Stephen Stamp from IL Indoor has posted his Three Stars of NLL Week 7 after a busy weekend which featured seven games and included highlight-reel goals, precision passing, heavy-hitting fights, big saves and primetime player performances. Check out the list below to see which players made a difference with the regular season now past the 1/3 mark in the quest for the Champion’s Cup.
“It really was a scorer’s world through the first six weeks of the 2015 National Lacrosse League season,” Stamp writes. “There are plenty of ways you could demonstrate the truth of that statement. Here at the IL Indoor NLL 3 Stars, the most obvious evidence comes in the fact that through six weeks, the 18 players honoured as one of the three stars in this space have all been forwards. And I like honouring goalies and defenders when I can to try to balance out the admiration shown to the many outstanding players in the league. But in sifting through what everyone did during the week, it’s always been plain that the top three performers came on the offensive side of the ball. That will tend to be the case because offence is so much more easily quantifiable than defence, but all 18? Well, that streak ends this week. Scroll down to see who has broken through.”
Brandon Miller, Toronto Rock
37 saves on 41 shots, .902 save percentage
Here we go! The debut of the defensive players. While Toronto’s offense overpowered the Swarm—all six forwards had at least 4 points in each game—their goaltending was excellent, too. Nick Rose played well Saturday night but it was Miller’s performance Friday that really stood out. Keep in mind that Minnesota led the Friday game 3-2 early in the second quarter and had some good chances to score more goals. Miller turned them aside to hold the fort until Toronto’s shooters started to flood the back of the Minnesota net. Even then, Miller stayed sharp, allowing the fewest goals in a game of his career.
Aaron Bold, Edmonton Rush
70 saves on 84 shots, .833 save percentage
As someone pointed out on Twitter, Bold’s save percentage on Sunday was better than Edmonton Oilers’ goalie Viktor Fasth’s save percentage Saturday night and almost beat the other Oiler goalie, Richard Bachmann’s (.848 vs .852). And Bold wasn’t playing against some team pop-gun offense; before the weekend, Colorado had been the most the most dangerous team in the league, scoring 17 or more goals in three of their four games. Lots of credit to the Rush defence, who have reasserted themselves as the best in the league, but Bold is a big part of the success that unit enjoys.
Dan Dawson (Rochester): 4g, 10a. Dawson is an elite setup man, but he’s most effective when he’s also making himself a threat to score. He took 19 shots between Rochester’s two games on the weekend; the Knighthawks would have to love it if he keeps firing around 8 to 10 times a game…Rhys Duch (Vancouver): 4g, 2a. The Stealth are getting some nice balance in the offensive end these days, but Duch is still the straw that stirs the drink on the West Coast…Cody Jamieson (Rochester): 3g, 11a. It’ll be interesting to see who’s named the Pinty’s Wingman of the Week between Leblanc, Dawson and Jammer…Mark Matthews (Edmonton): 7g, 3a. Matthews appears to have gotten his sticks tuned more to his liking. After having some early-season accuracy issues, Matthews hit the net with all 15 of his shots Friday and 11 of 14 Sunday…Kasey Beirnesand Brett Hickey (Toronto): 6g, 3a each. The pair of righties put up the exact same scoring lines in each of the Rock’s two weekend games, with 3 goals in each game. Trippy…John Grant Jr (Colorado): 5g, 3a. There wasn’t a whole lot to celebrate for the Mammoth over the weekend, but Junior continues to…