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Montour enjoys his status as All-Star

Ken Montour -- All-Star Goalie.

The Buffalo Bandits goalie is starting to think about that concept now that the actual All-Star game is less than a week away.

"It's something you don't think about too much," he said. "I guess I've been in the league for quite a while, so it's nice to go for once."

The 29-year-old knew he had gotten off to a good start in the 2009 National Lacrosse League season. Montour led the league in goals-against average entering this weekend's play. Still, he likes the idea that he'll be starting for the East in Saturday's game at the Pepsi Center in Denver.

"I think I got a letter when I got to practice, and they sent me an e-mail," Montour said. "I didn't even have to tell anybody. They all found out on their own."

Montour is a big reason why the Bandits will head into the break with the best record (7-2) in the NLL. He will be joined on the East roster by Buffalo's Mark Steenhuis, John Tavares, Chris White and Roger Vyse. No team will have more representatives at the game.

"Everyone on the team is pretty deserving," Montour said. "As a team you have to pick a couple of guys, but the whole team could go. Week after week we're battling together, and that's the important thing. It's a shame we can't bring the whole team."

There's one big minus when it comes to playing goal in an All-Star game. Such contests aren't known for rugged defensive play. The goalies usually find themselves at the far end of a shooting gallery.

"I'm not looking forward to that," Montour said. "There will be a lot of rubber and a lot of goals. I'll just try to grin and bear it -- have as much fun as I can."

The NLL will stage a skills competition on Friday night. The actual game will be at 9 p.m. Eastern time on Saturday night, with both events carried on NLL.com.

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Steenhuis was in the lineup for the Bandits against the Minnesota Swarm Saturday night. The forward suffered an undisclosed injury during the second half of last week's game against Toronto. He finished the game and took some treatment during the week. Steenhuis took some shots on his own after the team portion of Saturday morning's shootaround in HSBC Arena and said he was ready to go.

When asked if Steenhuis was close to 100 percent during Saturday's loss to Minnesota, Bandits coach Darris Kilgour responded afterwards by saying that "Mark got a little too much of 'I've got to do it.' Our offense tends to get stagnant at times, and tonight it got stagnant for a good 12 to 13 minutes." Steenhuis had four goals and two assists.

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The Bandits made one roster move this week. Cody Jacobs was signed to the practice player squad. Jacobs was removed from the active roster last week to make room for Pat McCready. . . . Minnesota had a 55-45 edge in shots on goal. . . . Bufffalo had three short-handed goals.

e-mail: bbailey@buffnews.com

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