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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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Stories/Op-Ed

Season Preview: Edmonton Rush

The Edmonton Rush in 2014 had the best regular season in the history of the National Lacrosse League. They set a record by winning 14 straight games to open the season. They were the first team to win 16 games in a season. They were second in the league in goals for and first in goals against. They had a player win the defensive player of the year award as well as having finalists for the goalie of the year and transition player of the year and a member of the all-rookie team. Just about everything went right for Edmonton until they reached the playoffs. Then they lost in the West Division finals to the Calgary Roughnecks, falling 2-1 in the mini game. And just like that, the dream season came to an abrupt end for the Rush. They enter 2015 with very little change to the roster and no change to their expectations: it’s championship or bust for this Edmonton team.

2014 record/playoffs: 16-2 in regular season, 1-2 in playoffs (including mini game)

Top 3 returning scorers: Mark Matthews (31 goals, 47 assists for 78 points), Cory Conway (18/51/69), Jarrett Davis (16/37/53)

Key additions: Corey Small (F), Ben McIntosh (F), Tyler Carlson (G)

Key losses: Curtis Knight (F, injured), Brodie MacDonald (G, traded), Derek Keenan (Coach, leave of absence)

Outlook: There’s no need for much change when your roster is as strong as Edmonton’s, and accordingly the lineup looks almost identical to last year’s. And there’s not much doubt that the Rush will be very good once again. Whether they can win 16 games again is very much up for debate; that was an historical regular season they had in 2014. As mentioned above, though, it’s all about the playoffs this year for the Rush.

It certainly helps the cause that they were able to make the trade to move up and get the first overall pick, with which they selected Ben McIntosh. The young forward has already looked right at home in the preseason, contributing some scoring and not seeming overwhelmed by the level of play at the pro level.

The return of Corey Small is a big deal, too. The lefty forward missed all of last season with a knee injury but had a strong summer for the Victoria Shamrocks, suggesting he’s ready to step right back into the lineup and contribute the way he did in 2013, when he was the team’s third-leading scorer with 28 goals and 36 assists for 64 points.

Those pair of additions should help the Rush deal with the absence of Curtis Knight, but that doesn’t mean Edmonton won’t miss the emerging star forward. Last year, Knight led the team in goals (35) and was second in points (72). He was also named the team’s MVP, a recognition of how important his all-around play is to the team’s success.

When Knight’s knee collapsed under him and he fell to the turf during the Canadian University Field Lacrosse Association championship game in November, it was a huge blow to Edmonton’s hopes for 2015. Much he was for his Guelph Gryphons Baggataway Cup champions, Knight is integral for Edmonton because he just does so much for the team.

The offence is in pretty good hands, though, with Mark Matthews leading the way and supported by the likes of McIntosh, Small, Cory Conway,Jarrett Davis, Zack Greer and Robert Church. They also get plenty of help from the back end, as Edmonton typically follows the Derek Keenan model of pushing the ball in transition. Chris Corbeil had a brilliant season in 2014, scoring 17 goals and 10 assists to lead the transition charge on top of his usual excellent defence.

There’s plenty more to like about the Rush D, too. Kyle Rubisch basically owns the defensive player of the year award, Brett Mydske has established himself as a stud defender and Jeff Cornwall has emerged as one of the best two-way defenders in the game, as well. Ryan Dilks,Nik Bilic, John LaFontaine, John Lintz…the list of excellent defenders on the Rush roster just keeps going.

So, the forward group is strong even with the loss of Knight, the defenders arguably comprise the best back end in the game, and the transition game is dangerous. What about goaltending? Hardly a weak link, that’s for sure. Aaron Bold has proved that the trade to acquire him from Rochester, where he was Matt Vinc’s backup, was a good one. He is challenging Vinc for the title of best goalie in the league, playing up to the level of the rest of the Rush team.

The penalty kill was good last year, too, ranking fourth in the league with a 54.29% success rate. In fact, the only real weakness the team showed in 2014 was the power play, which was seventh-best in the NLL, connecting only 41.11% of the time. Even there, there’s a bright side, though. The Rush gave up the fewest shorthanded goals against in the league: just four.

So, just about everything looks pretty good for Edmonton in 2015, save for the notable absence of Head Coach and General Manager Derek Keenan, who announced recently that he will take a leave from the team for the season to be with his wife Wendy, who is suffering from terminal pancreatic cancer. It’s a tragic situation for the highly-respected Keenan, and the team will certainly miss him. 

Even though Keenan has built the team to have very few weaknesses, it is still a young squad that benefits greatly from his leadership. It will be up to assistant coaches Jeff McComb and Jimmy Quinlan to help the team’s leadership group keep the team focused on the task at hand throughout the season. There’s no question, though, that the team will look to perform well for Keenan, rather than letting his absence be a distraction. They certainly have the pieces in place to compete for the franchise’s first championship.

Story courtesy of Stephen Stamp from ILIndoor.com.

NLL