News | 5/12/2014 11:21:43 AM | Kevin Snow
With a 12-8 win over Rochester under their belts following Game 1 of the National Lacrosse League’s East Division Finals, the Buffalo Bandits now head into uncharted waters as the scene shifts east down the Thruway for Game 2 this Saturday at Blue Cross Arena.
For the first time in league history, both the Division Finals and NLL Championship are being played as two-game series, switching from the previous single-elimination format.
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In addition to the Bandits taking a 1-0 lead over Rochester, the Calgary Roughnecks surprised the top-seeded Edmonton Rush with a come-from-behind 12-11 OT decision out west on Saturday night.
Wins by the Bandits and Roughnecks this weekend (Calgary and Edmonton play Friday at 10 p.m. ET) would result in the two teams advancing the Champion’s Cup Finals the next week.
If Edmonton or Rochester can pull out a win in Game 2, then it’ll be time for a tiebreaker mini-game.
Unlike the league’s regular season sudden-death overtime format, the mini-game will be a full 10-minute period played immediately following the conclusion of Game 2. The clock will be reset to zero, and no lineup changes will be allowed for either team.
However, all minor penalties and game misconducts will carry over to the tiebreaker game.
Goalies will change ends at the start of the mini-game, and each team will be granted one challenge flag opportunity during the 10-minute period.
Officials will initiate challenges with two minutes or less remaining in the mini-game.
Each team will also have one timeout during the period, and there will be a media timeout at the first stoppage in play under the five-minute mark of the period.
If the two teams remain tied following the tiebreaker, they will play a 15-minute sudden-death overtime period to decide a winner. Goalies will switch ends at the start of the period and each team will have one timeout. Challenge flags are not allowed during sudden-death OT; officials will initiate all reviews during the sudden-death period.
The Champion’s Cup Finals will get underway during the weekend of May 23-25, with Game 1 being hosted by the lower-seeded team. If the Bandits advance to the Finals, Game One will be played at First Niagara Center on Saturday, May 24 at 7:30 p.m.