News | 2/6/2012 4:25:42 PM | Bandits.com
SMITH , TAVARES & M.THOMPSON TO START FOR THE EAST
The National Lacrosse League today announced that three Buffalo Bandits players have been selected to start for the East in the 2012 NLL All-Star Game on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. at First Niagara Center.
Bandits forward John Tavares, the all-time leading scorer in NLL history, will play in his 10th career All-Star Game. Tavares entered the season in a tie with Colin Doyle of the Toronto Rock for most career All-Star Game appearances. Tavares has scored 32 points (18+14) and collected 82 loose balls in his previous nine All-Star Games. He currently leads the Bandits with 28 points (12+16), including a league-leading seven power play goals, in five games played this season.
Buffalo defenseman Billy Dee Smith, the 2009 NLL Defensive Player of the Year, will make his first career All-Star Game appearance. Smith has played in all five games this season, registering one goal, 14 penalty minutes, 12 loose balls and three forced turnovers.
Bandits goaltender Mike Thompson, the NLL’s Defensive Player of the Week for Week #2, will also appear in his first career All-Star Game. Thompson is tied for third in the NLL with two wins and currently ranks fifth in the league in both goals against average (11.36) and save percentage (.757). Thompson finished in the top three in all three of those categories last season.
Online fan balloting that helped select the starting lineups concluded this past weekend. The fan votes were combined with the votes of the league’s General Managers & Head Coaches, as well as the league’s covering media, to select the starters. Each group’s votes counted for one-third of the total.
Reserves for the East and West teams will be announced by the league later this week.
Tickets for the All-Star Game, which will take place in Buffalo for the first time in NLL history, may be purchased here. For more ticket information, please call 1-888-467-2273 or visit the First Niagara Center box office.