Saturday, July 2, 2016

Excelsiors adding young talent, giving vets a chance to win, says Stewart

Kyle Rubisch is among the key players Brampton traded away Friday.
(Photo: Dave Fryer)
The trade of several veteran players to Major Series Lacrosse championship contenders came at their requests and was largely the product of respect for what the players have done for the Brampton team, says Excelsiors head coach Paul Stewart.

Stewart said that Brooklin requested permission to speak with Chris Corbeil and Kyle Rubisch and that the Excelsiors never deny such requests. Because of the relationship of the pair with their coach in Saskatchewan, Derek Keenan, Corbeil and Rubisch told the Excelsiors they would like to join him in Brooklin as the Redmen make a push for the Mann Cup.

"Corbs and Rubes, along with [Dan and Paul] Dawson, are the most loyal guys to this organization. After everything they have done for this team, we couldn't deny them a chance to play meaningful lacrosse," said Stewart.  The Dawsons were sent to Six Nations in a pair of trades yesterday.

While Brampton isn't mathematically eliminated from playoff contention at 1-9, even if they won their remaining eight games it may not be enough to get to the postseason.

With the trades, Brampton adds some talented young players that should help moving forward.

When asked about speculation that the trades were rentals and the players would be returning to Brampton after the season, Stewart refused to comment. League rules do state that a player can't be returned to a team from which he was traded for one year.

Interestingly, the Excelsiors have also extended Stewart's contract as head coach for two more years. That move can only reinforce the speculation that the players are expected to return to the Excelsiors. If Stewart agreed to sign on for another two years, it seems unlikely that he would be enthusiastic to part with such core players.

Brampton is back in action Sunday night when they play host to the Peterborough Lakers.