The Minnesota Swarm and Vancouver Stealth have announced a trade with the Swarm acquiring veteran defenseman Mike Grimes from the Stealth in exchange for transition player Tyler Hass and forward Dane Stevens. Minnesota will also receive a third-round selection in the 2016 NLL Entry Draft as part of the deal, which is pending league approval.
Grimes, 28, has earned the reputation for being one of the league’s toughest defenders during his eight-year career. The Peterborough, Ontario native collected NLL All-Pro Second Team honors in ‘13 and was named an All-Star starter in ‘11. Grimes is also no stranger to postseason success, having appeared in 11 career playoff contests, which includes three Champion’s Cup appearances. Grimes helped lead the Stealth to a title in ’10 against Toronto, and to runner-up finishes in ‘11 and ’13. This past season as an assistant captain, the 6-foot-3, 210-pound lefty led all Vancouver defensemen with 22 points (5g, 17a), and also notched 96 loose balls along with 25 forced turnovers.
“This trade is a win-win for both teams and for the players involved, who were looking to play closer to home and to their respective full-time jobs,” said Swarm Owner and Governor John Arlotta. “We hate to lose a player of Tyler’s caliber, but we’re excited to add Mike Grimes who is equally capable of creating scoring chances in transition and playing tough defense. Mike’s pedigree is well known in this league and he is a welcome addition to our defensive unit.”
Grimes began his pro career with brief stints out West in 2007 and 2008 prior to his six-year tenure with the Stealth from 2009-14. With the team in 2011, Grimes posted career numbers in loose balls (103), forced turnovers (27) and led all NLL defenseman in scoring with 21 points (11g, 10a). In 115 career games, Grimes has totaled 108 points (41g, 67a), 624 loose balls and 80 forced turnovers (NLL began keeping track of forced turnovers in 2011).
Hass, 29, spent fours years with the Swarm from 2011-14, and totaled 42 points (32g, 10a), 217 loose balls and 47 loose balls in 52 games. Minnesota acquired the Victoria, British Columbia native in the third round (30th overall) of the 2006 NLL Entry Draft. Hass’ top season with the Swarm came in 2013 when he posted career highs in points (12), loose balls (71) and forced turnovers (23).
“We are absolutely elated to acquire a player of Tyler’s caliber and feel he will be a tremendous asset for us in the coming season," said Stealth president and general manager Doug Locker. "Throughout his career, he has shown the willingness to do whatever is needed and he brings us an added weapon in transition as well as being a steady presence on defense."
Stevens, 25, appeared in four games with the Swarm in ‘14 after coming over in a midseason trade from Edmonton. The 6-foot, 215-pound lefty forward notched five points (1g, 4a) and eight loose balls last season.
“We have watched Dane for a number of years and feel he brings a different dynamic to our offense," Locker said. "He is a guy who has a very high lacrosse IQ who can not only score goals, but distribute the ball very well. We are looking for Dane to contribute in a big way in the upcoming season."