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Memphis Blast vs Panthers Preview

 

By: Raven Moore

This Saturday, the Memphis Blast will get their first taste of in-game action against cross-town rival Memphis Panthers. This game serves as an important test for the rebuilding team who will be starting numerous first-year players on offense and defense.

One of those first-year players is wide receiver, Markerion Johnson, who like many of his teammates are anxious to get onto the field. He explained to the media the importance of a team’s first game, even if it is the preseason.

Saturday’s game is very important to me and my teammates,” Johnson said. “It lets us know where we are as a team. But we also want to make a statement to let the league know we are a threat and not to count us out.”

Veteran gadget player and co-captain, Brandon Fisher, recognizes that with so much youth on the team, the Panthers may underestimate them.

“Most of our team is made up of rookies with only a couple of returning veterans,” Fisher said. “We’re going into this game with a young core and the Panthers are made up of a lot of former Blast players who have a lot more experience. That means that our newer players are going to have to prove that they deserve to be here.”

One of those players ready to prove their worth is wide receiver, Brandon Kendall, has gained much notoriety this off-season because of his blazing speed. He explained that this first game is important for him because it allows him to show Blast head coach, Charles Thompson, that he belongs on the team.

“I am going to bring my skills and athleticism to the table,” Kendall said. “Coach Thompson has really been a positive role model and coach since I’ve been on the team. I don’t plan on letting him down.”

Thompson understands the challenge ahead of his team and is going to use this game as a scouting opportunity to see what all his players really bring to the table.

“I am looking for consistency,” Thompson said. “Players who will make an impact to give us the best opportunity to win.”

Blast’ linebacker, Eddie Hines, has been considered one of the leaders’ on defense and as he enters his third season, he’s had his share of highs and lows with the team. He knows that for the Blast to come away with the victory, they have to work as a cohesive unit.

It will take us to play as a team on both sides of the ball,” Hines said. “We have to start dominating our opponents at the sound of the first whistle. Maintaining our energy and having fun is important because if you’re not having fun out there, this sport isn’t for you.

The game takes place March 2, at Charles Greenhill Stadium at 2 p.m. This is first of the team’s two preseason games and officially starts the team’s 19th season. Entry into the game costs $5 dollars but children 12 and under enter free. Be sure to come support the Memphis Blast!

 

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