For the first time in nearly two decades, the National Lacrosse League returns to the Capital Region. The Albany FireWolves, formerly the New England Black Wolves, kickoff their inaugural season on Saturday, December 4 with an away game against the Toronto Rock before returning to Albany for a home matchup versus the Rochester Knighthawks on Saturday, December 18. This weekend’s game will be at 7 p.m. in the FirstOntario Centre on Saturday, December 4, and broadcast live on My4 WNYT, ESPN Plus, and TSN as the NLL Game of the Week.
Though this will be the first game under the name FireWolves, the organization will look to start the 2021-22 season with a win and pickup where the team left off before the season came to a halt in 2020. The then Black Wolves were riding a four-game win streak and boasted the best record in the league at 8-3 when play was stopped. Toronto was having a solid year as well, holding a 7-4 record and was a game back from first place in the North division. The last time the two clubs met, the Black Wolves came out on top 12-8.
FireWolves Players to Watch:
Joe Resetarits is a player whom locals might recognize after his standout career with the University of Albany just a few years ago. The former Great Dane scored a goal in every single game he played in throughout his four years and was named All-American and Conference Player of the Year honors the last season he played in the Capital Region. Returning to the 518, Resetarits has established himself as one of the best forwards in the NLL and is the only American player to log a 100-point season in league history. During his short tenure with the Black Wolves, Resetarits has compiled 68 points in 18 games. Look for Resetarits to create multiple scoring opportunities for the FireWolves both as a scorer and a distributer.
Another key name is one fans will see between the pipes this season. Coming off a Goalie of the Year award in 2020, Doug Jamieson returns to the team after posting eye-popping goaltender numbers the last time he was on the turf. He allowed a mere 8.80 goals per game, good for second best in NLL history, and set a league record for save percentage at 82.9%. Though a testament to a solid defensive unit as a whole, Jamieson served as the backbone while in net as the team was on pace to allow the fewest goals in the league since 2014. The magic number is to keep the opposing team under 10 goals and who better to have in net than one of the best in the business?
Though the FireWolves were able to retain numerous key guys on the roster, the team still made waves in free agency this offseason. Trading away a pair of second round 2020 draft picks, the FireWolves brought in Jacob Ruest, a four-year league vet who adds a ton of firepower to the team’s already loaded offense. Playing each of his first four seasons with the Colorado Mammoth, Ruest tallied up 188 total points in 67 career games. Ruest has already made an impact for the FireWolves, scoring a goal in their most recent preseason victory last Saturday. The new addition to the offense will look to ride the momentum from the preseason win to help lift the FireWolves to a 1-0 start to begin the team’s inaugural season. Look for Ruest to quickly transition defense stops into scoring opportunities for the FireWolves.
Opposing Players to Watch:
Entering his tenth season with the Rock, Rob Hellyer has been a staple for the Rock offense since being drafted in the third round in 2010. Last season, Hellyer finished third in MVP voting while leading the Rock in scoring with 56 points. Hellyer was limited to just one goal in the only matchup against the Black Wolves during the 2019-20 season.
Nick Rose, another long-tenured member of the Rock, has been in a Toronto uniform since he joined the team in 2012. In the shortened season, Rose posted career bests 9.41 GAA and Save Percentage .816. In one game against the Black Wolves in 2019, Rose allowed 11 goals.
Tom Schreiber has been nothing short of great since joining the Rock in 2017. In 18 games during his debut season, Schreiber compiled 33 goals and 61 assists on his way to being named NLL Rookie of the Year. Two years later, he tied his 94 points from his rookie season and set a career high with 65 assists. In five games prior to the season shutting down in 2019-20, Schreiber tallied 19 points on eight goals and 11 assists.
This will be the first meeting between the FireWolves and the Rock this season. The two clubs will faceoff one more time after the season opener on Saturday, February 19 in Albany.
Do not miss your opportunity to witness history! Fans can secure their tickets for the historic inaugural 2021-22 FireWolves home opener today! For more information regarding home opener tickets, visit https://albanyfirewolves.com/tickets/2021-22-home-opener/ or call/text the FireWolves front office at 518-362-4900.
The Albany FireWolves 2021-22 Inaugural Season is presented by CDPHP.
About Albany FireWolves
The Albany FireWolves is the Capital Region’s very own Professional Box Lacrosse team, playing in the National Lacrosse League out of the Times Union Center in downtown Albany, NY. For more information, contact the Albany FireWolves Front Office at (518) 362-4900 or visit AlbanyFireWolves.com. Follow the team on Facebook at facebook.com/AlbFireWolves, Twitter @AlbFireWolves, and Instagram @AlbFireWolves.
About the National Lacrosse League
The National Lacrosse League (NLL) is North America’s premier professional lacrosse league. Founded in 1986, the NLL ranks third in average attendance for pro indoor sports worldwide, behind only the NHL and NBA. The League is comprised of 15 franchises across the United States and Canada: Albany FireWolves, Buffalo Bandits, Calgary Roughnecks, Colorado Mammoth, Georgia Swarm, Halifax Thunderbirds, Las Vegas NLL, New York Riptide, Panther City Lacrosse Club (TX), Philadelphia Wings, Rochester Knighthawks, San Diego Seals, Saskatchewan Rush, Toronto Rock, and Vancouver Warriors.
For more information, visit NLL.com and find @NLL on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. For more information visit NLL.com.
About ASM Global
ASM Global is the world’s leading venue management and services company. The company was formed by the combination of AEG Facilities and SMG, global leaders in venue and event strategy and management. The company’s elite venue network spans five continents, with a portfolio of more than 325 of the world’s most prestigious arenas, stadiums, convention, and exhibition centers, and performing arts venues. From Aberdeen to Anchorage, and Sydney to Stockholm, its venues connect people through the unique power of live experiences. ASM Global’s diverse portfolio of clients benefit from the company’s depth of resources and unparalleled experience, expertise and creative problem solving. Each day, the company’s 61,000 passionate employees around the world deliver locally tailored solutions and cutting-edge technologies to deliver maximum results for venue owners and amazing experiences for guests. By consistently looking for new ways to envision, innovate and empower the spaces and places that bring people together, ASM Global elevates the human spirit while delivering the highest value for all stakeholders. For more information, please visit www.asmglobal.com.
About Times Union Center
Times Union Center is a full-service entertainment and sports facility featuring a wide variety of family shows, sporting events, trade shows and concerts. Owned by Albany County and managed by ASM Global, Times Union Center opened in 1990 and is home to the Albany FireWolves of the National Lacrosse League, the Albany Empire of the National Arena League and the Division I Men’s College Basketball Siena Saints. For more information, please visit www.timesunioncenter-albany.com.
Established in 1984, CDPHP is a physician-founded, member-focused and community-based not-for-profit health plan that offers high-quality affordable health insurance plans to members in 26 counties throughout New York. CDPHP is also on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram.