National Lacrosse League: 10 Things To Know For Week Four
via NLL press release by Ryan Ireland
Road Teams Dominate Heading Into Holiday Break; ESPN2 Audience of 100K+ Tunes in to Vegas Inaugural Home Game
PHILADELPHIA, December 22, 2022 – The National Lacrosse League (@NLL), the world’s largest and most successful professional lacrosse league, takes a break this week for the holidays, coming off a thrilling Week 3 that saw all seven away teams claim victories. Play resumes with three contests on December 30-31, then a slate of seven games the first weekend of January.
Here are 10 things to know about the NLL for Week 4:
- ESPN SportsCenter tabbed Corey Vitarelli’s goal for the Philadelphia Wings on Saturday as its #10 Play of the Day.
- Four teams remain unbeaten, with Rochester (3-0) and Halifax (2-0) in the East and Calgary (2-0) and San Diego (2-0) in the West sporting unblemished records.
- The inaugural home opener for the Las Vegas Desert Dogs was a star-studded affair at Michelob ULTRA Arena, with more than 7,500 in attendance and Las Vegas Raiders receiver Davante Adams among the dignitaries joining Wayne Gretzky, Steve Nash and Joe Tsai in welcoming the new team.
- The success translated to the TV audience as well, attracting an average of 102,000 total viewers during the ESPN2 telecast. It makrs the highest viewership on an ESPN linear platform since the NLL-ESPN partnership began.
- At least 20 sets of brothers dot NLL rosters in 2022-23, including the foursome of Lyle, Jeremy, Miles and Jerome (Hiana) Thompson (Onondaga Nation, N.Y.). Will and Tony Malcom (New Westminster, B.C.) combined for six points as Panther City Lacrosse Club spoiled the Las Vegas Desert Dogs home opener, 9-3.
- A total of 11 NLL Players were selected to the final USA 2023 World Lacrosse team set to compete in San Diego, June 21-July 1. Selections for the top-seeded U.S. squad include Trevor Baptiste (Philadelphia), Charlie Bertrand (Las Vegas), Liam Byrnes (Panther City), TD Ierlan (Toronto), Connor Kelly (Albany), Danny Logan (San Diego), Kieran McArdle (Albany), Matt Rambo (Philadelphia), Blaze Riorden (Philadelphia), Tom Schreiber (Toronto) and Ryan Terefenko (Halifax)
- The Bandits’ 11-8 win at Toronto on Saturday marked a curious feat for major Buffalo sports teams: all three won by three that day: The NFL Bills topped the Dolphins, 32-29, and the NHL Sabres skated past Arizona, 5-2. It’s been reported that it was the first time all three won on a single day.
- A week after setting a franchise record since their relocation to Halifax prior to the 2019-20 season with 18 goals in a win over Philadelphia on Dec. 9, the Halifax Thunderbirds eclipsed that mark with 20 in a win at New York on Saturday.
- In NLL Team Community News:
- The Las Vegas Desert Dogs continue to make strides in connecting with their local community, this week supporting the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District’s Winter Reading Challenge with a grand prize package with tickets and Desert Dogs swag.
- Ontario telecommunications brand Cogeco presented an $184K check to United Way at Saturday’s Toronto Rock home game as part of its sponsorship of the team. The fans got involved with a “Teddy Bear Toss,” with more than 2,000 bears collected for those in need.
- The Philadelphia Wings are set to kick off Wings their first-ever Wings on the Road tour throughout Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey. The tour begins on Monday at Steelyard Sports in King of Prussia, Pa.
- The University of Denver is one of three U.S. and Canadian schools to have furnished the NLL with nine players each on 2022-23 rosters (along with Albany and Guelph); Two of its most prominent products had standout games with Trevor Baptiste (Denville, N.J.) of the Wings going 20 of 22 on face offs and Tyler Pace (Coquitlam, B.C.) of Calgary notching seven points (two goals, five assists).
- Some milestones reached last week include:
- Buffalo forward Kyle Buchanan (Nepean, Ont.) now has 502 career points after scoring a goal and adding four assists vs. Toronto
- Buffalo defenseman Nick Weiss (Port Hope, Ont.) now has 101 career points after recording two assists vs. Toronto
- Calgary forward Dan Taylor (Calgary, Alb.) now has 102 assists after collecting three vs. Vancouver
- With a four goal effort vs. New York, Halifax forward Chris Boushy (Johannesburg, South Africa) now has 100 career points.
- Halifax forward Austin Shanks (Courtise, Ont.) passed the 200 career points mark with four assists vs. New York
- Halifax forward Ryan Benesch (Elmira, Ont.) had five goals and four assists for nine points, passing current Las Vegas coach and GM Shawn Williams for eighth all-time in career points in the NLL. Benesch is tied for third in the league in both goals (eight) and points (16) this season.
- New York forward Connor Kearnan (Courtise, Ont.) now has 101 career points coming off three goals and an assist vs. Halifax
- New York defenseman Jay Thorimbert (Whitby, Ont.) played in his 100th career NLL contest vs. Halifax
- Panther City defenseman/transition player Tyler Burton (London, Ont.) become the ninth player in league history to reach 1300 face off wins in his career vs. Las Vegas
- Philadelphia forward Matt Rambo (Glenside, Pa.) now has 101 career assists with his three vs. Georgia
- Rochester defenseman Paul Dawson (Oakville, Ont.) now has 800 loose ball recoveries with five against Albany.
About the National Lacrosse League
The National Lacrosse League (NLL) is North America’s premier professional lacrosse league. Founded in 1986, the NLL ranks third in average attendance for pro indoor sports worldwide, behind only the NHL and NBA. The League 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 (TX), Philadelphia Wings, Rochester Knighthawks, San Diego Seals, Saskatchewan Rush, Toronto Rock, and Vancouver Warriors.
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