PRO Rugby, Denver Stampede, USA Eagle Prop Chris Baumann to ITM Wellington Lions

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Chris Baumann: Mullet Militia

WELLINGTON, NZ – A true character – and one of our favorite rugby players and people – Chris Baumann, will be heading to New Zealand after the his Denver Stampede take on the Ohio Aviators in Obetz, OH on Sunday, in the PRO Rugby Final.

The USA Rugby Men’s 15s prop will be joining the Super Rugby Hurricanes ITM squad – the Wellington Lions -on a short-term deal. We are not 100% sure of the details, yet.

For those that haven’t had the pleasure of knowing Chris, he’s a man that has toiled all over the globe and went years between opportunities with Team USA. He is a study in perseverance, hard work and has battled long and hard for his opportunities.

CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 01: Louis Stanfill #20 of the United States of America Eagles thanks fans after an International Test Match against the New Zealand All Blacks at Soldier Field on November 1, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. The All Blacks defeated the Eagles 74-6. Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images/AFP == FOR NEWSPAPERS, INTERNET, TELCOS & TELEVISION USE ONLY ==

Baumann’s also a charter member of the Lou Stanfill Mullet Militia.

The Lions are thin in the Prop Department, so with the PRO Rugby season winding up and the Stampede’s success coming in no small part from their talented front row, phone calls were made and a deal was done.

Matt_McCarthy Steve_Lewis Rugby_Wrap_UpIt’s a great situation for all involved, as PRO Rugby players continue to get attention from professional teams abroad. PRO’s Director of Rugby Steve Lewis had this to say of the Baumann deal: “I’m very excited for Chris. It’s great for him and us and we look forward to seeing more of our players signing contracts overseas.

Another player getting noticed is LangiLangi Haupeakui, who’ll be training with the Aviva Premiership Harlequins. Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.48.34 AMMake sure to check out Matt Ryan’s excellent profile of the emerging force in the back row.

200px-Wellington_Hurricanes_logoBut back to the front row and Baumann… We’ll be watching and rooting for Chris but it will be interesting to see how he gets his RV down under.

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Matt McCarthy comes to from their partner in the USA, RWU and MTM feature a stable of diverse contributors, with coverage that is both serious and with a wink. Find him on twitter: @Matt_McCarthy00