Archive for the ‘head 2 head’ Category


Knighthawks ready to get their game on

Cody Jamieson showing off his athleticism to score against the Wings.
Cody Jamieson showing off his athleticism to score against the Wings.

With the Knighthawks set to open their preseason with an exhibition game at home tonight against the Minnesota Swarm, their players are getting excited to launch the defence of their championship. Joe Walters talked to Daily Sports Obsession about what the title meant to him, what it means that fans can get in free to tonight’s game and what to expect in the coming season. Winning with his hometown team in front of his hometown fans was a special moment for Walters. “I have never cried after winning a championship before, but after we won I was in tears” he said. “The emotions let out, knowing the path I took and how tough it was, it made it that much more meaningful.” Make the jump for more Knighthawks news with a look back at Travis Larner’s excellent story about Cody Jamieson and his thoughts on last year and the season to come. READ MORE »


Boston Blazers, Buffalo Bandits and Rochester Knighthawks, who makes it?

Win and they're in. Lose and maybe not. Can the Boston Blazers win their third straight and dictate their own post-season destiny in 2010? (Photo: Larry Palumbo)
Win and they're in. Lose and maybe not. Can the Boston Blazers win their third straight and dictate their own post-season destiny in 2010? (Photo: Larry Palumbo)

OK, so what do we know?

There’s two spots left in the East. The first two seeds (AKA first round home playoff dates) are sewn up by the Orlando Titans (who have also clinched the division title) and Toronto Rock.

The Boston Blazers, Buffalo Bandits and Rochester Knighthawks are still alive. The Philadelphia Wings have been out for a couple of weeks now. Who makes it? After the jump, check out the surviving East trio’s breakdowns with just one game left for each (Boston and Buffalo going head-to-head), and then let us know who’ll be able to start attending those pre-season summer ball sessions at this time next week. READ MORE »


National Lacrosse League power-play goals, what they mean to the bottom line

Garrett Billings leads the league with 11PPG, the Rock owning the best PP unit. (Larry Palumbo)
Garrett Billings leads the league with 11PPG, the Rock owning the best PP unit. (Larry Palumbo)

We’ve mentioned it countless times before on Insider, if you can score a man-up, more often than not, you’ll win the game. It’s that easy.

National Lacrosse League success is driven by power-play scoring, plain and simple, even though it’s probably the least exciting aspect of the game, watching five guys casually move the ball around while three or four try and hold their ground. Pass, pass, pass, pass, pass, pass, outside shot and then a gimmie goal. It’s no doubt a skill, one some teams have fine tuned to virtual perfection, just not an all that exciting one. READ MORE »


Tonight: Geoff Snider vs. Rory Smith, heavyweight title on the line

Geoff Snider, considered by most to be the best fighter in the sport, faces his biggest test, potentially tonight, when Rory Smith and the Titans welcome him back to Amway Arena. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)
Geoff Snider, considered by most to be the best fighter in the sport, faces his biggest test, potentially tonight, when Rory Smith and the Titans welcome him back to Amway Arena. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)

Over the past decade there have really only been a handful of names that have truly deserved mention as the absolute best pound-for-pound fighter in box lacrosse. Tonight’s clash between the Philadelphia Wings and Orlando Titans will be the platform for one of the league’s most anticipated rematch title fights off all time, a historical clash that could shift lacrosse’s fight club landscape like never before. READ MORE »


Titans return to Buffalo could be a rematch to remember, “We still carry a bitter taste in our mouths of what happened to Kenny Montour” – Derek Graham

The Buffalo Bandits have not forgotten how their last game against the Titans played out. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)
The Buffalo Bandits have not forgotten how their last game against the Titans played out. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)

The National Lacrosse League’s Week 9 might only have two games on the sked this weekend, but it’s one the Buffalo Bandits have probably had circled on their calendars since the league dropped their 2010 regular season schedule back in September.

It was during last year’s East Division Final that the then New York Titans rolled over the Bandits in a dominating 9-3 win that would send the Titans to the Champion’s Cup against Calgary and send Buffalo into an off-season that would see considerable changes to both their on-floor product and bench. READ MORE »


Will National Lacrosse League records fall in 2010?

Athan Iannucci's single season goal record looks pretty safe this year. (Photo: Matt J. Wiater)
Athan Iannucci's single season goal record looks pretty safe this year. (Photo: Matt J. Wiater)

The last couple National Lacrosse League seasons has seen some pretty epic record book chases, in many cases, longtime single season records falling to a new breed of box lacrosse game changers.

The Washington Stealth’s Rhys Duch of course set a new rookie mark for scoring, pushing past Gavin Prout’s former first-year best numbers, Duch posting 89-points in his first year of NLL ball in ‘09. Athan Iannucci came outta left field and broke Gary Gait’s single season goal run two-years ago, while both Dan Dawson and Josh Sanderson conquered a new helper standard last year, and Colin Doyle took a serious stab at John Tavares‘ seemingly untouchable season point total in ‘09.

Will records fall this winter? Find out who looks like they might be flirting with the books in 2010, after the jump. READ MORE »


What’s wrong with…

Pat Heim and the Wings face a Bandits team also trying to figure things out. (Photo: Matt J. Wiater)
Pat Heim and the Wings face a Bandits team also trying to figure things out. (Photo: Matt J. Wiater)

This past week I had to go to New York State for a couple of meetings.  When I was crossing the border at the Queenston-Lewiston Bridge, the U.S. customs agent asked me all the pertinent questions and then asked what I did in the past that I needed a P1 visa.  The P1 visa is needed by Canadians to play or coach with a National Lacrosse League team based in the United States.   I let him know that I have coached in the NLL for a few years with teams, including San Jose and Buffalo.  He leaned out of his window and said “What the heck is wrong with the Bandits this year?”  Before he finally let me go, I had to give him my theory.  That got me thinking not only about Buffalo but the other teams Shanny put in his Power Ranking cellar dweller group.  Not so much what is wrong, but what factors are playing into where they are right now. READ MORE »


The Battle of Alberta: Calgary Roughnecks vs. Edmonton Rush Round 14

Hanna, Alberta native Lanny McDonald saw his fair share of wars in the NHL's Battle of Alberta.
Hanna, Alberta native Lanny McDonald saw his fair share of wars in the NHL's Battle of Alberta.

The NHL has the Flames and Oilers. The CFL the Stamps and Eskies. There are even the lesser mainstream hyped Hitmen and Oil Kings, and U battles between the Dinos and Golden Bears.

But whatever way you slice it, The Battle of Alberta is one of the most heated and wildly contested rivalries in sports, Canada and beyond. And the National Lacrosse League has given birth to an Alberta battle royale of their own, the defending champion Calgary Roughnecks and the rebuilt, renewed and re-energized Edmonton Rush. Who leads the lacrosse series? What four players have played in every single Alberta war leading into tonight’s 14th meeting between the two Canadian rivals? Of the 99 ball players that have bucked horns in this series, how many have worn both the Roughneck red and Rush black? Find out, after the jump. READ MORE »


Pre-Game: Scoring on & holding up the press, Mark Steenhuis’ clutchness, and taming the Monster

Can Steenhuis be as clutch as he was in '09 during Buffalo's west swing? (Photo: Buffalo Bandits)
Can Steenhuis be as clutch as he was in '09 during Buffalo's west swing? (Photo: Buffalo Bandits)

Can the 0-2 Colorado Mammoth respond to the firing of head coach Bob McMahon and get their first win in 2010 with Steve Govett now managing their bench, the Mammoth away from home against the surging Minnesota Swarm tonight?

Can the Buffalo Bandits, also coming out of the regular season gates at 0-2 like the Mammoth, finally figure things out on offense across a full four periods of lacrosse? A tough task against the Washington Stealth’s heavily underrated defensive game (still missing Travis Gillespie, Brett Manney day-to-day after an elbow injury from Week 1) and goaltending, with or whitout legend John Tavares in the lineup.

Friday sees two of the early part of the season’s biggest underachievers against arguably the West’s two hottest clubs. Find out what teams need to do for the W, after the jump. READ MORE »


Pre-Game: Even strength scoring, power-play efficiency, and double headers on rested enemy turf

Kenny Montour gave them more than enough support last week, can the Buffalo O help him out? (Photo: Buffalo Bandits)
Kenny Montour gave them more than enough support last week, can the Buffalo O help him out? (Photo: Buffalo Bandits)

Can the Philadelphia Wings figure out how to score even strength, and maybe more importantly, take advantage of the Boston Blazers playing their second road game in as many nights, that first one a real doozy? Can the Edmonton Rush, who find themselves doing double duty away as well, get Gavin Prout and the rest of the team a win in the Colorado Mammoth’s home opener after last night’s lackluster performance in Everett. And finally, can the Buffalo Bandits get their offense back on track, with or without John Tavares, when they host the Rochester Knighthawks? READ MORE »