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Moment of the Decade: 2014 Denver Outlaws win first of three MLL Championships

The Denver Outlaws win the 2014 MLL Championship, the first of the franchise’s 3 titles.

To recap a monumental decade of pro lacrosse, Pro lacrosse Talk enlisted members of the lacrosse community to recount the top moments in pro lacrosse from 2010 to 2019. This article was published as part of the “Top Pro Lacrosse Moments of the Decade” series.

The moment that stands out to me is when the Denver Outlaws won their first title in 2014. There was just so much happening here. It was the third-highest attended title game ever and played in the emerging market of Atlanta.

Denver had been to the title game and lost three times in four years. They fell short between 2006 and 2009 and lost again in 2012. Considering 2006 was the Outlaws first season, that’s all just so remarkable, especially in the context of the great westward expansion of lacrosse, with Bill Tierney arriving at Denver University in 2010.

So the Outlaws win their first title in 2014, Denver University wins its first NCAA title in 2015, and lacrosse has firmly planted the flag out west, with Denver as the hub.

The game itself was also incredible. Denver was down four goals to Rochester to start the fourth quarter. In fact, Denver led 1-0 in this game and then not again until the final score of 12-11. It constantly looked like perhaps, once again, the Outlaws would be bridesmaid and not bride.

John Grant Jr. had a hat trick and an assist and was the finals MVP for Denver. He also won finals MVP the year before, playing for Chesapeake. Junior is still the only player to win MLL finals MVP twice, let alone for two different teams.

Finally getting over the hump started a veritable dynasty for the Outlaws. They missed the title game in 2015, but have played for the championship every year since, winning two more titles in 2016 and 2018.

Watch the highlights of the 2014 MLL Championship below to relive the 2014 Denver Outlaws’ first of three championships.

Dan Arestia is a lacrosse fanatic first, writer second. He is a frequent contributor to Lacrosse Playground and has been published on College Crosse and Inside Lacrosse.

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