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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
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
Fri, Mar 3
21:00:00
Las Vegas
San Diego
Sat, Mar 4
11:30:00
New York
Philadelphia
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

Seals Know Change Needs to Start Now

Last season, the San Diego Seals proved to the league that an expansion team is more than their title suggests. In fact, most opposing coaches refused to refer to them or prepare for them as if they were an expansion team.

 

Those Seals broke the mold by making the playoffs in their first season as a franchise led by likely future hall of famers Dan Dawson and Brodie Merrill and a gifted group of inspired young players, including the NLL’s Rookie of the Year, Austin Staats.

 

Oh, how a year can change things, though. Dan and his brother Paul are no longer suiting up for the Seals along with role players such as Garrett Billings, Kyle Hartzell, and Connor Kelly. Not to mention that Staats and prolific scorer Casey Jackson are still recovering from their respective injuries, and Adrian Sorichetti still hasn’t suited up for them either.

 

Having manufactured a team with new parts, this team is still trying to work out the kinks of what should be a well-oiled machine a third of the way through the 2020 season.

 

Connor Fields, who was a part of the 2019 Seals club, understands even in just his second season in the NLL that it takes time for teams to mesh when there are new acquisitions. He is confident that his team will come together to play at the level they need to win, and that chemistry building is already in the works.

 

“I definitely think that as our chemistry grows, I feel like we’re going to get better and better,” Fields said. “It’s early in the season, but there’s no excuses for how we’ve been playing. With new faces in the lineup from pickups over the offseason, we’re still trying to figure out each others’ tendencies and then get a couple of guys going each game.”

 

The team knows that a change is on the horizon with both Staats and Jackson expected to return to the floor before the end of February – the Seals are producing almost two goals fewer per game with the pair out of the lineup.

 

Team President Steve Govett believes that he, Seals General Manager and Head Coach Patrick Merrill, and the staff have built a strong side, but added that it’s a great challenge to keep up that success when the roster has significant holes as it does right now.

 

“It’s important to any team to have the guys that you’re expecting to be in your lineup, to have them playing,” Govett said. “If you took the number of goals out of the lineup that we have, any team would struggle. Think about the best players on any given team… How are those teams able to continue to win?”

 

Yet, injuries to key players aren’t the only reasons for the Seals early struggles this campaign. As painful as it may sound, Merrill had a laundry list of things he felt the team needed to improve upon before their game this past weekend versus the Saskatchewan Rush.

 

“We would shoot ourselves in the foot when we were trying to go on our runs,” Merrill said. “We weren’t getting stops or scoring goals when we needed to stop other team’s runs. We’ve given up too many goals off face-offs, too many transition opportunities, giving up too many goals within the last couple minutes of a quarter, etc. Those were areas that we thought we could get a lot better in, and we were much better in the Vancouver game.”

 

Unfortunately, as we now know, the coaching staff felt their team’s effort against the Rush was much of the same story. Their lack of runs, and, inversely, the runs allowed by the Seals are deeply affecting the team’s ability to build much momentum during games. In the Seals’ first five games, they allowed ten runs of three or more goals while only creating two runs of three or more goals for themselves.

 

Poor early starts do hinder a team’s chance at making the post-season, but you wouldn’t have to look too far back to find a team that had similar misfortunes to begin the year. Last season, the Calgary Roughnecks were riddled with absences to their lineup for a good portion of the season but endured the tough stretch, came on strong at the end of the year, and went on to become the NLL Cup winners.

 

What’s looking like one of the most important signings of the offseason, the Seals grabbing the skills of Wes Berg, has partially filled the gap left by the offense that hasn’t been on the floor. But, as Berg knows from his years in the league, a season-defining win is all it takes takes to turn your season around.

 

“It’s been a bit of a rocky start,” Berg said. “You never want to drop too many games early and be battling for your life for a playoff position when the season is only midway through. We’re definitely going to need to win some games and some important division games coming up.”

 

The Seals embark on a short, two-game, non-divisional road trip this week facing the league-leading Halifax Thunderbirds, followed by the expansion New York Riptide. However, when the team heads to Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on Feb. 1st, they will begin a four-game stretch against West Division opponents.

 

Of course, winning every game from here on out is the goal for the 1-4 Seals, but with the potential point-swing in divisional matchups, Merrill knows that those matches play a critical role in the team’s postseason fate.

 

“We’ve dug a bit of a hole to start this season,” Merrill said. “Any games that we win in the division, especially on the road, are going to be huge for us if we want to stay in the race.”

 

The do-or-die mentality is starting to creep in, particularly in the highly competitive West Division that is already put behind the eight-ball in terms of the playoff race because they have five teams instead of four battling for the two guaranteed post-season berths.

 

Yet, as Govett explained, with the Roughnecks of last season very much on his mind, this is the Seals opportunity to show that it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.

 

“The whole point is to get into the playoffs,” Govett said. “How you get in doesn’t matter, it’s what you do when you get there.”

NLL