The Vancouver Stealth announced that they have signed Burnaby, B.C., native Ilija Gajic to a two-year agreement as he enters his first season with the Stealth and 5th season of his National Lacrosse League career. Gajic played the previous 4 seasons with the Colorado Mammoth before being traded to the Stealth for Bob Snider this past August. With the 2014 season fast approaching, Gajic couldn’t be happier about the chance to play close to home. “Having the opportunity to play pro lacrosse in your hometown is a real honor for me, also to be a part of the Stealth organization. They’ve treated me great ever since I was traded here,” said Gajic.
Gajic brings 4 years of experience to the Stealth, having played in 53 regular season games for the Mammoth, scoring 62 points (28g, 34a) and grabbing 356 loose balls. He also appeared in 2 playoff games for the Mammoth recording 2 goals and 1 assist to go along with 11 loose balls. Gajic has had his ups and downs in his lacrosse career having dealt with some injuries in the past, but he feels this year there is nothing holding him back.
“My body feels great this year, I’m not dealing with any injuries so I’m excited to start with a clean slate so to speak. I just want to make an impact right away,” said Gajic.
There’s no doubt that playing professional lacrosse close to home is something special and the Stealth are eager to see what kind of an emotional boost hometown players like Gajic will bring.
“Having Ilija back in B.C. and representing the Vancouver Stealth is pretty special. We are really excited about what he brings to the team and we can’t wait to see him on the floor,” said President and General Manager Doug Locker.
Gajic has been a proven winner for his hometown team in the past with back to back Minto Cups in 2004-2005 with the Junior A Burnaby Lakers. He also helped the New Westminster Salmonbellies to three straight Western Lacrosse Associations titles from 2008-2010. In 7 seasons with the Salmonbellies, Gajic has score 285 points (118g, 167a) in 81 games.
The start of the season is still a few months away but Gajic won’t have to wait long for a game against his former team as the Stealth open the season in Colorado,
“I have a lot of friends that I’ve made over the years and I had many good years in Colorado, but I’m excited for the next chapter,” said Gajic.
The 2014 season begins in Colorado on January 4 followed by their home opener at the Langley Events Centre on January 11 against the Minnesota Swarm.
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