It's one day late due to the Riders game, but welcome to Saturday. Here are the usual weekly thoughts running through my muddled mind, and as always they come in no particular order.
--What a shot to the onions Thursday's CFL opener provided to Rider Nation. Hey, its not like other games against Montreal have come down to a field goal that hasn't turned out well for you right? SIGHHHH! What could have been an optimistic week for Canada's team and its crazed fanbase turned out being another knife-throwing affair in the waning hours of Thursday night and Friday.
All Tyler Crapigna had to do was kick the game-winning 45 yard field goal and the Riders would have been 1-0 and there would have been a good feeling surrounding the team, but nope! No wind and straight down the middle. He has done that before and he will do it again, but on this night it wasn't going to happen.
Crapigna has made game winning kicks for the team before, and he will again. On this night, it wasn't to be though which is too bad because the Riders outplayed the Alouettes, but they didn't get the two points. You can complain about Chris Jones bringing in Brandon Bridge and the clock management all you want as well as other things, but at the end of the day, a play that should have been made wasn't made. Players will tell you one play does not make a game and they are right, but on this night the one play that needed to be made wasn't so we move on to Winnipeg and hope the first official CFL game at Mosaic Stadium does not go down in the history books as a win for the Bombers.
Crapigna isn't alone as we found out Friday night in a Grey Cup rematch. Rene Paredes had the game on his foot and he failed to come through as well as Calgary and Ottawa played to a tie. It brought up my problem with CFL overtime which is teams need to start possession at the 45 yard line or 55 yard line. After Calgary intercepted an Ottawa pass, all they had to do was run two simple plays and kick a field goal. By putting the ball at the 45 or 55, you make them have to earn at least a first down before having a reasonable shot at a field goal. It's too easy to get points from the 35.
As for video review, TSN's Chris Cuthbert put it the best after another highly questionable call by the command centre when he put "CFL Video Review needs to be reviewed" on his Twitter account, Yes it does Chris, yes it does. Hey, at least the first two games of the season have gone right down to the last play though right?
--A question for the CFL from the warped mind of Twitter follower "Jock Cartier". With no commissioner, whose signature is on the CFL football this year?
--Jordan Eberle is a New York Islander. A fickle fan base turned on Eberle because they didn't want to remember what he had done over a seven year time, but what he did over a two month period. Why did Eberle become the whipping boy in the playoffs when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had just as bad a playoff? In a bad year, Ebs still scored 20 but in the end it didn't matter as he was sent away for Ryan Strome. Yes, I would have liked to seen more, but the trade allowed for the return of Kris Russell and perhaps another piece in either a trade or free agency. You might have not been able to get the same return for RNH as you did for Eberle, but it will be tougher to fill Jordan's skates and his offensive production. He'll score 25-30 if not more playing alongside John Tavares in a conference that isn't as tough.
--I just want to make sure I have this right. The Arizona Coyotes went to the NHL draft and they were there without A) a head coach B) no president of hockey operations C) no #1 goalie unless you want to give that to Antti Raanta whom they traded for along with Derek Stepan to the Rangers for the #7 pick and D) no captain. What a hot mess! Speaking of hot messes, how about the Vancouver Canucks who tweeted out just hours before the draft that they will be re-tooling their scouting staff after the draft and free agency. ????? Get excited Vancouver!! Congratulations as Trevor Linden and Jim Benning have taken over for Craig MacTavish and Kevin Lowe as biggest front office dunces that used to be former players.
--Was the torch officially passed from Sidney Crosby to Connor McDavid as the face of the NHL Wednesday night when the Oilers captain won the NHL's MVP award? I don't know if you can really do that until McDavid has the Stanley Cup in his possession whenever that may be especially if Pittsburgh continues to be a strong contender for hockey's holy grail. I will ask this though. At the NHL Awards this week, players were asked if you could start a team today what player would you start with and the majority answered McDavid. Connor voted for Carey Price for what its worth. The reason players are voting for McDavid is because he is much younger. It begs the question that with the likes of Matthews, Laine, Marner and other young guns making their name known, where would you put Sid if starting a team from scratch with everybody available. I would have to think he would be no lower than 3, Would you put Matthews ahead of him?
--How many people does it take to announce your first round draft pick?
--That's all I got. Have a great weekend!