Mike Thompson was the goaltender who led the Bandits to the 2009 Championship. Photo Credit: Larry Palumbo
Daryl Gibson retires after a 12-year playing career. Photo Credit: Larry Palumbo
Buffalo Bandits veterans Mike Thompson and Darryl Gibson have announced their retirement from the National Lacrosse League.
Thompson joined the Bandits in 2007, going 5-4 in his first full NLL season after appearing in eight games with the Ottawa Rebel in 2001. In just his second year with the team, Thompson backstopped the Bandits to the 2008 Champion’s Cup Final, where he made 39 saves to bring Buffalo its fourth championship in franchise history.
“I wanted to go out on my own terms,” Thompson said. “Some goalies don’t have a choice and I didn’t want to put myself in that situation. With my previous injuries, I just felt like it was time. It comes with the territory; I was just fortunate enough to make the decision before having a serious injury put me out.”
Thompson finishes his career with a 31-16 record and an 11.53 goals against average. His 31 wins and 1,825 saves as a Bandit rank him behind only Steve Dietrich in franchise history.
“I want to say thank you to the Bandits organization and the coaching staff,” Thompson said. “I’d also like to thank the Buffalo fans for being the best fans in the league. It’s been an extraordinary experience.”
A 12-year NLL veteran, Gibson spent his last three seasons with the Bandits, recording 13 assists and 78 loose balls in 27 games. In his career, Gibson saw time in Albany, Toronto, San Jose, Arizona, Minnesota and Chicago before joining the Bandits in 2010. The defenseman set career highs with 18 points (3+15) and 84 loose balls in 2002 with the Toronto Rock. He added two goals in two playoff games that season, winning his first of two Champion’s Cups with the Rock.
“I want to thank the Bandits organization for allowing me the opportunity to come back and play out my career with the best organization and fans a player could ever dream of,” Gibson said. “My only regret was not winning another ring with this group. It was truly an honor to be a part of the Bandits family, and I will always consider myself a Bandit.”