The Hockey News



Schultz gets $3.675-million, one-year contract from Oilers to prove himself





Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 10:56 am

The Blair Necessities



This And That




--The usual weekly assortment of thoughts running through my brain in no particular order


   --I will tell you the truth. This picture does sadden me somewhat because as much as a fan as I am of Weston Dressler, I was looking forward to watching him on Sundays and doing his thing with the Kansas City Chiefs. However that didn't happen which just tells you how hard it is to crack an NFL roster and it shows me again that players going down south--at least most of them---don't get the shot I think they are deserved. Weston certainly showed he can play the NFL game at mini-camps and training camp so why didn't Andy Reid give him a chance to show his stuff in the first pre-season game. I think Reid doesn't even realize how good of a player he let get away. From the time he left until the announcement by Sportscage Insider Arash Madani on Thursday morning, I wasn't in a panic. I KNEW Weston was coming back and I knew he would come back if it didn't work out the day he left. When Weston talked about wearing #13 in KC as a tribute to the Rider Nation. He meant that! He was sincere with that. Yes, he might like a little more privacy (as would many players I'm guessing), but he knew where he wanted to be if it didn't work out and I had full confidence there would be money in the bank account for him. Yeah, its only a one year deal, but I think Rider fans can rest easy knowing #7 will be here for the rest of his pro football career. Welcome home Weston!!

     --Upon finding out Weston had signed, I wanted to find Rod Pedersen's call of Weston's touchdown in the 4th quarter of GC 101. It could have been the last pass he caught as a Rider. Seeing the play just gave me goosebumps. Those are memories you just don't forget.

    --If Tad Kornegay is retiring as a Rider (which I have no problem with), its time for Lance Frazier to do the same thing.
 
   --What's your favourite LDC memory? Its gotta be Kerry Joseph's TD run for the win late in the 07 game. I think that play was the one that had people this team could win it all this year. They did!

    --The Hamilton Tiger Cats and the Tim Hortons Field situation has just become an embarrassment.  You would think Hamilton would have learned from the Winnipeg situation but they didn't. I am confident the Riders will do it the right way when it comes time to make the move from Mosaic 1 to Mosaic 2.

   --Until a couple of weeks ago, I thought the ice bucket challenge was the adventure you took at the hotel in first A) finding the bucket in your room and B) finding the ice machine!  

   --School starts next Tuesday! How do ya feel about that Mom and Dad!

 --My 11 year old recently took part in the Cougar womens basketball day camp. This could have easily resulted in the resignation of head coach Dave Taylor as I'm sure my daughter tried to set the sport back years, but it didn't which must mean something. Hopefully it trends well when she gets on the court to play and play she will unlike what was basically a wasted year of softball since RCBA knows what they are doing when it comes to equal playing time.

   --ESPN's Colin Cowherd asked a great question this week. The question was "What is the biggest athlete that is pushed onto fans as a star, but isn't."  I answered Michael Sam, Tim Tebow, Tony Romo and Johnny Manziel and that was just the NFL!

   --He's a little busy with his other job that I don't think he's giving up anytime soon, but Brad Wall would make a great replacement for Mark Cohon.

  --If the NHL puts a team in Vegas as rumoured, what would you call it?

  --As the major league baseball season starts to end, I am starting to wonder if thoughts of the Cubs competing for a pennant in 2016 should be moved up somewhat. A couple of big free agent signings may sway me. Javier Baez and Jorge Soler have fit into the lineup nicely and I can't wait to see what 3B Kris Bryant will do when he is called up. Add him to the likes of Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro and Theo Epstein's magic is starting to rub off.

  --Derek Jeter's last ever game in Toronto will be played Sunday and I hope Jays fans come out to salute the Yankees shortstop this weekend. Many teams have given Jeter interesting gifts on his farewell tour this season. I wonder what Toronto has planned.

--Is it true that all jazz musicians do is think about sax?

--Have a great Labour Day weekend. GO RIDERS!



Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 6:12 am

Metro



Friday's Scoreboard

Friday’s Games (All Times Eastern) CFL Montreal 20 Ottawa 10 — MLB American League Baltimore 9 Minnesota 1 N.Y. Yankees 6 Toronto 3 Boston 8 Tampa Bay 4 Cleveland 6 Kansas City 1 Detroit 7 Chicago White Sox 1 Texas … Continue Reading

Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 10:57 pm

Yahoo Sports Blog



Spain out to upset under-manned US in Basketball World Cup

Derrick Rose of the USA defends during the game against Puerto Rico at Madison Square Garden on August 22, 2014Hosts Spain and the rest of the field must believe they finally have a decent shot at knocking off the mighty United States as the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup tips off on Saturday. The United States were clearly the better team at the 2012 Olympics when LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and company knocked off Spain in the final in London.



Read More

Posted on 30 August 2014 | 2:46 am

Canada.com



Sloppy seventh inning costs Buehrle and Jays in 6-3 loss to Yankees

TORONTO – Brandon Morrow will not welcome this assertion, but his manager believes he might be better off in the bullpen. The oft-injured starter has been on the disabled list since May 3, recovering from a torn tendon sheath in […]

Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 10:49 pm

T.S.N.



Grandal singles in winner in extras, Padres edge Dodgers

Go to TSN.ca for details. #TSN

Read More

Posted on 30 August 2014 | 2:43 am

The Joy of Sox



G133: Blue Jays 5, Red Sox 2

Red Sox   - 000 002 000 - 2  5  1
Blue Jays - 100 000 40x - 5 6 1
Example
Joe Kelly / Marcus Stroman
Holt, SS
Pedroia, 2B
Ortiz, DH
Napoli, 1B
Nava, LF
Craig, RF
Betts, CF
Middlebrooks, 3B
Ross, C
Edwin Escobar was called up, while Heath Hembree was optioned to Pawtucket. ... Xander Bogaerts will be activated on Saturday in Tampa Bay. ... 20 Questions with Brock Holt.

Read More

Posted on 27 August 2014 | 11:20 pm

The Blair Necessities



This And That




--The usual weekly assortment of thoughts running through my brain in no particular order


   --I will tell you the truth. This picture does sadden me somewhat because as much as a fan as I am of Weston Dressler, I was looking forward to watching him on Sundays and doing his thing with the Kansas City Chiefs. However that didn't happen which just tells you how hard it is to crack an NFL roster and it shows me again that players going down south--at least most of them---don't get the shot I think they are deserved. Weston certainly showed he can play the NFL game at mini-camps and training camp so why didn't Andy Reid give him a chance to show his stuff in the first pre-season game. I think Reid doesn't even realize how good of a player he let get away. From the time he left until the announcement by Sportscage Insider Arash Madani on Thursday morning, I wasn't in a panic. I KNEW Weston was coming back and I knew he would come back if it didn't work out the day he left. When Weston talked about wearing #13 in KC as a tribute to the Rider Nation. He meant that! He was sincere with that. Yes, he might like a little more privacy (as would many players I'm guessing), but he knew where he wanted to be if it didn't work out and I had full confidence there would be money in the bank account for him. Yeah, its only a one year deal, but I think Rider fans can rest easy knowing #7 will be here for the rest of his pro football career. Welcome home Weston!!

     --Upon finding out Weston had signed, I wanted to find Rod Pedersen's call of Weston's touchdown in the 4th quarter of GC 101. It could have been the last pass he caught as a Rider. Seeing the play just gave me goosebumps. Those are memories you just don't forget.

    --If Tad Kornegay is retiring as a Rider (which I have no problem with), its time for Lance Frazier to do the same thing.
 
   --What's your favourite LDC memory? Its gotta be Kerry Joseph's TD run for the win late in the 07 game. I think that play was the one that had people this team could win it all this year. They did!

    --The Hamilton Tiger Cats and the Tim Hortons Field situation has just become an embarrassment.  You would think Hamilton would have learned from the Winnipeg situation but they didn't. I am confident the Riders will do it the right way when it comes time to make the move from Mosaic 1 to Mosaic 2.

   --Until a couple of weeks ago, I thought the ice bucket challenge was the adventure you took at the hotel in first A) finding the bucket in your room and B) finding the ice machine!  

   --School starts next Tuesday! How do ya feel about that Mom and Dad!

 --My 11 year old recently took part in the Cougar womens basketball day camp. This could have easily resulted in the resignation of head coach Dave Taylor as I'm sure my daughter tried to set the sport back years, but it didn't which must mean something. Hopefully it trends well when she gets on the court to play and play she will unlike what was basically a wasted year of softball since RCBA knows what they are doing when it comes to equal playing time.

   --ESPN's Colin Cowherd asked a great question this week. The question was "What is the biggest athlete that is pushed onto fans as a star, but isn't."  I answered Michael Sam, Tim Tebow, Tony Romo and Johnny Manziel and that was just the NFL!

   --He's a little busy with his other job that I don't think he's giving up anytime soon, but Brad Wall would make a great replacement for Mark Cohon.

  --If the NHL puts a team in Vegas as rumoured, what would you call it?

  --As the major league baseball season starts to end, I am starting to wonder if thoughts of the Cubs competing for a pennant in 2016 should be moved up somewhat. A couple of big free agent signings may sway me. Javier Baez and Jorge Soler have fit into the lineup nicely and I can't wait to see what 3B Kris Bryant will do when he is called up. Add him to the likes of Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro and Theo Epstein's magic is starting to rub off.

  --Derek Jeter's last ever game in Toronto will be played Sunday and I hope Jays fans come out to salute the Yankees shortstop this weekend. Many teams have given Jeter interesting gifts on his farewell tour this season. I wonder what Toronto has planned.

--Is it true that all jazz musicians do is think about sax?

--Have a great Labour Day weekend. GO RIDERS!



Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 6:12 am

Roto Rob



Podcast: Awaken, Ye Sleeper Chasers

On this week’s episode of RotoRob Fantasy Football Weekly Podcast, heard every Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. EST on Blogtalkradio, Nick Wagner and Josh Johnson were joined by Trent Davis of SpoonFedSports.com and Jerry Palleschi of ESPN991.com.

Read More

Posted on 28 August 2014 | 12:28 pm

Rider Prophet



Riders vs. Bombers: Labour Day 2014

What a week for Rider Nation! We are riding a 5 game win streak, its time for the annual Labour Day Classic and we get Weston freakin' Dressler back! Life is pretty good.Well at least its good for everyone who didn't invest in a #7 Doege jersey... which is everyone except Doege's mom. Sorry Mrs. Doege.

The Riders have won the last 9 Labour Day games. It was a winning streak that began the year we opted to bench Nealon Green in favour of Marcus Crandell. It still ranks up there as one of the happiest Rider moments of my life (this is how much I hated Nealon). One thing that is nice about this year's match-up is that for the first time since 2007, there is actually some legitimate build up to this one. Ever since '07 (one of the most epic Labour Day games ever), the Bombers have usually been an embarrassment coming into the game (generally finding new ways to define embarrassing. Remember 52-0?). The only exception was in '11 when we were embarrassing and they were good... but we ended up embarrassing them anyway. The good news is that the fact that the Bombers are actually winning games should coax a few more Bomber fans to come to the game (well technically due to their poor hygiene its actually a bad thing for public health but it does make the atmosphere that the game more exciting... just bring some isogel).

Last time we played, we beat them without scoring an offensive TD... can you imagine the score if we can get our offense going again?

I said it last time and I'll say it again, the Winnipeg OL is brutal. They allow the most sacks and Winnipeg has a League worst 4.2 yd avg gain per rush. It is the most glaring hole on that team and one that the league's most sack happy D-line is ready to exploit again. I imagine this time around they will at least make an attempt to slow down John Chick (key word being attempt). That should make life easy on the rest of our D-lineman. Another weakness of the Bomber O is the turnovers... they are aplenty. Poor run game (Grigsby has talent but is not consistently productive) + Poor pass protection (did I mention the OL sucks) + young QB = Turnovers. Its not rocket science. Nick Moore may play this time around which certainly helps the pass game but overall I have full faith in our D to smother them. Bombers average over 25 points per game but only 14 points per game against West opponents.

Offensively all the talk will be about Dressler and while I expect him to be involved he is not going to be the miracle cure to our pass game all by himself. Sounds like Durant will play which is good, as good as Tino did in relief, Durant is still our best chance to win. Look for us to run early... run late... generally just run lots. Winnipeg allows over 110 yards per game and we will surpass that (maybe even in one half). For how important the run is I like having 2 RBs (or maybe even 3 in the off chance both Allen and Messam dress) to rotate in. Bomber safety Leggett is quickly developing into a playmaker so when we do decide to pass we need to be wary of him. I see Getzlaf in for a busy day and Taj too. Dressler and Getz will pull attention inside leaving room for big plays to Taj. I don't expect anything as dramatic as the Joseph sneak in '07 but look for Durant to use his legs 2-3 times when we really need the yards. Don't expect an offensive onslaught but we will score a few offensive TDs.

Honestly my biggest worry heading into the game is giving up a big play on special teams. Happened in BC, happened against Montreal. Between our D and our run game we can grind out victories if we limit these big plays. Stoudemire has established himself as a great retrurner (wonder if we are having second thoughts about keeping Marshay Green and cutting Stoudemire). My issue is not that we suck on coverage. My issue is how our depth is being testsd. We get Hurl back which is huge but we have already lost Hughes, Moore, Regimbald and McHenry (honestly never thought I'd see the day where losing Regimbald was noteworthy). We need a solid outing from whoever we cobble together on teams. Will also need another big game from Milo.

Simply put, we don't lose Labour Day. We win when we are favoured, we win when we have no business winning, we win with Michael Bishop (or at least in spite of him). There's just something about Labour Day. Add in the boost that Weston gives us and you have a recipe for a happy ending. I don't think their offense is better than our defense. Provided we get even a mediocre performance from our O we will win.

Riders by 14

Headline: Happy Ending Ensues When Riders Beat Their Own Willy

(You didn't think I'd do a whole Labour Day post without as least one Willy joke did you?)

Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 8:00 am

Buzzing the Net Junior Hockey



NHL draft finally here: the coast-to-coast

WHL

Leon Draisaitl to the Edmonton Oilers at No. 3 overall seems a lock, eh? (Edmonton Journal)

You wanted a comprehensive draft preview that would help kill two hours at work today? You got one! Thank you. (The Pipeline Show)

Guy Flaming has a mock draft that will knock your socks off. (Coming Down The Pipe!)

Philadelphia Flyers beat writer Frank Seravilli also has an extremely cromulent mock that projects Sam Reinhart to join the Calgary Flames. (Philly.com)

Ken Warren has a rundown on the top 10 available prospects. (Postmedia)

Moose Jaw Warriors beat reporter Katie Brickman explains why teams will look past centre Brayden Point's lack of size. (Moose Jaw Times-Herald)

Edmonton Oil Kings defender Dysin Mayo figures the long playoff run goosed his draft stock. Did it do the same for his teammate, left wing Brett Pollock? (Victoria Times-Colonist)

Tim Hunter is interviewing again about the Vancouver Giants coaching job, writes Steve Ewen. (Vancouver Province)

Comeback story for this season ahead: Kootenay's Tanner Faith coming back from shoulder surgery. (Cranbrook Daily Townsman)

OHL

The Florida Panthers still have the No. 1 pick on the table, apparently. (USA Today)

Today's should-read: how Michael Dal Colle has come out stronger due to his family's challenges. (CBC Sports)

Josh Ho-Sang to the Habs? Why not? (A Winning Habit)

Bob Duff takes the long view, comparing Aaron Ekblad to another Windsor-area defenceman who went No. 1 overall 20 years ago, Ed Jovanoski. (Windsor Star)

The Toronto Maple Leafs have a checkered draft history? That explains so, so much. (National Post)

Sam Bennett says people "don't know why" the draft class lacks a potential superstar. Far be it to suggest it has to do with who does the analysis. (Columbus Dispatch)

This is more like it: a mock draft with Peterborough's Nick Ritchie in the top five. (SBN College Hockey)

Sault Ste. Marie's intuitive defender, Kyle Jenkins, is an intriguing possibility as a Day 2 pick. (Sault Star)

QMJHL

Halifax Mooseheads GM Cam Russell predicts speedy striker Nikolaj Ehlers will go "very high" on Friday. Like No. 6 overall to Vancouver high? Who knows? How about No. 7 overall to Carolina? (Metro Halifax)

Damn right Charlottetown goalie Mason McDonald is stoked for the draft. (Charlottetown Guardian)

Cape Breton's Julien Pelletier should become the first player from Thurso, Que., to be drafted in 21 years. (Le Droit)

Quebec Remparts overage goalie François Brassard is working toward getting a free-agent shot after being put back in the draft pool by his hometown Ottawa Senators. (Le Soleil)

Feel-good story: Rimouski grad Jimmy Oligny, a rugged rearguard, has signed an AHL deal with the Milwaukee Admirals. (hockeyfights.com)

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.


Read More

Posted on 27 June 2014 | 11:06 am

Sports on the Web



Sports and Gambling, a Timeless Activity

  Betting on sports events has always been a pastime in the human condition and I am sure that back as far as the Romans the odd denarius  was wagered on which gladiator would decapitate the other. Over the year’s sports betting has been refined where there are more choices in sports to bet on […]

Read More

Posted on 31 July 2014 | 6:40 pm

Vancouver Sun



Labour Day Classic: It’s going to be war

Here’s the thing about the Labour Day Classic — win or lose, stuff happens, good, bad, ugly and bizarre. Almost without fail, memories are made that fans and players alike collect, burnish and delight in recounting, often years later, or perhaps sooner.

Read More

Posted on 30 August 2014 | 10:13 am

Rod Pederson



NO CONFIRMATION ON DRESSLER YET

REGINA (CP) - Fans of the Saskatchewan Roughriders may want to temper their expectations for slotback Weston Dressler ahead of Sunday's game versus the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. In fact there's still some confusion on whether or not he'll even play.

Signed to a one-year deal by Saskatchewan on Thursday, Dressler is no guarantee to suit up against Winnipeg, although a lot of eyebrows would be raised if he doesn't. Before he does return to the field, however, Dressler faces a learning curve before he's completely comfortable in his new surroundings.

`"We'll see. I have a lot of work to do if I want to play on Sunday,'' said Dressler, who was among the first wave of cuts by the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs earlier this week. "We'll see how (Friday and Saturday) go with practice and how comfortable I can get. If I'm not comfortable, if I'm not going to be able to help the team at all, or if I'm going to hurt the team in any way then I'm not going to do that.''

Rider offensive coordinator George Cortez said after Friday's practice that Dressler has been ahead of schedule with regards to picking up the offense however head coach Corey Chamblin wasn't about to rush the four-time West Division all-star into the starting lineup.

"A lot of people are going to be expecting him to be the same person he was before he left and I think it's going to take a bit of time,'' Chamblin said. "He has to get adjusted to his teammates, he has to get adjusted to the field. There's an adjustment period. Hopefully it's shorter than I think it will be.''

Asked if Dressler can learn the revamped Riders playbook in time for Sunday's game, Chamblin wasn't sure it could be done.

"It's reaching,'' he said. "In the off-season we did some things to update (the playbook). The thing you worry about most, not just the playbook, is what kind of CFL shape he's in. In practice (Thursday), you could see he's a bit winded. I'm not sure if he's ready to play at this point.''

The five-foot-seven, 180-pound Dressler has spent his entire six-year CFL career with the Riders, giving him some familiarity with Saskatchewan's playbook. He has eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark in five of those six seasons. His 442 receptions and 6,536 yards ranks third in franchise history.

Dressler and receivers Chris Getzlaf and Taj Smith each surpassed 1,000 receiving yards in the 2013 season. Responsible for those feats was quarterback Darian Durant, who will likely start on Sunday despite an injury to his right (throwing) hand suffered in last week's win over the B.C. Lions.
Durant conceded he and Dressler had some initial growing pains during Thursday's workout as far as finding their chemistry.

"He's used to things happening a lot faster on a smaller field down in the NFL,'' Durant said. "I just told him to be a little more patient with some of his routes and different things like that because the field is much wider and he has a little more time.

"As far as the playbook in concerned, he's picking it back up where he left off and now it's about the timing.''

Dressler said his first day at practice wasn't a smooth transition however after Friday's workout he said he felt "good".  However he still hadn't received word from Chamblin that he'll suit up against Winnipeg this week.

"It was tough. It was different,'' he said of Thursday's workout. "It's going to take a little time to get used to the game again and get used to the playbook. Every time I try to learn a new playbook I basically try to erase my memory from previous things I've learned as far as terminology goes. So now I'm trying to erase my memory again and retrain it.''

The Riders (6-2) have won five straight games and sit tied with the Bombers (6-3) for third place in the West Division standings. Though much of the Riders' recent success can be attributed to the stellar play of their defence, which has allowed just two offensive touchdowns in its past three games.
Saskatchewan's lone touchdown in its 20-16 victory over B.C. last week was scored by reserve offensive lineman Dan Clark on a goal line play-action passing play.

While Durant is confident Dressler will add a big-play potential to the Riders' aerial attack, Chamblin cautioned the offence will not become one-dimensional.

"There's a slight adjustment, a slight bump. One man can't make it or break it,'' Chamblin said. "(Defensive end) John Chick can't do it by himself. He has to have good teammates around him and I think we have a pretty good football team, I think the offence is pretty good and (Dressler) will just add to the experience aspect for us.''


Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 4:19 pm

Yahoo Sports



After taking another from the A's, Angels looking like a team to beat (Yahoo Sports)

Aug 28, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; The Los Angeles Angels celebrate after a sacrifice fly hit by Los Angeles Angels second baseman Howie Kendrick (47) during the 10th inning against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. The Los Angeles Angels defeated the Oakland Athletics 4-3. (Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports)

The A's protested a bizarre obstruction call against them, but were left still looking up at the Angels.



Read More

Posted on 29 August 2014 | 3:35 am

Toronto Sports Media



Seen & Heard – Weekend Edition

 photo: The Sun/bad strategy   by mike in boston – @mikeinboston – hatemailaccount gmail com   Way too much to cover since my last post so please feel free to add any interesting links or items for discussion in the comments.    JaysTalk – Anthopoulos […]

Read More

Posted on 22 August 2014 | 9:26 pm

Star Sports



Fire at Tim Hortons Field won't affect opening, Hamilton officials say


A small overnight fire at Tim Hortons Field won’t affect the Hamilton stadium’s preparations for hosting the CFL Labour Day Classic, team and city officials say.

The fire, whose cause is still being probed by the Hamilton Fire Department, was restricted to one room, said team president Scott Mitchell on Saturday.

“There was nobody hurt and no effect to timelines . . . (It was) contained in one small room,” said Mitchell.

The stadium, which is still in the very final stages of construction, still hasn’t been given the go-ahead by city building inspectors to host the game, which is scheduled for Monday.

City spokesperson Michael Kirkopoulos said city inspectors and construction crews haven’t been delayed because of the fire.

“We do not believe at this time, nor have any reason to believe this will impact in any way game operations or continued work at the stadium today, including inspections,” said Kirkopoulos in an email.

The Labour Day Classic between Hamilton’s home-town Tiger-Cats and their hated rivals, the Toronto Argonauts, is an annual high point in the schedule and typically provides a boost in attendance.

Earlier this week, team officials announced two contingency plans if the stadium wasn’t given the green light in time — shifting it to Tuesday night, either at Tim Hortons Field, or at Toronto’s Rogers Centre.


Read More

Posted on 30 August 2014 | 10:28 am

Ottawa Citizen Sports



Fury FC scores four in first away win in its history

Ottawa Fury FC collected the first away win in its history Saturday night

Read More

Posted on 20 May 2014 | 2:10 am