An up and down weekend created a log jam in our Pick Ems.
Steve Holroyd, Ross McLoughlin, Shawn Slaght and Susan Walton all went 3-1.
Gary Groob broke even at 2-2 and Kevin Neibauer took it on the chin at 3-1.
So, the results reveal two leaders with Gary Groob and Shawn Slaght setting the pace at 17-9 with Kevin Neibauer and Ross McLoughlin a game behind at 16-10.
Steve Holroyd is within striking distance with his 15-11 mark and Susan Walton posting a 13-10 mark.
So, a jam packed schedule ahead and the herd will remain tight or, someone will distance the pack.
So, we kick things things with the Pride of Toronto, Gary “Make this Quick, I have to be Awake at 3 am”
Colorado @ Vancouver
Last week’s loss will sharpen the focus of the Mammoth. Vancouver hasn’t proved they can play a full 60 minutes yet.
San Diego @ Halifax
San Diego still has injury trouble, and uncertainty In goal.
Halifax can score! With all the extra possessions Jake Withers gives by winning 60-70% of faceoffs…this will be a long night for the Seals.
Calgary @ Rochester
Another close game as both Christian Del Bianco, and Craig Wende put on goaltending exhibitions. The edge goes to the veteran play of the Roughnecks.
Philadelphia @ NE
Both teams have 3 game winning streaks. The Wings have beaten lesser competition, while the Black Wolves have beaten teams like Toronto, and Saskatchewan. The edge in overall depth goes to NE, who will crash the net on every occasion, making Higgins uncomfortable.
Toronto @ Buffalo
These teams always play each other hard. In a very physical battle, I give a slight edge to the Rock.
Georgia @ NY
A very pissed off Swarm club goes into a winless house in NY…
Mike Poulin has a big night in net, while the Thompson Brothers show why they have been so dominant these last few years.
Colorado @ Saskatchewan
A tired Colorado team comes to a team that found its mojo last week I a battle for first in the West.
Sasktel is tough to play at for any visitor, but when the home team is amped up…look out!
Rochester @ Philadelphia
The first win for either expansion team finally happens!
Craig Wende steals the show, making big saves while Shawn Evans, and Holden Cattoni lead them to a narrow victory.
Heading West and Shawn “The Cold Miser” Slaght who came indoors long enough to thaw his fingers and opined his picks.
COLORADO @ VANCOUVER
Pick – Colorado
This is going to be a one-sided game. I don’t see any way Vancouver even keep this one close. These are two teams headed in different directions.
SAN DIEGO @ HALIFAX
Pick – Halifax
The Thunderbirds look impressive early on this season. On the other hand, San Diego has had a tough schedule to open the year and it just keeps getting tougher. Austin Staats can’t come back soon enough for the Seals.
CALGARY @ ROCHESTER:
Pick – Calgary
Rochester is little by little improving, but they aren’t in the same category with teams like Calgary. Roughnecks win, but only by two or three goals.
PHILADELPHIA @ NEW ENGLAND
Pick – New England
Time for the wake-up call for the Wings. They have been playing well, but have beaten mostly bottom feeders and a tired Roughnecks squad. They still haven’t proven they can beat a top team (that’s isn’t coming off a back-to-back).
TORONTO @ BUFFALO
Pick – Buffalo
I like the Bandits simply because the Rock have been inconsistent. One game they can look like a top tier team, the next they are struggling. Looks for another big night from Vinc.
GEORGIA @ NEW YORK
Pick – Georgia
Again another one-sided match up. New York has a lot of problems, I don’t know where to begin, yet Georgia is a well-oiled machine.
COLORADO @ SASKATCHEWAN
Pick – Saskatchewan
I’m on the fence with this pick. On paper, the Rush should win this one. The offence came out a bit against San Diego, but it isn’t firing on all cylinders. Especially against a goaltender like Dillon Ward, goals will be hard to come by. I have concerns, but it’s hard to pick against the Rush.
ROCHESTER @ PHILADELPHIA
Pick – Philadelphia
This will be the benchmark game for the Wings. Can they beat the beatable teams. As long as the keep getting good goaltending from Higgins they’ll have a chance.
Staying West but about an 80 degree temperature change and Ross “I Shined my Magic 8 Ball while Sipping an IPA on the Beach” McLoughlin.
COLORADO @ VANCOUVER: Mammoth are going to bounce back and the Warriors are not a 4 quarter team. WINNER: Colorado
SAN DIEGO @ HALIFAX: The Thunderbirds are going to be overconfident, Seals need this win and they won’t travel 4000 miles and spend 12 hours traveling for nothing. WINNER: Seals
CALGARY @ ROCHESTER: Calgary are going to the Knighthawks, Knighthawks are going going to have to wait for another week to have a win. WINNER: Calgary
PHILADELPHIA @ NEW ENGLAND: Blackwolves are not going to have an answer for a surging Wings. Winner Philadelphia
TORONTO @ BUFFALO: The Rock won’t have enough to take out the Bandits. WINNER: Buffalo
GEORGIA @ NEW YORK: The Swarm rebound and the Riptide still don’t have a way to be consistent. WINNER: Georgia
COLORADO @ SASKATCHEWAN: Mammoth are going to pull out a stunner. WINNER: Colorado
ROCHESTER @ PHILADELPHIA: Both teams are going to be running on empty, Wings are going to want to keep it going. WINNER: Philadelphia
Returning to the East and Steve “I Remember When they Played Soccer with Rocks” Holroyd.
COLORADO @ VANCOUVER: As last week in Philadelphia showed, the Warriors are in trouble; goaltending is largely non-existent. The Mammoth are a strong team, and will be hungry to bounce back from last week’s beating in Halifax. WINNER: Colorado
SAN DIEGO @ HALIFAX: The surprisingly undefeated Thunderbirds are looking to keep it going against the Seals, who—after a slow start—are starting to hit their stride. The home team have a dynamic offense, and a boisterous fan base on their side, and will go to 5-0. WINNER: Halifax
CALGARY @ ROCHESTER: The NewHawks are improving, but not enough to overtake the Roughnecks’ dynamic offense and all-world goalie, Christian Del Bianco. WINNER: Calgary
PHILADELPHIA @ NEW ENGLAND: The Black Wolves are the NLL’s only other undefeated team (along with Halifax), but have been off. The Wings, on the other hand, come off a big win and have some momentum. This may be the match-up of the weekend. I think Philly’s 3-1 record is flattering, though, and the Wolves stay undefeated. WINNER: New England
TORONTO @ BUFFALO: Even two months into the season, the Rock still look like they’re in training camp mode, not on the same page with one another. The Bandits are loaded on offense, have Matt Vinc in goal, and are playing at home. In the end, an easy pick. WINNER: Buffalo
GEORGIA @ NEW YORK: The home team is a woeful side, as the Riptide have been thoroughly outclassed in every game they’ve played save against Philadelphia. The Swarm will be hungry after an ugly loss at home last week. WINNER: Georgia
COLORADO @ SASKATCHEWAN: The Mammoth will be exhausted in their second of back-to-back games, and the Rush are a strong team playing before the best crowd in NLL. WINNER: Saskatchewan
ROCHESTER @ PHILADELPHIA: Regardless of whatever happens the night before, the Wings will be exhausted playing their second game in two nights, particularly after such an emotionally charged game against the Wolves. The KnightHawks will also be playing their second game in a row…and simply don’t have the horses yet. WINNER: Philadelphia
And, they much anticipated Philadelphia Prognosticator… the lovely and talented… with a small ego, Kevin Neibauer…now that the NLL has a gaming partner, wager I the opposite way of my picks!
The up and down NLL Schedule has seemingly simmered on the byes and presents 8 games.
We start with Colorado@Vancouver
Will Logan Schuss play? If he does, he will make a difference in this one?2
Lightning Cupido and Dillon Ward will be the difference in a mammoth Mammoth romp.
San Diego @Halifax
The trip from sunny Sn Diego to Halifax is the longest trip the NLL has to offer.., The Seals have no answer for Jake Withers and the TBirds win a close one.
The NewHawks are close but Calgary has far too many answers and win, 15-11.
Going Black Wolves
Yes, Philly is playing well, but beating a travel weary tired Calgary team, then New York and a Schuss- less Warriors team. Sets up a great battle that New England pulls off by two.
Two storied rivals go at it again.. Buffalo totally man handled the Swarm and Chase Fraser and Philly cast off, Chris Cloutier make the difference in a back and forth battle.
The Swarm will come in with a pissed off mind set… Being humbled by Buffalo with all of zero goals from Lyle Thompson and Jordan Hall… New York will be spectators by half-time.
The Mammoth, while a top notch team, have the daunting task of tackling a Rush team who is trying to find their offense… Find it, the will.
Two games in two days is never a good ingredient. Uncasville is short but a difficult trip to Philadelphia.
Shawn Evans will be Shawn Evans and create havoc and garner a nine point night to give the expansion team its first victory.