Welcome to the usual set of Friday thoughts running through my muddled mind, and as always, they are in no particular order.
--Super Bowl 50 is here. On Monday morning, we will either be talking about Peyton Manning's last game being one where he was a winner or Cam Newton winning his first Super Bowl. I would love to see Peyton go out on top, but the Panthers have the better team and should win this game by more than a touchdown, but one just never knows what could happen. If this is Peyton's last game and all indications are it likely is, does a win or loss change his legacy. Yes, it will look better to see two Super Bowl wins on his resume, but with what he has done, does that matter? He is going to the Hall of Fame no matter what. For whatever reason, and I don't know why (maybe I've bought into the white jersey theory), I am taking the Broncos to win this one by a score of 19-16. Do not take this bet to the bank for any reason!
--We are now just a few days away from CFL free agency which is great. I wonder when the league will get around to telling us when the draft is and when the schedule will come out. Many are counting down the days to June 1 around here. It doesn't matter if the Riders are 15-3 or 3-15, fans just want their football fix to begin.
--It looks like Chad Owens is going to go to free agency. Would the Riders be interested in Owens. I can't see it. Chris Jones wants size and Owens doesn't give him that. Besides, he had an Owens type player and he is in Winnipeg now.
--Ottawa wants the 2017 Grey Cup. Why not? I think a Grey Cup game in Ottawa would be tremendous for the CFL especially if the REDBLACKS continue to be a force in the East.
--Bret (Hitman) Hart revealed Monday he is battling prostate cancer. I think I speak for many when I say I hope he puts the sharpshooter on and wins this battle. He has been through enough already.
--It is hard to believe Tuesday night's game between the Edmonton Oilers and Columbus Blue Jackets will be the first one Jordan Eberle and Connor McDavid had played together and one has to wonder what numbers Eberle would have if they had playing together from night one!
Would the Oilers be in a different position if both had been healthy all year long? I think the answer is "yes"! There is a lot of talk about whether or not GM Peter Chiarelli will trade Eberle or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to get the defenceman they desire. I just can't see Ebs being traded because he is a winger while Nugent-Hopkins is behind both McDavid and Leon Draisiatl on the depth chart. Does Edmonton really want RNH as their third-line center? We will find out before the trade deadline methinks! At the end of the day, I don't see any moves being made, I don't see the Oilers making the playoffs and I don't see them getting a gold card at the lottery.
--Can you imagine the crowd on Rose Street in downtown Regina if Eberle brought his linemate (and no, not Benoit Pouliot) to the 2016 Sticks on Rose event. That my friends would be a sight to see.
--As the stretch drive to the playoffs begin, one would have to think Patrick Kane is the odds-on favourite to be named the league's MVP and former Saskatoon Blade Braden Holtby would be named the Vezina Trophy winner, but could Holtby do what Carey Price did last year and win the MVP. I don't see it, but I am guessing a lot of votes will go his way.
--The NHL got it right with the Dennis Wideman suspension. There is no ifs, buts or maybes about it. The guy cross-checked a linesman from behind and he looks on video to have done it deliberately. You can't have that in the game. See ya Dennis! If you don't give him a long suspension, you are sending the wrong message. I would like to see Wideman just accept his punishment, but he is saying all the things he has to say as he appeals the decision.
--Interesting comments and a great endorsement from Regina Thunder president Brin Werrett on the Sportscage Wednesday. Werrett was asked if there was any concern on his part of current Thunder coach Scott McAuley going to fill the vacant U of R Rams spot as many have suggested. Werrett said if he were the Rams, that would be the first guy he would be calling as Scott is considered one of the best young coaches in the game. Hmmmmmmm!! Brin also went on to say that if Scott were to leave, which he obviously hopes he doesn't, he thinks there are guys on the current staff who could take over. Werrett also announced Gizmo Williams will be the guest speaker at their sports dinner March 19 and that the team will honor former Rams coach Frank McCrystal and the great Marco Ricci which makes me wonder if Boston Pizza Emerald Park is catering the shindig. Go to reginathunder.ca to get ticket details on what should be a great night at the Turvey Center.
--Watching Steph Curry play basketball is just a treat. There has been a lot of talk about how Curry's Golden State Warriors would do against Jordan's Chicago Bulls. That would be fun to watch. I know how Curry's Warriors would do against Isiah Thomas' Bad Boys--Detroit Pistons!
--Speaking of basketball, the Cougar men and women are home for some big games this weekend against Victoria. Tip off both Friday and Saturday night is 6 PM.
--Before I go, I have to type a few lines about a guy that I gave the moniker of "Mayor of Gronkville". For years, I have been going to High Impact Wrestling and for just about every show I have been at, a guy named Phil Alderson has been there and more oft than not, he had the audacity to wear Zubaz pants. Word came down Thursday morning Phil passed away after suffering a pulmonary embolism at an age way younger than he should have. It will not be the same at High Impact shows not seeing him around as he would saunter over to take a shot or two, ask about the Riders and the latest in the WWE. The guy loved his Riders and he LOVED his wrestling whether it be the pros or the guys in HIW, or any other promotion that rolled through town, Those conversations won't be happening anymore. RIP Phil!! Get a front-row seat for those wrestling shows in the sky! Gronkville has lost a huge member of the fraternity!
--That's all I got. Have a great weekend and enjoy the last football game that matters until late June or early July.