Calgary Roughnecks General Manager Mike Board took some time out of his busy schedule to provide some thoughts on the burning topics surrounding the team. Check out what he had to say about the season, his star forward Shawn Evans, Tyson Roe, and more!
1) Can you give us your thoughts on the season to date?
It’s been a tale of two seasons, really. We had a poor start and then were able to turn the ship in the right direction during the second half of the season. I credit the coaches and players for committing to continue to improve. They never stopped battling. They never stopped believing. That’s a big reason for us getting to where we are now.
2) Are you surprised at all how well Frankie Scigliano has jumped in and excelled?
I don’t think we are surprised. We drafted Frankie at a young age, he was just 18, but we felt he had a tremendous upside. He patiently waited for his turn. He soaked up everything for a few years and when he was given his chance he was ready. Since he got the opportunity he has continued to get better.
3) The defence in general has gotten better and better as the season has progressed. Why do you think that is?
I think, to a degree, it was about finding our identity as a team. Defence is a team effort and once everyone committed to do their part, we started reducing our goals against.
4) With the team heading to the West Final, what are you expecting from Edmonton during this series?
A battle. A war. They are a big, strong athletic team at both ends of the floor. They have finished first in the West for two seasons in a row for a reason — they don’t have many holes. We know we have to be at the top of our game anytime we play Edmonton.
5) Since making your ‘big’ mid-season move to get Sean Pollock, how important has he been to the team?
Sean is a character player. He is a veteran who knows what to do on and off the floor. He gets to the dirty areas and isn’t afraid to mix it up. He has given us grit up front. We’re happy to have been able to add him to the roster.
6) We all know how incredible Shawn Evans is, what can you say about him? MVP?
Shawn Evans hates to lose. He is a warrior. And, obviously, he is an offensive threat. He can score, he can be a set-up guy. He is a difference-maker. Certainly he deserves strong consideration as MVP this season.
7) Having had a year to watch, practice, and learn from the veteran guys, can you talk about the development of Tyson Roe?
Tyson has come a long way. It’s a big jump to the NLL and we have a veteran team so this has been a good learning experience for Tyson. He will play some summer ball again this summer and we think he will continue to develop. He is big and athletic and that’s a combination that we like.
8) Obviously the season isn’t over yet, but with two picks in the first round of the draft, can you give us a quick look towards the draft?
Well, we know it is a deep draft and we feel that we will be able to draft some quality players in the first round with those picks. Our hope is that those players will be able to step in and play right away.