Saskatchewan lacrosse fans have waited 231 days for Saturday, Jan. 21.
The Rush host the Rochester Knighthawks in their home opener at SaskTel Centre, which will follow a banner raising celebrating a second straight National Lacrosse League Championship.
“It’s a big night for us with the banner raising and a full building,” said Rush head coach Derek Keenan. “I’m sure the guys will be excited, but we can’t get too excited.”
Saskatchewan opened the season with a pair of road losses to Georgia and Toronto and are hoping the return to Saskatoon will be the morale boost they need.
“We’re in a bit of a funk, but we started 0-2 in 2015 when we won our first championship,” Keenan said.
The Rush are also dealing with what comes with being the team to beat in the NLL. Fresh off two titles, it’s easy to understand why the rest of the league wants to knock them down a peg.
“We have a big target on our backs being the team to beat,” said Rush forward Ben McIntosh. “Coming into this year every team is giving us their best and getting excited to play us.”
Several Rush players are still getting used to their new teammates, including major offseason pick up Adam Jones and first overall draft pick Ryan Keenan.
“I think it will come as we work the kinks out and hopefully we’re peaking at the right time,” McIntosh said.
The visiting Knighthawks come into the game with a 1-1 record after losing to Toronto and beating New England.
So far the Rush have dominated the all-time series between the two teams, winning nine of ten meetings.
Saturday’s game starts at 7:30 p.m at SaskTel Centre.