It’s playoff time in the AUDL, with two games this weekend and two more next weekend, all building to the climactic Championship Weekend semis and finals on September 10 and 11 in Washington, D.C.. The title chase still feels wide open, but my personal pursuit of perfect postseason picks is the real struggle right now.
After remarkably going 13-2 the past five weeks, could I possibly keep thriving and prognosticate all seven playoff contests correctly? That’s certainly the goal.
With two stray rescheduled regular season games remaining in the Atlantic, I’ve got to make a pick in one of those along with the West and Central Division title games.
That’s enough preamble. Here are the “Locks” for “Week 13!”
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Lock No. 1
Between the two regular season finales, I like the DC Breeze -3 in Tampa Bay the most. Coming off a thrilling double overtime victory over Raleigh, the Breeze don’t want to let any momentum wane prior to hosting a playoff game next Friday. If DC comes out with focus and purpose in the first quarter, they should overwhelm the 2-9 Cannons, who originally were envisioning hanging at the beach this weekend rather than competing against a first class opponent. The Breeze -3 is the safe choice here.
Lock No. 2
In Saturday night’s West Division title showdown (broadcast live at 9 PM ET on the DraftKings Dream Stream), I have got to go with Dallas +1.5. I honestly thought this game would be a pick-em or the Roughnecks would be the slight favorite, even on the road. Add in the news that an injured Kyle Henke might return and star handler Chris Mazur is also on the Roughnecks’ active roster, along with the reality that Dallas has shown in the past it can win playoff games on the road, and the Roughnecks feel like an even easier pick. The Growlers are good enough to win this game, but their inconsistent offense — a source of frustration all season long — will likely cost them in a key moment. Getting Dallas and the points is a gift!
Lock No. 3
The Chicago Union -1.5 are the pick for the Central Division title game, but this matchup remains wildly intriguing largely because Chicago and Minnesota are two teams who are both in uncharted territory. Despite many opportunities, the Union and Wind Chill are a combined 0-7 all-time in playoff games, but obviously something’s got to give on Sunday. I think the line is a couple points off, and Chicago won by four in Minnesota the last time these two teams met. Expect this to be a reasonably close game, but the Union’s steadier O-line and more explosive D-line athletes will create a multi-goal separation late.
Free $1K DraftKings Sportsbook Pool
Even if you’re unable to wager on AUDL action due to your location (AUDL DraftKings Sportsbook bets are available in West Virginia, Tennessee, Colorado, Michigan and Illinois), everyone is eligible for this week’s AUDL Saturday night Free-to-Play pool. Just answer the 10 questions about the results from the second half of our exclusive DraftKings broadcast featuring Dallas and San Diego and you can win your share of $1,000.
Three categories I’m looking at in the “Lock” department:
Will San Diego get six or more blocks as a team? YES
Will Dallas complete five or more hucks? YES
Will Dallas win on the road and reach their fifth straight Championship Weekend? YES
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