Friday, January 20, 2017
This And That
Welcome to Friday! Here are the usual weekly thoughts running through my muddled mind, and as always they come in no particular order.
--Has it been a week already since the Durant trade? The week has flown by with many voicing their two cents as to who will be under center for the Riders when the 2017 season opens. That list is growing long with the names Kevin Glenn, Drew Tate, Travis Lulay, Henry Burris,and Ricky Ray being thrown out there amongst others. The other name is James Franklin. He is obviously the key cog in this whole equation. The Eskimos would like to keep him, but he doesn't apparently want to sign an extension. One can't blame Eskimos GM Ed Hervey for wanting a succession plan to Mike Reilly, but the Riders at one point were grooming Drew Willy to be Darian's replacement, but he wanted to be a starter and went to Winnipeg. The name Vernon Adams Junior isn't coming up much, but he didn't sound too thrilled with the trade. Montreal didn't want to trade him here hoping he will be the guy after Durant. Adams doesn't sound as if he has that much patience. This story isn't even close to ending.
--As all of this happens, I can't help but wonder where the Riders would be were it not for the season ending injury Durant suffered in 2014 at the Banjo Bowl. How would the fortunes of this team look had he not suffered that elbow injury. The Riders were 8-2 and on their way to a win that afternoon at Investors Group Field and then the bottom fell out. Man, did it ever! Could the Riders have repeated that year? If they did, you know Durant is still here, and I'm guessing Corey Chamblin and Brendan Taman are as well. Oh, how one play can change the history of a football team. Would the New England Patriots have had the success they had if it weren't for the tuck rule? They went on to win their first Super Bowl that year over the Rams and the rest is history.
--Jose Bautista is going home again. The 36 year old had no desire to return to Toronto, but other squads had no desire in signing Bautista so he goes back to Toronto. Inexplicably, he gets more money than the qualifying offer he rejected. Amazing! Who's kidding who, Jose and the Blue Jays was like last call at the bar and we've all been there guys. The quotes GM Ross Atkins had on Thursday were purely laughable. If Bautista was always on their radar as Atkins claimed and if Bautista truly wanted to be a Jay all along as Atkins claimed, this wouldn't have gone until mid January.
--What has happened to Carey Price? The Habs goalie looks ordinary all of a sudden!
--There are apparently Saskatchewan Rush donuts at the Tim Hortons in Harbour Landing. Are there Regina Pats donuts anywhere?
--Where does Tim Raines go down in the list of greatest Montreal Expos? Put me down as having him at number 2 right behind Gary Carter! He was Rickey Henderson before Rickey Henderson was cool.
--Congratulations to Les Lazaruk! The iconic play-by-play man, and overall all-around good man, called his 1700th game when Medicine Hat paid a visit to Sask-Tel Centre Wednesday night. That's a lot of time in the rink and on the bus. He's one of the best out there.
--When did the phrase "50-50 puck" start getting used by broadcasters and who made this one up? I have heard two references to a 50-50 puck this week. It's as annoying as a "good stick". That phrase isn't going away it seems, but let's hope 50-50 puck does.
--NBC has announced "Will and Grace" is coming back. Can we get "Married with Children" to return? That would be awesome. There has never been a better TV character than Al Bundy!
--We find out who is going to the Super Bowl this weekend. I don't know how you can't take New England at home over Pittsburgh, but if the Steelers can get into a time of possession game and keep running Leveon Bell down the Patriots throats, they have a chance. The longer Pittsburgh is in the game, the better chance they have of winning.. As for the NFC game between the Packers and Falcons, the big question is how many yards and points will these two teams have. This game could go either way, but Atlanta has so much depth at receiver and a 1-2 punch in the backfield in Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman that it could be too much for a Green Bay team who is injured in the secondary. Aaron Rodgers may have to perform a miracle three weeks in a row, and who's kidding who, he probably can.
--Are the four remaining QB's the four best in the game as was suggested this week listening to NFL Radio. No doubt Brady and Rodgers are on the list, but is Matt Ryan there yet? Is Ben Roethlisberger one of the best four in the game? I would think guys like Drew Brees, Russell Wilson, Derek Carr and yes, even Cam Newton even though I'm not a fan would be ahead of Roethlisberger and maybe Ryan too, but that could change if he takes his team to the Super Bowl with a great performance Sunday.
--How much longer until spring training? The first baseball preview magazines are out which is always a good thing.
--That's all I got. The Pats are home to Medicine Hat tonight so maybe I'll see ya at the Brandt Centre. Have a good weekend!!