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WK
1
Fri, Dec 2
FINAL
Philadelphia
8
Halifax
18
Sat, Dec 3
FINAL
Vancouver
8
Toronto
19
Sat, Dec 3
FINAL
San Diego
15
New York
14
Sat, Dec 3
FINAL
Albany
11
Buffalo
10
Sat, Dec 3
FINAL
Rochester
16
Georgia
11
Sat, Dec 3
FINAL
Colorado
6
Saskatchewan
18
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
Calgary
Colorado
Sat, Jan 7
22:00:00
Vancouver
San Diego
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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HistoryStories/Op-Ed

Remembering an Improbable Historic Night

Boy, how time flies. It feels like just yesterday that one of the best weeks of end-to-end NLL action concluded. Each game had its fair share of thrills and spills, but it was hard to match the excitement that emanated from the historic moments that occurred in Rochester and on Long Island on Saturday night.

Before diving into Week 9 action, it’s important to reflect on the enormous feats that were achieved last week.

There was something in the air on that six-game night, not only in the state of New York, but in every NLL barn that evening from Halifax to Saskatoon. It was the kind of night where something magnificent was going to happen. And for the league’s expansion franchises, it happened, not once, but twice within about 35 minutes.

Not far from the U.S.’s northern border, the new-look Knighthawks were nipping at the toes of the defending-champion Calgary Roughnecks all night. The match stayed tight throughout the evening and was defined by a one-minute stretch midway through the fourth quarter. Pinpoint passing, an electric stop, and a power play goal later, a deficit quickly became a lead, a lead that would not be relinquished.

Chaotic would be the only suitable word to describe the final moments of the game. Yet, despite being down a man because an extra attacker that the Roughnecks had brought on, this version of the Knighthawks did enough defensively to hold on for their first win in franchise history.

According to Knighthawks forward Holden Cattoni, to come out victorious in such dramatic fashion, on their home floor, against the reigning NLL Cup champions should give their team the belief that this success can be replicated.

“It’s really exciting,” Cattoni said. “Everyone has played at a high-level before whether it’s in the NLL or in the summer. Everyone is accustomed to winning and playing competitive games. It’s good to be in the situation, and it’s good that it came against the team that won [the NLL Cup] last year. This builds our confidence a bit, and it’s a sign that we’re there. If we play the way that we’re capable of, we can compete with anyone in the league.”

A moderate six-hour drive South East of Blue Cross Arena to Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, the New York Riptide were in the midst of their own heated exchange with their East Division Rivals, the Georgia Swarm.

With their heads solely focused on the game at hand, the Riptide were on a course to make their own history against the NLL’s 2017 Champion’s Cup winners. Prior to the game, the Riptide were visited in the locker room by Erik Baker, co-founder and managing director of GF Capital, who shared a motivating personal story.

Whatever he said seemed to work. Matching the potent Swarm offence nearly the entire game, the Riptide benefitted from timely stops and shots, including a near-buzzer beater by Gale Thorpe in an unsettled situation – they had no timeouts – to send the game to overtime.

In the extra frame, where the first goal wins, an unlikely hero provided the offense. Riptide Captain Dan MacRae was running ahead of the defense after a missed opportunity that hit the post from the opposition. Ryan Fournier saw his teammate out front and provided a well-placed long-floor feed for MacRae who at first stopped in his tracks and looked for a pass before cutting in and sneaking the ball past one of the league’s best goaltenders of the last decade, Mike Poulin for their first win in franchise history.

It was another improbable ending to yet another expansion team. The Riptide celebrated with raw passion. MacRae joked that his teammate’s reaction was partially spurred on by the fact that he, a guy that had 22 goals over his 10 years in the league, had just scored the goal to give his team their first win.

“I don’t know if it was just because of the surprise factor from a [defensive] guy shooting the ball or what it was for everyone to go to the dog-pile,” MacRae joked. But, seriously, we got the monkey off our back so-to-speak.”

Of course, though, one win wins you the battle, but stringing multiple wins together can win you a war, or in this case, the NLL Cup. Regy Thorpe and Mike Hasen, head coaches from the Riptide and Knighthawks respectively, were quick not to get too excited about one win. Within the days of the historic win, Thorpe and his staff were already looking ahead to their next game, which is tonight against the Philadelphia Wings.

“It’s good, but we’ve got a big weekend coming up,” Thorpe said. “We’re already moving and getting our scouts and everyone ready for [the Wings]. It was nice to get a win, trust me, but we know we’ve got two big games coming up.”

Hasen noted that his team’s effort has continued to improve game-by-game and letting up now just because the team has won would be counter-productive to the team’s ultimate long-term goal of winning a championship.

“We like our team where we are, but we still need to get better, obviously,” Hasen said. “But, we’re getting better; that’s progress, and I see that. They were rewarded for the [last] Saturday night.”

While the Knighthawks have the week off in Week 9, the Riptide will have a shot at another expansion rarity when the face the Wings: winning games on back-to-back nights – the San Diego Seals pulled it off last season.

Following unfortunate slow starts to their seasons – something, realistically, you would expect from most expansion franchises – could the uncommon occurrence of two new franchises winning on the same night turn both their season’s around. If it does or it doesn’t, few will forget what happened the night these clubs made new marks in the NLL’s history books.

 

NLL