SAINT PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Swarm announced today that the team has signed T Greg Downing and D Tyler Collins to two-year contracts.
The Swarm selected Downing in the first round (ninth-overall) and Collins in the fourth round (30th overall) of the 2011 dispersal draft of Boston Blazers players this past September.
“Greg was a strategic pick for us,” Associate General Manager Joe Sullivan said. “He will help our team better compete for loose balls, which is an area we are looking to have more success at in 2012. Greg’s speed and athleticism led him to a combined 179 loose balls in the past two seasons. We’re looking forward to watching his game develop now as a member of the Swarm.”
Downing, 26, appeared in 45 games with the Blazers from 2009-11 and totaled 33 points (5g, 28a) along with 274 loose balls. The Auburn, New York native registered four assists, 11 forced turnovers and collected 78 loose balls in 16 games with Boston in 2011. He posted a career-high 101 loose balls in 2010 and totaled 95 as a rookie in 2009.
The Blazers selected Downing in the fourth round (43rd overall) of the 2007 NLL Entry Draft. Prior to joining the NLL, Downing was a three-time All-American at Fairfield University and helped lead the Stags to an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2005.
Collins, 24, was ranked as the #14 prospect by IL Indoor heading into the 2010 NLL Entry Draft; Boston went on to select him with the 46th overall pick in the fifth round. Collins’ playing résumé is highlighted by his four-year career at Colgate University and stints with the Brooklin Redman (MSL) and Toronto Beaches (OLA Jr. A).
“Tyler is a big, strong back door man that will bring physical play to camp,” Sullivan said.