By Budd Bailey
The Buffalo Bandits suffered some big losses in the expansion draft earlier this year in Shawn Evans and Jordan Durston.
On Tuesday night, they had the chance to add some young talent to fill in the roster – even though it took a while to start taking some players. That’s the price that is paid after an outstanding season earlier in 2019.
Buffalo’s first-round pick came in the No. 12 spot, and it was used on defender/transition player Brent Noseworthy. He’ll certainly add size to the lineup, as he checks in at 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds. Noseworthy is the all-time scoring leader at the University of Michigan, where he became the first Wolverine to score 100 goals. Writer Stephen Stamp, the best in the business at this stuff, described Noseworthy as “big, strong, athletic, coachable, and improving at warp speed.” That sounds like a good use of a first-rounder.
After the pick was made, the Bandits released video on social media of Noseworthy scoring a goal for Michigan. What was noteworthy was that the field was covered with snow. If the National Lacrosse League ever tries outdoor games in Buffalo in January, Noseworthy will be experienced at those tough conditions.
By the way, Stamp had Kason Tarbell going to the Bandits in his mock draft. That made sense, because Tarbell had played for Buffalo co-coaches Rich Kilgour and John Tavares for Six Nations over the summer. Alas, Tarbell was picked by Georgia in the No. 11 spot.
Buffalo waited until No. 29 for its second-round choice, and used it on forward Nathaniel Kozevnikov. He has shown a scoring touch with Langley (British Columbia, Junior A) over the past five seasons, piling up 77 goals and 48 assists in 44 games. Kozevnikov had 21 goals in only seven games last season.
The Bandits took four other players in the NLL Draft. They were:
*Third round – Ryder Garnsey, forward, Notre Dame.
*Fourth round – Taylor Kauffeldt, defenseman, Barrie.
*Fourth round – Tyler Halls, transition, Orangeville.
*Sixth round – Joel Watson, goalie, Whitby.
The two new expansion teams opened the draft. The New York Riptide took forward Tyson Gibson of Robert Morris, followed by the Rochester Knighthawks’ selection of transition player Ryland Rees of Stony Brook.
Buffalo’s season begins on Dec. 7 at home against the San Diego Seals.
(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)
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