CALGARY, AB — Christmas was busy for both the Calgary Roughnecks and the Buffalo Bandits.
On Dec. 28, the Roughnecks acquired sophomore transition player Brandon Goodwin in exchange for Mitch de Snoo, a rookie and second round pick of the Roughnecks.
Goodwin played 10 games for the Bandits in 2015, registering three goals and four assists during his time on the floor. He also scooped 17 loose balls.
A BC kid, Goodwin was happy to be closer to home.
“It’s pretty exciting,” Goodwin said. “It’s closer to home for me, being from Vancouver. A couple of guys that I grew up with on this team, which is exciting to get back to playing with them, guys like Tyler [Digby] and Frankie Scigliano. So for me, it feels a little more like home and it’s a closer team than I was used to in Buffalo.”
Although he didn’t want to leave the friends he had made in Buffalo, Goodwin was delighted to join the Roughnecks.
“It was hard to live away from home for so long. It was a big knowing that I was coming to Calgary,” he said. “There was a few guys that I knew and it was exciting to hear that I was coming here.”
The Roughnecks will have the exciting opportunity to participate in three home openers in 2016.
They opened the season at the Rough House for their own home opener on Jan. 2. They will head to Buffalo this weekend to face the Bandits in their home opener. They will also battle the New England Black Wolves in their home opener on Jan 15.
Historically, the Roughnecks have done well when playing the villain in opponents opening home games.
Since 2005, Calgary has played in 10 such games. They hold a 6-4 record, winning most of the contests from 2008 to 2012. The last opposing home opener that the Riggers have been apart of was in 2014 when they lost 16-11 to the Toronto Rock.
LOSING A LEGEND
After an illustrious 24-year career in the NLL, lacrosse legend John Tavares retired. The NLL’s all-time scoring leader spent his entire career with the Buffalo Bandits, where he won a Champion’s Cup.
Though he will not be on the floor, Tavares will remain on the bench for the Bandits. As an assistant coach, Tavares will pass on his knowledge to the already talented forward group in Buffalo.
For Goodwin, it was an honour to play alongside Tavares during his last NLL season.
“I was lucky to be able to play with JT for that last year,” said Goodwin. “It’s cool to play with one of the best players to ever play the game. I have nothing but respect for that whole organization and that whole team, especially JT.”