National Lacrosse League Power Rankings: Week 3

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Well it now feels like the NLL is fully underway. There were 6 games this weekend and every team played at least once. Even though most teams have only played twice, there are only two teams still undefeated and only one team ( the Minnesota Swarm) is winless. Highlights this weekend included the Edmonton Rush demolishing the Mammoth 17-6 on George St. Pierre night in Edmonton. In Vancouver, BC fans got to see Vancouver play their first home game in the NLL since 2004. Tyler Richards made 45 saves to ensure the home fans a victory as the Stealth won by a score of 8-5 against the Minnesota Swarm. Finally is there anyone who was watching the Buffalo Bandits against the Philadelphia Wings who didn’t believe John Tavares would get the winning goal? In a game that made you forget his age, Tavares had 5 goals, including the overtime winner, to lead Bandits to their second victory in the weekend.
Let’s check out week 3’s Power Rankings.

1(1)

Rochester Knighthawks
2-0
The defending champs defeated the Philadelphia Wings 13-9 on at home on Saturday behind an 8 point night for Cody Jamison. So far, the Knighthawks have started their season in the manner that they finished last year. They look like champions. Next week the Knighthawks will host the Toronto Rock.

2(2)

Edmonton Rush
2-0
The Edmonton Rush look scary good this weekend as they demolished the Colorado Mammoth 17-6. They won their first game without a goal from 2013 rookie of the year Mark Matthews. This weekend we found out how dangerous they are when they are firing on all cylinders as Matthews scored 5 goals and 4 assists. Next week the Rush will host their Alberta rival Calgary Roughnecks for the first time this season.
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3(9)

Buffalo Bandits
2-1
Making the biggest jump of the week are the Buffalo Bandits who made an impressive comeback against the Toronto Rock defeating them 12-10 on Friday and then pulled off an overtime victory in Philadelphia Wings after the Wings made a big comeback. On Sunday the great one, John Tavares, scored 5 goals including the OT winner. Next week the Bandits will travel to Colorado on Saturday.

4(4)

Toronto Rock
1-1
The Toronto Rock got off to a great start against the Bandits on Friday taking a 6-2 half time lead. However once Buffalo got on a roll the Rock were not able to stem tide and Buffalo scored the next 6 goals and then defeated the Rock 12-10. Toronto’s next game doesn’t get any easier as they travel to Rochester on Saturday.

5(4)

Vancouver Stealth
1-1
The Vancouver Stealth were not overwhelming in their 8-5 victory over the Minnesota Swarm but they got playoff goaltending from Tyler Richards as they were outshot 50 – 33. The Stealth have a busy weekend comig up as they host Colorado on Friday and then travel to Calgary on Saturday.

6(6)

Calgary Roughnecks
1-1
Even though Shawn Evans (0 goals, 3 assists) and Curtis Dickson (1 goal, 1 assist) had quiet nights, the Calgary Roughnecks got a home opening victory over the Colorado Mammoth 13-11. Calgary will have a big weekend next week when they travel North to play the red hot Edmonton Rush and then head home to meet the Vancouver Stealth.

7(7)

Philadelphia Wings
1-2
The Wings lost both games this weekend -13-9 against Rochester and 12-11 against the Bandits in overtime. In both games the Wings fell behind early but rallied to make a game of it. They will hope to rebound next weekend when they play a home and home against the Minnesota Swarm.

8(3)

Minnesota Swarm
0-2
For the second week in a row the Minnesota Swarm outshot their opponents by a wide margin but for the second week in a row their offence was stifled as the Swarm were defeated 8-5 by the Vancouver Stealth. Minnesota has averaged 5.5 goals in their two losses and will hope to get a break through game when they play Philadelphia twice next weekend including the Swarm’s home opener on Sunday.

9(8)

Colorado Mammoth
1-3
The Mammoth were in the game on Friday (13-11 loss to Calgary) but they didn’t show up against the Rush on Saturday as they were spanked 17-6. Coach Hamley must be hoping that his young goaltenders (Tye Belanger and Dillon Ward) can shake off the losses – especially Saturday`s – because they have another two games coming up. They are at Vancouver Friday and return home to play the Bandits on Saturday.
A longtime TV analyst for lacrosse, Shanny calls games for TSN. Shanny won five Mann Cups as a player and is the voice of boxla in Canada. Email him at brian.shanahan@nllinsider.com or follow him at @sbdshanny.

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