IL Indoor’s Brian Shanahan has released his updated NLL Power Rankings following a two-game weekend in Week 10. With six games on the schedule coming up in Week 11, and no fewer than four games in any weekend for the rest of the season, the playoff race is heating up with a ton of action on deck for lacrosse fans looking to get their fix.
“There were only two games in the National Lacrosse League this weekend,” Shanahan writes. “On Friday night, the Toronto Rock once again showed that they are the class of the NLL. The Rock got 11 points (3+8) from Rob Hellyer and eight points (4+4) from Stephan Leblanc as Toronto rolled over the Colorado Mammoth by a final of 17-9. The only reason the Rock might consider a future without Garrett Billings is because Toronto’s offence has not been this good since 2005 when Colin Doyle, Blaine Manning and Josh Sanderson each scored over 100 points.
“In the other game of the weekend, Daryl Veltman scored four goals, including the overtime winner as his Calgary Roughnecks defeated the Edmonton Rush, in Edmonton, by a score of 12-11. It’s a fine line between winning and losing in the NLL. Earlier in the season Calgary found away to lose every close game. Maybe their luck is changing.”
1) Toronto Rock (9-1): The Toronto Rock are looking real good. They are tops in team defence, power play, penalty kill, and second in team offence. The only place where Toronto is hurting is on the faceoff circle. They were 6 of 31 on Friday and that bodes the following question; is the importance of faceoffs overrated in the NLL or would Toronto be that much scarier if it were winning its share? I’m not sure of the answer but at this time I would not take out any of Toronto’s defenders for a straight up FOGO. Next weekend, the Rock have a home-and-home weekend against the Buffalo Bandits starting in Buffalo Friday night.
3) Edmonton Rush (4-4): Edmonton lost its second-straight game, both at home, and both in overtime. This week, it was the Calgary Roughnecks defeating the Rush by a score of 12-11. Edmonton played a lot better this week than it did last weekend but suddenly next weekend’s game, against the Vancouver Stealth, has become a first-place battle.
6) Colorado Mammoth (4-5) (-1): After starting the season with three-straight wins, the Colorado Mammoth have gone 1-5 and took a bit of a beatdown at the hands of the Toronto Rock, losing 17-9. The game got away from the Mammoth in the second quarter and they never were able to get closer than three goals. Next week the Mammoth will host the Minnesota Swarm on Sunday.
7) Calgary Roughnecks (2-7) (+2): Maybe the lacrosse gods have stopped punishing Calgary Roughnecks as they finally ended up on the winning side of a close battle. The Roughnecks defeated their Alberta rival, the Edmonton Rush, by a 12-11 OT score. Despite their terrible (0-6) start to the season, each of the three teams ahead of the Roughnecks only have two more wins. Next Saturday, the Roughnecks host another tough team, the Rochester Knighthawks.