Well folks, the NLL season is upon us again! Seems like just yesterday my teammates and I were licking our wounds from a lost opportunity in Washington, in a tough loss to the Stealth.
Well here we are, nearly 8 months later and we are back at it. 10 teams looking for the NLL title and for the first time in a very long time, 10 teams that have a legitimate shot. The parity in the league might (as I've said before) be at its very best. Orlando folding gave every team increased talent and depth and there are no more "doormats". Expect a game every night or you will be piling up the losses.
Either way, in Rockland our focus remains the same. Unfinished business! Be one game better than we were last season. Easier said than done, but we are going to cherish the challenge.
This past Saturday we hosted the Edmonton Rush to the ACC for a tilt with them. As it always is early, play was a little sloppy and a little rushed, but as both teams settled down the fans got to see a really fast paced, action filled NLL game. The story line, in my opinion, was the play of both goalies. Whipper, as he always is was great in our end, holding the Rush to one second half goal! In the other net, Disher was just as good, keeping them in the game as we rallied off scoring chance after scoring chance.
Defensively, we were a little rusty and a little out of sorts, but when they settled in, it was nice to watch. Offensively, we had a really good night all around. I was very pleased with our unselfish play and our ball and feet movement. This could be a really special group!
Either way, we don't have anytime to dwell on this one as we go into our nemesis "Blue Cross Building" in Rochester for a match with the new look Knighthawks this Saturday at 7:30pm, on TSN 2. If we are going to make a statement, this would be as good a time as any as we haven't won in that building (aside from the NLL title in 2003, I believe) in a vvvvveeerrrrrryyyy lllllooooonnngggg time! It will be a good challenge, as they are very skilled offensively and have added Matt Vinc, who is highly regarded around the league as one of the best goalies.
If we are going to have success this year, we are going to have to win in this building. Period.
Enough NLL talk. I'll check back in Monday with you all to keep you up to date with our progress as we continue toward our end goal.
Before I leave I wanted to tell you about one giant pet peeve of mine. This is a small thing, but it has driven me nuts since it happened last. I'll tell you my feelings and you can tell me if I am over reacting, or maybe I am just nuts? This happened easily four times to me last season alone. When we are entering or exiting the building, there are always fans with their hands down to get a high five, or some kind of acknowledgement. I dig that. I was one of those kids at one point myself! So as a rule, I always try to get in some high fives and some friendly banter. Lately (I say lately, because I never remember having the balls to do this myself, or ever seeing it earlier in my career), kids have been doing the old "how she doing". They hang their hand there, I go to hit it and they move it away and start chirping me! It drives me nuts. What am I supposed to do? Don't give anymore high fives in concern that I am going to wave and miss and get chirped about it? Then you have their parents telling anyone who will listen what an A**hole I am! Or do I continue with the humiliation and frustration of the "now you see it, now you don't"?
I'll leave it with you and let you guys decide!
Anyway, until next time.