Home cooking still a huge advantage

PAUL FRIESEN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 11:49 AM ET

The Calgary Roughnecks battled all season long for a home playoff date.

Problem is, they weren't a dominant force at the Saddledome this year.

The Roughnecks went 4-4 in front of their hometown fans and struggled at times, even with 12,000-plus cheering them on.

Forward Kaleb Toth couldn't really explain the mediocrity at the 'Dome but was quick to say how happy his team is to be hosting the Arizona Sting tonight in their West Division semifinal playoff game.

"I think sometimes we get a little bit complacent at home," said Toth. "Sometimes we get a little too relaxed. We would come out and start to run away with games and then stop playing."

Toth and Co. won their final two regular-season games to clinch second place in the division, both of them on the road.

"The playoffs is a brand new season," said Toth. "What we did during the regular season doesn't count anymore. We're happy that we have a home playoff game."

NO CHANGES

Roughnecks head coach Jeff Dowling likes the NLL's playoff format and wouldn't want to see it changed.

During the mid-90's, the NLL held a best-of-three series for the Champion's Cup and, according to Dowling, going back to a series format rather than the one-game elimination would be a mistake.

"I like the way they have it right now," said Dowling. "It's NFL style with the 16 regular-season games and each one of them meaning so much.

"To change it and play two-out-of-three would be way too much. There would the potential there to play nine playoff games, which is more than half the regular season."

The league currently has no plans to change the format.

WRAY HAPPY

Roughnecks defender Taylor Wray, a former member of the Duke University lacrosse team, was pleased to hear three players in the program were cleared of any wrong doing in an alleged rape case.

"It's about time," said Wray. "I can only imagine the relief for those guys. Everyone has known for a long time that the accusations were unwarranted and untrue."


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