Welcome to Week eleven of the 2019-20 NLL season, y’all!
Week eleven features five games from Friday through Sunday. The week kicks off on Friday as the Buffalo Bandits take on the Vancouver Warriors on the road. Saturday will see Saskatchewan host Colorado and Calgary host New York. On Sunday, Vancouver will travel to Rochester and Buffalo will travel to Toronto.
Colorado at Saskatchewan will the NLL Game of the Week, FREE to watch on B/R Live, Twitter, and Facebook.
Can Vancouver Keep Rolling?
The Vancouver Warriors were sitting at 1-4 just two weeks ago. But have since started to put all the pieces together and now sit at 3-4 and in third place in the West Division. Over the past two weeks they have taken down the Colorado Mammoth and the New England Black Wolves, who have both looked like two of the best teams in the league at times this year.
Vancouver has the horses to get it done on the offensive end with guys like Keegan Bal and Mitch Jones leading the way. They also have immense depth with Jordan McBride, Logan Schuss, and others that can seemingly step up at anytime. Also, being able to get some D guys like Sam Clare and Matt Beers be a threat in the transition game has done wonders for them, as well.
The one area where Vancouver has seemed to lack the most over the past few years is defense. But after their performance the past two weekends, many are wondering if their back end is finally coming around. With Eric Penney as the bonafide starter in net they have consistency at the most important position in the sport. Combine that with how this Warriors defense has progressed this year, despite losing Nik Bilic to an injury in game one, it’s no wonder this team has looked better than they every have.
While playing at home against Buffalo on Friday and on the road against Rochester won’t be easy, Vancouver will be looking to keep the momentum going and stay on the right track.
Rivalry out West
In a showdown between the top two teams in the West Division, rivals Colorado and Saskatchewan will be fighting for the season series on Saturday night.
The two squads have split their first two meetings with Saskatchewan winning the first game 9-7 and Colorado winning the last game, which was just three weeks ago, 12-6. Neither contest saw the home team take home the victory.
Saskatchewan comes into this contest looking to get revenge for that 12-6 loss two weeks ago and to get some serious energy going after two consecutive bye weeks. Colorado is looking to get back to their winning ways after getting beat in overtime against Buffalo two weeks ago and then losing 17-10 last weekend against the San Diego Seals in Las Vegas.
The first game between these two was a defensive battle and the second saw Saskatchewan breakdown in all aspects and Colorado took full advantage and ran away with the victory. This third and final regular season meeting between these two could end up going either way, especially considering how unpredictable this season has been.
Can Buffalo Extend Their Streak?
Since starting the season 1-1 the Buffalo Bandits have won four straight games, including two consecutive overtime contest against the Colorado Mammoth and Rochester Knighthawks.
After moving to 5-1 last weekend, the Bandits will be looking to extend their winning streak to six games with two games this weekend. And while playing on the road at Vancouver on Friday and at Toronto on Sunday isn’t going to be an easy task, the Bandits have the horses to get past both squads, who are both riding pretty high right now.
Buffalo’s offense has become increasingly more balanced as the season has progressed, which has helped propel them past some pretty tough defenses this season. Additionally, any team that has Matt Vinc in between the pipes has a chance to win on any given night.
This could be a big weekend for Buffalo is they are able to put all the pieces together for both games against Vancouver and Toronto, and pull out wins.
Week Eleven Schedule
Friday, February 7th
10:30pm ET: Buffalo @ Vancouver
Saturday, February 8th
8:30pm ET: Colorado @ Saskatchewan
9:30pm ET: New York @ Calgary
Sunday, February 9th
2:00pm ET: Vancouver @ Rochester
3:00pm ET: Buffalo @ Toronto