Atlas vs. Redwoods: Matchup Preview

By Jerome Taylor | Aug 1, 2020

The Redwoods are hoping to start a winning streak when they take on the Atlas on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET on NBC.

Atlas is coming into this game with something to prove. After taking a 15-6 beating against the Whipsnakes, the Bulls will want to regain some early series mojo to bring their final pool play record to .500.

The Redwoods are coming off their first victory. In a real goaltender's battle, the Redwoods came out on top against their rivals, Chaos in overtime. The 'Woods are also going to be looking to get to .500, and they'll want to have a winning streak going into tournament play.


Storylines to Watch 

Bouncing Back from a Blowout
In Atlas' last game, it got ugly and stayed ugly for quite some time. The Whipsnakes had their way on offense and didn't let the Bulls score for a quarter and change.

Atlas got crushed at the stripe. The usually reliable, Trevor Baptiste, went 5-19 in faceoffs. The Atlas had no luck from anyone else who lined their stick up with Joseph Nardella.

At attack, the Atlas looked discombobulated and had a hard time finding the back of the net. Their three attackmen combined to shoot 11% on Thursday. Expect to see a more aggressive Rob Pannell moving forward, considering he's only scored two PLL goals so far.

The Bull's middies also let them down against the 'Whips, as rookie sensation Bryan Costabile was left scoreless. Connor Buczek has been quiet, only scoring once in 17 shots so far during the Series.

Atlas needs their offense to live up to its offseason potential to get off the snide against the Redwoods.

Gaining Momentum
The Redwoods rode Tim Troutner's stellar play in goal to an overtime victory to earn their first win in the Championship Series.

Offensively, the ‘Woods big names carried them. Myles Jones picked up three points, and midfield mate Sergio Perkovic added two points as well.

If the Woods offense continues to find their rhythm, they can be heading into tournament play .500, with mismatches all over the field.

Major Matchups
Tucker Durkin is back, and he made his presence felt against Whipsnakes when he had the opportunity, causing two turnovers. Durkin teaming up with Cade van Raaphorst will solidify Atlas’ backline. A group whose primary responsibility will be slowing down Ryder Garnsey, who will be riding high coming off of a game-winner.

Garnsey also has a running mate in Clarke Petterson, who has been playing well during the Series (tied for second on the team in points with six).

This matchup has the makings of a tag-team match worthy of a squared-circle, and will be the matchup to keep your eye on Saturday.

The +135 Atlas moneyline is the most intriguing bet in this game. It would be hard to look at either one of these teams and say that there is a clear favorite.

A +135 line bears that out, but the enticing thing is that it's the same odds that the 0-2 Waterdogs have against the 2-1 Chrome.

Based on the Series to date, it's safe to say that Atlas matches up with the Redwoods better than the 'Dogs do with Chrome.

If you're a fan of underdog moneylines, this is a bet worthy of your attention.



Both these teams come into this matchup looking to finish pool play .500. It is more critical for Atlas to get this win because if they do not, they'll have a 1-3 record and the worst goal differential (-9 going into the game). The best-case scenario for them if they take an L on Saturday is hope either Waterdogs or Chaos finish pool play winless. That's the only way the Bulls don't fall to the bottom of the standings.

For the Redwoods, they find themselves in a similar position, 1-3 is where no wants to be. But they also can climb the rankings, depending on the Chrome/Waterdogs result on Friday. If the Chrome lose by four and the 'Woods overpower Atlas, a 3-seed could be there waiting for them.

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