 25, 2006. The West Division defeated the East Division 14–13. The MVP of the game was Lewis Ratcliff of the Calgary Roughnecks, who scored 4 goals, including the game winner. This marked the second straight year that a Roughneck player was All-Star Game MVP, with Tracy Kelusky having won it in 2005.

All-Star teams

Eastern Division starters   Western Division starters
John Grant, Jr., Rochester Gavin Prout, Colorado
Colin Doyle, Toronto Tracey Kelusky, Calgary
John Tavares, Buffalo Craig Conn, Arizona
Steve Toll, Rochester Jay Jalbert, Colorado
Thomas Hajek, Philadelphia Brodie Merrill, Portland
Pat O'Toole, Rochester (goalie) Anthony Cosmo, San Jose (goalie)
Eastern Division Reserves Western Division Reserves
Marshall Abrams, Rochester Dan Carey, Colorado
Jake Bergey, Philadelphia Bruce Codd, Arizona
Ryan Cousins, Minnesota Jonas Derks, Arizona
Glenn Clark, Philadelphia Dallas Eliuk, Portland (goalie)
Steve Dietrich, Buffalo (goalie) Peter Lough, Arizona
Blaine Manning, Toronto Derek Malawsky, San Jose
Dan Marohl, Philadelphia Lewis Ratcliff, Calgary
Josh Sanderson, Toronto Scott Self, Arizona
Phil Sanderson, Toronto Ryan Sharp, Portland
Mark Steenhuis, Buffalo Kaleb Toth, Calgary
Shawn Williams, Rochester Andrew Turner, Edmonton
Jim Veltman, Toronto Taylor Wray, Calgary



Award Winner Team
Jet Blue MVP Award Steve Dietrich[5] Buffalo
Edge Active Care Rookie of the Year Award Brodie Merrill[6] Portland
Les Bartley Award (Coach of the Year) Derek Keenan[7] Portland
GM of the Year Award Derek Keenan[8] Portland
Executive of the Year Award Angela Batinovich[9] Portland
Defensive Player of the Year Brodie Merrill[10] Portland
RBK Goaltender of the Year Award Steve Dietrich[11] Buffalo
Bowflex Sportsmanship Award Sean Greenhalgh[12] Philadelphia
Championship Game MVP Gavin Prout[13] Colorado

All-Pro Teams

First Team

Second Team

All-Rookie Team

Weekly awards

The NLL gives out awards weekly for the best overall player, best offensive player, best defensive player, and best rookie.

Week Overall Offensive Defensive Rookie
1 Sean Greenhalgh Sean Greenhalgh Matt Roik Sean Greenhalgh
2 Jonas Derks Jonas Derks Chris Levis Jeff Zywicki
3 Mark Steenhuis Mark Steenhuis Steve Dietrich Shawn Evans
4 Nick Patterson Jake Bergey Dallas Eliuk Brodie Merrill
5 John Grant, Jr. John Grant, Jr. Pat O'Toole Brodie Merrill
6 Craig Conn Craig Conn Nick Patterson Dan Carey
7 Chad Culp Chad Culp Nick Patterson Sean Greenhalgh
8 John Tavares Brodie Merrill Pat Campbell Brodie Merrill
9 Aaron Wilson Aaron Wilson Bob Watson Sean Greenhalgh
10 Matt Disher John Grant, Jr. Matt Disher Shawn Evans
11 Sean Greenhalgh John Grant, Jr. Matt King Jeff Zywicki
12 Jay Jalbert Ryan Ward Jeff Zywicki Jay Jalbert
13 Mark Steenhuis Mark Steenhuis Matt King Roger Vyse
Brodie Merrill (tie)
14 Brodie Merrill Jay Jalbert Steve Dietrich Brodie Merrill
15 Colin Doyle Colin Doyle Dallas Eliuk Sean Greenhalgh
16 Dan Dawson Dan Dawson Steve Dietrich Sean Greenhalgh

Monthly awards

Awards are also given out monthly for the best overall player and best rookie.

Month Overall Rookie
Jan John Grant, Jr. Sean Greenhalgh
Feb Nick Patterson Brodie Merrill
Mar Gavin Prout Brodie Merrill

Statistics leaders

Bold numbers indicate new single-season records. Italics indicate tied single-season records.

Stat Player Team Number
Goals John Grant, Jr. Rochester 54
Assists Josh Sanderson Toronto 69
Points Josh Sanderson Toronto 98
Penalty Minutes Rob VanBeek Philadelphia 72
Shots on Goal John Grant, Jr. Rochester 277
Loose Balls Jim Veltman Toronto 226
Save Pct Steve Dietrich Buffalo 80.8
GAA Steve Dietrich Buffalo 9.97

See also


  1. ^ "Toronto opens 2006 as Experts' top pick". Outsider's Guide to the NLL. January 4, 2006. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  2. ^ Philly, R.A. (February 22, 2006). "Record-tying Tavares named Player of Week". Outsider's Guide to the NLL. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved February 4, 2007.
  3. ^ Philly, R.A. (March 4, 2006). "NLL Week Ten Roundup". Outsider's Guide to the NLL. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved February 4, 2007.
  4. ^ "National Lacrosse League - 2006 Regular Season - Standings". NLL.com. Retrieved May 3, 2012.
  5. ^ "Dietrich Wins 2006 Jet Blue MVP Award". NLL website. May 11, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  6. ^ "Merrill Wins Edge Active Care Rookie of the Year". NLL website. May 9, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  7. ^ "Derek Keenan Wins Les Bartley Award". NLL website. May 4, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  8. ^ "Derek Keenan Wins Vonage GM of the Year". NLL website. May 5, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  9. ^ "Batinovich Named Executive of the Year". NLL website. May 8, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  10. ^ "Merrill Wins Belmont.com Defensive Player of the Year". NLL website. May 2, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  11. ^ "Steve Dietrich Named RBK Goaltender of the Year". NLL website. May 3, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  12. ^ "Greenhalgh Wins Bowflex Sportsmanship Award". NLL website. May 1, 2006. Retrieved November 7, 2006.
  13. ^ Knight, Ben (May 13, 2006). "Mammoth stampedes over baffled Bandits". Outsider's Guide to the NLL. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved November 7, 2006.