Category Archives: Viewpoint

Top Ten Tuesday: After A Historical Monday:

Another busy week in the world of sports in Saskatoon here are my top ten thoughts in no particular order including;  A big tip of the helmet to the Football Saskatchewan grid iron crew. Plus a questionable golden goal.

Here we go!

10 – For the first time since the three game-Senior Bowl format was introduced the North topped the South in all three inter-provincial games at Saskatoon Minor Football Field yesterday. In the Six-Man game the North topped the South 22-8. Meantime in 9 man action it was the North downing the South 47-13 while in the 12-man Ed Henick Bowl game the North topped the South 53-29. The three games were all held at Saskatoon Minor Football Field and featured the top seniors in the province.

9 – Congrats to the Football Saskatchewan for making the weekend a must attend event for all players and fans alike. The backdrop of SMF Field was spectacular and the athletes did not disappoint.

8 – One more on football and Saskatoon Minor Football Field has become the crown jewel of football in ToonTown. The Field’s use is spectacular with all types of programs from Rush Girls Flag Football to the U16 and U18 Academies to the Tikes on Spikes program. Those with the vision to make the facility into what it has become deserve a big pat on the back.

7 – To a different green and the Saskatchewan Rush are doing it right on and off the field. The Rush defended their NLL Western Conference Championship on Saturday night completing the sweep of the Calgary Roughnecks. Off the field the game was once again the biggest attendance for any sporting event at Sasktel Centre with just over 15,100 fans in the building, which certainly says a lot. There were some skeptics openly questioning how the team would draw on the May long weekend (yes, that would be me) BUT I am glad to say that I was wrong.

Top 10 Tuesday: What I learned From Don Cherry: WOW I just typed that!

Well another seven days have come and gone in the world of sports. North American headlines have been dominated by the Texas Rangers-Toronto Blue Jays dust up in Arlington on Sunday. That’s where we will start with lots of other observations to come in no particular order that we call the Top 10 Tuesday.

10 – Well let’s start with the brawl that all began when Jose Bautista emphatically tossed his bat after a dramatic home run in the fifth and deciding game of the ALDS last October. All was quiet until the Rangers got their retribution in the finale of a three game set in Texas on Sunday when reliever Matt Bush plunked him with a 90+ mph fastball in the eighth inning. Bautista was incensed and had to be restrained, somewhat, by the first base umpire. Getting no satisfaction he slid hard into second base on a double-play opportunity for the Rangers that drew the irk of Rougned Odor who landed a right-cross for the ages that cued the benches to clear. So the act is being called cowardly by the Jays. I prefer ingenious. Firstly, the Rangers won the game. Secondly, they exacted revenge in front of their fans, something the faithful have been calling for since October. AND finally, they were able to get their pound of flesh which should have settled the situation not withstanding Bautista’s slide.

9 – Now speaking of the slide I say it was dirty as there was intent from Jose Bautista to injure the Texas second baseman. MLB’s view of the slide will be interesting to hear. However, I didn’t notice Odor’s throw until I saw Don Cherry’s take on Coach’s Corner and it is hard to dispute that Odor was throwing at Bautista coming at him. The low throw almost caught Bautista in the bucket which also may have caused the tentions to ratchet up a notch.

Top Ten Tuesday – Welcome to 2016!

What a week in Saskatoon for grid iron fun. Both the Saskatoon Hilltops and University of Saskatchewan Huskies held their spring camps. Add to that the Saskatchewan Roughriders gearing up for today’s CFL draft and the WHL bantam selection and it has been a busy time. So in no particular order here is my take on the last seven days in ToonTown.

10 – Start with a tip of the cap to the organizers of the Dogs Breakfast. This year’s edition featured the CFL on TSN panel minus-Matt Dunigan, add Kerry Joseph. The panel concept was a definite change from what patrons experienced in the past but one that seemed well received. In the end the recruits were again welcomed to the program in a truly Saskatchewan Huskie tradition. The best description of this year’s event was provided to me from one recruit’s father who said this is like the Roughriders Plaza of Honour only better!

9 – Staying with the Huskies and 2016 is going to be a very interesting season. There are some younger players that are pushing for some playing time and going to make some tough decisions for the coaches. There are also some veteran players that look extremely determined to make a statement in Canada West.

Top Ten Tuesday: It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year:

A football appetizer is on the menu for fans in Saskatoon this week. Throw in the NHL play-offs, MLB baseball and some basketball and we’ve got it all in this week’s musings. In no particular order here’s what’s on my mind:

10 – The NHL play-offs are into round two. I believe that my actual viewing time has increased to two periods. However, the NHL is doing itself no favors. I have no idea why the league would schedule game one of round-two on the same night as a first-round game seven. Yes building availability was one of the reasons for the scheduling conflict with that being said there had to be an alternative. Why anyone would take away from the drama of a game seven is beyond me. More from hockey in a moment.

9 – With that being said I think I watched a complete basketball game, from tip-off to the final horn, for the first time since Jordan and Pippin were winning with the Bulls on Sunday night. The Raptors escaped another first round flame-out by holding on to beat Indianapolis at Air Canada Centre. The wins is, of course, huge for the franchise but isn’t an NBA title which some analysts and fans may lead you to believe.

Top Ten Tuesday: April 26

Here we go again and it’s time to take a look at the top ten sporting that have caught my attention. In no particular order:

10 – Well the word on the street is that Rogers is having a heck of a time drawing eyes to their NHL play-off broadcasts. The low numbers are so troubling that the hockey host broadcaster is going to go over their content with a fine tooth comb this off season. Having said that, one simple change could make a world of difference: Find a consistent platform to deliver your product! For example, if you have to keep telling me where I have to go to see certain games at different times and it is not in the same place I probably won’t take the time to look.

9 – Staying with the NHL and apparently anything goes in the NHL play-offs. As you probably know the no-holds-barred approach to officiating in the play-offs drives me nuts. Exhibit A: The final minute of New York Islanders, Florida Panther game on the weekend. Two clear trips were overlooked before the Isles put the game-tying puck in the net. Then, nothing short of a homicide was going to get called in extra time. I read an interesting analysis on the final minute shame in the game and it was pointed out that the players want to be able to decide the game and that most are in favor with no calls late in games or in overtime. Firstly, that smacks of the roosters ruling the roost. Secondly, if the players are in favor of not having any penalties called in critical game moments in the play-offs would they be as content to carry that over to the regular season.

The Price Is Not Right In Riderville

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have confirmed international receiver Maurice Price has filed retirement papers to the Canadian Football League.

“We are surprised and disappointed to hear of Maurice Price’s decision to retire. We were given no indication when we acquired Maurice and negotiated a new contract that he may not continue playing,” stated Riders General Manager and Head Coach Chris Jones. “As a team we will continue to move forward with our free agent camps and work through the CFL Draft. An opportunity has opened up for another player.”

Top Ten Tuesday: April 19

Well it’s that time of the week again. Time to empty my brain of random thoughts from the week that was in the world of sports. So here we go in no particular order.

10 – Mike Reilly has become the highest paid player in the CFL. His contract extension with the Eskimos will see him reportedly double his salary to $500,000 a year in both 2017 and 2018. When I spoke with a CFL Hall of Famer about Reilly his thoughts on the Edmonton Quarterback was that Reilly needing to prove that he can stay on the field. “That’s how you become great… by staying on the field!”

9 – Who should be the top paid player in the CFL? For years the argument could be made for dominant Canadian Lineman. Now I think you have to go with a Quarterback and if I was to pick one across the league right now for the highest base salary that would be Bo Levi Mitchell in Calgary.

8 – An interesting dynamic is developing in Edmonton with the Eskimos signing free-agent Quarterback Thomas DeMarco. The move, obviously, makes sense on a number of levels: He played for new Head Coach Jason Maas in Ottawa, the Eskies are in need of a veteran presence behind Reilly after trading Matt Nichols to Winnipeg last year, AND there is still a ton of upside on DeMarco. With all that being said let’s not forget that it was DeMarco that beat out Reilly for the number two job in B.C. which saw the Lions ship Reilly to Edmonton.

An Award Winning Edition Of Dave’s Dis N Dat!

In no way am I saying that this is deserving of any or consideration for any awards. However when reviewing headlines from the week there are a number of awards that I would like to hand out. So with that being said the vote(s) are in and here are the award winners from the week.

The Harry Houdini Award goes to fans of the Moose Jaw Warriors. As good friend Michael Ball would say a lot of fans went to the rink dressed as empty seats on Tuesday night for game three of their second round WHL play-off series. I understand that the team dropped the first two games of the set with Brandon in Manitoba but there has to be some concern there.

The Green for Blue Award goes to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers who posted a $4.4-million profit in 2015 despite not making the play-offs or selling out the Grey Cup Game that they hosted. Tip of the cap to the Manitoba men who have done a nice job turning the franchise around off the field. Now, can they get it together on the field.

The Innovation Award Goes To The CJFL.

Top Ten Tuesday – April 12

Well another seven days have come and gone. Here are my musings from the week that was in the world of sports. In no particular order.

10 – Well it can only be called an implosion of epic proportions, Jordan Spieth’s unraveling on the back nine at the Masters won’t soon be forgotten. With that said I think Spieth deserves a tip of the cap for the sportsmanship that he exhibited following the collapse. As is the tradition of the Masters, being the defending champion, he presented the winner Danny Willet with the coveted Green Jacket. Unlike some athletes, coaches and managers who shy away following defeat Spieth was right there, although I am sure that he would have preferred to have been anywhere but there.

9 – Rider Nation is getting an appetizer for the coming season with the team’s annual spring mini-camp in Florida. While it is hard to judge from this far away my initial impressions are very positive. There seems to be a good mix of veterans and players looking to crack the CFL. AND GM and Head Coach Chris Jones is definitely living up to his word and looking for a group that is fast, athletic and big.

8 – The best news out of the mini-camp thus far has to be the health of Quarterback Darian Durant. The team’s on-field general says that he feels close to 100% which is a great step forward.

7 – The player that I am going to watch with interest is former Ti-Cat and Alouette Quarterback Dan LeFevour. The pivot seemed to take the next step in his career with Hamilton two years ago when he took over from injured starter Zac Collaros. However, he suffered a season ending knee injury that halted his progress. Additionally, he was not resigned in Steel Town and made his way to the gong show in Montreal that didn’t do him any favors. I think it will be interesting to see if he can displace Brett Smith as the back-up and/or find his way onto the main camp roster.

6 – On a different field, albeit early, I think there is cause for some concern with the Toronto Blue Jays.

A Tardy Top 10 Tuesday:

Yes I know that it’s a day late but hopefully not a dollar short. Another intriguing seven days has come and gone in the world of sports. Here’s my weekly take in no particular order:

10 – First off congratulations to the Saskatchewan Rush and their sellout crowd of 14,941 at Sasktel Centre on Saturday night. That makes it the only sporting event that I can ever recall selling out Sasktel Centre. Wow! Well done.

9 – Truthfully I am in awe of the marketing machine that is the Saskatchewan Rush. They have developed a product, created demand for the product all despite having what seemed to be an ample supply of tickets for their games. That being said, the Rush have cranked it up another notch after clinching a home-play-off game they have already released their post-season ticket purchasing plan. In addition to booking play-off seats the team has rolled out its’ 2017 season ticket purchasing plan. Wow these guys are on top of their game!

8 – Congratulations to Zenon Park. The community of 187 had over 200 show up for their 6th annual Sports Celebrity Dinner featuring Grant Fuhr and Damon Allen. I had the pleasure of serving as MC for the evening that put $20,000 back into the community to maintain and increase recreational opportunities in the community. What a great event!