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WK
2
Fri, Dec 9
20:30:00
Las Vegas
Panther City
Fri, Dec 9
22:00:00
Saskatchewan
San Diego
Sat, Dec 10
19:00:00
Toronto
Rochester
Sat, Dec 10
21:30:00
Vancouver
Calgary
WK
3
Fri, Dec 16
22:00:00
Calgary
Vancouver
Fri, Dec 16
22:30:00
Panther City
Las Vegas
Sat, Dec 17
19:00:00
Buffalo
Toronto
Sat, Dec 17
19:00:00
Rochester
Albany
Sat, Dec 17
19:00:00
Philadelphia
Georgia
Sat, Dec 17
19:30:00
Halifax
New York
Sat, Dec 17
20:00:00
Colorado
Panther City
WK
5
Fri, Dec 30
19:30:00
Halifax
Buffalo
Fri, Dec 30
21:00:00
San Diego
Calgary
Sat, Dec 31
21:00:00
Panther City
Saskatchewan
WK
6
Fri, Jan 6
22:30:00
Philadelphia
Las Vegas
Sat, Jan 7
19:00:00
Panther City
Rochester
Sat, Jan 7
19:00:00
Halifax
Albany
Sat, Jan 7
19:00:00
Buffalo
Georgia
Sat, Jan 7
19:30:00
Toronto
New York
Sat, Jan 7
22:00:00
Vancouver
San Diego
Sun, Jan 8
0:00:00
Calgary
Colorado
WK
7
Fri, Jan 13
18:30:00
Albany
Halifax
Fri, Jan 13
21:00:00
Saskatchewan
Colorado
Sat, Jan 14
19:00:00
Halifax
Toronto
Sat, Jan 14
19:00:00
Panther City
Philadelphia
Sat, Jan 14
19:30:00
Georgia
Buffalo
Sat, Jan 14
21:00:00
San Diego
Calgary
Sat, Jan 14
22:00:00
Las Vegas
Vancouver
Sun, Jan 15
15:00:00
Rochester
New York
WK
8
Fri, Jan 20
19:30:00
Buffalo
Rochester
Fri, Jan 20
22:30:00
Vancouver
Las Vegas
Sat, Jan 21
19:00:00
New York
Albany
Sat, Jan 21
19:00:00
Toronto
Philadelphia
WK
9
Fri, Jan 27
18:00:00
Rochester
Halifax
Fri, Jan 27
19:00:00
Buffalo
Philadelphia
Sat, Jan 28
19:30:00
Buffalo
New York
Sat, Jan 28
20:30:00
Las Vegas
Saskatchewan
Sat, Jan 28
21:00:00
Toronto
Calgary
Sat, Jan 28
21:00:00
San Diego
Colorado
Sat, Jan 28
22:00:00
Panther City
Vancouver
WK
10
Fri, Feb 3
21:00:00
Georgia
Colorado
Sat, Feb 4
18:00:00
Calgary
Halifax
Sat, Feb 4
19:00:00
New York
Toronto
Sat, Feb 4
19:00:00
Albany
Philadelphia
Sat, Feb 4
19:30:00
Rochester
Buffalo
Sat, Feb 4
22:00:00
Panther City
San Diego
Sat, Feb 4
22:00:00
Saskatchewan
Vancouver
Sat, Feb 4
22:30:00
Colorado
Las Vegas
WK
11
Fri, Feb 10
19:30:00
Toronto
Georgia
Fri, Feb 10
21:00:00
Saskatchewan
Calgary
Sat, Feb 11
19:00:00
Halifax
Rochester
Sat, Feb 11
19:30:00
Albany
New York
Sat, Feb 11
20:00:00
Vancouver
Panther City
Sat, Feb 11
21:00:00
Colorado
Calgary
WK
12
Fri, Feb 17
22:00:00
Saskatchewan
San Diego
Fri, Feb 17
22:00:00
Calgary
Vancouver
Sat, Feb 18
19:00:00
Georgia
Toronto
Sat, Feb 18
19:00:00
Las Vegas
Albany
Sat, Feb 18
19:30:00
Philadelphia
Buffalo
Sat, Feb 18
20:00:00
Colorado
Panther City
Sun, Feb 19
13:00:00
New York
Halifax
WK
13
Fri, Feb 24
21:00:00
Panther City
Colorado
Fri, Feb 24
22:30:00
Calgary
Las Vegas
Sat, Feb 25
19:00:00
New York
Rochester
Sat, Feb 25
19:00:00
Albany
Georgia
Sat, Feb 25
20:00:00
Vancouver
Saskatchewan
WK
14
Fri, Mar 3
18:30:00
Buffalo
Halifax
Sat, Mar 4
11:30:00
New York
Philadelphia
Sat, Mar 4
16:00:00
Las Vegas
San Diego
Sat, Mar 4
19:00:00
Rochester
Toronto
Sat, Mar 4
19:00:00
Georgia
Albany
Sat, Mar 4
20:00:00
Saskatchewan
Panther City
Mon, Mar 6
19:00:00
Toronto
Philadelphia
WK
15
Fri, Mar 10
19:30:00
Halifax
Buffalo
Fri, Mar 10
21:00:00
Calgary
Colorado
Sat, Mar 11
19:00:00
Albany
Toronto
Sat, Mar 11
19:30:00
Philadelphia
New York
Sat, Mar 11
20:30:00
San Diego
Saskatchewan
Sat, Mar 11
22:30:00
Vancouver
Las Vegas
Sun, Mar 12
16:00:00
Rochester
Georgia
WK
16
Fri, Mar 17
21:00:00
Saskatchewan
Calgary
Fri, Mar 17
22:00:00
San Diego
Vancouver
Sat, Mar 18
11:00:00
Georgia
Philadelphia
Sat, Mar 18
18:00:00
Toronto
Halifax
Sat, Mar 18
19:30:00
Albany
New York
Sat, Mar 18
19:30:00
Colorado
Buffalo
Sat, Mar 18
20:00:00
Las Vegas
Panther City
Sun, Mar 19
15:00:00
Philadelphia
Rochester
WK
17
Fri, Mar 24
20:30:00
San Diego
Panther City
Sat, Mar 25
19:00:00
Toronto
Albany
Sat, Mar 25
19:00:00
Halifax
Philadelphia
Sat, Mar 25
19:30:00
Georgia
New York
Sat, Mar 25
21:30:00
Calgary
Saskatchewan
Sat, Mar 25
22:00:00
Buffalo
San Diego
Sat, Mar 25
22:00:00
Colorado
Vancouver
Sat, Mar 25
22:30:00
Rochester
Las Vegas
WK
18
Fri, Mar 31
20:00:00
New York
Georgia
Fri, Mar 31
21:00:00
Las Vegas
Colorado
Fri, Mar 31
22:00:00
Calgary
San Diego
Sat, Apr 1
19:00:00
Buffalo
Toronto
Sat, Apr 1
20:00:00
Albany
Panther City
Sat, Apr 1
21:30:00
Vancouver
Saskatchewan
Sun, Apr 2
13:00:00
Georgia
Halifax
Sun, Apr 2
18:00:00
Rochester
Philadelphia
WK
19
Sat, Apr 8
19:00:00
Albany
Rochester
Sat, Apr 8
19:00:00
Saskatchewan
Georgia
Sat, Apr 8
21:00:00
Panther City
Calgary
Sat, Apr 8
21:00:00
Vancouver
Colorado
Sat, Apr 8
22:30:00
San Diego
Las Vegas
WK
20
Fri, Apr 14
21:00:00
Las Vegas
Calgary
Fri, Apr 14
21:00:00
San Diego
Colorado
Sat, Apr 15
19:00:00
Philadelphia
Toronto
Sat, Apr 15
19:00:00
Georgia
Albany
Sat, Apr 15
19:30:00
New York
Buffalo
Sat, Apr 15
21:30:00
Halifax
Saskatchewan
Sat, Apr 15
22:00:00
Panther City
Vancouver
WK
21
Fri, Apr 21
20:30:00
Calgary
Panther City
Sat, Apr 22
18:00:00
New York
Halifax
Sat, Apr 22
19:00:00
Georgia
Rochester
Sat, Apr 22
20:00:00
Toronto
Buffalo
Sat, Apr 22
21:30:00
Colorado
Saskatchewan
Sat, Apr 22
22:00:00
Las Vegas
San Diego
Sun, Apr 23
15:00:00
Philadelphia
Albany
WK
22
Sat, Apr 29
19:00:00
Philadelphia
Rochester
Sat, Apr 29
19:00:00
Buffalo
Albany
Sat, Apr 29
19:00:00
Halifax
Georgia
Sat, Apr 29
22:00:00
Colorado
San Diego
Sat, Apr 29
22:00:00
New York
Vancouver
Sat, Apr 29
22:30:00
Saskatchewan
Las Vegas
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Stories/Op-Ed

No Love Lost: Knighthawks At Bandits Rivalry Rematch

The Buffalo Bandits (4-3) host the Rochester Knighthawks (2-3) at First Niagara Center for a Thruway Rivalry rematch on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET. Watch the game on NLL LIVE in the U.S. and on TSN.ca in Canada. It’s safe to say no love will be lost between these two teams on Valentine’s Day as they meet for the second leg of their three-game season series.

The first tilt between the I-90 rivals took place in Week 5 when Buffalo fell to Rochester on the road by a score of 17-11 at Blue Cross Arena. Down 10-4 at the half, Buffalo scored seven-straight goals to take an 11-10 lead before relinquishing seven consecutive goals of their own to the Knighthawks. Rochester’s Dan Dawson led all runner with 11 points (0+11) while Dhane Smith led Buffalo with five points (2+3).

Buffalo has seen their four wins this season all come in close fashion, by three goals or fewer. Two of the team’s wins were by one goal, including last week at Calgary where they won in overtime 15-14 over the Roughnecks.

Bandits rookie Jerome Thompson netted the game winner on a screamer of a shot from the point to round out a three-point night (1+2).

“Sorry to all the fans for not shooting as much as I should,” Thompson tweeted after the game. “I think it’s about time [I shoot more].”

The Bandits and Knighthawks are certainly not strangers. In fact, these two teams know each other very well.

“It’s no secret between Buffalo and Rochester, things get pretty heated. It’s quite a rivalry,” said Bandits assistant coach Dan Teat. “We’re not hiding anything from each other. We know each other. It’s still Rochester. It’s still Buffalo. We’ll have to see who’s standing after we slug it out.”

After a grueling start to the year with two back-to-back weekends and two trips out west, Bandits transition player Jay Thorimbert is happy to stay close to home in the Northeast for a while as the team will not board a plane to play a game until April. The Bandits play either at home or close to home (Toronto or Rochester) for the team’s next seven games.

“Travel is draining on the body,” Thorimbert said. “It’ll be good to stay close to home and sleep in our own beds.”

Thorimbert has become a force at faceoffs in his time in Buffalo. So far this season, he is almost 60% on draws and has won more faceoffs than any other player in the NLL. He expects a tough and tight game this Saturday against a strong Rochester team.

“It’d be nice to get a 17-11 win of our own, to get some distance between us and not have to worry about them scoring in the last eight seconds,” Thorimbert admitted. “But I definitely think it’s going to be another tight one.”

Bandits forward Ryan Benesch is tied for the league lead in scoring with 40 points (21+19) in seven games while Knighthawks star Cody Jamieson, the 2014 NLL MVP, leads Rochester with 27 points (10+17) in five games played.

The Bandits find themselves just one game out of first place in the East. The Knighthawks are last in the East but are only two games out of first place.

The Knighthawks are coming off a tough road loss last Friday night against the Minnesota Swarm where the team fell 7-6 in overtime. Rochester’s defense has been exceptional for the last three games, only allowing one team to score in double digits (Bandits scored 11 in Week 5) and continued that run against the Swarm.

“That’s our job,” said Knighthawks defenseman Mike Kirk who recovered five loose balls and caused two turnovers against the Swarm. “We’re out there to limit the scoring chances and do what we have to do. But at the same time, we’ve got to come out with a win. If we’ve got to hold a team to six or five [goals] to get our offense going, that’s our job on the back door. We’re just going to get back to it, stick to our principles, and go into Buffalo with the same mentality.”

“It was a good battle, a tough test for us,” said Knighthawks head coach Mike Hasen about the overtime game in Minnesota. “I think we did pretty well keeping their transition in check, which is a good point on our side. The boys were working hard on that. It’s just a manner of regrouping.”

The Thruway Rivalry is always an intense matchup no matter the record. The players, the fans, and the coaches are always into these games.

“Playing against Buffalo, it’s always easy to get up for and be ready for,” Hasen said. “It’s going to be another good Eastern battle… The atmosphere in Buffalo is really good.They’re all wearing orange and they’re all screaming nice and loud and proud. It’s close enough where we do get some of our fans to come down and cheer us on as well. It’s two teams that are going to battle tooth and nail each and every time.”

The Knighthawks got off to a very slow start against the Swarm offensively, trailing 5-1 at halftime, before coming back in the third quarter. Digging an early hole in Banditland would not bode well for Rochester.

“We’ve got to come out focused and ready to move our feet and move the ball,” Hasen said. “It’s pretty simple. If the boys are doing that, they’re hard to check. If the boys are moving, we can be successful.”

Playing a pivotal role in moving the ball for the Knighthawks lately has been Rochester native & Irondequoit grad Joe Walters, who has 15 points (8+7) on the season. The last time these two teams met, Walters had a career game with seven points (5+2) including five goals.

“He’s been working real hard on his game,” Hasen said. “He works very hard week in and week out. The success is coming from a lot of that hard work and getting confidence. Guys see it and give him the ball a little more often. Now he’s comfortable about driving and taking shots when he has to and feed when he has to. We don’t expect him to get five [goals] every night like he did a couple weeks ago, but he’s a big contributor to our success.”

After the game in Buffalo, Rochester will hit the road for another rematch, this time against the New England Black Wolves at Mohegan Sun Arena on Sunday at 6 p.m. ET.

By Steve Bermel (@BanditsBeat) & Jeremy Pike (@KnighthawksBeat) for NLL.com. Photo by Larry Palumbo.

NLL