If you are a basketball fan, Regina was definitely the place to be on Saturday night as there were two big games. The finals of the 57th Luther Invitational Tournament went with the home team in the final. In the end, they had to settle for second as they were beaten 80-56 by the team from Raymond, Alberta. Its the 11th time that the small town in southern Alberta (just south fo Lethbridge)with a population of just over 3-thousand has won the event. Meanwhile at the University, it was Game 3 of the GPAC semi-final between the host Cougars and Winnipeg. James Hillis' squad got 28 points and 11 rebounds from Kris Heshka while Jordan McFarlen had 16 points with 12 rebounds in an 85-74 win. That means its off to Brandon next weekend for the division final.
At the Brandt Centre, the Pats were in tough playing the WHL's top team and in the end the Calgary Hitmen were too much. Calgary gets three in the 3rd for a 5-2 win. I don't have the numbers in front of me but it seems to me as if Dale Derkatch's squad has been badly outscored in the final 20 minutes of the hockey game. This isn't the first time this year that a team has really taken it to the Pats in the 3rd. Is this a reason for what has happened??? Just add it to the mix I guess. The loss is Regina's 7th straight and they remain 4 points back of Edmonton and Prince Albert who are battling for 8th. 7th place Kootenay is 10 points up on Regina meaning the chances of finishing 7th and getting Saskatoon in the first round are now likely a pipe-dream.
Rider fans are on pins and needles as CFL free agency begins at 11 o'clock Saskatchewan time. The biggest question amongst the Rider Nation isn't who the team is going to pursue but will they be able to keep middle linebacker Mo Lloyd. Its beginning to sound more and more as if Lloyd could be joining Richie Hall in Edmonton and BC is still in the mix too. I guess we'll find out soon as I can't see this dragging out over a few days. Other free agents are Anton McKenzie, Mike Abou-Mechrek, Jamie Boreham, DJ Flick, Glenn January, Mike McCullough, Tristan Clovis, Leron Mitchell, Scott Gordon and Steve Morley. I have been hearing for the last week the team is ready to offer a contract to Joe McGrath---a Moose Jaw native who has been playing for the Eskimos. If he indeed does wear green and white what does that mean for Abou-Mechrek, January and Morley. I don't think the quotable Abou-Mechrek will be back. I can't see Flick returning and the same goes for Clovis and Gordon with Mitchell perhaps being number one on the depth chart at safety when training camp comes around. I can see Boreham and McCullough returning.
John Morris has always been known to speak his mind and the curler is doing it again. Morris has lifted the lid on an age-old argument about the Brier field. The 3rd on the world champion Kevin Martin rink feels the Brier winner should return the next year as Team Canada the way the ladies do it. This would mean no Northern Ontario. I know Saskatchewan's curling guru--Warren Woods of Global TV-- would likely disagree because he is from that part of Canada but I agree with Morris. Remember when the Scotties was at the then Agridome with two Saskatchewan rinks in it(Sandra Schmirler and Cathy Trowell)....it guaranteed a sellout. With this years Brier in Calgary, it would be a guaranteed sellout if you had Martin and Ferbey or Ferbey and Kevin Koe or one of those three and another rink in the field.
NHL play last night. Former Saskatoon Blade Mike Green set NHL history. The Caps defenceman scored in his 8th straight game as Washington beat Tampa. Green has to be considered a shoo-in for Vancouver 2010 and he must be a front-runner for the Norris Trophy at the end of the year. Could Nick Lidstrom's stranglehold on that trophy be coming to an end.
Finally, there is talk amongst NFL circles that the Atlanta Falcons are now trying to trade Michael Vick. An Atlanta newspaper looked at teams that are in need of a quarterback and where the best fit for the disgraced quarterback who will soon be released to a halfway house after serving time for dogfighting would be. Teams like Detroit, Kansas City and Cleveland are mentioned and so are my beloved Seahawks. (WHAAAATTT??!!) The paper suggests Vick could be a fit in the Pacific Northwest because his head coach and offensive co-ordinator in Atlanta are now both in Seattle serving in the same role. There is no need for Vick in Seattle. None, none whatsoever. This will not happen!!!!
NASCAR fans are excited about today because its the Daytona 500. I am not a NASCAR fan so I won't check that out. The NBA all-star game is today. It again does not resemble the game we see most nights so I will likely miss that. It is the first Sunday in a long time in which there is no football being played. SIGGGHHHH!!!! I wonder what the NFL network will have on. Have a good Sunday!!!!