Dead last in both goals for and against, a pair of assistant coaches have taken the fall for the Vancouver Stealth.
The offence is averaging just 10.2 goals per game while the defence is surrendering 15.4. Not surprisingly, the team sits dead last in the National Lacrosse League at 1-9. With those numbers and the Stealth’s fading playoff hopes and the team hoping for any sort of spark over the final eight games, the team made a pair of coaching moves on Wednesday night. John Lintz and Jim Milligan are both out, with Art Webster and Kevin Alexander taking over their respective roles.
“Our roster is extremely talented and is stocked with champions who are much better than our record indicates. The coaching changes that we have made were done with that talent in mind and the opportunities that still exist in the second half of the season,” said Stealth president and general manager Doug Locker in a press release.
“We have the utmost respect for the work that Jim and John did and thank them for their hard work and efforts.”
But in a results-based business, something needed to be done.
Alexander was already on the Stealth coaching staff as an assistant coach. This is his eighth season with the organization. He also has head coaching experience with the Syracuse Smash of the MILL as well as working as an assistant in the NLL with Calgary (2006 and 2007) and Portland (2008 and 2009). As a player, Alexander won a pair of NLL championships and two more WLA titles. He also won the WLA scoring five times in his 10-year career. Alexander is a member of the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame, the BC Sports Hall of Fame and the Victoria Shamrocks Hall of Fame.
This is Webster’s second stint with the Stealth. He served as an assistant coach from 2007 to 2015 and was on the staff at the height of the team’s success, when they won the Champion’s Cup in 2010 and finished runner-up in both 2011 and 2013. He currently works as an assistant coach for the Western Lacrosse Association’s Victoria Shamrocks and has five Mann Cups on his resume, three as a coach and two as a player. He is also a member of both the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame and the Victoria Shamrocks Hall of Fame.
The pair will be tasked with trying to right the Stealth ship when they host the New England Black Wolves on Saturday night at the Langley Events Centre in the NLL Game of the Week.
New England (4-4) is in the midst of a three-game losing streak.
The teams also met back in late December with the Black Wolves scoring the game’s final seven goals in a 13-9 victory.