National Lacrosse League Opens Friday with NLL Faceoff Weekend: Ten Things to Know

NLL Game of the Week on TSN’ Doubleheader Friday Opens 20-Game TSN Slate; ESPN Schedule Begins with Saturday

Philadelphia-New York Contest; Every Regular Season and Playoff Game to be Streamed Live on ESPN+, TSN+

​​PHILADELPHIA, November 28, 2023 – The National Lacrosse League (@NLL), the largest and most successful professional lacrosse property in the world, opens its 37th season with five contests on “NLL Faceoff Weekend” with three games on Friday and two on Saturday.

Coming off a season of record-breaking attendance across the league and interest in the NLL and the sport of lacrosse at an all-time high, the off-season was an exciting one for the NLL, with storylines heightening the anticipation for 2023-24.

Here are 10 things to know about the NLL entering Week 1:

Fans can watch three of the five NLL Faceoff Weekend contests on linear broadcasts, beginning with the “NLL Game of the Week on TSN” doubleheader on Friday featuring the Saskatchewan Rush at Halifax Thunderbirds (7 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. AT), with broadcasters Pete Dalliday, Pat Gregoire, and Ashley Docking) followed by Panther City Lacrosse Club at Vancouver Warriors (10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT), with Teddy Jenner, Brad Challoner, and Shantelle Chand).

In the “NLL Saturday Night Showcase on ESPN,” the Philadelphia Wings visit the New York Riptide (7:30 p.m. ET). The Albany FireWolves vs. Las Vegas Desert Dogs contest (10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT) will also be seen locally in both markets (My4 in Albany, Fox 5 in Vegas).

The Buffalo Bandits, who open play on Dec. 9 at Albany, will be looking to repeat as NLL Champions, a feat that is rare in League history. The Rochester Knighthawks (now the Halifax Thunderbirds) were the last, pulling a threepeat with titles from 2012-14. The only other title defenses in League history were by the Toronto Rock (1999-2000) and (2002-03).

The Bandits’ championship last season was their 12th trip to the NLL Finals, the most in League history. The current Halifax Thunderbirds made ten appearances during their time as the original Rochester Knighthawks, and the Rock have made nine NLL Finals appearances.

All 135 regular season games and every playoff contest will be streamed live on ESPN+ and TSN+. The full schedule is available at https://www.nll.com/schedule/full-schedule/.

TSN will broadcast 20 Game of the Week contests, including at least one at each of the League’s five Canadian-based franchises. The schedule, subject to change, is available here: https://www.nll.com/news/2023-24-nll-game-of-the-week-on-tsn-schedule-announced/

In October, the NLL unveiled NLL UnBOXed™, the League’s new continent-wide grassroots campaign designed to bring the League’s fast-paced game to boys and girls in more communities across North America. The League also revealed the cities and branding for the nine non-NLL markets, available at https://www.nll.com/UnBOXed/.

The new NLL UnBOXed series will debut with the Toronto Rock and New York Riptide playing at Place Bell in Laval, Québec on Friday, February 16, 2024 in the first regular season game to be held in the province since 2002.

In September, the League unveiled new branding, including a refined primary logo, stylized wordmark, and for the first time, a French language “Ligue Nationale de Lacrosse” family of marks.

The 2023-24 NLL season will be the first under a new unified standings format and playoff structure which will feature a more balanced schedule across its 15 teams and a single-table, eight-team playoff qualification system that eliminates the geographical conferences.

Monday marked the debut of “War on the Floor: A Season with the San Diego Seals” on Prime Video, an all-access series that follows the expansion franchise throughout the 2021-2022 season. Search “War on the Floor” to watch the five episode series.

NLL.com‘s news bureau has been busy with numerous features every week. The latest series is the “NLL Top 50,” counting down the league’s best at each position. Next up, the forwards. See links to the other positions at the bottom of that article.

Schedule – Week 1 (All Times Eastern)

Friday

  • Saskatchewan Rush at Halifax Thunderbirds, 7 p.m., TSN, TSN+, ESPN+
  • Panther City Lacrosse Club at Vancouver Warriors, 10 p.m., TSN, TSN+, ESPN+
  • Albany FireWolves at Las Vegas Desert Dogs, 10 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, My4, Fox 5

Saturday

  • Calgary Roughnecks at Rochester Knighthawks, 7 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+
  • Philadelphia Wings at New York Riptide, 7:30 p.m., ESPN2, ESPN+, TSN+

About the National Lacrosse League

The National Lacrosse League (NLL) is North America’s premier professional lacrosse league, with a record 1,165,528 fans attending games in 2022-23. Founded in 1986, the NLL is comprised of 15 franchises across the United States and Canada: Albany FireWolves, Buffalo Bandits, Calgary Roughnecks, Colorado Mammoth, Georgia Swarm, Halifax Thunderbirds, Las Vegas Desert Dogs, New York Riptide, Panther City Lacrosse Club (Fort Worth, Texas), Philadelphia Wings, Rochester Knighthawks, San Diego Seals, Saskatchewan Rush, Toronto Rock, and Vancouver Warriors.

For the latest scores and developments in the National Lacrosse League, please visit: NLL.com and find the NLL on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and TikTok.

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Media inquiries contact: Joe Favorito, jfavorito2@gmail.com, 917-566-8345

Jerry Milani, media@nll.com, 917-797-5663

Gary Groob
Gary Groob

Gary Groob has been involved with Lacrosse for the majority of his life, whether playing, coaching, or covering the sport for the media.

An avid fan, with a real drive about helping to “grow the game”, Gary became part of podcasts about the game in 2010. Through the podcasts, Mr. Groob was given an opportunity to write about lacrosse, and the rest as they say, is history.

Through many miles (flying and driving) Gary has made inroads with the National Lacrosse League, Major Series Lacrosse League, the Ontario Lacrosse Association, as well as the Arena Lacrosse League, covering the leagues, their teams, and players, working for, and in concert with all of them.

In the year 2020, Mr. Groob was made the media person for the Arena Lacrosse League, voted onto the board of directors of the Brampton Excelsiors Lacrosse Club, as well as being made administrator of the Lacrosse page “Global Lacrosse” with a membership of 9000 members in over 90 Countries. Gary was also made an administrator of Lacrosse History Past Present and Future in 2022.

Mr. Groob co-hosts a weekly Lacrosse show on Spanglish Sports World, and ZingoTV channel 250, as well as writes a weekly lacrosse column for La Portada Canada News (both in print, and online).

Gary also hosts a Lacrosse talk show and podcast for The Edge of Philly Sports Network, seen live Sunday nights at 9pm (ET), and archived on the Edge of Philly YouTube page, as well as Spotify.

Mr. Groob’s other sports interests include Hockey, Football, Boxing, Wrestling, and Baseball, competing competitively in Boxing and Wrestling for many years.

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