Paddy glad to net starting role

IAN BUSBY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:08 AM ET

These are unfamiliar times for Paddy Campbell.

But they feel so good.

The Calgary Roughnecks goaltender was anointed the new starter for the National Lacrosse League club yesterday after Steve Dietrich was traded to the Edmonton Rush.

And the Riggers put Campbell down as their only goalie protected for the upcoming expansion draft.

In the past two expansion drafts -- for the Edmonton Rush and Boston last year before the franchise was put on hold -- Campbell was left unprotected and selected each time.

He can sleep easier this time, and he has the entire off-season to deal with being a starter and veteran leader.

"This allows me to focus on the fact I'm the No. 1," Campbell said. "As much as you say you prepare the same for games when you are backing up, it's a totally different mentality when you are starting.

"It's a different lifestyle because you a big part of every game. I have that clear in my head at this point in time."

The only other time the 11-year veteran goalie was a bona fide starter was in 2006-07 with the Rush, but then he came down with a form of Crohn's disease.

He stayed away from the game briefly after the Riggers took him in the dispersal draft of Boston players but returned this mid-season when Dietrich went down with a concussion.

The 31-year-old is almost back up to his original playing weight this summer and is pumped to return because he's positive the Roughnecks are cup contenders.

"Good things are going on in Calgary," Campbell said. "Most of the players are peaking, and these are key seasons for us."


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