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GAME PICKS: NLL Week 12

A trio of games set up Week 12 in the National Lacrosse League this Saturday evening. Each battle has its own important storylines as we creep closer to the playoffs.

 

A Knighthawks victory tightens up an already crowded East, while a Banditland “W” gives Buffalo a bit of breathing room atop the division. Calgary is arguably the hottest team in the NLL and are headed into one of the toughest places to play in Saskatoon. In the late contest, Vancouver looks to play spoiler as New England tries to tie Toronto for second place.

 

NLL staff members Andy McNamara, Tyson Geick, Pat Gregoire, Ashley Docking, and Brian Shanahan deliver their game predictions every week.

 

Send us your picks @NLL on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook using the specific game hashtags for each match-up below.

 

Rochester Knighthawks (4-6) at Buffalo Bandits (6-3)- Saturday, 7:30pm ET

 

Andy

I love the battle of upstate New York! Throw the records out, these two franchises always bring it. This is a very important divisional matchup as Rochester needs to extend their win streak to three to keep pace in the East. Buffalo is well rested off the bye and has been a force themselves now sitting in first place.

 

I believe the Knighthawks momentum for knocking off the powerhouse Rush carries over.

 

Pick: Knighthawks

 

Tyson

A close one here, as both teams are on fire right now. I’ll be interested to see who the Bandits start in goal, and I think that could be the difference maker in this game.

 

Pick: Bandits

 

Pat

This one is a coin flip for me with how well each team has played. Rochester is flying high coming off a huge win against Saskatchewan while Buffalo is coming off the bye week. I just have a feeling the Bandits will continue their winning ways and improve to 4-1 at home.

 

Pick: Bandits

 

Ashley

Pick: Knighthawks

 

Shanny

Pick: Bandits

 

Tweet @NLL using #ROCvsBUF

 

Calgary Roughnecks (4-5) at Saskatchewan Rush (8-2)- Saturday, 8:30pm ET

 

Andy

Usually three things are certain in life- death, taxes, and the Rush don’t lose two-in-a-row. However, the roll Calgary is on breaks this rule. I see their phenom goaltender Christian Del Bianco stifling Saskatchewan’s attack enough to squeak out a low scoring slug fest.

 

Pick: Roughnecks

 

Tyson

They suffered their most convincing loss of the season last weekend, but they’re back on home floor and I see this team playing with some serious fight as they try to clinch a playoff spot.

 

Pick: Rush

 

Pat

Another really tough pick here. Calgary has been buzzing as of late lead by their young elite netminder Christian Del Bianco while Saskatchewan is coming off just their second loss of the season. I think this one is close, but I can’t see the Rush losing two weeks in a row.

 

Pick: Rush

 

Ashley

Pick: Rush

 

Shanny

Pick: Rush

 

Tweet @NLL using #CGYvsSAS

 

New England Black Wolves (4-4) at Vancouver Stealth (1-9)- Saturday, 10pm ET

 

Andy

On paper this is the best chance Vancouver’s had to collect that elusive second win in quite some time. New England was off to a hot 4-1 start to the season before sliding down to .500. I’m a big Johnny Powless fan, and if he can return to his offensive form from a couple years ago then this Black Wolves offense just got a lot more dangerous.

 

Until the Stealth prove they can earn another victory I just can’t pick them at 1-9.

 

Pick: Black Wolves

 

Tyson

This one really could go either way. We’ll see if the addition of Johnny Powless helps New England get some more offense.

 

Pick: Black Wolves

 

Pat

The Stealth’s season looks to have already slipped out of their hands, while the Black Wolves are still in a playoff push. This game means more to New England so I think they come out with a “W” to stay in the mix in the East division playoff hunt.

 

Pick: Black Wolves

 

Ashley

Pick: Black Wolves

 

Shanny

Pick: Black Wolves

 

Tweet @NLL using #NEvsVAN

 

 

Make sure to check out my 1-on-1 interview with NLL commissioner Nick Sakiewicz here: https://t.co/qnoXZjpFFo

 

Andy McNamara has been a play-by-play commentator for the NLL on TSN, NLLTV.com, and world lacrosse tournaments since 2011. He’s also a sport talk host and anchor on TSN 1050 sports radio. Follow Andy on twitter @AndyMc81.

 

 

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