10 Man Ride: Film Study on Lyle, Hossack, Byrnes & More

By Joe Keegan

PLL Analyst

Mar 25, 2021

CLEAR! The ride is on. The Entry Draft is tonight at 7:30PM ET on Twitter Spaces. Lisa Redmond and I will be joined by all eight head coaches. Join us as 24 pros hear their names called.

Now, it’s time for Part II of our prospects to watch series.

Part I covered Daniel Bucaro, Zach Goodrich, Mikie Schlosser, Warren Jeffrey, Sean Sconone, Bryce Wasserman, Max Adler, Matt Abbott, Randy Staats, and Ryan Lee.

In no particular order, here are 10 more players to watch:

1. Lyle Thompson, A, Chesapeake Bayhawks 

Only one coaching staff has bothered to watch much film of Lyle Thompson this offseason; the rest are only watching to learn how to slow him down.

Lyle is the consensus top pick to Cannons LC. He doesn’t dodge; he flows through a series of roll backs and hip flips en route to the middle of the field. He doesn’t simply soak checks; he brushes them aside. Don’t reach!

From 2015-18, Lyle buried 36.7% of his unassisted shots. Insanity. His creativity makes him unpredictable, and unpredictable dodgers are impossible to slide to. Can you squeeze a double off this pick? Maybe – but Lyle rejects it. Do you slide to him walking the dog? He’s not a threat from there… right? Psych! He increases his angle by moving the goalie.

2. Graeme Hossack, D, Team Canada / Halifax Thunderbirds (NLL)

The 2018 All-World defenseman is returning to field lacrosse.

Hossack a.k.a. Cyborg is a 3x NLL DPOY. He’s the top defender available in tonight’s draft. An LSM by nature, Hossack throws a ton of checks. He hunts for chicken strips at every chance he has.

Read more about Hossack here. 

3. Liam Byrnes, D, Philadelphia Barrage

Most defensemen in this draft class are GLE giants who throw checks and play on an island. Byrnes is the best help defender of the bunch.

The 2019 MLL DPOY out of Marquette is an organizer. Watch him play, and you’ll notice nothing but head swivels, finger points, and a foot in the paint at all times.

His anticipation helps him arrive early as a two slide. This adjacent creep is Ehrhardt-esque. (Often, Byrnes arrives so early that this throwback is never even made.)

During recovers, Byrnes remains on high alert at all times. His job isn’t done after he closes out. He prepares to re-slide if a hitch catches a teammate further along on the carousel off-guard. His instincts are impeccable.

Read more about Liam Byrnes here.

4. Nick Marrocco, G, Boston Cannons

Goalies – like faceoff specialists – are tough to project from NCAA to PLL. Any team in need of a netminder should be targeting Marrocco or Sean Sconone tonight rather than waiting for a rookie in April.

Both have proven they can win at the pro level; Marrocco led the Cannons to the 2020 MLL Championship.

Read Kyle Devitte’s profile on Nick Marrocco here.

5. Challen Rogers, M, Boston Cannons

Challen Rogers was built for PLL rules. He defends indoors; and he’s comfortable on that end in field, too.

In a defense-to-offense role, he could punish a lot of opponents “trapped” on the field. Remember the pick-and-rolls Zach Currier and Jake Withers ran for the Waterdogs? Rogers will put enemy offensive midfielders in similar predicaments.

6. Ben Randall, D, New York Lizards 

Randall is the most polarizing defender in this class. Some have him as high as the top defender; others don’t have him on their board.

He has experience covering Matt Rambo from their Ohio State-Maryland clashes in the B1G. He didn’t back down from Lyle last summer. There’s a strong chance that a team bullish on Randall will land him in the second or third round for a decent price.

7. Chris Aslanian, A/M, Denver Outlaws

Chris Aslanian celebrates teammates’ goals with John Haus levels of jubilation. He’s also frequently responsible for making those goals happen.

Aslanian carries doubles with confidence. He’s physical whether he’s running from X or downhill out of the box. He rarely makes mistakes, dishing 30 assists to 32 turnovers (a very healthy ratio in shot clock lacrosse) – plus who knows how many second assists like this.

Aslanian’s an efficient shooter, too. He shoots angrily, and from quality angles. Players who carry like he does shouldn’t shoot 40.8%. The Hobart product can play a lot of different roles for the right team.

8. Latrell Harris, LSM, Team Canada / Toronto Rock (NLL)

A St. Catharines, ON native, Harris made the jump to the pros straight out of high school. He competed for Team Canada in Israel at 20 years old as a short-stick defender.

Harris is in the pool as a long-stick midfielder. His versatility, experience, and upside make him a valuable addition to a roster.

9. Mark Cockerton, A, Boston Cannons

This draft is loaded with lefty scorers: Shayne Jackson, Andrew Kew, Kyle Jackson, Mark Matthews, and many, many more.

Mark Cockerton might be the sharpest shooter of the bunch. He has range. Cockerton can pop off a mumbo with a poor angle and still sneak his shot past the goalie. He has always changed planes well; over the years, he’s added more shoulder fakes and twisters to his repertoire.

10. Dylan Molloy, A, New York Lizards

Physical dodgers have had a lot of success in the PLL (see: Rambo, Matt and Williams, Zed). Dylan Molloy – the 2016 Tewaaraton winner – is as physical as dodgers get.

Rob Pannell may have trademarked the question mark dodge, but Molloy has a patent pending on the question mark that begins on the wing. He always attacks the middle of the field, uses his shoulders to shield his shot, and gets to the paint.

Thanks for reading!

Subscribe here to see the 10 Man Ride in your inbox every Thursday morning. And submit any questions you want to see answered in this space to me on Twitter (@joekeegs), and I’ll talk to you next week!

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