Rock loses Gibson

RYAN WOLSTAT -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:30 AM ET

Darryl Gibson's return to the Toronto Rock didn't last very long.

The 2006 all-star defenceman, re-acquired by the club late last season, was selected third overall by the Chicago Shamrox in the National Lacrosse League's expansion draft yesterday.

The popular Gibson, who won championships with the Rock in 2002 and 2003, played just three regular-season games and one in the playoffs for the team in his second go-around. The Rock still will have to give up the first-round pick in 2008 it surrendered to the Minnesota Swarm.

Rock director of lacrosse operations Mike Kloepfer said losing Gibson, along with the pick, will set the team back, but added that by keeping defenders Ian Rubel and Brian Beisel -- both candidates to go instead of Gibson -- and with veteran Dan Ladouceur expected to return in 2007, he expects the team's defence to be fine.

The NLL's two new franchises placed a healthy premium on goaltenders. As expected, San Jose Stealth backup Brandon Miller, an Orangeville native, went first overall in the expansion derby to the Shamrox. Miller was buried behind former Rock stalwart Anthony Cosmo in San Jose, but has posted a 5-0-2 record this summer with the Brampton Excelsiors, better than Rock starter Bob Watson's 4-3-0 mark with the same club.

Arizona Sting goalie Mike Miron was projected to go second, but in a minor curve, his teammate, high scoring forward Pat Maddalena, was the yet-to-be-named New York franchise's first selection.

New York's reasoning became clear when it managed to grab goalies Curtis Palidwor and Aaron Bold with its next two picks. Palidwor finished in the NLL's top five in goals against average, wins and save percentage last year, but Kloepfer, who said he is "checking his Blackberry often" for trades, expects Palidwor to be moved for a nice return.

After Gibson was selected, the Rock quickly pulled back the 28-year-old Rubel. Young forward Matt Taylor was the second and final Rock player selected, 18th overall by New York. Taylor collected four points in two games as a rookie forward last season.

Besides Gibson, the Shamrox also picked up former Rock teammates Dan Stroup and Chris Gill, who combined to score 51 goals in 2006 for the NLL champion Colorado Mammoth.


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