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Mammoth Names Final 23-Player Roster

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The Colorado Mammoth announced today that the team has named its final 23-player roster, headlined by all-star forward John Grant Jr. Since the start of training camp, the coaching staff has been responsible for trimming the active roster by more than a dozen.

“It took three weekends of [training] camp, and hours of film study, to determine which group of players we believe gives us the best chance to win the Champion’s Cup,” said Mammoth Head Coach Bob Hamley. “Now, I’m anxious for Opening Night!”

Colorado opens the 2012 regular season at home on HealthONE Field at Pepsi Center against the Minnesota Swarm on Saturday, January 14 at 7pm MST. The Mammoth roster includes four former Swarm players, including three who played for Minnesota a season ago.

Three left-handed forwards made the Mammoth team: Grant Jr., Adam Jones and Jamie Lincoln. Gavin Prout (the franchise’s all-time leading scorer), Sean Pollock, Derek Hopcroft and Jordan McBride make up the right-handed offense.

Returning transition players Ilija Gajic (L) and Jed Prossner (L) are joined by newcomers Cameron Holding (L), Mat MacLeod (R), and Scott Stewart (R). John Gallant (L), Jarett Park (R), and Matt Leveque (R) are the lone holdovers from last year’s defense. Joining them are lefties John Orsen, Creighton Reid, and Rory Smith, and righties Jon Sullivan and Dan Coates.

Goaltender Chris Levis, who led the West Division with a 9.99 goals-against average in 2011, is accompanied between the pipes by rookies Tye Belanger and Dan Lewis.

2011 NLL Entry Draft selections Joey Cupido (5th round) and Jovan Miller (6th round) have been assigned to the Mammoth’s practice squad, while veteran transition player Nick Carlson has been released.

Forward Alex Gajic and defenseman Ian Hawksbee were placed on the Physically Unable to Perform List. Gajic, who suffered an eye injury this summer, practiced with the team in Washington last weekend. Hawksbee, who endured a lower-body injury prior to training camp, is expected to be ready to play on Opening Night.

Forward Joel Dalgarno has been placed on the Holdout List, as he is unable to suit up for Colorado this year. The 25-year-old recently earned a position with the Coquitlam (British Columbia) Fire and Rescue Department, and will endure a six-month probationary period with the response team. He is expected to rejoin the Mammoth for the 2013 season.

The 2012 active roster is comprised of just eight players who finished last season with the Mammoth. Five of Colorado’s eight selections in the 2011 NLL Entry Draft made the team, while two others have been named to the practice squad.

Colorado, which rallied late in the season to make the playoffs for the eighth time in the franchise’s nine years in Denver, lost in the 2011 West Division semifinals to the NLL regular-season champion Calgary Roughnecks. That, says Mammoth President & General Manager Steve Govett, is not good enough.

“Our goal every year is to win the championship in front of our great fans at Pepsi Center.”

Absent from the team’s roster in 2012 is forward Brian Langtry, who’s been a stalwart in the line-up since the franchise’s inaugural season in 2003. The 35-year-old, who retired from the NLL in October, will have his #6 jersey retired and raised to the Pepsi Center rafters on January 14.

Tickets to Opening Night and all other Mammoth regular-season home games are on sale now at the Pepsi Center box office, all Colorado Dick’s Sporting Goods retail kiosks, online at TicketHorse.com, or by calling 303.53.HORSE.

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