New York, NY (PRWEB) January 25, 2008
The New York Titans National Lacrosse League franchise is declaring its home opener on Thursday, Jan. 31 at 7:30 pm against San Jose at Madison Square Garden as "Eli Appreciation Night."
To honor New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning, who has lead his team to Super Bowl XLII against the New England Patriots, the Titans will grant free admission to all fans with the first name "Eli" or who wear a New York Giants Jersey with Manning's No. 10 number.
"We want to show our solidarity with our fellow New York team and show support for Eli, who often gets a bum rap in this town," said Tim Kelly, COO of the New York Titans. "We are very proud of the New York Giants and are rooting for them to ruin the New England Patriots perfect season."
Fans must show a valid photo ID with the printed name of "Eli" or "Elisha" or "Elijah" or their jersey at the Madison Square Garden box office for tickets.
The Titans are New York City's first-ever professional lacrosse team. The home opener against the San Jose Stealth will be the first of five home games for the Titans at Madison Square Garden. Ticket prices for individual games can purchased for as little as $15. For ticket and schedule information, go to http://www.nytitans.com.
Last year's Titans' home opener at Madison Square Garden - the first-ever lacrosse game at the world's most famous arena - drew a crowd of 13,000-plus fans. The National Lacrosse League's 2007 expansion franchise will look to improve on its 2007 record of 4-12.
Opening night will also feature the first annual "Mayor's Cup" game - played between the New York Fire Department lacrosse team and the New York Police Department lacrosse team at 5:30 pm. A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the PBA Widow's & Children's Fund and the Thomas Elsasser Fund.
The rock band "Bang Camaro," one of the top American buzz bands, will also perform during the Titans warm-up and again at half-time. Bang Camaro, a five-piece band with up to 20 lead singers belting out their unique blend of 'dude powered' rock that has "redefined metal," according to Rolling Stone magazine.
The Titans are part of the 22-year-old National Lacrosse League, headquartered in New York City. The NLL features 12 teams across the country - New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Colorado, Minnesota, Toronto, Buffalo, Portland (Ore.), San Jose, Calgary, Edmonton and Rochester, N.Y. - and drew over one million fans in 2007.
Lacrosse is the oldest and most continually played sport in North America - invented by Native American Indians and discovered by French explorers in the 1600s, who named the sport "La Crosse" or "the cross" since the sticks used by the Indians resembled church's crosses.
Lacrosse is one of the most popular youth sports in the country and has been called by Sports Illustrated and the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association as the fastest growing sport in the United States. Called "the fastest sport in the fastest city" by standout Titan player Ryan Boyle, lacrosse in New York is a fan-friendly, action-packed game with body checking, shots on goal every 30 seconds.
Standout players on the New York Titans include;
Casey Powell - Syracuse graduate and one of the famed "Powell brothers," Casey would have likely broken the NLL singles season assist record last season if not for a late, season-ending injury.
Pat Maddalena - A chiropractor by day, Maddalena was the leading scorer on the Titans in 2007 and is playing for his fourth NLL team in the last nine years.
Ryan Boyle - Princeton graduate and the 2004 National Lacrosse League Rookie of the Year, Boyle was featured in such news outlets last year as the NY Post's Page Six, The New York Times and famed on-line gossip column Perezhilton.com.
Jordan Hall - The "JaMarcus Russell" of lacrosse in 2008 (the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 NLL Draft), who when not playing for the Titans on the field, is helping the franchise with office work off the field.
Rory Smith - A twenty-year-old rookie who teammate Ryan Boyle calls "A YouTube legend" as many of his hockey and lacrosse fights are featured on the internet video portal.
Lacrosse has a special connection to New York City as the first ever collegiate lacrosse game was play 130 years ago in 1877 in Central Park when New York University played Manhattan College. Manhasset, New York native Jim Brown, one of the National Football League's legendary players, is regarded as perhaps the greatest player of all time, starring for Manhasset High School and Syracuse University. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is also a lacrosse enthusiast having attended college at lacrosse powerhouse Johns Hopkins. "This is a popular sport," Bloomberg said in a jovial press conference in July of 2006 announcing New York City's acquisition of a National Lacrosse League franchise. "It's a great chance to take a stick and hit somebody, and you can do it legally with a smile on your face, and they sort of like getting hit."