The Washington Stealth and Colorado Mammoth announced a trade today just minutes before the National Lacrosse League’s 12pm PST trade deadline. The Stealth has acquired forward Cliff Smith from Colorado in exchange for Joel Dalgarno, Ian Hawksbee and a third round selection in the 2011 NLL Entry Draft.
Smith, a 6’3”, 210-pound forward from Surrey, B.C., comes to the Stealth after spending his first two seasons in the NLL with the Mammoth. In eight games with Colorado this season, the left-handed Smith has tallied eight goals and three assists for eleven points in the NLL’s lowest-scoring offense. With the move, Stealth Head Coach Chris Hall thinks that Smith’s skills will be better suited in the league’s highest-scoring offense.
“Cliff is a big, strong guy and brings a tremendous amount of grit and skill,” said Hall. “We’ve been watching him for a long time – through juniors, his time with the New Westminster Salmonbellies and his pro career – and he has huge upside. We think the fit will be right for him in Washington.”
Smith has played four seasons with the New Westminster Salmonbellies of the Western Lacrosse Association in British Columbia. The Salmonbellies have won the WLA Championship each of the last three summers. In 99 regular season and playoff games with New Westminster, Smith has accumulated 147 goals and 145 assists for 292 points.
The Stealth sends Dalgarno, a left-handed forward, and Hawksbee, a left-handed defenseman, to Colorado along with a third round pick in the 2011 NLL Entry Draft.
“In order to bring in Smith, a guy we felt was a piece we needed in our lineup, you have to give up a lot to do it,” said Hall. “Dalgarno and Hawksbee have been very valuable for us and we are very sorry to see them go.”
Dalgarno joined the Stealth prior to the 2010 season in a trade with the Toronto Rock that included All-Stars Lewis Ratcliff and Colin Doyle. Dalgarno has appeared in two games for the Stealth this season, recording three goals and an assist.
Hawksbee was acquired from the Edmonton Rush earlier this season. He’s played three games with the Stealth, tallying an assist and 16 loose balls.
Smith will get his first chance to impress Stealth fans when the Stealth returns to action on March 25 against the Boston Blazers at the Comcast Arena at Everett. Tickets for the game are on sale now and can be purchased by calling 877-MY-75-TIX or at www.stealthlax.com.