What to Watch: NLL Week Three

(Photo Courtesy of Toronto Rock)

Welcome to week two of the 2019-20 NLL season, Y’all! 

Every team in the league will have played at least one game following this weekend. Just as it was last week, every game on the docket this week will go down on Saturday night, but at least the times are more spaced out. Philadelphia will travel to Georgia to open the action in week three. In addition, New England will travel to Saskatchewan, Vancouver will host New York, and Toronto travels to San Diego. 

New England at Saskatchewan will be streamed on social media for FREE as part of the NLL’s new Game of The Week deal with B/R Live. Read more about this deal.

Week Three Storylines

How Will Higgins Look for Philadelphia? 

The Philadelphia Wings will open their season on the road against the Georgia Swam this weekend. And while Philadelphia did beat Georgia late last season, things will be a lot different this time around with Georgia being fully healthy and Philadelphia having a new man in between the pipes. 

Zach Higgins will be the primary starter for the first time in his career this season after being traded by Buffalo over the summer. However, he does have experience as a starter for his time in Buffalo and Minnesota. The question for Philadelphia coming into this season is how effective can Higgins be, especially considering how poorly this Philadelphia defense played as a whole last season.

Making your first start in goal for a new team against this electric Georgia offense is no easy task. If Higgins can get off to a hot start this weekend it could mean he is the guy for Philly. And if he doesn’t, many will peg this trade as a short-sided decision by the Wings’ front office. 

Robert Church vs Callum Crawford

While this Saskatchewan-New England game this present some very interesting storylines, including the fact that New England beat Saskatchewan last season, perhaps none is bigger than the fact that this matchup features two of the league’s top lea scorers, thus far. 

In game one, Robert Church caught fire as he helped lead the Rush to victory over the Mammoth. Church was in on eight of Saskatchewan’s nine goals in that week one victory. Last week, Callum Crawford put up similar numbers in New England’s road victory in Toronto. Crawford put up seven points (3G/4A) and was part of seven of New England’s 12 goals in the win. 

Both of these guys have been stellar through their team’s first games of the season. As New England travels to Saskatchewan this weekend, the questions is will Church and Crawford be able to similar performances as we have seen thus far, and if so, who can put up more points? 

Is It The Rock Bottom Bowl?

Just two weeks into the season is it fair to call this matchup between New York and Vancouver the Rock Bottom Bowl? Probably not, and both of these teams will get better as the season matures. However, neither looked good in their season debuts and not many have out of this world expectations for them anyway. 

The fact of the matter is, both New York and Vancouver will be looking to bounce back after both paying pretty poorly in their openers. Judging by how each team has looked thus far, it may be a matter of whoever gets their offense going first wins this game. And if anyone has an edge here, it is certainly Vancouver, as New York- an expansion team- seemed to still be trying to get their chemistry going in their loss last week. 

Dawson Returns to San Diego

“Dangerous” Dan Dawson had a bounce-back season last year with the San Diego Seals in their franchise’s inaugural year. Now, a year later, the Oakville, ON native has come home and is now with the Toronto Rock. 

When Dawson and the Rock come to San Diego this weekend it will be the first time he has faced the Seals since leaving over the offseason. And after both San Diego and Toronto took very tough losses in week two, you can bet that both of these teams want to come out firing and get their first win. 

Week Three Schedule

Saturday, December 14th

7:00pm ET: Philadelphia @ Georgia

8:30pm ET: New England @ Saskatchewan

10:00pm ET: New York @ Vancouver

10:00pm ET: Toronto @ San Diego

All games can be streamed on Bleacher Report (B/R) Live. And as previously mentioned, New England @ Saskatchewan will also be streamed for FREE on Twitter and Facebook.

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