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NLL Week 12 Preview

Editor’s note:  Yes, it’s Friday April 1, 2011, but NO, Connor’s picks last week were not April Fools Jokes. They were just really bad. His worst week of picking all season. That’s just embarrassing. Did he go 0-for?  I think so…

Washington vs. Toronto (game is on TSN)

This is a big game for both teams. Can the seemingly unbeatable Rock bounce back from a tough loss after a two week break? Can the defending Champs come together at the homestretch and be the Champions of old? Toronto is undefeated at home and after a tough loss, to West leading Calgary, you can expect them to be “working harder” this week. Expect this well coached team to bounce back in all aspects of their game. Washington is .500 and have clinched a playoff spot. However, do not expect them to float the rest of the season into playoffs. 6-6 is not where this team wants to be.

Rabil Minnesota Swarm Washington Stealth NLL lax lacrosse
Rabil on TV more? Ok! Photo Courtesy NLL.com and Richard Olson

The Stealth, much like many other teams, are looking at these last few games in the regular season as time to focus and come together. This will be an emotional battle. Not necessarily because of last years championship game, but because of the importance of this game for each team and what it means to each to to win this game entering into the playoffs. Based on the face where the game is being played. Win – Toronto (Connor picks Toronto. uh oh)

Colorado vs. Edmonton

This is the first of three match-ups that will see the Rush and Mammoth square off face-to-face in the next two weeks. More so than any other game this weekend, this game has the largest playoff implications. These two teams will be battling for the fourth and final playoff spot in the west. Toss in a a trade at the dead-line, a curse, and this game just got that much more entertaining. Colorado had not won a game at home since trading Gavin Prout to the Rush in 2009.

Two weeks ago, the Mammoth traded back for Prout and last week finally won a home game, much to the pleasure of one of the best crowds in the NLL. A coincidence, I think not… Last week, Zack Greer scored a game high 5 goals, including the game winner, against his former team, Minnesota to keep his new teams playoff hopes alive. These two teams seemed to have mad the moves necessary to create the chemistry necessary to make the push. The question is, who will push harder? This one is a toss up. Just cuz, Win – Colorado (Connor goes with Edmonton. He likes their fight!)

Minnesota vs. Calgary

The Roughnecks were fortunate enough not to fall victim of the terrible layoff most teams suffered in the previous weeks this season. Calgary took advantage of a Toronto team last week that did have he dreaded two week layoff. In front of a great home crowed and on national television in Canada (TSN2) Calgary beat the Rock in the NLL’s best of match-up. Without that lay-off the Roughnecks timing and confidence is at an all-time high. A perfect example of this would be reflected in Calgary’s own, Jeff Shattler, who is receiving early MVP talks. Minnesota is coming off an emotional one-point loss to Edmonton. Needless to say, the arguably best team in the league pulls out the win handedly. Win – Calgary (Connor goes with Minnesota.  It’s time!)

Saturday April 2 2011

Toronto vs. Philadelphia

The last two outings between TO and Philly didn’t fair to well for Philly. Two games this weekend is favorable for Toronto after a lackluster performance last weekend that no one was happy with. The Wings, winless in their last 4 have still to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Toronto sweeps series. Win – Toronto (Connor says Toronto wins)

Calgary vs. Minnesota

See above! Unforeseen injuries Calgary rides the wave of success into Minny. Win – Calgary (Connor also goes with Cal)

Rochester vs. Boston

Boston Buffalo NLL Lacrosse Boston Buffalo NLL Lacrosse
Casey Powell on the move.

Boston NEEDS this win! Rochester NEEDS this win! There is a theme this week and its playoff time if you couldn’t tell. Going 0-2 last week killed the B’s and a must needed “bounce-back-weekend” looms, especially being winless in their last 4. Rochester has been up and down all season. Regardless, of home or away, the K-Hawks are all over the board.The depth and experience come to focus for the Blazers. Win – Boston (Connor is going to keep picking Boston If you’re gonna be wrong, be consistent!)

Washington vs. Buffalo

Buffalo has 4 wins in their last 4 match-ups and are also 4-1 at home. Washington has been on the road all weekend… I am torn on this pick. If Washington goes winless this weekend, they win the remaining 2 games of the season ending 8-8. Win – Buffalo  (Connor also got with the Bandits)