The Dukes Of Hazzard, Roar Of The Rings, and Shameless Plugs; All Show Up In Dave’s Dis N’ Dat

A smattering of thoughts to round out the week also known as some of Dave’s Dis N’ Dat…. With an actual reference to the Dukes of Hazzard.

Start with some football notes and the Saskatchewan Roughriders announced the resigning of receivers Rob Bagg, Chris Getzlaf and offensive lineman Brendan LaBatte and Dominic Picard. For Roughrider fans this is great news as the foundation of any successful team is Canadian talent and these four are top drawer not only with their abilities on the field but also on what they bring to the locker room in character.

Didn’t take the Eastern media long to jump all of the deals! While the Roughriders do not disclose financial details on any of their players, there is a lot of speculation that the deals all include hefty signing bonuses due December 17th. Yes that is the day after the Ottawa expansion draft, which may be a financial deterrent to the REDBLACKS on Expansion Draft Day.

Speaking of the draft and there is no doubt that the Roughriders will lose some players from their Grey Cup team the question is which one? If you had to submit a list of six non-import players to protect who would they be? You have to think that Brendan LaBatte, Chris Best, Ben Heenan, Chris Getzlaf, Craig Butler and Chris Milo would all be top priorities. However, could and should be made for Dominic Picard, Keith Shologan, and Rickey Foley.

So is dirty pool being played by the Riders in signing these types of deals with their players? Absolutely not! Part of General Manager Brendan Taman’s job is to exploit any soft spots in the collective bargaining agreement and the salary management rules. That’s why these moves are big for the Green and White.

Now for the Dukes of Hazzard reference and is Weston Dressler pulling the ole Shuch and Jive? After being named an All-Star earlier this week Dressler stated that he was planning to attend some NFL free-agent workouts. Now I believe that there is definite interest in his services in Chicago with the Bears and Head Coach Marc Trestman who saw him up close and personal in his time in Montreal. However, being a potential free-agent and with the NFL news Dressler has dropped down if not fallen off the list of potential targets for the REDBLACKS. Count him as another protected player without having to actually protect him?

Speaking of the CFL All-Star team that was named this week and am I the only one who thinks that Darian Durant was snubbed by the league yet again? Ricky Ray had some amazing completion numbers but he only played half a season against some porous defences. Not to mention the fact that he didn’t win the Grey Cup little lone a play-off game.

Staying with Quarterbacks and will Henry Burris be out in Hamilton? He is a pending Free-Agent and has apparently fallen out of favor in Steel Town. The rumblings of him not being offered a contract are eerily similar to what is happening with Saskatchewan when it comes to the REDBLACKS expansion draft. Plus, if you are Kent Austin who do you want to quarterback your team? I would have to think that is Dan LeFevour is an option that he would have gotten some playing time in the Grey Cup when the offence was crumbling under the direction of Burris.

One more football note and I like the hiring of Mike O’Shea as Head Coach in Winnipeg. The enthusiasm and ingenuity that he had brought to the Toronto Argonauts Special Teams is very exciting. However, if the Bombers don’t get a deal done for a Quarterback prior to the Ottawa expansion draft his hiring won’t mean a hill of beans.

South of the border Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin was fined $100,000 for being on the field and interfering with a punt return. Wonder if would have a bonus clause in his contract for making the tackle? May have been better than his defence’s that night.

Staying with the NFL and the Seattle Seahawks set a new World Record for noise at an outdoor stadium. 137.6db was registered at field level on Monday night. Wow! Can’t wait to hear how loud Rider Nation could be in an acoustically friendly stadium.

To the ice and it says here that the MLSE the owners of the Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to get Wayne Gretzky in the fold. Now I will admit that I am not a hockey operations expert but wouldn’t you want to focus on getting a younger centre? Kidding aside what will Gretzky bring to the Leafs?

Staying with hockey in Ontario and further proof that the Ontario Hockey League does it right is in a block-buster trade made this week. I have the upmost respect for David Branch and what he has done in Ontario from player safety to ensuring the integrity of their midget draft. Yes, it is a midget draft which needs to be adopted in the WHL. Anyways, back to the trade and one player was moved for eight draft picks, five of which were second rounders. Now you may be asking why no first round picks. Simple the OHL has a rule that forbids the movement of first round picks. Basically the OHL is protecting its member teams from themselves and not allowing them to deal the 1st round picks (the players that should become the building blocks of your franchise). That is opposed to the WHL where one executive told me that teams are trading draft picks like they are candy.

One last hockey note and is anyone else getting tired of on-air personalities pleading for their jobs. See Don Cherry and Coaches Corner last Saturday night. I get that there is going to be a big shake up with broadcasters when Rogers takes over the National NHL rights. Long story short it is my perspective that if you are good at what you do, work hard at it, and are respectful to your audience and peers all will work out.

Lastly on the pebbled ice and you have to love the drama, emotion and intensity being displayed by the competitors at the Roar of The Rings. One men’s and one women’s team will qualify for the Sochi Olympic games. I hate to say this but the action that is on display at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg is far superior to anything that we will see until perhaps the gold medal game at the Olympics. Isn’t it then time that Canada sends more than one representative to the Olympics? We can send multiple Bobsled teams so why can’t we send two or three men’s teams and the same on the women’s side? Just curious?

That’s it for today! Enjoy the weekend.

Dave

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