National Lacrosse League: Ten Things to Know for Week 17

Eight Games over Three Days with Local Broadcasts of Every Contest Supplementing ESPN+, TSN+ Coverage

PHILADELPHIA, March 21, 2024 – The National Lacrosse League (@NLL), the largest and most successful professional lacrosse property in the world, features every team in action in one of its busiest weeks of the year – eight contests, with every one involving teams in the top eight or within a game of the final playoff spot with five regular season weeks to go in “The March to May.”

A standout matchup pits the first-place Toronto Rock (11-3) hosting the current No. 4 team in the table, Halifax (8-6), in the NLL Saturday Showcase (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+, TSN+, CTV2).

Here are 10 things to know about the NLL entering Week 17:

  • UpStanding: We’ll start to break down the playoff possibilities soon, but suffice it to say that this week’s games will be critical as teams bounce around the last few slots. The Toronto Rock (11-3), San Diego Seals (10-4) and Albany FireWolves (10-4) look in the best position for first-round home dates, spots 4-8 are very much in flux, with nine teams with two games in the loss column for the five positions.
  • Tune Time: Every one of the eight games on the NLL Week 17 schedule will be seen on a local market broadcast, in addition to ESPN+ and TSN+ coverage. Both CW23 and Bally Sports Southwest will carry the critical Buffalo Bandits vs. Panther City contest (Friday, 8 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. CT) and key local partners will take the rest of the games (see full list below)
  • Flexible: While we’re thinking about broadcasts and schedules, the NLL today announced the schedule flexes for its popular NLL Game of the Week on TSN for the final two weeks, including a doubleheader NLL Season Finale Weekend. Details here.
  • Into the Fire: A fascinating element of NLL players is their ability to compete at the highest level of the game while often maintaining demanding off-floor jobs. This NLL YouTube video feature on the Vancouver Warriors’ Brett Mydske (Engine 6, Burnaby) and the New York Riptide’s Damon Edwards (Engine P56, Pickering) spotlights these two true heroes, first responders in Ontario.
  • Metrics on Fire(Wolves): It’s getting perilously close to NLL Awards time, and NLL.com’s Cooper Perkins isn’t just using the eye test or the goals leaderboard to size up the candidates in a deep Rookie of the Year pool. In this week’s LAXMetrics powered by NLL, Perkins makes a case for Albany’s Tye Kurtz (Puslinch, Ont.)… and his FireWolves teammate Alex Simmons(Hamilton,Ont.), seen by many as the favorite.
  • Pack Stands Together: The Las Vegas Desert Dogs honored the memory of Emily King, wife of forward Marshal King (Victoria, B.C.), placing her name on their helmets for their game at Vancouver on Friday night. Emily recently passed away from cancer. NLL’s sideline reporter Chantelle Chand recaps here.
  • Sealed with a Win: The Toronto Rock’s run at the top of NLL.com’s Adam Levi’s NLL Power Rankings hit a snag when they lost a four-goal lead in a defeat at new No. 4 Buffalo (up from No. 7!). Installed in their place is the team they unseated as No. 1, the San Diego Seals, who earned a gritty win at Calgary to assume the throne. The Halifax Thunderbirds move to No. 3 and have a chance to rise higher when they play at Toronto Friday.
  • Promo Picks: Some of the promotions at NLL arenas this weekend include:
    • Panther City Lacrosse Club will host “Hometown Heroes” Night Presented by The Office Wellness Spa at Dickies Arena vs. the Buffalo Bandits (7 p.m. CT)
    • The Calgary Roughnecks will conduct a celebration of girls in the game when they take on Albany (Friday, 7 p.m. MT) at Scotiabank Saddledome
    • The Toronto Rock will celebrate Marvel Super Hero Night vs. Halifax (Saturday, 7 p.m. ET) at FirstOntario Centre
    • The Colorado Mammoth will celebrate the growth of the sport across the state on Colorado Lacrosse Night vs. Rochester (Saturday, 7 p.m. MT) at Ball Arena
    • Saturday is Military Appreciation Night in San Diego when the Seals take on Las Vegas (7 p.m. PT) at Pechanga Arena
    • Georgia takes on Saskatchewan on Family Night on Sunday (5:30 p.m. ET)
  • NLL Players reaching milestones last week included:
    • Georgia forward Shayne Jackson (Bowmanville, Ont.) now has 501 assists after dropping two vs. Philadelphia
    • Halifax forward Ryan Benesch (Elmira, Ont.) passed Josh Sanderson for seventh on the all-time list with 269 game played
    • Las Vegas forward Zack Greer (Whitby, Ont.) now has 303 assists after notching four vs. Vancouver
    • Las Vegas forward Casey Jackson (Victoria, B.C.) now has 203 points after scoring eight goals vs. Vancouver
    • Las Vegas goaltender Landon Kells (Fergus, Ont.) now has 1017 saves after stopping 39 vs. Vancouver
    • New York forward Jeff Teat (Brampton, Ont.) now has 203 assists after dishing four vs. Saskatchewan
    • Saskatchewan forward Ryan Keenan (Oshawa, Ont.) now has 404 points after a two-goal, five-assist effort vs. New York
    • Toronto forward Chris Boushy (Oakville, Ont.) now has 201 points after netting four goals vs. Buffalo
    • Vancouver forward Keegan Bal (Coquitlam, B.C.) now has 402 points after a three-goal, six-assist outburst vs. Las Vegas
    • Vancouver coach Curt Malawsky passed Les Bartley for seventh all-time with 94 coaching wins after his Warriors topped Las Vegas
  • Player achievements within reach this week are:
    • Albany forward Marshall Powless (Six Nations, Ont.) needs two points to reach 100
    • Albany forward Ethan Walker (Peterborough, Ont.) needs eight assists to reach 100
    • Buffalo defenseman Paul Dawson (Oakville, Ont.) needs four points to reach 100
    • Buffalo forward Chase Fraser (Vancouver) needs six points to reach 200
    • Buffalo coach John Tavares needs one win to pass Jamie Batley for 15th on the all-time list with 57
    • Colorado defenseman Paul Dawson (Oakville, Ont.) needs four points to reach 100
    • Colorado forward Tyson Gibson (Maple, Ont.) needs four assists to reach 100
    • Colorado forward Connor Robinson (New Westminster, B.C.) needs three goals to reach 100; and one point to reach 200
    • Georgia forward Brendan Bomberry (Six Nations, Ont.)needs eight points to reach 200
    • Georgia defenseman/transition player Jeremy Thompson (Akwesasne, Ont.) needs two assists to reach 100
    • Halifax forward Ryan Benesch (Elmira, Ont.) needs five goals to pass Dan Dawson for fourth on the all-time list with 552
    • Halifax forward Dawson Theede (Brooklin, Ont.) needs eight points to reach 100
    • New York forward Connor Kearnan (Courtice, Ont.) needs two goals to reach 100
    • New York forward Kiel Matisz (Stony Creek, Ont.) needs four goals to reach 200
    • New York forward Reilly O’Connor (Whitby, Ont.) needs six assists to reach 300
    • Panther City forward Callum Crawford (Ottawa, Ont.) needs four assists to pass John Grant Jr. for sixth on the all-time list with 779
    • Philadelphia forward Joe Resetarits (Hamburg, N.Y.) needs one goal to reach 300
    • San Diego defenseman/transition player Trevor Baptiste needs 30 faceoff wins to become the 10th player in league history to reach 1500
    • San Diego forward Curtis Dickson (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) needs two goals to pass Colin Doyle for seventh all-time with 528; and one point to become the 16th player to reach 1000
    • San Diego forward Dane Dobbie (Elora, Ont.) needs eight assists to reach 600
    • San Diego defenseman/transition player Jesse Gamble (Rockwood, Ont.) needs three points to reach 100
    • San Diego forward Kyle Jackson (Sarnia, Ont.) needs two points to reach 300
    • Toronto goaltender Nick Rose (Orangeville, Ont.) needs one win to pass Bob Watson for third all-time with 106; and 62 minutes played to become the fifth goaltender all-time with 10,000 minutes; and 64 saves to pass Pat O’Toole for fourth on the all-time list with 6465
    • Toronto forward Corey Small (St. Catharines, Ont.) needs seven assists to reach 500
    • Vancouver forward Kevin Crowley (New Westminster, B.C.) needs seven assists to reach 500
    • Vancouver forward Kyle Killen (Caven, Ont.) needs two points to reach 200

Schedule – Week 17 (All Times Eastern)

Friday

  • Buffalo Bandits (7-6) at Panther City Lacrosse Club (6-7), 8 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, CW23, Bally Sports SW (Thulin, Jernigan, Hale)
  • Albany FireWolves (10-4) at Calgary Roughnecks (5-8), 9 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, My4 (Farhall, Tyrrell, McDonald)

Saturday

  • Vancouver Warriors (4-9) at Philadelphia Wings (5-7), 7 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, Philly57 (Smith, Gabrielsen, McGuinness)
  • Halifax Thunderbirds (8-6) at Toronto Rock (11-3), 7 p.m., NLL Saturday Showcase, ESPN+, TSN+, CTV2 (Abbott, Shanahan, Docking)
  • Saskatchewan Rush (5-6) at New York Riptide (6-8), 7:30 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, MSG Network (Leno, Belisle, Delvecchio)
  • Rochester Knighthawks (6-6) at Colorado Mammoth (4-9), 9 p.m., ESPN+, TSN+, Altitude Sports (Lindahl, Shewchuk, Gallant)
  • Las Vegas Desert Dogs (4-9) at San Diego Seals (10-4), 10 p.m.,ESPN+, TSN+, Silver Sports SEN (Perkins, Ossello, Michaels)

Sunday

  • Saskatchewan Rush (5-6*) at Georgia Swarm (8-7), 5:30 p.m.,ESPN+, TSN+, Peachtree Sports (Mooneyham, Hanover, Hoffman)

*pending Saturday result

About the National Lacrosse League

The National Lacrosse League (NLL) is North America’s largest professional lacrosse league, welcoming 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, and recently unveiled its largest brand campaign ever, “Welcome to The Next Major League™” and introduced its comprehensive grassroots initiative, NLL UnBOXed™, that will expand the League’s footprint to more than 60 communities across North America by 2027.

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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