When the temperature reaches record highs, NHL Network is on a re-run marathon and the calendar is still months away from opening night, the world for a hockey fan can seem pretty bleak. Just because it’s the off-season, doesn’t mean you can’t cheer for another sport.
With a seemingly endless amount of teams, the sport comes in two varieties, box and field. With many similarities to hockey, it’s an easy choice to win your summer affection. With different levels of pro teams across North America, it’s a fun and inexpensive way to enjoy a day.
The difference between box and field is simple. Box is indoor lacrosse usually played on a hockey rink where the ice has been covered or removed. Similar to hockey, box features 6 players per team on the floor. Field is outdoor, played on a field. Field can be a bit more confusing at first, there are ten players on each team: three attack, three midfielders, three defenders and a goalie.
National Lacrosse League (NLL) is the more well known pro version of box, although their season coincides with the NHL. In Canada, box lacrosse has several leagues during the summer. The Western Lacrosse Association (WLA) is very popular and garners a large following. The Ontario Lacrosse Association (OLA) is another popular option for Eastern Canada. If you don’t reside in Canada, don’t fret. Major League Lacrosse (MLL) has teams across the States, MLL is field lacrosse. While it isn’t hockey, it’s a pretty fine substitute for the off-season.
A great site to familiarize yourself with the sport and it’s teams: In Lax We Trust