If there's one good lesson to be learned about pro sports, it's that coaching changes around the start of the season are a sign of trouble. Remember Dick Jauron letting his offensive coordinator go just before the start of the 2009 Bills' season? And before that, how about when John Rauch was fired in the Bills' training camp in 1971?
It's with some surprise, then, that the Boston Blazers announced the firing of head coach Tom Ryan. He's been with the team since 2007. The Blazers looked like they had added plenty of talent this season, and seemed to be ready for a good regular season. We'll have to see if this is a warning of trouble ahead.
Meanwhile, Orchard Park's Joe Smith has landed on his feet. Smith was released by the Bandits earlier in training camp, but has turned up on the roster of the Philadelphia Wings. Smith had trouble getting regular duty in Buffalo, going from the inactive roster to the starting lineup with a few weeks last season.
The teams of the National Lacrosse League had to submit their rosters by Thursday. The Bandits say they won't announce their squad until Friday. However, some cuts were placed on the NLL's web site. So ... Buffalo released Drew Candy, Rusty Kruger, Wayne Van Every, Jeff Powless, Jason Crosbie, Isiah Kicknosway, Ben McCullough and James Purves. That goes with Elijah Printup, Holdon Vyse and Kyle Schmelzle earlier in the week. We'll see how the roster shapes up Friday.
--- Budd Bailey