Friday, October 4, 2013
This And That
I had to laugh at the no fighting in hockey debate raising its head again on night 1 of the NHL season after Habs tough guy George Parros was carried off the ice on a stretcher after losing his balance while grappling with Leafs tough guy Colton Orr and falling on his face. Parros didn't crumple to the ice after being punched. He fell himself because he stumbled and fell awkwardly. There were three other fights in the game including one needless one between Brandon Prust and a Leaf one whose name I forget. No one talked about those three fights though. I don't like it when a fight breaks out because someone hits someone else with a clean check and a "message" has to be sent, but I have no problem with two guys putting up the dukes. Some will agree with me, others won't. Do I see fighting leaving the NHL anytime soon? No! Steve Yzerman has suggested one fight and you are automatically kicked out. I wonder how Yzerman would feel if he was watching his Tampa Bay Lightning in a big game one night and someone goaded Steve Stamkos or Marty St. Louis into dropping the gloves. Perhaps what the NHL needs is a rule that says after so many fights, you get an ____ game suspension and if you fight so many times after that, the suspension increases by _____ games.
The Riders are in BC just five days after losing in Montreal. The football team has lost the last three games by a total of nine points combined so I haven't lost hope because I think having Kory Sheets back will help a lot tonite. However, if someone had put a schedule down in front of me at the start of the season and said do they win or do they lose I would have scratched an "L" besides this one no matter their record. From Montreal Sunday to Vancouver Friday is not easy and its get that much tougher when you play a team who has won its last dozen at home. Put the struggles of the football team aside. I just don't like their chances. However, this team knows after the slide they have been on that a win tonight just might be the impetus for a great finish to the season. Hopefully they can pull one out.
A gentleman asked me through this blog in rather angry fashion this week if I was Darian Durant's defence lawyer because of the way I staunchly defend him and asked in rather rude fashion if Durant was paying me for the constant defence. While I laughed at the comment, it doesn't change my attitude towards the Riders quarterback any and my opinion of him perhaps even grew a little more this week because of the Twitter incident. Should Darian have done it....absolutely not and if he doesn't use the F word no one is talking about this. Do I applaud him for telling some yahoo where to go. Yup! In this day and age of social media, internet toughguys can say and do whatever they want behind a keyboard (isn't that right Mr or Mrs Anonymous). I asked Durant and Corey Chamblin if they have ever had a fan come up to them and beak face-to-face and both said NO. What a surprise!!! Durant did what many of us have done or would like to do. Granted, the comment wasn't that bad but if someone pokes you long enough, you will eventually have enough and that comment is what put him over the top. The fact he has turned this negative into a positive by taking the support he has received for this from fans wanting to pay his fine and asking them to donate to Geroy Simon's coats for kids charity is tremendous. It tells you something about the guy who isn't just blowing smoke when he says he wants to win a championship here. In a place where championships are few and far between, Durant would love to have his name immortalized besides that of Lancaster, Austin and Joseph. I am still amazed at the constant criticism he gets, but as my Dad and many other old timers have said---they booed Lancaster too.
Speaking of classy moves, it was a very classy move for the Montreal Canadiens to stage an open practice in the town of Lac Megantic, Quebec. That was the town devastated by that train derailment and explosion, The wounds are still open for many and it will be that way for a long time. Giving those people just a few hours of their time and letting them meet some hockey heroes was a great move. Giving those people whose lives will likely never be the same a reason to smile and laugh for one afternoon was tremendous
MUST WATCH TV: Find it online or find out when it will be on Sportsnet, but watch "Back In the Saddle". Its the story of the Calgary Flames rebuilding the insides of the Saddledome after the flood this summer. Its incredible. The damage the building sustained was unbelievable and the fact they had it ready in time for the season is another story in itself. Flames coach Bob Hartley admits in the show he had started looking for apartments in Saskatoon because he thought that is where they were headed. I highly recommend you watch this even if you're not a sports fan.
Rod Pedersen brings up the Rider jerseys being sold at Jersey City in his Friday column and how he sees Durant jerseys everywhere. It amazes me when I sit in the press box and look down at the stands below to see the amount of jerseys and the variety of names current and past that are on the back. You have your Durants, Dresslers, Sheets and Getzlafs, you have your Butlers, Brackenridges, Chicks and Shologans. You have your Makowskys, Dominguezs, Szarkas and Clermonts (where's the Mullinder jerseys) etc. etc. etc. At one game, I counted over 40 different names of Riders past and present on jerseys and I know there would have been a lot more had I looked. I love that! Add the personal jerseys that have your last name and nickname on it and it just adds to the fabric that is Rider Nation. I will say though I've never seen a Rider jersey with "BISHOP" on the back. I hope I don't.
Back to the NHL for a second and it was great to sit down Tuesday night and watch some NHL hockey. I couldn't get into the game last year because of the late start, but I am ready for it now. It was great watching the Oilers play the Jets ---at least until the 3rd period for this Oilers fan when Devan Dubnyk was Devan Dubnyk. As much as I want and think the Oilers can make the playoffs this year, I also think they need an upgrade in net and Tuesday didn't dissuade those feelings any.
Week 5 NFL Lock of the Week----Packers over Lions
Week 5 NFL Upset of the Week ---Colts over Seahawks (yes you are reading that right!)
The Chargers and Raiders are playing at 1130 PM Eastern time Sunday night which is 830 California time. This is because of a baseball game being played in Oakland earlier. Could this game not have been moved to San Diego? Can it not be played Monday or Saturday? Who is going to watch that game in the Eastern time zone.
Are Kate Beirness and Natasha Stanizewski the new latenight anchors on TSN replacing Jay and Dan. If so, I'm OK with that.
I still want Fox Sports One and ESPN.
Chalk me up as one who wants Faith Hill back doing the Sunday Night Football theme.
I heard Global weather girl Tiffany Lizee mention the word "snow" yet, No Tiffany, No, No, NO!!!! No snow until after the Grey Cup game please, Can you and JC Garden please get together and make that happen for us. Thanks!
That's all I got. Have a great weekend! GO RIDERS!!! GO SEAHAWKS!!!