Friday, December 2, 2016
This and That
--I am shocked and stunned over the senseless death of Joe McKnight. One minute, he is driving to wherever after doing who knows what when he strikes the car of someone. That someone, who just isn't stable, decides to settle it by shooting the 28 year old. If what a witness is saying is true, the shooter actually stood over McKnight as he laid there and shot him again. While shocked and stunned, this crap is happening in the U-S every day. Was race involved? The shooter was white and McKnight was black. I'll let you decide on that one. Joe McKnight was a good football player. I watch a lot of US college football and he was on those USC teams that were a national power after Matt Leinart and Reggie Bush left. McKnight was supposed to be the next Reggie Bush. That didn't happen. I couldn't believe it when I saw his name in the CFL and after one game this year, I told him I loved watching him play. He wanted his name on an NFL roster. That won't happen now because of something that didn't need to occur. RIP Joe! My thoughts and sympathies are with those in the Riders organization who got to know the 28 year old. From the sounds of it, he was a helluva guy to be around.
--Has the ink on the Grey Cup game dried? There are many who are saying it was the best GC they have ever seen. I'm sorry, but that honor goes to 1989. The 1996 game between Toronto and Edmonton in the snow at Ivor Wynne Stadium and the 2005 overtime game between Edmonton and Montreal also come to mind. This game was exciting, and it had its drama, but it wasn't the best one. Not in this guy's opinion at least. Had Ottawa and Calgary gone up and down the field on one another the way the Ti-Cats and Riders did in 89, I might have said otherwise, but that was a game which was all Ottawa in the first half, and all Calgary in the 2nd half. The other three games also had no frivolous challenges.
--The question remains why Calgary took the ball out of Bo Levi Mitchell's hands at the end of regulation and tried to get in the endzone with Andrew Buckley. Some are saying that's what happens when you put the ball in the hands of a Canadian quarterback. ????? Really? No one had a problem with Buckley scoring in the game before or the numerous TD's he received. Would Drew Tate have been able to put the ball in the endzone on that play? Yes, Buckley shouldn't have been in the game at that point, but to say its because he's a rookie Canadian quarterback is a little bit of a stretch and does nothing to foster the development of Canadian quarterbacks in the CFL
--While Dave Dickenson is being roasted for his play calling at the end of regulation, it seems no one wants to pat him on the back for the short kick call that enabled Calgary to get into position to tie the game. Without that gutsy move, he never has the opportunity to make what turned out to be the wrong call.
--Henry Burris needs to do the Peyton Manning and leave when he is on top, Damon Allen had that chance and so did Anthony Calvillo. Neither did, and two of the all-time greats limped to the finish line. Hank doesn't have to be like those two and his resume speaks for itself. Get out while the gittin is good Hank!
--Remember when Commissioner Orridge said the Riders damaged the reputation of the CFL with roster-gate? I wonder what Jeffy boy thinks of the Toronto Argonauts and how they damaged the reputation of the CFL with what they did to Grey Cup. I have talked to more people this week about the disaster that was Grey Cup week. From empty hospitality suites to ticket prices to giving away free tickets to that awful Pizza Pizza promotion. Am I missing anything? Thank god the game was entertaining because if that had been a one-sided contest, especially in Calgary's way, it would have been a bigger disaster. Ottawa will put on a great Grey Cup next year because Jeff Hunt knows what he is doing. However, he does have the task of bringing the Grey Cup Festival back to what Canadians expect and not what they received in Toronto.
--The Old 96er Scott Schultz went off on Orridge during an episode of Saskatchewan's #1 sports show---the Sportscage. Schultz wasn't happy with Orridge's statement at his state of the league newser during Grey Cup week that there's no conclusive evidence at this point" of a link between football and CTE (the degenerative brain disease caused by head trauma). Schultz was not enamoured with those comments and finished by saying Orridge should step down or be removed from his position because he thinks in all facets, he hasn't been good for the CFL." Agree or disagree? I think you know where my stance on this matter is. Has the league grown and is the league making money for the teams. If he has, he stays like Gary Bettman in the NHL, if not, he has one more year to pull up his socks. He may not even have that much time. One CFL person told me facetiously this week that wouldn't it be something if Orridge's dismissal came during CFL week. That isn't going to happen. I countered with perhaps they get rid of him and announce the new guy at CFL week. That isn't going to happen either.
--What was the best moment of the year for the Riders? Is it the "Farewell to Mosaic" ceremony after the home portion of the schedule had concluded? I asked two people that and that was their answer. Was there nothing better?
--The NFL is thinking about scrapping Thursday Night Football. I would be OK with this because the Thursday night games aren't generally good ones and is something the players bitch and moan about. Have your opening Thursday night game and have your Thanksgiving Day games, but that's it. If the NFL wants more prime-time games, could they do a Monday Night Football doubleheader every week? The logistics of that may be too difficult though as you would need to have the 2nd game on the West Coast or close to it all the time.
--Week 13 NFL Lock of the Week -- Packers over Texans
Week 13 NFL Upset of the Week --Ravens over Dolphins
--Someone at Hockey Canada needs to explain why Pats blueliner Connor Hobbs was left off the list for the national junior team training camp. The guy is a rock on the blueline and as some have already said, he may be NHL ready. That one is a head-scratcher. There are guys every year left off the list for one reason or another sparking similar debates. When it hits close to home though like it did with Jordan Weal, it makes you wonder.
--The latest Boston Pizza ads with the hockey coach can go at anytime. In fact, most ads for Boston Pizza can go. Great food, poor ads!
--Are Guns N' Roses coming to Regina? If some of the billboards around town are any indication, it would appear as if one of the first events at the new Mosaic might come from the iconic band. Word is some kind of announcement is happening Monday.
--Finally, a thank you to Principal Richard Pound......or John Cozman as he was better known. The local wrestling legend passed away this week after a battle with cancer at the age of 52. There have been many who have had a unique schtick in the ring, but the way John (Principal Pound) did his thing every night was something to see and something to behold. He was great and yes, I took pride in standing up whenever he came out to give him a solid round of applause while letting Gronkville know they should show him some respect. The wannabes just had no clue what they were going to get when the Principal entered the ring and those at ringside had no idea what they were going to get if they dared talk smack to him, Isn't that right Toots!! While I have had many enjoyable nights at wrasslin, I have never laughed so hard as a night at the Victoria Club when he got into it with a wrestler named Mr. Intensity Mark Posey. I won't get into the whole story, but I was amazed the cops didn't show up, He had me literally on the floor laughing with my ribs aching. I am laughing now just thinking about it. After the show he came out and said "I think I riled some people up tonight" with a huge grin on his face. Those who know me know I love my wrestling, and I have to admit had it not been for John, I don't know if I would have started going to High Impact or Hardcore Wrestling as it was known back in the day. He was a beaut! Those who watched him would agree! School is sadly no longer in session.
--That's all I got. Have a great weekend!