BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Bandits re-signed forward Dhane Smith to a five-year contract, the team announced Friday.
Entering his 11th season in Buffalo off a 49-point playoff performance that garnered him 2023 NLL Finals MVP honors, Smith’s new deal locks down a cornerstone of the Bandits franchise and the team’s leading point-scorer from last year’s title-winning season.
The Bandits’ fifth pick in the 2012 draft, Smith placed second in the NLL in points scored and broke his own league record for assists in a single season in 2023 with 36 goals and 96 assists in the regular season. The Kitchener, Ontario native added another 15 goals and 34 assists in six playoff games.
The two-time NLL MVP has cemented his place in the record books of both the league and the Buffalo franchise. He set the single-season records for points (137) and goals (72) in 2016, and owns the top two spots for assists in a single season. He is third in all-time Bandits history in goals (346) and points (950) and second in assists (604) to his current head coach John Tavares.
Smith, 31, is the latest member of Buffalo’s core to sign a multi-year extension this offseason. Last week, 25-year-old forward Tehoka Nanticoke extended his tenure with a two-year contract after a season that saw him contribute 39 points in the regular season and 23 in the playoffs. Former NLL All-Rookie Ian MacKay, a strong presence in transition, re-signed last month for three years. Goaltender Matt Vinc, the NLL’s all-time leader in wins, saves and minutes played, signed a two-year deal back in August.
With the NLL season just over a month away, the Bandits will host an open practice at KeyBank Center on Saturday, Nov. 11 at 10 a.m.
Buffalo’s season begins in Albany against the FireWolves Dec. 9. Banditland will open its doors with a banner raising on Dec. 16, as the defending NLL champions square off against San Diego at KeyBank Center in their home opener.
Justin McMullen is a Western New York native who joined the News 4 team in 2023. You can read more of his work here.