In an effort to bring you coverage of everything Minnesota sports, tonight, SBNation Minnesota will cover its first ever live Swarm game. Bear with us as we adjust to covering a new game, and make sure you head down to the X to catch this team. The most fun you can have with your boots on.
The Swarm match up against the Boston Blazers tonight, in the first of back-to-back games that will see them take off for Colorado after the game. Having just returned from a two game East Coast swing, the Swarm get this one home game, then head back out on the road until March 27.
Boston brings with them the Casey Powell (24G, 25A), Dan Dawson (13G, 35A), and Josh Sanderson (11G, 22A), the top scoring line in the NLL. In relation the Swarm's top scorers are Ryan Benesch (20G, 18A) and Callum Crawford (10G, 17A). Powell is the reigning league MVP, and the current league leader in goals and points.
The Swarm have never beat Boston in team history (0-2), and have not done well against Eastern Conference opponents this season (0-3).
Swarm coach said "They have three or four of the best players in the game," Lines said. "We have to pay closer attention to them than we normally would. Coming from the Eastern Division, they are a rough and physical team. To beat them, we have to be very physical with them."
Those words should be sweet music to hockey fans making the switch to lacrosse, as "we have to be very physical with them" should translate to plenty of fights and angry play.
The game should also be as much of a goaltending duel as there can be in a lacrosse game. According to a Swarm press relase:
"Saturday's matchup features two of the league's premier goaltenders. Swarm G Nick Patterson, who will also start in this year's All-Star game, is off to a 3-2 start and ranks fourth in the NLL with a .796 SV%. On the other side, G Anthony Cosmo will suit up for Boston after winning Week 6 Defensive Player of the Week honors for his performance in the Blazers 11-6 win against Colorado."
The game is also taking place on "green day" as the Swarm have purchased enough wind generated power to offset the entire night's electricity usage, and $1 of each ticket purchased will go toward green initiatives of the team.
Anyone who wants to make the leap into lacrosse, stop on by and say hi in the comments. I'll be publishing updates throughout the game both here, and on Twitter.
Tickets are still available, and can be purchased at the Xcel Energy Center box office, or online.