Merrill named NLL player of the month


, Last Updated: 9:24 PM ET

EDMONTON - Brodie Merrill has had an impressive run for the Edmonton Rush.

In the past month, the Rush transition player had nine goals, 11 assists and collected 60 loose balls.

On Wednesday, Merrill was recognized for his efforts by being named the National Lacrosse Leagues player of the month.

Im probably a little biased on this, but I think hes the MVP of the league, said Rush head coach and general manager Derek Keenan. If you look at the true meaning of what the most valuable player is, I think if you took him out of our lineup our team certainly wouldnt have finished the way we did and we certainly wouldnt have won last week.

Merrill, 28, had an assist and collected nine loose ball in last weekends playoff win over the Calgary Roughnecks.

The Toronto native is the leagues reigning transition player of the year and came over to Edmonton in the leagues dispersal draft after the Portland LumberJax folded.

This season, Merrill set a Rush franchise record by collecting 190 loose balls, which was second in the league. He finished fourth in team scoring with 17 goals and 36 assists for 53 points.

Merrill is one of a number of key veterans the Rush brought in this season, which helped them snap a four-year playoff drought.

Hell be in the lineup Saturday when the Rush travel to Seattle to take on the Washington Stealth in the second NLL semifinal.

Merrill had a pair of goals, three assists and a game-high 16 loose balls in the teams last encounter during the regular season that the Rush pulled out 14-13 in overtime.

Hes brought everything to us that we expected and more, Keenan said. Not only with his play on the floor, but with his leadership and the intangibles that he brings to a team. Its been tremendous.