The busiest week in the NLL has come and gone. Another overtime thriller is making this season very exciting. Only three games on the schedule this week, including the battle for the Beast of the East.
Power Rankings Week 5
(1) 1—Rochester Knighthawks (3-0) Knighthawks stay atop as they claim a 12-8 victory over the Toronto Rock. Knighthawks built a 10-4 halftime lead. Hawks were led by Cody Jamieson’s four goals and Dan Dawson’s seven assists. Knighthawks travel down the I-90 to face the Bandits on Saturday night in a battle for first place.
(2) 2—Edmonton Rush (3-0) Another dominant game by the Rush as they dominated Calgary. Mark Matthews and Curtis Knight each tallied four goals as the Rush equaled their home win total from last season. Edmonton travels to Vancouver for a Saturday night match up.
(4) 3—Buffalo Bandits (3-1) Are the Bandits for real? They went into Colorado without John Tavares and won 16-9 in a dominating performance. Dhane Smith’s four goals and Steve Priolo’s hat trick led the way. Bandits host Rochester for first place this Saturday night.
(3) 4—Toronto Rock (1-2) The Rock fell behind early to the Knighthawks at the half 10-4 and could not recover as they fell 12-8. Rock are off this week but have back to back next week as they host Vancouver on Friday and travel to Buffalo on Saturday.
(6) 5—Calgary Roughnecks (2-2) Calgary was dominated by the Rush 15-8 on Friday night, but rebounded with a 15-12 win over the visiting Stealth the following night. Curtis Dickson is struggling right now, but their goaltending is second worst in the league. (Colorado). Calgary hosts the Mammoth Saturday night.
(5) 6—Vancouver Stealth (2-2) A weekend split for the Stealth. Lewis Ratcliff’s buzzer beater gave the Stealth a 14-13 thriller in OT against Colorado. On Saturday they fell on the wrong side with a 15-12 defeat to Calgary. Vancouver will host the red hot Rush Saturday night. This could be a preview of the western conference final.
(7) 7—Philadelphia Wings (2-3) Once again the second quarter was the turning point as the Wings dropped a 11-10 decision to the Swarm Saturday afternoon on some questionable officiating that has been reviewed by the league. On Sunday the Wings got revenge by playing a full 60 minute game and defeated the Swarm 15-8. Jordan Hall 4 G, 4 A led the way, while Tracey Kelusky isn’t showing his age—can we say comeback player of the year now? Wings are off this week as they prepare for the Stealth on February 1.
(8) 8—Minnesota Swarm (1-3) Picked up their first win Saturday 11-10 over the Wings, but layed an egg in their home opener 15-8. Tyler Carlson was pulled in both games in favor of rookie Zach Higgins. Swarm are off this week as they prepare to rebound against the Mammoth when they travel to Colorado February 1.
(9) 9—Colorado Mammoth (1-5) Dropped both games this weekend. A 14-13 overtime thriller to Vancouver on Friday, and then an embarrassing loss to Buffalo 16-9 at home. Rookie Dillon Ward played the full 60 minutes Friday. But on Saturday Tye Belanger was pulled again for the fifth time this season. Colorado travels to Calgary this weekend, and with the current state of goaltenders I would think Ward gets the start.