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Billy Dee Smith has been in plenty of happy postgame locker rooms during his 11 years as a member of the Buffalo Bandits. Last Saturday’s scene after the playoff win against Toronto was one of the most euphoric of them all.“It was actually weird,” he said. “We’ve been in good spirits considering the eight-game losing streak. You know you’re better than that and expect more…

The final four of the National Lacrosse League playoffs have been determined, and the Buffalo Bandits earned an invitation to the party.The Bandits’ win over Toronto on Saturday gave them a spot in the East final against the Rochester Knighthawks. Both teams will have the chance to host a game. Buffalo will have its home game on Saturday at 7:30 p.m., with the teams playin…

TORONTO — Buffalo Bandits coach Troy Cordingley reached into his bag of motivational tricks in his pregame speech before Saturday’s first round playoff game with the Toronto Rock.“He came out wearing” John Tavares’ “jersey and said he wanted the win so that JT could come back and play in front of his home fans one more time,” Ryan Benesch said.Mission accomplished.The Band…

TORONTO — Buffalo Bandits goalie Anthony Cosmo needs to buy an eraser today. He has to wipe out the ugly “zero” that was in his statistical profile under “playoff wins.”Cosmo earned postseason win number one when the Bandits defeated Toronto on Saturday night. It only took him 14 years to do it. “I got the game ball because it’s my first playoff win,” he said about this vi…

Bandits

The Buffalo Bandits should have a powerful motivating force on their side for the National Lacrosse League playoffs this year.Redemption.The Bandits have a chance to erase some of the memories of a stunning eight-game losing streak that closed their season when they open the postseason tonight in Toronto against the Rock (7 p.m., nll.com, Radio 1520 AM). Buffalo coach Troy…

The National Lacrosse League’s regular season came to an end late Saturday night, and that set up the first round of the playoffs.The Buffalo Bandits were one of six teams to qualify for the postseason. They will open the East semifinal with a game in Toronto against the Rock on Saturday. Starting time at the Air Canada Centre is 7 p.m. In the West, Calgary will host Color…

Bandits

What looked like a dream regular season for the Buffalo Bandits several weeks ago has ended as a nightmare. The Bandits lost their eighth in a row on Saturday night, extending a franchise record for consecutive losses. The latest loss was a 16-14 decision to the Rochester Knighthawks before 19,070 in the First Niagara Center. “It’s mind-boggling,” Ryan Benesch said. “When …

Bandits

Joel Matthews felt a little pressure when he made his National Lacrosse League debut last week for the Buffalo Bandits.Matthews was placed on the roster just before the game with the Rochester Knighthawks, who are merely the defending NLL champions. The game was played in Rochester. Just to raise the stakes, the Bandits had lost their previous six games in a row.“It felt w…

Bandits

The numbers tell the story for the Buffalo Bandits’ offense.When the Bandits were 8-2 back in mid-March, the team was averaging 11.9 goals per game and allowing 10.1 goals. But since then, Buffalo has scored only 8.1 goals per game while allowing 11.9 goals. That’s led to the most discouraging number of them all – seven straight losses, a franchise record.“I think you don’…

ROCHESTER — The Buffalo Bandits didn’t play a bad game against the Rochester Knighthawks on Saturday night. In fact, they did quite a bit right except when it came to scoring goals. That makes it easy to guess how this game turned out. The Bandits dropped their seventh straight game, losing to the Knighthawks, 8-4. That set a franchise record for consecutive losses, breaki…

TORONTO — Last year, the Buffalo Bandits lost six straight games down the stretch to spoil what looked like was going to be a very promising season.Sound familiar?The Bandits of 2014 lost their sixth straight game – tying a franchise record for longest losing streak – when they dropped a 13-9 decision to Toronto on Friday night. The loss came before 11,276 in the Air Canad…

Bandits

TORONTO — For the past several years, Buffalo Bandits superstar John Tavares hasn’t given retirement much thought – except when it’s been brought up by others. The original Bandit has said he’d keep playing as long as he enjoyed it and was contributing to the team.Now, the subject is on his mind. The disclosure came after he sat out last week’s game in Minnesota.“I was a h…

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Sat, Apr 12, 2014

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The playoff picture in the National Lacrosse League’s East Division has gained some clarity, thanks to yet another loss by the Buffalo Bandits.The Bandits dropped their fifth straight game, a 10-9 decision to the Minnesota Swarm. Buffalo, which had been 8-2 less than a month ago, fell to 8-7. The defeat, combined with Rochester’s win over Vancouver, means…

Bandits

Sometimes Dhane Smith plays with the defensive squad of the Buffalo Bandits, bringing his athletic ability to that unit.Sometimes the second-year pro finds himself up front with the offensive players, particularly when it’s time for a power play.In fact, Smith is liable to play just about anywhere except goal during the course of a game. The only given for tonight’s game a…

The Buffalo Bandits didn’t get any help late Saturday night in their attempt to clinch second place in the National League East and guarantee themselves a home playoff game.The Toronto Rock defeated the Vancouver Stealth, 17-9, in British Columbia. That improved the Rock’s record to 6-9, while the Bandits are 8-6. Toronto can clinch a playoff spot next week with a win over…