It’s Tuesday And Here Are This Weeks Top 10 Thoughts

Well it has been a very interesting seven days in the world of sports he’s make take on what is making headlines.

10 – Is the sky falling in Riderville? The Saskatchewan Roughriders were thumped 48-15 on Saturday in Toronto. Not a lot to draw on for the coaching staff except perhaps a reality check that the Green and White need after a lack-luster second half against Hamilton and a disinterested look against the Argos. Saskatchewan will be OK, they just need to get back to work.

9 – My phone blew up yesterday after the Riders dealt Dwight Anderson to the Toronto Argonauts for a conditional draft pick. To be truthful I don’t know much more than the facts. 1) D-A was traded, 2) He allowed touchdown passes to receivers he was covering in both week one and week two, 3) He is a high maintenance player on the field, 4) He was traded away the day after a loss, 5) Coach Chamblin alluded to the fact that the deal was a pre-emptive strike and that there were no on-field or off-field issues., AND 6) He was kept around after training camp when the team could have decided to replace him with other talent. So, if you can draw any conclusions please be my guest.

8 – Amazingly while some where happy to see Anderson dealt, see the comments section, others say that getting a conditional draft pick from the Argos isn’t enough. Two thoughts on this one, firstly a conditional pick is truly just a step above an outright release where the Riders may have been required to pick up some of his salary. Secondly, it is hard to make in-season trades in the CFL as maneuvering around the cap is very tricky. Additionally, look at what Edmonton got in return for Quarterback Ricky Ray, arguably, the best player in the league. Basically, the Eskies ended up with kicker Grant Shaw!

7 – One more on the Anderson deal and with his departure and the removal of his salary from the Riders cap does that mean another veteran could be returning to the Green and White? Let’s just say that there is wiggle room in the salary structure should an opportunity present itself.

6 – Listening to the Voice of the Saskatchewan Roughriders Rod Pedersen he openly questioned whether or not anyone in the CFL has achieved a sellout thus far in 2014. The answer is no, and I wonder if the alarm bells shouldn’t be going off in the gate-driven league’s office in Toronto. Explanation number one for low attendance, the league’s labour situation dominated any and all pre-season/training camp talk which failed to generate any hype or excitement for the league heading into the season. Not to mention the fact that labour disputes are highly emotional and there might be some lingering effects from fans.

5 – Possibility number two for lack of attendance; In the markets that need the exposure the most it seems as though they are shutting/their customers out. Some teams incredibly are limiting fans and maybe more importantly media access to players or in the case of Winnipeg coaches outside of Head Coach Mike O’Shea. The media tell the stories of the league and its players and good or bad they are promoting he game while the interaction that fans have been afforded in the past was one of the biggest endearing qualities of the Canadian Football League.

4 – Possibility number three, that I don’t get. The media in Edmonton is up in arms over the fact that they are unable to go into the Eskimos locker room to speak with players. They point to the fact that they are allowed in the Oilers room and have in some ways boycotted the Eskimos. If you haven’t heard View From The Sidelines co-host Mike McCullough’s thoughts on the subject, (Click here), he completely agrees with Eskimo Head Coach Chris Jones and closing the locker room. I honestly, can’t disagree. How would you like to carry out a responsibility of your job in your lunch room or washroom at your work.

3 – On top of that, I agree with Mike’s stance so long as the players will meet with the media. An overzealous media person with one CFL in particular disrupted a live interview that I was doing within the confines of the parameters of the league’s media policy as he didn’t feel as though the player should be subject to questions after a loss.

2 – Hands up if you though that Hamilton’s new stadium would be ready for their opening game this season. The Ti-Cats, who once again are opening the season with an extended road trip, confirmed yesterday that their stadium is only 85% complete so they will need to play at McMaster Stadium for their first two home games. End story it’s hard to generate enthusiasm if you cannot deliver the goods. That is why it in my mind is such a good plan that the Riders and City of Regina have undertaken with the idea that the stadium will be ready but vacant for half a CFL season. That should ensure that the Green and White can move in on time in 2016.

1 – Lastly, to a different field and can someone please tell me what the Toronto Blue Jays are doing? With the club in a free-fall instead of addressing any of the teams deficiencies General Manager Alex Anthopolis claimed out-fielder Nolan Reimold off of waivers. Now correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t Anthony Gose more than prove his ability to play every day in centre field when Colby Rasmus was on the DL? AND aren’t the most glaring deficiencies on the Blue Jays roster at 2nd base, and starting pitcher? Oh, and maybe a hitter that can bat in the clutch. Long story short the nucleus of the team is proving once again that when things get tough they get going. Time to blow-it up and try to figure out a way to build from within!

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