NLL Week 7 Staff Picks

Meeting for the third and final time this season, Edmonton Rush host Washington Stealth on Friday night (Photo: Richard Olson)
Meeting for the third and final time this season, Edmonton Rush host Washington Stealth on Friday night (Photo: Richard Olson)

There are five games on the schedule in week 7. On Friday, East Division leaders, the Toronto Rock (5-2) host West Division leaders the Calgary Roughnecks (4-2) in a rematch of their week 2 battle. Also on Friday, in their third meeting of the season, the Edmonton Rush (1-4) host the Washington Stealth (4-3). On Saturday, continuing their road trip, the Roughnecks face the Minnesota Swarm (2-3), who hope they can hold off the Roughnecks and continue their five-game home-win streak. The Buffalo Bandits (3-3), hoping to rebound, travel to Rochester to take on the Knighthawks (3-3), who don’t seem to have any trouble finding the back of the net lately, winning three in a row. In the last game of the weekend, the Edmonton Rush travel to Colorado; do the Mammoth (2-3) continue their pattern and pick up the win this weekend? The Philadelphia Wings have a bye week.

We need to just take a minute to give credit where credit is due – have you noticed how great Bob and Teddy’s picks have been the last 2 weeks? These guys are on fire. After a semi-decent picks last week (3-2), and 6 weeks in, you’d think this would start to get a bit easier. Not. At. All. So, this week, in honour of Valentine’s Day (yup, I’m nothing but mush on the inside), I’m picking with my heart; either who I want to win or my favourite team of the two facing off. Do I think a team other than who I picked is actually going to win? Perhaps. I’m throwing caution (and strategy, and my less than envious record) to the wind this week.

Finally a week where there were no ties in the fan picks; fans are at 10-10-6 through 6 weeks. Wanna play favourites with me fans? You can vote for who you think will win up to the scheduled start of each game. If you’d prefer to choose a team based on strategy, the guys break down their picks for you:

Calgary at Toronto
It’s the battle of former teammates in goal and Nick Rose will come out ahead in this one for the Rock. – Chavez

The Roughnecks are on the type of roll that is difficult to achieve in today’s uber-competitive NLL. I’m riding that wave till it crashes. – Stamp

The Roughnecks offence has been awesome on the road and you know they’d like nothing better than to fill the net behind Nick Rose. Riggers win a shootout at the ACC. – Pilson

As good as Calgary’s playing, they come to Toronto at an inopportune time. I see the Rock winning in a tough battle, but by a few goals. Home-floor advantage and being REALLY angry about the loss to the Swarm helps them. – Vock

Washington at Edmonton
The Rush are overdue for some good breaks and a win.– Chavez

The Rush have had a lot of success against the Stealth the last couple of years plus they’re due for a win. Can’t pick against both of those factors. – Stamp

The Rush offence isn’t setting the world on fire right now and Tyler Richards has been stellar. Not a favourable matchup for the Rush. Think they get outgunned in this one. – Pilson

Edmonton’s better than their record. I see their defense giving the Stealth some trouble and the Rush getting a much-needed win at home. – Vock

Calgary at Minnesota
Both run the ball well but I like Calgary’s front door better, especially with the way Curtis Dickson is playing lately. – Chavez

This game is a huge challenge to my wave-riding, thanks to a stat that the Swarm pointed out on their Facebook page: Minnesota has won five straight games and 11 of their last 13 at home. But combine the way the Riggers are playing with my firm belief that playing back-to-backs is a big advantage and I have to go with Calgary. – Stamp

The Swarm’s lightning fast transition game should be able to take advantage of a Riggers team playing two games in two nights. – Pilson

Tough pair of games for the Riggers. Minny’s riding high after that win last week. Could see Calgary coming in tired and worn out from travel, but surprising the Swarm. Riggers are balanced and playing very well. – Vock

Buffalo at Rochester
The Knighthawks are coming together on both ends of the floor and they looked scary good last weekend. – Chavez

Given Rochester’s dominance of the Bandits last week, it’s hard to imagine not picking them to beat Buffalo again. That kind of apparent certainty makes me nervous. Almost nervous enough to pick the Bandits. Almost. – Stamp

The Knighthawks offence is playing amazing and Matt Vinc is back on his game. The Bandits offence is nowhere near amazing right now and Anthony Cosmo isn’t getting a lot of help on the backend. This one spells lopsided Rochester win. – Pilson

Looks like the Knighthawks are moving in the right direction after last weekend’s results. Could see the Bandits stealing one here, but didn’t they already do that in Week 3? Gear side note: Cody, CP and other NLLers have been wearing some sweet Reebok Pumps on the floor. Too cool. – Vock

Edmonton at Colorado
The defense needs to get it together if the Mammoth want to get back into the race, and this is as good an opportunity as any. – Chavez

Unless Aaron Bold can stop 89.5% of the shots he faces like Tyler Richards did last week, this game should definitely be a lot closer than Colorado’s loss in Washington. I still like the Rush to take this one, though. – Stamp

Not sure how confident I am about this one, but this league is far too talented and competitive for a team like Colorado to fade out of the picture. I can’t imagine the surly tone of John Grant Jr’s message to his fellow players. Guy likes to win. Not too high on losing. – Vock

Week 7 Picks

Chavez
13-13
Stamp
17-9
Shanny
15-11
Bridgman
10-16
Jenner
13-13
O’Neill
15-11
Pilson
12-14
Vock
11-14
Friday
CAL @ TOR

WAS @ EDM
Saturday
CAL @ MIN
BUF @ ROC
EDM @ COL

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