The Minnesota Swarm was a box lacrosse team in the National Lacrosse League who played at the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota from 2004 until 2015. The team's previous owners (Minnesota Sports & Entertainment) who also own the NHL's Minnesota Wild purchased the rights to the inactive Montreal Express team on August 10, 2004. The name Swarm was selected over Thrill, Rush and Bullheads on October 25, 2004.
|Based in||St. Paul, Minnesota|
|Arena||Xcel Energy Center|
|Colors||Yellow, Blue, White|
|Owner||John and Andy Arlotta|
|Head coach||Joe Sullivan|
|General manager||John Arlotta|
|Local media||KARE, KFAN (AM), KXXR|
On July 16, 2008, John J. Arlotta and his son Andy Arlotta were officially announced as the team's new owners. On May 22, 2015, The Swarm announced that they would be relocating for the 2016 NLL Season. On May 29, they announced that they would play in Duluth, Georgia, for the 2016 season as the Georgia Swarm. 
The Minnesota Swarm played their first exhibition game on December 10, 2004 against the Colorado Mammoth. The team drew over 14,000 fans — a record for an NLL preseason game, though most of the tickets were free. The Swarm's first regular season game was in Rochester against the Knighthawks on January 1, 2005, in which the Swarm won 12-11. Craig Conn scored the first goal in franchise history. Their first home regular season game was January 21, 2005 against the Buffalo Bandits. The coach of the team for the first season was Mike Simpson and the general manager was Marty O'Neill.
Forward Craig Conn and defenseman Ryan Cousins were named reserves for the East Division All-Star Team at the 2005 NLL All Star Game. Ryder Bateman ranked tied for second among NLL rookies in goals and third in scoring. The team finished the season with a 5-11 record. In August 2005, Adam Mueller was named as the head coach of the team.
The Swarm made the NLL playoffs after the 2006 season with an 8-8 record. In July 2006 Adam Mueller resigned as coach and was replaced on August 1 by Duane Jacobs. In 2007 the Swarm improved to a 9-7 record, again making the playoffs. General Manager Marty O'Neill was named NLL GM of the Year.
As a promotional stunt for the 2007 season opener, local sports newscaster Eric Perkins signed a one-game contract to play for the Swarm. Commercials were aired on NBC showing Perkins at a news conference taunting the Chicago Shamrox. He did end up getting 8 seconds of playing time in the 11-10 loss. In 2008, The Swarm announced that they would be retiring Perkins' number 66.
In Week 7 of the 2008 NLL season, the Swarm established a league record by running up a 12-0 lead before the New York Titans broke their scoreless streak in the third quarter of the contest. For the third year in a row, the Swarm improved their record over the previous season, finishing with a 10-6 record. They lost to the New York Titans in the division semi-finals, but GM Marty O'Neill was once again named NLL GM of the Year, becoming the only multiple winner of this award.
Minnesota finished the 2009 season with a 6-10 record. The team failed to make it to the playoffs for the second time in franchise history. Kevin Buchanan led all Swarm rookies in goals (22), assists (23) and points (45). He received NLL Rookie of the Week honors twice and was named to the All-Rookie Team. After serving as an assistant coach from 2008–09, Mike Lines was named as head coach of the Swarm in August 2009.
The Swarm finished the 2010 season with a 5-11 record, and advanced to the postseason where it fell 14-10 to the eventual NLL Champion Washington Stealth in the first round of the playoffs. During the 2010 season, Minnesota had three of the league's Top 10 scorers in Callum Crawford, Aaron Wilson, and Ryan Benesch. Callum Crawford also set two Swarm records by tallying 96 points and 64 assists during the season.
Improving to an 8-8 record in the 2011 season, the Swarm advanced to the playoffs and was defeated 14-8 by the Washington Stealth for the second consecutive year in the first round of the playoffs. Ryan Benesch led the league as the Top Scorer with 95 points and also led the league with 46 goals, setting a new Swarm record. Representing the Swarm in the Western Division All-Star game, Ryan Benesch and Nick Patterson were selected as starters for the team and Callum Crawford and Andrew Watt were named as reserves.
Relocation to GeorgiaEdit
On May 22, 2015, team owner John Arlotta announced that the Xcel Energy Center, home of the Swarm, did not renew the contract for the team. Instead of negotiating for a new lease, the Swarm began looking for more profitable states to relocate to.
Announced in a press release, Arlotta stated that, "The sport of lacrosse is growing at a rapid pace in Georgia and we're thrilled to bring the fastest game on two feet at the professional level to the arena at Gwinnett Center." Arlotta also added: "We have to be on a forward trajectory," and "We need to find an arena that works better for an individual owner."
The Swarm announced on May 29 that they would be relocating to Georgia for the upcoming 2016 NLL season. The Swarm will now play in the 13,000-seat Arena at Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Georgia, as the Georgia Swarm.
Movement to bring the NLL back to Minnesota
On May 23, 2015 an effort was launched by fans of the former Minnesota Swarm called 'Bring back the NLL to Minnesota'. Its purpose was to express discontent with the league and owners of the Swarm for moving the team, and to rally supporters to bring a new NLL team to the Twin Cities.
Awards and honorsEdit
|2012||Andrew Suitor||Transition Player of the Year|
|John Arlotta||GM of the Year|
|Joe Sullivan||Les Bartley Award|
|Andy Arlotta||Executive of the Year Award|
|Jake Elliott||Tom Borrelli Award |
|2011||Ryan Benesch||NLL Scoring Title |
|2009||John J. Arlotta||Executive of the Year |
|2008||Marty O'Neill||GM of the Year |
|Tom Garrity||Executive of the Year |
|Ryan Cousins||Defensive Player of the Year |
|Craig Point||Rookie of the Year |
|2007||Marty O'Neill||GM of the Year |
|Ryan Cousins||Defensive Player of the Year |
- As Minnesota Swarm
|2005||Eastern||5-11||5th||2-6||3-5||188||231||Mike Simpson||Missed playoffs|
|2006||Eastern||8-8||4th||3-5||5-3||158||171||Adam Mueller||Lost in division semifinals|
|2007||Eastern||9-7||3rd||4-4||5-3||200||207||Duane Jacobs||Lost in division semifinals|
|2008||Eastern||10-6||2nd||6-2||4-4||199||176||Duane Jacobs||Lost in division semifinals|
|2009||Western||6-10||5th||2-6||4-4||174||198||Duane Jacobs||Missed playoffs|
|2010||Western||5-11||4th||3-5||2-6||189||201||Mike Lines||Lost in division semifinals|
|2011||Western||8-8||2nd||5-3||3-5||187||180||Mike Lines||Lost in division semifinals|
|Lost in division finals|
|2013||Western||7-9||5th||5-3||2-6||219||202||Joe Sullivan||Lost in division finals|
|2014||Eastern||4-14||5th||2-7||2-7||180||219||Joe Sullivan||Missed playoffs|
|2015||Eastern||6-12||4th||3-6||3-6||185||226||Joe Sullivan||Missed playoffs|
|2006||Division Semifinal||Minnesota 10||Buffalo 11|
|2007||Division Semifinal||Minnesota 8||Buffalo 14|
|2008||Division Semifinal||New York 11||Minnesota 8|
|2010||Division Semifinal||Minnesota 10||Washington 14|
|2011||Division Semifinal||Washington 14||Minnesota 8|
|2012||Division Semifinal||Minnesota 14||Colorado 10|
|Division Final||Edmonton 15||Minnesota 3|
|2013||Division Semifinal||Minnesota 20||Toronto 11|
|Division Final||Minnesota 10||Rochester 12|
|Loose Balls||Jordan MacIntosh||197||2013|
Head coaching historyEdit
- "Swarm Introduce New Ownership". NLL.com. July 16, 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-21.
- "Swarm announce relocation to Metro-Atlanta area". NLL.com. May 29, 2015.
- "Marty O'Neill Named GM of the Year". NLL.com. May 3, 2007. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
- "Eric Perkins Jersey to be retired". MNSwarm.com. Retrieved 2008-03-04.
- Chavez, Bob (March 4, 2008). "Swarm to retire jersey of a legend". NLLInsider.com. Retrieved 2008-03-04.
- "Minnesota routs New York, 16-9". NLL.com. February 8, 2008. Archived from the original on February 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-14.
- "Marty O'Neill Named GM of the Year". NLL.com. May 8, 2008. Archived from the original on May 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
- "Swarm announce intention to relocate for 2016". NLL.com. May 22, 2015.
- "Swarm lacrosse team moving to Atlanta". StarTribune.com. Retrieved 2015-05-29.
- "Swarm's Suitor wins Transition Player of the Year". NLL.com. 2012-05-15. Archived from the original on 2012-05-19. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
- "Minnesota Swarm's John Arlotta wins General Manager of the Year Award". NLL.com. May 8, 2012. Archived from the original on June 15, 2012. Retrieved May 8, 2012.
- "Swarm's Joe Sullivan wins Bartley Award". NLL.com. May 9, 2012. Archived from the original on May 12, 2012. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
- "Minnesota Swarm's Andy Arlotta wins Executive of the Year Award". NLL.com. June 5, 2012. Archived from the original on January 4, 2013. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
- "Jake Elliott wins Borrelli Award". NLL.com. June 6, 2012. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
- "2011 Regular Season - All Players". NLL.com. Archived from the original on 2011-09-03. Retrieved 2011-09-07.
- "John J. Arlotta Named Executive of the Year". NLL.com. May 6, 2009. Archived from the original on May 9, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-06.
- "Tom Garrity Named Executive of the Year". NLL.com. May 6, 2008. Archived from the original on May 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-06.
- "Cousins Named Edge Defensive Player of the Year". NLL.com. May 12, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
- "Point Named Rookie of the Year". NLL.com. May 13, 2008. Archived from the original on May 17, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-13.
- "Cousins named Defensive Player of the Year". NLL.com. May 1, 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-01.