Will the Roughnecks Regain the Lead in the West Division?

With the Calgary Roughnecks finishing second in the west for the first time in three seasons, they look to get back to their winning way’s this January and this is how.

Mike Poulin, the undisputed number one goalie. He has his moments where any simple shot seems to go in (but really, which goalie doesn’t) He was acquired in a trade from the now defunct Boston Blazers franchise and has been a work horse since. Signing a two year deal back in July to come back to Calgary, he played in every game last year amassing a 12-5 record in the regular season and a 4-1 playoff record leading the team to a West finals upset of the Edmonton Rush then losing in the extra “game” in the finals versus the Rochester Knighthawks. Poulin’s .768 save pct isn’t the strongest in the league and the team won’t dispute that but head coach Curt Malawsky has always said it’s not the amount of saves Poulin will make but the timing of them, which came to fruition in the West finals after shutting down a potent Rush offence to end their season in the extra “game”. Also, having the Rookie of the year and Goalie of the year in the WLA Frankie Scigliano as a back up it really doesn’t matter who the ‘Necks put between the pipes, the opposing team is going to have a hard time putting rubber to mesh.
The embarrassment of riches that is the Roughnecks offense, leaves nothing but options and skill for Curt Malawsky to pick on any given night and every player can perform and put the ball in the net. Dane Dobbie has been an all star the last two seasons, breaking Lewis Ratcliff’s Roughnecks team record of goals in a season by amassing 51 (previous record was 50) and perennial all star and point machine Shawn Evans who finished above 100 points again for the second straight season and only a few points short of tops in the league. With Scott Ranger missing alot of time due to work problems, Curtis “Superman” Dickson seemed to have more room to work his moves on the left side and when that didn’t work consistent point producer Jeff Shattler can answer any defender and has also proved that alone he can change the momentum of any ball game.
Karson Leung came to Calgary last year after having an impressive run with his summer squad the Victoria Shamrocks playing in the Mann Cup and having that experience plus being a rookie nobody really knew what to expect out of him, well, the junior offence star learned how to evolve his game as a strong defensemen and turn the Roughnecks transition game into a force to be reckoned with and having captain Andrew McBride as a solid work horse who has won a NLL championship to show him the ropes isn’t bad either.
We all know lacrosse is a possession sport and having the winningest faceoff man in league history Geoff Snider on your draws, it all starts there and after him missing the last few games of the year the ‘Necks had to expand their roster in a sense to find someone who can win that massive part of the game and they looked to Nolan Heavonor and Matthew Disdale to carry the load which they did quite well.
The Future of the Calgary Roughnecks looks bright and competing for first in the West and eventually their third NLL Championship looks more possible then ever.
Posted in NLL