Photo by Sean Carpenter – UltiPhotos.com
The New York Rumble will say goodbye to one of its Ultimate icons tomorrow as Joe Anderson suits up for the last time.
Anderson informed the team that he will be moving to Colorado in the coming weeks meaning his time playing in New York has come to an end. After 14 years of playing high school, college, club and professional ultimate, the man affectionately known as “Smash” is moving on.
Anderson has been all over New York, playing for several teams, including PoNY and the Rumble. He has certainly endeared himself along the way, as former teammate Lucas Murphy used words like loyal and family to describe Anderson.
“[Joe is a] game changer. Not many players make such an impact on 3 sides of the disc; shut down D, as well as blocks and interceptions. Productive movement on offense, as well as assists and goals, and then sideline presence,” said Murphy.
Smash has made quite the impact at the professional level with New York. He has been a captain of the Rumble all three years they have existed. On top of that, in 2014, Anderson was named to the MLU All-Eastern Conference First Team Defense.
Rumble Head Coach Anthony Nuñez said, “When the Rumble first started coming together, [Rumble General Manager] Michelle [Kondracki] asked me as well as the other coaches who would be the best fit/help our team perform at its best and Joe was a no brainer. He has been one of the major faces of New York since 2001.”
It is clear that Smash enjoys being the center of attention as well. He is often seen dancing on the sidelines after scores or in between quarters for the Rumble, trying to keep his teammates loose.
“Joe has a unique, vibrant personality that he expresses outright and loves to do so on camera,” said Murphy. “Cameras and news crews from all over the world see that he has a unique personality and they all love it.”
To everyone that knows him, Smash is the ultimate teammate. Murphy explained, “Joe may waiver on which team he plays for but every NY team is important to him.”
Nuñez shared similar sentiments, saying, “Seeing Joe interact with his teammates, the fans, and the coaching staff is amazing. He is the first guy to volunteer for a clinic or make a public appearance to help promote the sport we love. He is a presence in the locker room, pumping his teammates up and always positive. With Joe, every teammates is there for a reason and he will do whatever it takes to get the best out of them on the field.”
Anderson left the door open though regarding a return. He said, “There is a chance I can play again in NY. It just might not be at the highest levels.”
For now though, there is one last chance to see Joe “Smash” Anderson play in New York. He will suit up one last time for the Rumble this Saturday at 2 pm from Belson Stadium in Queens. The team will honor him before the game. Tickets are currently on sale on the Rumble Ticketleap Page.