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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Thumbs Down To ToonTown

So lemme get this straight. The Saskatoon Blades lead the Eastern Conference with 71 points. They are two points from being the top team in the WHL. The Moose Jaw Warriors come to town in a game that is televised across Western Canada and Credit Union Centre looks like it was "come dressed as a seat" night.
It looked at times as if there was no one in some sections. I'm sorry Saskatoon, but your support of the Blades is unacceptable! What do you want?
There is no reason why this team shouldn't be playing in front of huge crowds. The attendance last night was less than four thousand. That's brutal! Are your roads unpassable because of the storm? Did you stay home because the game was on TV? Were you hanging on President Obama's every word in the "State of the Union" address. Why isn't the Saskatoon hockey fan showing up for Blades games. I could understand the disdain if the Blades had the type of season that the Pats had, but they're not. They may have a legitimate shot at being the first Saskatchewan team in a long time to win the WHL title. They are solid from top to bottom and they deserve a lot more than what they are getting.
Say what you will about the on-ice product of the Pats, but for them to routinely get 4-grand or higher for games tells you what type of job Cliff Mapes, Joel Pickering, Kim Flaman and Dan Plaster amongst others are doing when it comes to marketing this team and having a fan-friendly atmosphere at the Brandt Centre. Its no secret that the best marketing is to have a winning hockey team. They have that in Saskatoon....hopefully the city pays attention to that very soon.
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Speaking of the Pats, I have been asked to tell fans who read this blog that they will want to stick around Tuesday night after their game against Red Deer. It will be Jordan Eberle autograph night as he will sign autographs on the main concourse after the game against the Rebels. Game time is 7 o'clock. I don't have to tell you that Regina is playing its best hockey of the year right now and that game against the Rebels will be a big one so here's hoping for a big crowd. OK, at least one that is bigger than what Saskatoon gets.
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The NFL's decision to hold the Pro Bowl before the Super Bowl instead of after it is getting its fair share of criticism. The league wanted to put its all-star game before the Super Bowl to keep the football train going instead of a one week break. It was the wrong move. Obviously players from the Super Bowl teams won't be playing and many others have pulled out as well meaning the league's best really aren't going to be performing. It only begs the question "Why do we have all-star games?". I really think they are a waste of time. With the exception of the baseball game, the all-star game isn't a showcase of the sport. The hockey game is nothing like what you see because there is no defence. The same with the NBA's all-star game. The Pro Bowl doesn't allow you to blitz or do other things so it too is not the football we love watching. Thus, why do we have them. Its a waste of time. You don't need one afternoon to showcase the skills of Ovechkin, Crosby, A-Rod, Halladay, Lebron, Kobe, etc. etc when their skills are showcased each time they step on to their playing surface. It wouldn't hurt me one bit if all leagues scrapped their all-star games.
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The city is slowly recovering from that massive weekend snowstorm and I will give credit where credit is due. I think the city has done a helluva job in cleaning the streets. I was out and about yesterday and while I didn't have to drive down many residential streets, the roads were fine. I don't know about this school buses not running all week because of the snow as its a major league pain for those who have to have their kids bussed to school, but they have made their decision so parents will have to live with the hassle for one more day.
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Tiger Woods is apparently in a sex rehab clinic in Mississippi. I have to ask---what exactly goes on in a sex rehab clinic? Maybe I don't want the answer to that. I'm guessing they aren't watching any "Girls Gone Wild" videos.
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Weyburn's Graham DeLaet starts play at the Farmers Insurance Open today. After taking the first two weeks off, some of the bigger names on the Tour like Phil Mickleson are in this event. In fact, this used to be Tiger's first event of the year but of course he won't be there. We'll all be watching to see if he can keep up his great play. Meanwhile, there is a good story on Graham in the Globe and Mail. Here it is....
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/delaet-has-bigger-goals-than-just-keeping-card/article1446768/

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This is no joke even though it looks like one. The city of Grand Forks, North Dakota was left with egg on its face after a major mistake so they made a video to tell citizens how to correct the mistake. You gotta watch this and remember this is true. I have had verification from a good citizen of Grand Forks (who has nothing better to do than read this blog every day)that it is.....



I LOVE THAT!
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A couple of people have asked me what I think of Andre Dawson going into the Hall of Fame as an Expo even though he spent his best year in the majors as a Cub. You know what, I have no problem with it. Yes, Dawson did something most don't and that is win an MVP award while playing for a last place club. However, if you are a baseball fan and you hear the name Andre Dawson, you think of the Expos. The same for guys like Gary Carter, Tim Wallach and Tim Raines. The Cubs have many players in the Hall and they will have more---more than the Expos. I'm guessing Ross Bahnsen or Rodney Scott won't be getting the call from Cooperstown.
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As you start your Thursday, think about this....

If there's a wheelchair-bound comedian, is it still called "stand-up"?

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

saw that last nite as well Mitch..brutal!!..
Saskatoon simply has never been a sports town, never.

Anonymous said...

Should I be surprised at the lack of support the Blades get. NO! Saskatoon is a piss-poor city when it comes to supporting their teams. In Regina, you have the Riders, the Pats, the Rams, the Thunder and the Cougars. Saskatoon only has the Blades and the Husky football team and after that everything seemingly falls off the radar. Yes, the rink is terrible but the Husky hockey team deserves more support. This is why I laugh when talk of the NHL coming and moving the Riders north surfaces.

PS: It was more like 2500 than 4 thousand in the building last night.

Ken

Anonymous said...

Is this going to turn into a Regina vs Saskatoon thing again. Can't wait. YAWWNNN!

Anonymous said...

Dawson wanted in as a Cub for income purposes. The Cubs have a huge following that is up there with the Yankees and Red Sox. If he can brand himself as a HOF Cub that is probably morelucrative on the speaking circuit. Gary Carter did the same thing as he wanted in as a Met. When he went to the Mets he already had a HOF resume, and that stint put him over the top.

Obama

Anonymous said...

No "Girls Gone Wild' videos at sex rehab. Think Golden Girls instead.

Estelle Getty. Oooh baby!

Stan

Mitchell Blair said...

That's gold Stan!

Anonymous said...

Your buddy Loubardias must have been crushed calling that game in his hometown and seeing that pathetic excuse of a crowd. They might as well have played the game at the Weyburn Coliseum. Then again if the braintrust at the time would have put the rink downtown instead of the middle of nowhere maybe there wouldn't be a problem.

Chris G

Anonymous said...

'Whitesnake guitarist Adrian Vandenberg'

HAHAHAHA ... that was funny stuff, right there. Good on Grand Forks for producing that.

KC

Anonymous said...

The Blades have to do a better marketing campaign. I live in Saskatoon, and there is not much Blades news or coverage here. We need bloggers like you and Roddy up here to rouse some interest....

Anonymous said...

The crowds at Blades game are pathetic but don't totally blame the fans. The media promotion is less than ideal. The Regina Leader-Post does a far better job with various stories, etc. Global in S'toon is not bad for promotion but, otherwise, it is non-existent. As for broadcasters, Rod Pedersen is miles ahead of Lazaruk. Les is terrible. A joke. When he picks his game stars, if Elliot doesn't fall flat on his face during an opposing team's breakaway, he is picked as a star. Yes, fan support in Saskatoon is poor, but local promotion is partly to blame.

Anonymous said...

It doesn't matter if the Blades have a good team or a bad team. The bottom line is this city won't support them for whatever reason. The lack of media attention is a good reason. Its somewhat surprising as well considering they are the only game in town in the winter (sorry U of S hockey fans). As for the comment that Lazaruk is a joke, you certainly don't know your hockey then. I would rather have Lazaruk call a game than Pedersen (football included). The jokes if you ask me are your buddy Morrison and CTV.

JC in Stoon

Anonymous said...

There is always an excuse with people in Saskatoon, the media doesn't cover the Blades enough, the pr is bad. And at the WJC what a embarrassment that was the tickets were to high, the games were not good enough, excuses, excuses it's never the fans fault always someone else's. Face it Saskatoon is just not a hockey,sports town at all I should know I live here.

David Cooper said...

Wow! Once again, Mitchell, you prove that not only do you have too much time on your hands, but that you are also truly clueless.

Regina hasn't even been able to attract an average of over 4,000 this season, while Saskatoon has average over 4,200 for the season, including 11 crowds over 4,000 and five crowds over 5,000. You rip us based on one game, in the middle of the week? What a joke! Go look at the Pats' statistics for mid-week games - how many do you see over 4,000? And there is good reason for that - junior hockey games attract a lot of families, and like mine, they are probably taking their kids to dancing, swimming lessons or some other mid-week activity that is more important than a hockey game.

Speaking of the Pats, if Regina is such a great sports town, why isn't the attendance better? I mean, all you have to watch are two of the best junior players in Canada, including a sure NHL player and the most high-profile junior player in the country in Eberle. What's your excuse? Regina, to date (and with one more game played) has the same number of crowds above 4,000 (11) and four games with crowds over 5,000, one fewer than Saskatoon.

And this is for Ken - you're even less in-touch with reality than Blair. Have you even been to a CIS game in Regina in the past few years? Or to a Thunder game? The Hilltops get twice the crowd or better than the Thunder ever get, and the Huskie Hockey team gets WAY more support than the Cougars.

And your BS really falls flat when it comes to the Huskie Football team and the Rams. Regina's support of the Rams is pathetic and is nowhere near the support the Huskies get. Even in 2007, when the Rams had Teale Orban and had a legitimate shot at winning Canada West, they only averaged 2,128 while the Huskies, who finished lower in the standings that year, had an average attendance of 4,056! Last year was even worse, with the Rams averaging 1,889 while the Huskies more than doubled that, with an average of 4,370 (which included a game in an early-October snowstorm). The only well-attended Rams games are when the Huskies come to town, because 500 + Huskie fans come down to watch their team.

You guys in Regina are petty and jealous of Saskatoon, and I suspect this is still due to the Team Canada games all being in Saskatoon. If our support of sports is so poor, how do we keep two midget hockey teams going? How do we keep putting so many Saskatoon minor hockey players in the NHL? How come most of the top Regina football players come up to play at the U of S? Give me a break. You guys have nothing, certainly not facts, to back up your crap.

Anonymous said...

If the Pats had a winning team that was at the top of the conference, the Brandt Centre would just about be sold out or sold out every night.
Saskatoon's problem is they are too good for the Blades. They want the NHL and nothing else. Then they can their hang their hat on the fact they have a pro team though. Guess what? You're never going to get one. The NHL will never come there and neither will the CFL. Not in my lifetime or my kids lifetime or their kids lifetime. Until Saskatoon gets over the jealousy factor of Regina having a pro team and they don't, this will continue. I feel sorry for Brodsky and Molleken as they ice a good team and this is the thanks they get.


Mike

Anonymous said...

To David Cooper:

Decaf buddy...try some decaf. Regina supports the Pats even though they are losing. Saskatoon doesn't when they are winning.


R$

Anonymous said...

R$ - Reality, buddy. Did you read any of the stats he posted? Looks like Saskatoon is supporting the team, just as well as Regina.

Can you guys read or do basic math?

Anonymous said...

No wonder Remenda told Rawlco to punt you. You are an idiot!

Anonymous said...

Saskatoon should be supporting them better one of the best teams in the league, and could be the first team in Saskatchewan in a very long time to do anything. And NOBODY CARES!! it's like there is anything else to do in Saskatoon.

Kim K. said...

Okay...as a resident of Saskatoon who is here in Regina studying at the U of R, I must tell you why the Blades have bad fan support.
1. No one knows when the games are played. No billboards, no electronic signs, hardly anything on radio or TV. If I don't know when the games are how am I supposed to go.
2. Sask Place is in the middle of no where. Yeah I know Regina, there you go again saskatoon bitching and complaing about your NHL calibre arena. It's a wonderful place yes, but it should have NEVER been built in an area that has one way in and one way out. I'm sorry, but look where Kelowna has their rink, or Winnipeg, or Calgary, or Moose Jaw...they don't have to drive God knows where to go to a game.
3. On a personal note, having grown up in Southern Saskatchewan and listening to Pats games on the radio as a kid I have and will always be a Pats fan. HaveI gone to a Pats game while I've been here in Regina -- no since I have night classes every night of the week excpet Fridays when I head back to Saskatoon.

To be honest I am sick of the Regina vs. Saskatoon thing. Regina has it's qualities and so does Saskatoon. I have lived for equal amounts of time in both cities and my conclusion is that Saskatoon is a big event town, while Regina is a sports town. However, a case can be said that Regina is only a Riders town -- how many people actually go and watch the Rams or the Thunder?...Something for you to ponder. (BTW, Saskatoon usually sees packed houses for the Huskies football team, and get good attendance for the Toppers too.)

Mitch I know it's been a slow sports week, but come on...stop the my city is better than your city stuff . . . how about focus on the upcoming Australian Football League season...heck I could write something for ya and you can take a day off from the blog....make this place Saskatchewan's home for Aussie Rules football!

Anonymous said...

Put the Stoon-Regina fight aside and ask yourself "What do they do in a sex rehab clinic?" Good question!
My sex rehab clinic is called my house after marriage. I ain't getting any anymore.

Grant said...

Kim K, I do agree with you on some of your points like there is very little advertising done for the Blades, and yes the CUC is way out but both of those are piss poor excuses. With the very little advertising that goes on I find my way to all the games, I know where and when they are. We don't have a NHL calibre arena add another 3000/4000 seats upgrade the score clock, the locker rooms and a few other things than we will have a NHL calibre arena.

I have also lived in both Cities right now I'm in Saskatoon and yes both places have great points and bad points like every other City in the World. I would also say that both Regina,Saskatoon are big event Cities. But yes, enough already with the whole Regina/Saskatoon garbage who the hell do we think we are Calgary/Edmonton.

Anonymous said...

Kim K:
I don't think this is a Regina-Saskatoon thing. It is a why isn't Saskatoon supporting the Blades thing? Moose Jaw is selling out a fricking alumni game on the weekend. They are selling out what is going to be basically a glorified senior hockey league tilt.

I don't live in Saskatoon but I can say despite their poor record over the past few years, the Pats do a tremendous job of marketing their club. Players are out in the community, the media does a good job of covering them, Eberle and Ketlo are on some billboards here.

Regina and Saskatoon have good points and they have bad points. A bad point for Saskatoon is their lack of support for a winning hockey team. Someone pointed out the disparity in football crowds. The Rams and Thunder don't win but the Huskies and Hilltops do. Why doesn't that translate to the Blades?

Mitch, you are right when you say Saskatoon should be embarassed, but perhaps the Blades need to look in the mirror and see just what is and what isn't happening and take the appropriate steps.

Tony P

Anonymous said...

-David, U need your own blog
-If Remenda was the reason you left Rawlco, Nye should be looking for work quite soon then. He makes Drew sound dumber than you did. Who's kidding who, you carried that show when you were there and Nye does that now. You two should team up.
-Tony, you might have the best comment out of all of this when you say the Blades need to look in the mirror and ask why only 3500 are showing up for a game involving a first place hockey team
--Besides the Riders, neither Regina or Saskatoon does a good job of supporting their university and junior football teams. For such a football crazed province, the teams that really need your support don't get it.
--Kim K, Australian rules football? So you're the fan!

A Regina-Saskatoon war is always entertaining whether it be on your blog or Rod's. It is too bad there weren't people in Saskatoon that were like you and Rod as the Bridge City really lacks some colorful media guys.

David

Anonymous said...

Fuck Off Blair!

Anonymous said...

The maturity of the Saskatoon sports fan is right there below David's post. Classy pal. You don't even have the sack to post your name which makes it that much more classy and laughable. Mitch, why post that? C'mon hero, tell us your name and why you really feel that way.

Darren Gardiner

Anonymous said...

PS: You have hit the nail on the head here. Whether it be a lack of marketing or apathy on the Saskatoon hockey fan, the bottom line here is the fine people of Saskatoon are ignoring one of the best junior hockey teams in the country. As a Pats fan, I can only wish we had a top 10 team to cheer for for the last couple of years.

Darren Gardiner

Anonymous said...

regina was averaging over 4500 for the last five years Saskatoon about 3800 close huh not!

Anonymous said...

Still waiting


Darren Gardiner

Anonymous said...

So Saskatoon people are saying they get the same attendance as the Pats. HOW SAD IS THAT!
You have a bigger rink and a better team. With the season you are having, you should be having much bigger crowds in your bigger rink. Making that argument just makes Saskatoon fans look dumb.

Jeff

Anonymous said...

Still waiting!!


Darren Gardiner

Anonymous said...

MB;
Watch the game on TV as well, and definitely agree. But, did you actually watch the game? The reason attendance is down is that the product on most nights isn't very good. The 'Dub has become an emotion-less game with very little excitment.

Additionally, you are kidding yourself if you believe the Pats are routinely getting 4,000 AT every Pats game. I have been to more than a few when they announce 4,000 plus and unless two thousand people are lined up in the bathroom they aren't even close!

Anonymous said...

WOWWW!! Some people from Saskatoon sure have a thin skin. I watched that game from Kamloops on Tuesday and I couldn't believe what I was seeing. In fact, I had to check the WHL website to see where the Blades were in the standings. That is highly embarassing. Some people are blaming marketing, some are blaming media. There is no reason why those in Saskatoon's hockey community shouldn't know when the Blades are playing and then get out there and support them.

Shawn P

Anonymous said...

Still waiting


Darren Gardiner

Mitchell Blair said...

Never mind Darren. He posted back, and he once again lacked the guts to identify himself so his oh so classy response won't hit the blog. You don't need to fight my battles partner, but thanks!