Here we go again. No, we’re not gonna talk about Chris White being underrated as a defenseman. That’s been said too often, to the point that it’s just not true anymore. If you know lacrosse, you know what’s up with Chris White and his game. What’s going on again is the talk about White being one of the best defenders in the game today, whether it’s in the National Lacrosse League or Major Series Lacrosse. And you know that old saying about defense winning championships? Well, it’s been around a little longer than White, but it was coined with guys like him in mind.
So maybe the championship thing hasn’t quite worked out in the NLL with Buffalo, where he was team captain for 4 seasons. Especially last year, where the Bandits trudged their way through a big-time slump in the regular season before finally clinching a playoff berth, only to be shown the door in the first round.
Winning and losing doesn’t fall squarely on 1 guy in a team sport like lacrosse, but White didn’t earn his fourth All-Star nod in 2012 for sucky play. Each one of those All-Star appearances are legit, and the 6-foot, 190-pound right-hander will go for his fifth All-Star bid this winter in Toronto after signing as a free agent with the Rock.
But, let’s get back to the championship thing. If you wanna see how that maxim rings true, check out White’s summer success with his hometown Peterborough Lakers. The Lake Show gets a lot of ink for its high-powered, celebrity offense. But that offense gets a lot of uncredited help from the back end and yeah, White’s a big part of that. We can talk all day about his fundamentals and textbook style of play, his shutdown reputation and his intangibles of leadership both on and off the floor.
But the proof is in the pudding and the pudding here is 5 Mann Cup rings. The most recent of those came just this summer, of course, and if White were to never play another MSL game again, he’s got bragging rights for life with 5 Cups in 9 seasons. And it coulda been more if the Lakers and White hadn’t lost in the 2005 Mann finals. It’s an impressive run, no doubt, and given the way White carries himself with such a quiet demeanor off the floor, he’s not likely to tell you about how much winning he’s done throughout his career. So we’ll do it for you. In fact, we just did.
Fact: The Stealth, then in San Jose, traded White to the Bandits in 2004 for the No. 11 overall pick in the 2005 entry draft. The Stealth used that pick on Ed Brown, out of Middlebury College, who never played agame in the NLL. Winner: Buffalo.
Top 40 (last year’s rank in parenthesis)
No. 40: Jeff Gilbert (not ranked)
No. 39: Kevin Crowley (nr)
No. 38: Kevin Ross (nr)
No. 37: Adam Jones (nr)
No. 36: Jordan MacIntosh (nr)
No. 35: Paul Rabil (30)
No. 34: Tyler Richards (17)
No. 33: Scott Ranger (nr)
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