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Premier Lacrosse League Helped Shape The Underground

By Kyle Bennett

Two years ago today, the Rabil brothers took the lacrosse world by storm and officially announced the beginning of the Premier Lacrosse League. A calculated risk for Paul Rabil to take, having found tons of success during his time in Major League Lacrosse, went all in to allow a league to be for the players and by the players.

Since starting Underground Sports Philadelphia in February of 2018, we’ve taken a number of calculated risks that could have flopped, but instead found rapid success, most notably our lacrosse podcast, Outside The Box. The growth of our show has been due to the PLL coverage we’ve been able to provide to our listeners and followers. From the players interviews we’ve been able to land, to in-person coverage of tour stops in 2019, to branding ourselves and networking with some absolutely incredible humans.

So on this 2nd birthday for the PLL, I figured I’d highlight some big moments the league has delivered that have changed the landscape of our lacrosse coverage, the sport in general, and a few odds and ends.

For the Players, By the Players

The moniker of the league since inception, the PLL has been predicated on making their league the first of its kind and having player input, decisions, and branding be one of the many landscape altering foundations of the league. The Outside The Box Podcast also follows that ideal, as we strive to be a mouthpiece and a platform for the players in this game we love to be able to have an unfiltered gateway to the fans. From Greg Gurenlian, to Ryan Ambler, to Joe Nardella, the connections the PLL has allowed us to make for our show has been unbelievable. The amount of growth since the first time we even mentioned the league on a show has been astronomical and the relationships that have evolved into family-esque bonds with players and coaches around the league has really changed our approach to covering the game in so many facets.

It also goes without saying that a number of coaches have been absolutely incredible humans to collaborate with. Nat St. Laurent and Andy Towers from the beginning have backed our brand and believed in our content. Then leading into the 2020 season, the FIRST interview that Waterdogs LC Head Coach Andy Copelan did after being named to the position was on the Outside The Box Podcast. And to see one of our OGs, Chris Collins, be named as an Assistant Coach on the Redwoods LC coaching staff was a moment we’ll never forget. Between the constant support and interactions from players and coaches in the league, we wouldn’t be what we are today without them.


As most of our OTB listeners know, I’m extremely new to the sport of lacrosse. I never played growing up and was introduced to the professional game via the National Lacrosse League first, so I had no clue what was in store for me with the professional field game. From the moment I sat down in the press box area at Red Bull Arena on June 8, 2019, I knew I was going to be hooked on this sport for life.

I’ve learned more about the field game than I could have ever imagined from the up close interactions at tour stops, listening to players talk about their game whether it be on OTB or other platforms, and even the social media involvement the PLL provides. Field Lacrosse 101’s class description should just be “Premier Lacrosse League”.

Not only have I learned about the ins and outs of how the game is played, but covering the PLL has also introduced me to the “why”. Understanding the history and story of the medicine game that the Natives shared with everyone is extremely important to me and how I approach covering the sport. Knowing the Creator’s Game story and truly knowing why so many professionals, especially of Native descent, play the game we all love opens up a whole new realm of how one can watch, dissect, and discuss the sport of lacrosse.

Follow Your Dreams

Starting a company from the ground up takes patience, determination, support, guidance, and knowing how to build, adapt, and grow. In a lot of ways, the PLL and Underground Sports Philadelphia have a lot in common. Both entities started in 2018, both have a team of driven individuals who take their talents to new levels each and every day, and we both share the common goal of delivering for our respective audiences.

This sport has given me friendships that will last a lifetime, listener interactions on a podcast that I was nervous about from the start due to my lack of knowledge on launch day, and a community that always looks forward to what we do next. This whole journey in the lacrosse world wouldn’t be possible without the dedication and hard work from Dom Pontari, Alex McIntyre, and most recently our listener turned intern, Harrison “Harry The K” Krementz.

If you see an opportunity to change the landscape of what you’re currently doing in life, want to do in life, or anything in between, go and seize the opportunity that’s in front of you because it could result in some life changing moments that you’ll never forget.

All in all, a big shoutout and thank you to Paul and Mike Rabil for believing in a vision, assembling a team to help execute said vision, and allowing a couple of aspiring media members from South Jersey to cover a kickass sports league from the jump. Oh yeah, the invitation to come on the podcast is still open and there for the taking gentlemen.

Happy PLL Day, everyone.

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