Toronto – The Toronto Rock (6-6) play host to the Edmonton Rush (4-7) on Saturday night at 6pm at Air Canada Centre as the Rock play their final regular season home game of 2012. The game will be broadcast live on TSN2 and will also be available on TSN Mobile TV.
In five trips to Toronto by Edmonton over the previous six years, each and every time, the Rock have come out on the winning end of things. Having said that, the parity in the league this year has meant there is never a clear-cut favourite entering any game.
“I’m surprised by their record, I’m sure they’ve gone through some tough times,” said Rock GM and Assistant Coach Sanderson. “They’re a very talented team and why they only have the four wins, I don’t quite understand that. I know the personnel on that team and they have a very talented ball club. We know we’re in for a real tough one this weekend.”
The respect is also there on the other side of the ball from the Rush perspective as they look to build on the success of their last couple of games.
“There’s a reason why they’ve been in the last two finals,” said Edmonton assistant coach Todd Lorenz. “They’re a great team and they are extremely well coached. Player wise they have what it takes. They’ve had a couple of bad breaks. By the end of it all, they’ll be a favourite in the East. It’s going to be a good battle to see where we fit in terms of the East.”
Like Edmonton, the Rock have strung together a pair of wins and are also trying to turn the corner down the stretch and get on a run leading up to the playoffs.
“It’s definitely been our best two games of the year,” said Sanderson when speaking about the two-game winning streak. “The last couple of games, the bounces have been coming our way. So if they want to keep coming, we’ll keep taking them.”
The Rock offence has been led by the red hot Garrett Billings who captured the NLL’s offensive player of the week as a result of last week’s history making 15-point performance in Toronto’s 15-9 win over Buffalo. Billings was the first player in league history to record a point on each goal his team scored. He also broke the previous team record for most points in a game, surpassing the old mark of 13 points set by Blaine Manning.
Billings followed up his offensive player of the week nod by capturing the March player of the month award. The third-year Rock forward shares the monthly honour with Colorado’s John Grant Jr.
“Without a doubt he’s been our MVP,” said Sanderson. “Knowing what the kid is all about I shouldn’t be surprised, at the same time being in on all 15 (goals) is pretty remarkable.”
Saturday night’s game between the Rock and Rush can be seen live on TSN2 at 6pm and is also available on TSN Mobile TV. For tickets to Saturday night’s game, please visit www.torontorock.com or call 416-596-3075.