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MAN UP WITH….Sandy Chapman

Throughout the 2010 season we’re giving you the chance to get to know the players of the Toronto Rock beyond the jersey. For our first edition, the Rock Man Up with Sandy Chapman.

On the turf, Chapman is just the guy to tighten up Toronto’s defensive end. The four-time NLL Champion is back in a Rock jersey this season for the first time since 2005.

When did you decide you wanted to be a pro lacrosse player?
When I got drafted to the Rock in 2001. I really didn’t ever expect to play in this league. Growing up, I just played lacrosse because it was fun.

Best lacrosse memory?
Probably winning the Mann Cup this past summer. It was the most exciting, intense lacrosse I have ever played. We were down by one with about 30 seconds left… I was in the penalty box so we were playing a man short. Mike Carnegie scores to put it into overtime. Our team is going nuts celebrating and I am all alone in the box- so I grab the official beside me and start hugging him. It was an amazing series. 

If you could change or add a rule to box lacrosse what would it be?
Great question, the one difference between summer ball and the winter is not being able to rag the ball while you are short-handed.  I think that can really get a crowd into a game and create huge momentum swings.

Best pump-up song?
I’m not really a music guy but Thunderstruck by AC/DC.

Have any pre-game rituals?
I have to have a game day nap. I try to eat a big lunch, take a nap and have a coffee right before the game.

Your best lacrosse workout…
I work out at my local YMCA in Waterdown. I like to get in a lot of cardio on the treadmill and some good stretching.

One goalie you don’t want to go one-on-one with?
Any goalie. I’m not known for my stick skills in front of the net. Goalies love to see me coming.

Describe your game style…
I would say I’m a small, aggressive defender who tries to bring energy and intelligence to a defensive scheme.

Who is the best player to ever hold a stick?
I have been so fortunate to play lacrosse with many great players like John Grant Jr., Gary Gait, Colin Doyle, Josh Sanderson, Dan Dawson- but there is something about playing with and against Jim Veltman. He’s got the skills, he’s a great motivator and leader and he makes the people around him better players.

Best fight you’ve been in/seen?
If you know me at all you’d know that any good fight is one that I’m not in. A paper bag would give me a good go. 

Although I don’t think it was the best fight I’ve seen, seeing Tim O’Brien and Paddy Campbell square off was pretty entertaining.

In one word describe your “game face”.
Smiling.

What’s the worst injury you’ve had?
Knock on wood, I’ve been lucky and not had any major injuries. Besides leg cramps and bad ankles the worst injury was probably this past summer playing against Peterborough. It was the last game in the regular season and the winning team got a buy in the first round. It was a Thursday night game and I got 3 stitches on my chin. Doesn’t sound that bad, but I was getting married on the Saturday; I will have to live with the pain from this injury the longest.

Favourite thing about Toronto…
The people in Toronto are great. They’re really friendly and supportive of their lacrosse team. I’m looking forward to being back and playing in Toronto again. 

Do you play any other sports?
I played hockey, like most other Canadian kids. In highschool I played most of the sports that my highschool offered, which included Badminton. In the past 10 years I’ve pretty much focussed on lacrosse.