National Lacrosse League Press Release
The National Lacrosse League (NLL), North America’s professional indoor lacrosse league and the top professional league in the sport of lacrosse, has announced that pro lacrosse will come to Idaho for the first time on Friday, November 14th. The Edmonton Rush, one of the league’s thirteen teams, will hold a weekend of training camp in Boise from November 13-16. The weekend’s main event will be an inter-squad scrimmage between Edmonton Rush Team White and Edmonton Rush Team Black. The game will take place at Qwest Arena on Friday, November 14 at 7:10pm. Admission to the game is free of charge, and doors open at 6pm.
The contest will mark the first time that professional lacrosse has been played in Idaho. Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing sports in the state. Since its creation in 1998, the Treasure Valley Lacrosse League has seen its player participation amongst high school boys explode from 5 teams with nearly 125 players to 13 teams and over 700 players. Enrollment of youth players through the Idaho Chapter of U.S. Lacrosse has quadrupled during that same period of time. Lacrosse teams at Boise State and the University of Idaho compete in the Pacific Northwest Collegiate Lacrosse League.
“In addition to being the most livable city in the country, Boise has always been a great sports town,” Boise Mayor David Bieter said. “We welcome the National Lacrosse League and hope its representatives have the opportunity to appreciate all the wonderful amenities Boise has to offer.”
Professional indoor lacrosse is played inside the confines of a hockey rink, with rink boards and glass intact. A green turf carpet is placed over the ice. The game combines the play-making style and scoring of basketball with the hard-hitting physical play of hockey. A 30-second shot clock keeps the action moving. A total of 25 goals are scored in the average NLL game.
“We are excited to bring the National Lacrosse League to Boise and Qwest Arena” said NLL Commissioner Jim Jennings. “We see Boise as a potential market for expansion. It’s a great sports town and would fit in very well with our Western teams in the US and Canada.”
The league’s current Western Division consists of teams in Denver, Portland, San Jose, St. Paul (MN), Calgary and Edmonton. The league’s Eastern Division has teams in New York, Chicago, Boston, Toronto, Philadelphia, Buffalo and Rochester.
“We’re excited to host the Edmonton Rush and showcase this very popular sport in downtown Boise,” said John Cunningham, President of Qwest Arena. “Thanks to great partners like Project Filter and 100.3 The X, as well as the support of the Treasure Valley lacrosse community, we’ll be able to open our doors for this incredibly entertaining sporting event free of charge.”
The Edmonton Rush will conduct a weekend of training camp in Boise as they prepare for the 2009 season, which starts in January. The Rush play their home games at Rexall Place, sharing the arena with the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers. National Lacrosse League teams play a 16-game regular season from January through April, with all games on the weekends (akin to the National Football League schedule). Each team plays eight home games. Several NLL teams play in National Hockey League arenas, including Madison Square Garden, Pepsi Center (Denver) and Xcel Energy Center (St. Paul). The NLL offers the top professional level of lacrosse played by the world’s greatest lacrosse players, all at an affordable cost.
For more information on the National Lacrosse League, please visit the league’s official website at www.NLL.com. For more information on the Edmonton Rush Lacrosse Club, please visit www.edmontonrush.com.