The Boston Blazers professional indoor lacrosse team announced the signing of Dan Dawson, a multitalented, dynamic offensive player who consistently ranks among the top scorers in the National Lacrosse League.
Dawson, measuring a full six feet, five inches, and weighing in at 225 pounds, comes to Boston with seven years of experience in the league, and having earned a selection to the All-Pro First Team in two of those years. Last season, he played forward for the Portland LumberJax, scoring 38 goals and 43 assists en route to a Western Division title.
When asked about the Dawson signing, assistant coach Randy Fraser seemed very excited about Dawson and the upcoming season for the Blazers. “Having Dan is like having an extra coach on the floor,” Fraser said. He added that Dawson helps to improve the younger players around him, including forwards Matt Lyons and Brenden Thenhaus, who work the right side of the offense with Dawson. Dawson also constantly improves his own game by learning from other players, said Fraser, and that he is truly a student of the game.
One of the challenges to starting an expansion team, according to Coach Fraser, is that there is no core group to build a team around. The Blazers coaches hope Dawson can provide a starting point from which a successful team can be built by adding players who work well together and have great team chemistry. For example, the Blazers drafted leftie forward Daryl Veltman in the first round, looking for an offensive threat to start opposite the right-handed Dawson. Players like Mitch Belisle, a former New York Titan from Cornell, and Paul Dawson, Dan’s younger brother, bolster the defense for Boston, and the two goalies Mike Poulin and Mike Muron are both looking strong in training camp.
After three weeks of training camp, Coach Fraser says preparations for the season opener against the New York Titans are going well. Practices are intense and competitive, with over 25 players vying for 18 spots on the dress list against the Titans. Fraser praises his team’s performance in practice, noting the high level of play and team chemistry the Blazers display.
On days off, Dawson and several other representatives from the Blazers have been promoting leadership and the game of lacrosse in several Boston area middle schools. Coach Fraser welcomes fans of the Blazers to keep an eye out for community appearances and to stop by and say hello. More information can be found online at the Blazers’ website, http://www.blazerslacrosse.com, including a schedule of community appearances under the Fan Zone link, and online ticket purchasing for the 2008 season.