By Alex Hinkley
The Rochester Knighthawks have already been crippled by injuries and the 2011 season hasn't even begun! Yesterday I wrote that newcomer Jordan Hall would be out for at least four games after undergoing surgery to repair a sports hernia but he isn't the only one injured.
Last week the Knighthawks placed forward Shawn Evans on the Physically Unable to Perform list. Players are often placed on the PUP when they suffer injuries outside of an NLL game which prevents them from playing (while the injured reserve is for players injured during games). It's unknown why he is on the list but it may not actually be due to injury. Sometimes players are put on the PUP due to personal obligations. Evans recently won the Major Series Lacrosse Bucko McDonald Leading Scorer Award after turning in a 21 goal, 60 assist performance for the Peterborough Lakers. His absence will seriously hinder the Hawks' offensive production.
Shawn Williams is also a question mark going into the 2011 season. Williams suffered a broken arm in August during an MSL playoff game against the Six Nations Chiefs. There hasn't been any word recently on whether or not Williams is fully healed and ready for the season but the Knighthawks placed him on the Physically Unable to Perform list on November 23rd which isn't a good sign. Defensemen Marshall Abrams was also placed on the PUP the same day as Williams.
Even Cody Jamieson isn't at 100%. According to fan reports on the Wingszone Message Board, Jamieson has been having knee problems during training camp. One veteran user on the forums writes, "I believe that Cody has actually had some knee surgery and that's why he didn't play with the Nations in Hawaii. From what I've heard he is on target to be ready for the season opener, but another new front line player will not be ready to play the first couple of games." Let's hope he's right.
With injuries mounting, the offense is starting to look drained. At least Craig Point still seems to be healthy and the Knighthawks did re-acquire forward Mike Accursi during the off-season. Accursi should definitely help out on offense while many of the big guns are missing. Gary Gait is also still listed on the roster on Knighthawks.net. Could he be coming back to help for one more season?