Its the usual Friday assortment of thoughts running through my muddled mind and as always, they are in no particular order.
My friends, we are on the verge of the 2nd round of the WHL playoffs with the Regina Pats meeting the Brandon Wheat Kings.
There is no doubt Brandon is favoured to win this series and why wouldn't they be, but can Paddock's proteges give them a battle.
The Wheat Kings are stacked from top to bottom and are arguably the best team in the league, but any team can be had.
The message from Paddock has not changed since the start of the year and its safe to say, everyone has bought in to what he is preaching. I am not saying they win this series, but I don't think it will be easy for Brandon and if Regina should win Games 1 or 2 in Brandon, look out.
The Riders mini-camp in Florida goes this weekend and yes, all eyes will be on Darian Durant as he will be throwing to show the coaching staff how his wounded wing is. There is still some speculation in Rider Nation about Durant's arm and whether or not his elbow has healed. I would think he should be fine now and if he is in the final stages of rehab, he will be ready to go in June and will certainly be ready to go for the season opener. As I'm sure you know, Rod Pedersen will be doing Saskatchewan's #1 sports show from the I-M-G Academy and will give you the information you crave on Sportscage Friday and Monday with a special Saturday show as well. Dangerous Dan Plaster will be joining Rod and the shows will be streamed live on Riderville.com.
I hope CFL rule changes don't result in games being 45-42 with Madden like performances. The defense still needs to be a part of the game and be able to do their thing. If a game is 13-9 because both defences are unreal, I am OK with that. It seems to me the rule changes are going to be a real detriment to defences and cover teams. I just hope the CFL knows what it is doing,
The article in Monday's Leader-Post with former CFL referee Don Barker about proposed rule changes years ago was a great read. Barker felt the CFL should have done like the NFL and put the goalposts at the back of the endzone to make a convert longer than it has been. I really wouldn't mind seeing that even though I am in favour of the 32 yard PAT.
The best thing about the start of a baseball season is hearing Vin Scully do Dodger games. He opened up Monday saying he should be on his knees because he is so thankful to be back in the booth and then joked if he was on his knees, he wouldn't be able to get up. I think I speak for all baseball fans when I say we are thankful he is back in the booth for another year. There is no one like him and there never will be. He is in a league all of his own.
The Detroit Tigers lost Max Scherzer to free agency and have Justin Verlander on the DL. They then go out and come oh-so-close to blanking Minnesota in the first three games of the year. I think they're just fine.
What has happened to the Pittsburgh Penguins? That first round draft pick they gave the Oilers for David Perron could be a lottery pick. I doubt it would happen, but can you imagine if Edmonton got Connor MacDavid with Pittsburgh's pick and ended up picking 3 as well.
Being an Oiler fan, you know I am not a Flames fan, but one must admit the job they have done this year is spectacular. Bob Hartley would have to be the odds-on favourite for Coach of the Year in my mind considering what he has done.
The Flames and the Canucks in the first round of the playoffs? Excuse me while I vomit! At least one of them will be out after Round 1.
My disdain for Kevin Lowe has gone up dramatically.
What will the MTS Centre be like for the first Winnipeg Jets playoff game in many, many years? The long suffering Jets fan that prayed for the NHL to return and got their wish has to feel so good right now. I'm glad to see them in and yes, I think they could upset the apple cart somewhat.
With the NHL season winding down, what are your thoughts on the Rogers consortium in year 1 doing hockey. I am not a George Stromboulopoulos fan and think he is not the guy to talk hockey with me on a Saturday night. While we had many games at our disposal, the network did a very poor job in telling us where those games were and I think it will be the same in the playoffs and the on-air talent was poor. Its a shame guys like Rod Pedersen, Peter Loubardias, Les Lazaruk, Regan Bartel and Jon Keen aren't allowed to show their stuff in the pros while we are subject to Paul Romanuk and others. Some like Romanuk, I don't. He is to me what Rod Black is to many of you when it comes to the CFL.
I realize there are some out there who still believe the PGA Tour revolves around Tiger Woods, but I am not one of them. There are too many new stars and established ones on the Tour that Tiger can just blend in with as far as I am concerned. While I didn't see a lot of Round 1 of the Masters, I can only hope we don't see every shot Tiger has while ignoring others who deserve TV time.
Seeing Jack Nicklaus hit a hole in one at the Par 3 competition on Thursday was just awesome.
Who has the best pizza in Regina? Well, OK its Tumblers if you ask me, but I'm not the one who will decide that. You will on May 8. Yes, the first Regina pizza pigout will be taking place. What is it you ask. Click here for the details and then tell your favourite pizza place to get out there and show why they have the best 'za in Regina. Its going to be a great night with a great charity being the big winner. Can someone come up with a Sportscage pizza? What would be on that? I shudder to guess!
Congrats to all Cougar athletes who won awards Thursday night and congrats to all who are fine ambassadors of the Cougar program each and every weekend as they play their respective sport.
That's all I got. Have yourselves a great weekend!
I don't know what shocks me more.
Is it the fact L-A is out or Pittsburgh could be.
Its going to be a wild playoffs!
I can't see the Pats having the success against Brandon they had against Swift.
You said it yesterday, they just keep coming at you and at you and at you.
There is no way Regina can hold up over a 7 game series. I say Brandon in 6
I hope Pats can get split when they come home. I agree with what you and Remple said yesterday about what BC would like if Pats came home for Game 6 up 3-2. It would be an atmosphere unlike any other and one we probably haven't seen since the MC loss to Val D'or.
Hockey Canada must be ecstatic knowing they could have the likes of Crosby and Doughty at the Worlds!
Vin Scully is the greatest broadcaster ever!
Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks Romanuk is horrible! There are a lot of guys calling games who are miles better than him.
You must hate seeing Calgary in the playoffs as an Oilers fan.
Just a great read Scruffy !!!!!!!!
Not being an Olympic year, many hi-end NHLers will say "no thanks" 2 playing 4 their country. Guys like Doughty need the summer 2 replenish themselves.
C'mon Scruffy, Pedersen & Loubardias??
There's a reason they are not calling hockey games anymore.
Doughty and Crosby will NOT accept invites to worlds. No LA King will be going after their Stanley Cup Wins and runs the past 4 years (and Olympics for a couple)
Yeah, the reason is Ken King is a first class A$$hole who wouldn't know talent if he saw it.
The guy doing Flames radio p x p couldn't carry either of those guys headsets.
Tiger making a run, but he's still too far behind Speith
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