Never take your eye off of the Minnesota Swarm.
The Minnesota Swarm have been active in the off season in the past. This season's moves kick off by moving a veteran forward for a first round pick in 2015.
The offseason for the National Lacrosse League is one of the longest in sports. While the players ply their trade in other leagues across North America, the owners and General Managers are left to ponder how to best develop their teams for the future. This leads to some action throughout the summer, especially leading up to the draft.
Today, the Minnesota Swarm announced they have traded veteran forward Kevin Ross to the Philadelphia Wings for a first round pick in 2015. The pick being that far out is interesting, suggesting that the Wings are still wanting to build for a run in the next couple years, and Ross is a great addition to that process.
With 30 goals and 33 assists (including the playoffs) last season, Ross is hardly a slouch when it comes to the offensive game, and scored at least one goal in all but the final game for the Swarm last season. He gets power play time, can take a faceoff if needed, and tallied 52 looseballs on the year.
At 27 years old, Ross still has plenty of time left in the NLL, but the Swarm have been trending younger, and with four first round picks this year, the Swarm are going to need to make some room on their roster. Adding yet another first round pick is a way for the Swarm to continue to build the franchise into a dominating team far into the future.
Owner / GM John Arlotta told Swarm.com:
"It's been a pleasure to have Kevin on the Swarm the past four years. I'd like to thank Kevin for his contributions both on and off the field during his time in Minnesota and we wish him nothing but the best moving forward in Philadelphia where he will get the chance to play closer to home."
Some fans may question Arlotta, but with the success of the team after multiple trades last year, it is difficult to find fault in the continuing re-shaping of the franchise.
Stay tuned to SB Nation Minnesota for all the latest on the Minnesota Swarm.