Sunday, October 31, 2010


Saskatchewan Roughriders gave up another special teams touchdown to the opposition in the first half of today's game against the BC Lions.  It's to the point where I really hope the Riders lose every single game left in their season so that we can be certain of major changes to the coaching staff next year.  The worst thing that could happen at this point is for a big playoff win after being inept for the last month.  It would disguise the much bigger issue.

Jay Boyd made an excellent point the other day when we were driving to Weyburn.  He says that men reach a certain age in the twilight of their lives and, mentally, they are not as sharp as they used to be.  It stands to reason that this is exactly what has happened with the Rider coaching staff.  They are good guys, nice people, and probably extremely knowledgeable about football.   But, they aren't as sharp as they used to be and it's showing in games.

Second half, the Rider quarterback turned the ball over too much, the offensive line doesn't protect him, Ryan Grice-Mullen fumbles on a return (Riders get the ball back), there are too few players on the field for a fourth quarter BC touchdown and you get the picture.  This team is a virtual mess.  Bad coaching, bad playing, and very little care or concern from the players from what I can see through my television set.  However, I'll be one of the dummies that tough out the weather to watch another pathetic display next week against Edmonton.

What is truly sad about this is that the Riders had the makings of a Grey Cup winner, in my opinion.  In the second half of the season, they don't even look like a playoff team.

I'm hopeful that since Eric Tillman passed up on Richie Hall as a head coach for the Roughriders, that he will also fire Hall now that the two are in Edmonton and he can return to Saskatchewan where he belongs.


It is happening with more regularity now.  Snotty, punk kids showing up trick or treating at your door without even making a minor effort to put on a costume.  The first group I handed out candy to today was a group of six who were borderline too old and definitely not wearing costumes (hoodies don't count).  Some say not to give candy to these kids, but it's not worth the potential hassle of cleaning egg off your house the next day.

We went with the kids to a co-worker's home of mine.  His next door neighbour had a sign posted that read, 'Sorry, No Candy'.  Interesting to note you could see the family getting ready inside to go out with their own youngster trick or treating.  Hey, I'm all for taking your kids out and if you are not home to hand out candy, then so be it.  But, if you believe in celebrating the day at all, you have to have some treats for when you are home and kids come to your door.

Saturday, October 30, 2010


When we drove into Yorkton at about 1:30 this morning (from Weyburn, returning from Game Of The Week), we saw a number of police cruisers on west Broadway Street and it turns out the link above was the reason why.


I joined today.

Jay Boyd was mentioning to me last night while we were on our way back from Weyburn.  It looks like a pretty cool social media music site.

I listened for a solid hour and a half this morning to a bunch of different songs; some of which took me down memory lane that I actually had forgotten about.

If you are on, or wish to join, look me up.  I'm stack1975.


The Weyburn Red Wings split up their top two lines and I really liked how things clicked for them.  Jesse Ross played with Brock Appleyard and Drew George; while Coltyn Sanderson lined up with Rod and Shawn Cowie.  The Wings now have two very good scoring lines and Keegan Bruce looks like he's going to provide them with good secondary scoring moving forward.

I am more impressed with defenseman Ryan Whitell each time I see him.  It was great to see Rhys Thomas back on the ice.  I know he's played 7 games, but that's the first time I've, personally, seen him play in about a year.  He has the ability to be one of the best offensive rearguards in the league.

Andrew Dommett was in the press box last night, and while I didn't get a chance to speak to him; it sounds like he's recovering nicely from his broken jaw.  I think he'll back playing sooner rather than later.

Kindersley's effort last night was one of the worst I've seen by an SJHL team this year.  I'm not sure if they recognized early they weren't going to win, so they are saving their game for Estevan tonight; or whether there is more at play.  Full marks to Riley Down for trying to spark the team at 3-0 by dropping the mitts with Blake Kirkham, even if Kirkham got the better of him.

Mitch Kilgore wasn't busy, but looked sharp.  Injuries to Riley Hengen and Zane Weal sound long term.

Special thanks to Brendan Ullrich for taking time before the broadcast to do an interview for SJ This Week.  Ullrich is the new voice of the Klippers.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Whenever I leave a Saskatchewan Roughrider game, there are always a number of city police officers on hand to direct the extra heavy traffic that comes and go from Mosaic Stadium. 

Tonight, I thought Yorkton could have also used some traffic police as it was insane (by Yorkton standards) going to the Gallagher Centre tonight between 6pm and 7:30pm.

People were blowing red lights, I assume because they were impatient waiting in line. 

It didn't appear as though the parking lot was fully plowed either, and that added to some chaos.

The big event was Johnny Reid with Rayanne Ottenbreit opening up.

For me, it was enough to only do one of our two kid's swimming lessons tonight.

STACKHOUSE SOAPBOX (Yorkton This Week Oct 27)

Suspension plenty | Columnists | Yorkton This Week, Yorkton, SK

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


CBC News - Saskatchewan - Riders ticket plan a 'cash grab': upset fan

What is this fan trying to say and why does the CBC consider this a story?

Pay for your playoff ticket. If they don't have a game, they'll refund you. Or, how would you like to have a $60 credit to next year's season tickets?

Gosh, we can be such cheapskates.


--We have such short memories in Saskatchewan.  The first snowfall hits and everyone thinks they can still drive like it's the middle of July. 

--A couple of days ago, the temperature was close to 20.  Last night, I went to bed to a relatively mild rain shower.  I wake up and it's the middle of January.  Now, I hear it might be 10 or 12 degrees for Halloween.  Bizarre.

--I shovelled twice tonight.  It was the heaviest snow ever.  I thought the blade on the shovel was going to fall off.  In fact, I wish it would have so that I could quit.

--If WalMart doesn't want to make plastic bags anymore, they should just say so.  Imagine trying to carry groceries in the middle of a snowstorm and a couple of bags just fall apart.  They are more and more flimsy with each passing week.  If they want us all to go re-usable, then just say it.


I have had a few people say they have not had any success posting comments.

If you want to post, maybe send me an email

I will see if I can figure out the issues and will post when it's fixed.  I've tried a test comment and it seems to work.  But, if more than one person has a problem, there must be a problem!

Update:  I may have fixed the issue!  Let me know if you have problems.


Photo courtesy:  Kelsey Jones (official photographer)
Part of what we do at Source Embroidery is help community groups raise money.  The Yorkton Harvest Midget AAA hockey team will be giving away their fridge just prior to Christmas, stocked full of meat from Harvest.  Tickets will be on sale at the next home game.

The other fridge was done for the Thorsness Terriers (Minor Novice) and was only done after permission was granted from the Saskatchewan Roughriders to use their logo.

If you would like more information on this excellent fundraising event, please contact me at .


According to Rod Pedersen, Darian Durant's 'friends' on Facebook have been posting rude messages.

Go back a few years, remember Paul McCallum having manure dumped in his driveway?

This is not class.

Sure, you can say it's a select few that ruin it for the majority, but I never hear of these types of things coming from any other CFL team's market.  Therefore, Rider fans absolutely cannot call themselves the best fans in the league.

Monday, October 25, 2010


The New York Yankees fired pitching coach David Eiland today.

This means the Yanks feel that AJ Burnett, Javier Vazquez, Sergio Mitre, Joba Chamberlain, etc. are actually supposed to be really good pitchers.

If you look at last year's free agent class, the Yanks could have easily signed Billy Wagner to set up Rivera.  I know Wagner said he wanted to close, but the Yanks would have paid him handsomely to set up.  There were other options too.  Matt Capps and Octavio Dotel for starters.

Say what you want, but the Yanks could have also made a Roy Halladay trade last winter or a Cliff Lee trade this summer.  Simply put, they didn't want those guys bad enough.  They also could have made free agent plays for Brett Myers and Joel Pineiro, who combined would have been about the same salary as Vazquez (who was acquired in a trade).

If they really did their homework, they could have spent next to nothing on a player that went 2-and-0 against the Yanks in the ALCS:  Colby Lewis.

At the end of the day, I think Eiland did a pretty good job.  David Robertson, Boone Logan, and Phil Hughes far exceeded my expectations.  Hughes simply ran out of gas and maybe Logan and Robertson aren't cut out for postseason pitching.  But, overall I think they have to be ecstatic with the contributions.

Then again, maybe it is the fault of the pitching coach.  Carl Pavano had a pretty good year.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Just a few questions, many of them rhetorical after getting a rare chance to watch a ton of football today...

--How's that Randy Moss acquisition working out for the Vikings?  Follow up:  Is Tarvaris Jackson a better option than Brett Favre at this point?

--Can someone remind me again about New England getting rid of Randy Moss and how much they were going to suffer this season?

--Saskatchewan Roughriders South lost today.  Which begs the question, can the San Diego Chargers salvage their season with another second half run?

--What happened to the New Orleans Saints today?  Follow up:  What happened to the Cleveland Browns today?

--Where are all the Chicago Bears fans that applauded the acquisition of Jay Cutler last year?  Follow up:  Can someone let me know what Cutler has ever won?

--Is it time to say good-bye to Mike Singletary in San Francisco?  Follow up:  Are the 49ers in even MORE trouble if David Carr becomes the starter in light of an Alex Smith injury?

--Did the Oakland Raiders score 59 points today?

--Were the Pittsburgh Steelers today's beneficiary of bad officiating?

--Is Roddy White the best receiver in the NFL?

--Is Buffalo going to go 0-and-16?

--What happens if Dallas loses tomorrow night to the New York Giants?  Follow up:  Is it possible that I may actually find myself cheering for a New York based sports team tomorrow?


Hi Friends and Family,

We’re now a few days past the one month anniversary of Luke’s stem cell transplant and things are on track and seem to be going well. We met with the doctor yesterday PM and he indicated he was pleased with Luke’s progress. We’ll meet with him again on Monday and he’ll decide then if 1 visit per week will be sufficient. Some issues still persist with the digestive tract, but the doctors expect them to take care of themselves shortly as the healing takes place. Both the chemo and radiation takes their greatest toll there, so it takes a while to get back to normal. His blood levels are coming along - after shooting up early, they have slid a bit and now are progressing slowly. The platelets have been the slowest to return, which is common – hopefully they’ll pick up as eating normalizes. It appears the liver damage Luke sustained in the earlier rounds of chemo is gradually taking care of itself and his enzyme levels are close to normal. This damage has led to what is called Veno -occlusive Disease which slows the return of blood from the organs and extremities, so there is a bit of swelling in the legs and abdomen – causing a little discomfort. This condition is common with transplants and the doctor feels it will take care of itself with time (a few weeks to months). This is the most likely cause of the slower recovery in the platelets.

Luke’s spirits have been good and he’s keeping strong – the good news yesterday really lifted a weight off his and everyone’s shoulders. The weather’s been quite nice so we’ve been able to spend most afternoons walking along the Bow River near our condo. We are getting into a bit of a routine since he was released from hospital nearly 2 weeks ago - normalizing things immensely. Calgary – which seemed so big when we first arrived has become familiar and trips to Costco (which seemed about ½-way to Edmonton before) are actually quite short now. Found a Chinese restaurant that makes Wor Wonton soup rivallng that from Peking House in Regina – so life is good!

As Luke begins to feel better he‘s ready to do more, but the immuno-suppressing drugs he’s on to minimize any rejection response from his new immune system (against his tissues) leave him more vulnerable to the many “bugs” around, so he can’t or shouldn’t do much around crowds. So as he’s feeling better, boredom becomes more of an issue – and no doubt, we can all appreciate how much fun it must be for a 20 year old to hang with mom and dad non-stop! Got to give him credit he handles it remarkably!

Thanks to each of you for your thoughts and prayers – it has been so much appreciated. Every little card, text, or email Luke receives and when he sees his orange “Love for Luke” bracelets showing up in so many places (esp. on TV) - you need to know that Luke takes notice – and treasures each and every gesture of support. He doesn’t say much, but his smile says it all.

Thank you all for your wonderful support – we’ll try to keep you up to date as things continue to evolve.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


The Saskatchewan Roughriders just got creamed by the Edmonton Eskimos and whether or not you think coaching is the problem, the effort I saw tonight indicates the players have decided to mail it in.

Week after week I have watched this team squander a tremendous opportunity.  On paper, they are the best in the league.  A league that is not strong at all this year.  For whatever reason, they could not translate paper to field.

The broken record that is the special teams doomed this team again tonight.  Ryan Grice-Mullen put the football on the ground on the game's opening kick-off.  For those needing an education on Grice-Mullen, rewind to the season opener a year ago when Buck Pierce (or was it Jarious Jackson?) had a wide open Grice-Mullen in the end zone to defeat the Riders.  If you remember that play, you are not surprised to see Grice-Mullen fumble.  Seven minutes later, former Rider return man Jason Armstead victimized the special teams for a punt return touchdown.

Say what you want, but if you are on offense and defense and you watch your special teams foul it up again in the first seven minutes of the game, your spirit is gone.

The defense gave up another 160 yards on the ground, which directly resulted in Darian Durant staying on the sidelines.  Alarm bells should sound everywhere when Glen Suitor announced tonight that defense co-ordinator Gary Etchevarry said he didn't care about run defense because this is a passing league. 

I can't help but think what a complete failure Brendan Taman has been when I look at the bad run defense and then see Stevie Baggs and Ricky Foley on other teams.  The Riders have the financial funds equivalent of the New York Yankees in MLB to outspend any CFL team they want.  Don't whine to me about the salary cap.  There are ways around it if you try hard enough.  Even if the Riders have to give up a first round pick, who cares? 

So, who fires Taman?  Ken Miller?  But, shouldn't Taman fire Miller?  Someone explain to me how that works.  And, is there another professional sports team anywhere that has a lame duck head coach with more power than the general manager?

Saskatchewan is a place that can't change the clock.  So, I don't expect them to change anything for next year.  After all, they haven't changed a thing week to week this year.  I have lived in this province for about ten years and couldn't figure out how this franchise was the laughing stock for so many seasons.  I now, understand, why.  I find myself laughing 3-4 times a game now.


Jay Boyd and I were in North Battleford last night (vs. Yorkton) and Melville tonight (vs. Estevan).
Watching the SJHL playoffs last year, I knew Blake Tatchell was headed for big things.  After watching him last night against Yorkton, I'm more convinced than ever. 

The Battlefords North Stars may have gotten off to a rough start, but they have righted the ship and are going to be a very tough team to play from here on out.  Graham Hildebrand, if he can stay healthy, will be one of the top five goalies in the league and that will make all the difference.

Robbie Ciolfi and Clarke Breitkreuz are the best 1-2 punch the Yorkton Terriers have had since Chris Korchinski and Jason Wagar.  In fact, they might be the best combo in the entire SJHL right now.

Remember that really deep Yorkton defense?  It's not so deep anymore with Drew McDermott retired to go snow boarding, Clark Byczynski gone to Swan Valley in a trade, Austin Bourhis and John Neibrandt playing in the Western Hockey League, and injuries to Kurtis Decker and Devon McMullen.

Full marks to Zach Rakochy tonight, who really fought the puck in the first period before settling in and playing a solid game against the Estevan Bruins.

Lucas Froese is a keeper.  A real nice young man and a talented hockey player.  I see future captain material here for the Melville left winger.

Godric Tham got hurt tonight (knee).  It didn't look good, but hopefully looks are deceiving in this case.  I have been impressed with him.

Troy Hunter is an excellent hockey player.

Some personal top fives so far from our SJHL Games Of The Week:

I have yet to see Humboldt, so their players are omitted based on that!

There are some others I haven't seen yet either (Notre Dame, Flin Flon)

1-Robbie Ciolfi, Yorkton
2-Drew George, Weyburn
3-Clarke Breitkreuz, Yorkton
4-Sanfred King, Kindersley
5-Blake Tatchell, Battlefords

1-Zak Majkowski, Yorkton
2-Devon McMullen, Yorkton
3-Eli Lichtenwald, Nipawin
4-Coltyn Sanderson, Weyburn
5-Ryan Whitell, Weyburn

1-Brody Hoffman, Nipawin
2-Graham Hildebrand, Battlefords
3-Charles Corsi, Melfort
4-Joel Danyluk, Estevan
5-Devin Peters, Yorkton

1-Woody Klassen, Battlefords
2-Johnathan Sonntag, Kindersley
3-Joel Kot, Estevan
4-Blaine Tendler, Yorkton
5-Tyson Newell, Melville

1-Adam Wihak, Melfort
2-Ty Ariss, Estevan
3-Nolan Souchotte, La Ronge
4-Dylan Coupal, Weyburn
5-Kyle Johnson, Estevan

Friday, October 22, 2010


I wonder if the New York Yankees are this generous with charities?

Kei Igawa got $4 million this year to NOT be around, and he'll get another $4 million next year.

Randy Winn got $1.1 million to disappear at midseason.

In addition to giving Alex Rodriguez $27.5 million a year until 2017; the Yanks have also given him the following (after all, he probably will have a tough time affording these perks):  Four Legends Suits each year, and a bonus of $6 million for each home run milestone he hits (660, 714, 755).

Mark Teixeira gets 8 season tickets a season.  I was looking forward to seeing him use one of those on himself for the rest of the playoffs, but alas....

AJ Burnett gets to block deals to 10 clubs if the Yanks decide they want to trade him.  Those ten MLB teams are extremely lucky if they see themselves on this list.

Javier Vazquez cannot be traded to any team in the AL West or NL West.

The Yanks gave the Cleveland Indians $500 000 just because Kerry Wood didn't get injured after he was acquired.

One of the absolute dumbest signings ever, Nick Johnson, was paid $5.75 million to spend the season on the disabled list.  Nick Johnson is a type of player the Pirates should be signing.  High risk, minimal reward.  Not the Yankees. 

Pitcher Andrew Brackman is in the middle of a 4-year $4.55 million dollar contract.  Never heard of him you say?  Cmon.  He pitched High A level ball this year.

Chad Gaudin spent 45-days as a Yankee this year and they paid him $737 500 before determining he couldn't break Spring Training.

Slade Heathcott was paid $2.2 million as their first round draft choice in 2010.  There are red flags everywhere about his character.  The jury is out.


Amazing.  Truly amazing.

The New York Yankees have lost to the Texas Rangers despite a payroll that is four times that of the Rangers.  According to, the Yankees paid their underachieving players a total of $206 million this season.  The Rangers, by contrast, paid their roster $55 million.  Can you imagine how much better the Rangers would be than the Yankees if they had the means to even double their payroll? 

To me, the Yankees border on incompetence despite being in the playoffs every single year.  I would challenge just about anybody to use the financial means the Yankees have and screw things up more than they have.  It takes no baseball acumen whatsoever to overpay the players they've given lofty contracts to. 

Let's just examine the Rangers for a moment and then compare them to what the Yankees have done.  Colby Lewis pitched two gems in this series.  Lewis was banished to Japan a few years back because he couldn't get the ball over the plate.  Texas scouted him and liked that he was able to refine his mechanics, so they brought him back and he's become an above average starter.  CJ Wilson has, successfully through coaching, been transformed into a bonafide #2 starter, and their General Manager, Jon Daniels, had the guts and smarts to put together a midseason trade to bring in Cliff Lee to anchor the staff. 

Now, let's look at the Yankees.  They threw $16.5 million (per season) at AJ Burnett and should've known full well that Burnett really doesn't give a hoot so long as he gets his cash.  Burnett only pitches well when there is a payday at stake.  He's proven that a number of times throughout his career even before he became a Yankee.  They gave $11.5 million (per season) to Javier Vazquez.  He was so bad I don't even know where he is.  He was nowhere to be found on their postseason roster.  One has to think they had a little bit of money in the kitty to bring someone else in at the trade deadline to alleviate the workload thrust upon Phil Hughes, but they didn't bother.

The Rangers aren't without their waste either, but they make up for it elsewhere.  Jeff Francoeur ($5 million) and Jorge Cantu ($6 million) are overpaid by quite a bit; but they also have bargain deals when you look at the likes of Josh Hamilton ($3.2 million), Nelson Cruz ($440 000), and David Murphy ($427 000).  How come the Yankees can't get these bargains?

Instead, the Yanks go out and sign Mark Teixeira ($20.6 million) and he was 3-for-35 when you combine the World Series from last year and this seasons ALCS.  These stats tell us Teixeira is not a clutch player.  He is, however, great at hitting a three run homer to turn a 7-1 game into a 10-1 game.  Derek Jeter was paid $22.6 million this year and is now a free agent.  What do you think the Yanks will give him in the offseason?  How does 4-years at $100 million sound?  Switch hitting Lance Berkman was paid $14.5 million and hit .111 as a right handed batter. 

Don't worry about the Yanks though.  Cliff Lee is going to get around $30 million a season from them in about a month.  It's a no brainer.  The Yanks are good at those.  But when it comes time to actually make a sound baseball decision, they have failed at just about every single one; or they just don't bother making a decision.  Who's the top free agent hitter?  Carl Crawford, and he'll command about $25 million per season from them.  Will Crawford be 20-times the player Brett Gardner is?  Unlikely.  But, it doesn't matter.  Crawford and Lee are the best and the Yanks will sign them, bidding against themselves in the process.  Somehow, though, they will still find themselves in a huge battle to win a World Series.

Fans that say money doesn't buy championships are right.  But, money does buy you a trip to the playoffs every year and a 1-in-4 chance to play in the World Series.  There is no other way to explain how the Yankees get there because they have little to no management skills in the front office and little to no character on the roster.  Heck, CC Sabathia (their best player) didn't even want to be a Yankee.  He was forced to accept when the offer got up to $24 million a year and nobody else exceeded $15 million.

The best part about all this?  Yankee fans care more about the ALCS embarrassment than the players do.  A-Rod, Teixeira (who probably faked his pulled hammy), Swisher, Burnett, and company just got a longer offseason to spend their millions.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

STACKHOUSE SOAPBOX (Yorkton This Week Oct 20)

I struggle with media reports that detail what the very sick and demented Col Russell Williams did in eastern Ontario.  Williams, on Monday, entered guilty pleas to two murders, multiple sexual assaults, and a string of sexually charged break-ins.  The reality is that there are other Williams type birdbrains out there and they don’t need this information to further fuel twisted fantasies.  To wish Williams a long, tortured existence in prison is probably not the right thing to say, but there really is no punishment that would be sufficient.  Lock him up beside Paul Bernardo, I guess.

Brett Favre is taking some heat for explicit text messages that were allegedly sent to Jennifer Sterger, a smokin’ hot brunette sideline reporter who worked for the New York Jets the same year Favre was the team’s quarterback.  I want to know why we, as a society, care?  I also want to know why professional athletes even bother getting married.  When Tiger Woods got put through the media ringer for his entourage of mistresses, I was one of the only people that had a bit of sympathy.  It’s not that a feel for Tiger, but I feel every other athlete that carries on multiple affairs should also get the same treatment as Tiger if this is how it’s going to be.  It should come as a surprise to absolutely nobody that a professional athlete is sleeping around.  Think about it.  They are good looking, rich, quite often hundreds of miles away from home, and there are women at every turn throwing themselves at these athletes.

When you go to a Saskatchewan Roughriders game, you can count on the following:  Darian Durant will have about 300 yards passing with a few touchdowns and, at least, one interception.  The defense will struggle against the run, the return game will be a joke, and a field goal will be blocked.  What you aren’t sure will happen is whether or not the Riders win or lose.  On Sunday, they lost.  There is no point dissecting the action.  This team is good enough to do some damage in the playoffs, but they may not.  Despite the wide array of talent, on paper, this club is not going to win the Grey Cup.  Fans need to come to grips with that now and not a month from now after another loss in which everything I mentioned at the beginning of this paragraph takes place during a game.

Yorkton Terriers are on a bit of a skid, but don’t break your ankle jumping off the bandwagon.  Every team needs some adversity and it’s better to have it now, than in March when you are in a best of seven playoff series.  The San Jose Sharks, Dauphin Kings, and Weyburn Red Wings are all good examples of this.  The Sharks can’t win a Cup, largely because their players don’t know how to get tough when the tough get going.  The Kings obliterated everybody in their path toward the RBC Cup, but when they encountered the Vernon Vipers in the championship game, they were left with too little time to recover.  Had that been a best of seven, Dauphin wins.  Weyburn breezed through the SJHL season last year, but discovered a Trent Cassan coached Terrier team was going to be tenacious, physical, and more up-tempo than what they were used to.  They not only did not adjust, they simply went away.

TSN turns me off their entire station when they lead Sportscentre with news that Phil Kessel is being dropped to the third line, or that Carl Gunnarson is going to the third defense pairing.  This is only news because it’s the Toronto Maple Leafs and TSN is short for Toronto Sports Network.  I’ve purchased NHL Centre Ice and I’ll watch that.  Any news that I need will come from the internet for this year.

It pays to be a First Nations chief.  Literally.  Figures released Monday indicate that dozens of First Nations chiefs take home more pay than many of Canada’s provincial premiers.  At least thirty of them earned more than $110 000 in tax free income last year, which eclipses the $109 893 average ‘after tax’ income paid to Canada’s premiers.  Don’t forget these chiefs also have expenses, that are not included in their annual wage.  One chief earned over $247 000 last year.  Too bad the study doesn’t disclose the individual names.  It should also be noted five chiefs were paid nothing at all.

Nice person mentions this week to Vivian La, Tina Twietmeyer, Cam Mehling, Kurt Goulden, and Michael Trebish.


I got my wife tickets to Virsky as an anniversary present this year and the performance was last night.

I am amazed at the athleticism of the men who specialize in Ukrainian dancing.  They do things far beyond what any hockey player can.

I have seen a few shows involving high end Ukrainian dance groups and for me to rank them wouldn't be fair.  I'm not knowledgeable enough about the craft.  All I can say is that I was entertained last night and Jenn (my wife) said it was a great show.

Personally, I liked one particular sequence where the dancers dressed up as Ukrainian warriors and performed a dance with a prop that looked like a staff.  From there, they went into a sequence with swords.  Very impressive.

Closer to the end of the program, there was another dance where participants dressed up as sailors.  It was very good.  The final dance of the night showed off some of the best athletic moves the group has in its repertoire, I'm sure.

Costume changes must be a nightmare for the dancers.  I lost count after about 20 minutes.

It also didn't go unnoticed that the females were probably all the same height and weight.  Ditto for the males, who probably could double as horse jockeys in another life.

As far as the crowd is concerned, I was mildly entertained by the number of people who were present that, most likely, haven't been out of the house in years.  I saw more than a couple of people confused as to how to read the seat numbers off the tickets. A few more were unsure where the actual seats were and there.  Towards the end of the show, an older couple actually got up and left with about 5 minutes remaining (sound like hockey?) because I'm sure they wanted to escape the hustle and bustle of the parking lot.  Yorkton's a huge city, after all.  Don't laugh.  I remarked to my wife about how Yorkton people would rather be home a few minutes earlier than stay until the end of the show just because they don't want to wait 5 minutes for traffic in the parking lot and I heard a man behind me bemoan to his wife about having to wait in the parking lot now because everyone was leaving at the same time.  Wow.

I've complained lots in Yorkton This Week about how people behave in the Gallagher Centre parking lot, but it bears mentioning again.  We are lazy.  There is no structure or order to parking, so even as rows are formed, some people squeeze into what should be a driving aisle just so they can get 20 steps closer to the building.  And, when leaving after an event, it's every man (or woman) for himself.  The most efficient way to do it is to let 1 vehicle in and then keep going.  Not in Yorkton.  We'll rear-end someone before letting one vehicle get in front.  Here's a novel thought:  park a little further away from the building and you can leave through the other end (near A&W) without actually dealing with the traffic!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I told myself I wouldn't follow Russell Williams' court proceedings this week, but it's everywhere.  It's impossible to not pick up 'some' information.  I am deeply troubled as to what we are capable of doing to one another as human beings.  I am so disgusted by this man that I posted a status update on my Facebook page that reads like this:  

Russell Williams should be released into the custody of his victims' families and whatever happens from that point on is fine by me. Frankly, I think he should be beat within an inch of his life, nursed back to full health, beat again, and continue with the cycle. Sorry if this sounds harsh. One of the sickest men ever.

As of this blog posting, I have had 10 comments and 6 'Likes'.  I would interpret nine of the ten comments to be in favor of punishing this slimeball beyond any extent that Canadian Law currently allows.  The other comment does close by suggesting the death penalty for Williams.  So, I really don't even have one single comment that opposes my drastic sentence.

If any political party was serious about cracking down on crime, there would be stiffer punishments for just about everything.  Catch a Canadian drug dealer in an honest moment (good luck) and ask him if he'd consider dealing drugs in Singapore. 

It's one truly terrible thing to kill another person.  It goes into another stratosphere to torture and kill.  To me, anyone who engages in such activity should also be tortured as 'part' of the punishment.

Meanwhile, Williams is going to get $60 000 a year as pension for serving in the military.  There has to be a way to funnel that money to the victims' families or simply not pay it all.  Don't sing to me about Williams' rights.  To me, he's forfeited his rights.  What a strange country we live in.  How come, in this case, we just can't change the rules as we go along?  Who's going to complain, other than Williams?  You just get sit idly by helplessly and say, "Oh well.  Rules are rules.  So he gets his pension."  That doesn't sit well with me.  Williams broke every moral rule in the book in committing his crimes.  We, as Canadians, can break one in return and hold back his pension.

And, while I have sympathy for his Williams' wife, I hope the assets signed over to her in the hopes they won't be considered in a civil suit against him are ruled to be fair game.  What marital split do you know where the man gives up just about everything to his ex without a fight?  And, if assets are considered to be 50-50 in a normal divorce, then the full 50% should be available for any civil litigation.  Williams' wife shouldn't even put up a fight against that.


The demolition of the Yorkton Dairy Queen took place this morning.  It started around 9am and this is what was left by 5pm.  (see above)

Meanwhile, just down the street, the new Yorkton McDonald's is starting to take shape.  Crews haven't wasted any time on the project and I wouldn't be surprised to see them up and running sometime in December.

Monday, October 18, 2010


The Yorkton Dairy Queen is coming down this morning and I figure there may be an accident or two from the gawkers who are caught at the traffic lights on Broadway checking out the action.

The New York Yankees make me laugh.  If you factor in what the players on the Yankees are making and what the players on the Texas Rangers are making, then this is what you should consider:  the Yankees playing Texas is like me having a 1-on-1 soccer game with my six year-old daughter and me going full-out to beat her at this 1-on-1 game and then celebrating like crazy after I finally eke out the victory.  The Yanks have nothing to be proud of.  All they have is a task at hand to prevent utter embarrassment.

The Saskatchewan Roughriders and San Diego Chargers may be twins separated at birth.  Or, perhaps best linked by the fact each is the worst coached team in their respective league.

If you are an adult and you interact frequently with teenagers, think twice before 'friending' them on Facebook.  A story published this morning in the New York Post suggests four teachers have been fired for inappropriate relationships with students on the social networking site.  One particular dork allegedly postd a tagline that said, "I'm not a gynecologist, but I'll take a look inside."  See ya.

I don't think I can stomach the details of Col. (used as loose as you can use the word, in fact I use it sarcastically) Russell Williams and his double murder, sex assaults court case.  The man doesn't deserve to live, but he should anyway.  I would suggest putting him in general population and whatever happens...happens.


The Saskatchewan Roughriders lost 34-26 to the Calgary Stampeders yesterday, essentially ending any chance the club had finishing in first place.  I felt the Riders played about as well as they can play and were beat by a better team yesterday.  There isn't much more to say about it than that.

A big complaint from fans yesterday was the inability of the defense to stop the run, however I think if you take a closer look the Gary Etchevarry defense hasn't really stopped the run for two years.  There is no sense complaining about it now.  If the Riders had a big lead by half time, Calgary would have abandoned the run.

Special teams continued to be a joke, only this time there was nothing funny about possibly losing Luca Congi for a very long time.  His leg injury looks extremely serious.  Blocked punts & kicks, big returns by the opposition, no returns by the Riders, and on and on it goes.  If you watched the Winnipeg-BC game on Thanksgiving Monday, you may remember Javon Johnson returning a kick deep into BC territory to set up a touchdown.  That has no chance of happening with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, so the onus is on Darian Durant to move the ball 65-75 yards on EVERY drive.

Dwight "Milli Vanilli" Anderson is classless.  I'm glad he plays for another team other than Saskatchewan.  His behaviour is embarrassing for the Stampeder management, I'm sure.  That's not to excuse some Roughrider fans, who showed equal class with the verbal sparring they were doing with Anderson yesterday.

My two cents on the Henry Burris bra situation is this:  the man was having fun at a party and hasn't played for the Riders in a number of years.  Let it go.  If you can honestly look Henry in the eye and say you wouldn't have done the same thing he did when he left the Riders a few years back, then go ahead and wear a bra to a game and taunt him until your heart's content.  But, I'll take Darian Durant over Henry Burris seven days a week and Burris can do whatever he wants with whoever he wants whenever he wants.  Thanks.

Friday, October 15, 2010


--I'm not sure if the street is called Dracup or not, but the traffic light on the corner of Broadway near Tim Horton's absolutely needs a signal arrow for those going north and south as well as vehicles heading east and west.  The reality is that Yorkton is growing and changes need to be made to deal with heavy traffic during peak hours of the day, such as meal times when the congestion is heavy in that area.

--Speaking of traffic lights, it's once again time to sync the lights so that when one turns the green, the other isn't turning red and, therefore, it's a five minute drive to go four blocks.


--It's too bad that the Chilean miner who was cheating on his wife has been the biggest story of all 33 that were rescued this week.  I suppose I should put in my two cents.  According to what I've seen and read, most people that cheat usually still love their spouse more than the other person.  I'm sure that guy had a lot of time to reflect on his life while trapped underground and I am guessing he was pretty eager to return to his WIFE.  When she ended up not being there, I can't help but think this guy must have been really hurt.  Some mistakes are bigger than others, I guess.

--Graham James is a sicko.  He's also nuts if he decides to leave Mexico to come home to Canada and face these latest sex charges.  Why give up freedom for jail?  I hope he comes back, don't get me wrong.  Although a much better fate would be for him to get into similar trouble in Mexico where penalties are much harsher than they are in our bleeding heart type society.

--It pays to sue for just about anything.  In Florida, a man has been awarded $650 000 after he was injured while receiving a lap dance at a strip club.  Apparently the woman's heel (she can't be much of a dancer) poked him in the eye, puncturing his eye socket and breaking bones around his eye and nose!

--There is a great article this week in MacLean's magazine about the state of some of Canada's big cities when it comes to civic elections.  Apparently, Ottawa, Calgary, Toronto, and Mississauga all have some pretty funny characters.  In Ottawa, the incumbent has admitted to doing a terrible job, but says you should vote for him again because now he knows better.  In Toronto, one of the front runners has a history of being tossed from sporting events.  In Mississauga, the current mayor is 90 years old and she's seeking her twelvth term.  Check it out if you get a chance.

--There will be a story coming out on Friday about the sale of the Phoenix Coyotes hitting a snag and that means the team is another step closer to returning to Winnipeg.  Don't buy into this.  The NHL has zero interest in returning to Winnipeg and it will only happen as a last resort.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


--Pascal Leclaire and Jesse Lumsden have the same body composition.  Both of them could get injured just getting out of bed in the morning.

--Jordin Tootoo is a dirty player.  He suckered Ryan Reaves tonight.  Anyone remember the Stephane Robidas sucker punch as well?  I remember him suckering Bart Rushmer too back in the Wheat King days.  Not much respect out there.

Monday, October 11, 2010


Give Wally Buono credit for doing an interview on CJOB after that loss.  However, the credit stops there.

In the last half dozen years, the BC Lions have been the dirtiest team in the CFL and that poor discipline has to start and stop with the coaching staff.

I look at the list of guys on this year's team alone:  Mitchell, Sanchez, Johnson, Rasouli.  Throw in Murphy and Jimenez from years past and that's a pretty good start on a list of guys who are 'me' players who throw the good out of the team out the window in favor of personal interests.

It was great to see Steven Jyles come in to mop up in the fourth quarter and, ultimately, lead his team to victory. Good for him as he was hoodwinked out of a starting job last week by someone who wanted to see Alex Brink play QB.

If the Lions do finish third and play Saskatchewan in the West final, a Rider loss would be more embarrassing than this defeat was for BC.


The job of coaching staff and management in any sport is to give your team a chance to win by putting the best players on the field/ice.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers did their fans and players a big dis-service today by starting Alex Brink over Steven Jyles.  If this was not Paul LaPolice's decision (I suspect he was taking orders from headquarters) he should say so.  Otherwise, it reflects poorly on him and the loyalty to his players.

I'm not saying Jyles is in the top three in the CFL, but he is the best quarterback the Winnipeg Blue Bombers have on their roster.

This is akin to Saskatchewan putting Cole Bergquist in to start next week's game against Calgary and we all know what kind of response from the fan base that would illicit.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


I'm no expert on physical appearances and maybe his goofy long locks really change him more than I think, but it appears to be as though Tom Brady has had some work done.

Look at the pic in this ridiculous story about Boy Wonder and the arrogant Randy Moss.;_ylt=Ais5hiGziqDEOYbq54WN0HZShgM6?urn=nfl-275875


Crescent Point Place in Weyburn has undergone a major face lift over the last half a dozen years.  It makes me wonder why they didn't just build a new arena altogether.  Nevertheless, the new lobby is likely going to garner rave reviews and the previous retrofit inside where there are luxury suites and the best media box in the SJHL are excellent.

A week ago, I thought the Melfort Mustangs might have the best number one line in the league.  I'm not so sure after watching Drew George, Brock Appleyard, and Coltyn Sanderson.  I'm also betting Yorkton will take issue too with their Breitkreuz-Ciolfi-Eisenhut combination.

If the Wings are to have a good season, they'll need banner years on the back end from Dylan Coupal and Ryan Whitell.  They've inherited a big chunk of ice time in the wake of last year's graduations.

Estevan's going to be pretty good.  Despite a decent start, head coach Karry Biette has made a number of player moves and it may take a while for the team to gel.  Joel Kot is only a few games into running their powerplay, and Ben Findlay hasn't scored yet.  Look for the Bruins to reel off four or five in a row in the near future.

The Saskatchewan Roughriders lost to the Toronto Argonauts yesterday and there is no question that special teams was the difference.  Jim Daley should be embarrassed to have a rookie coach like Mike O'Shea completely outcoach him.  Daley has been under fire all year and rightfully so.  Some will say it's too late to fire a coach, and I disagree.  It's too late to bring in somebody new, but not too late to replace Daley with either Ken Miller or Alex Smith.  At the end of the day, special teams have cost this team a Grey Cup game, and probably two or three others in this regular season.

Usually, the Roughrider Roundtable is full of drunks and uneducated fans who do nothing more than blow hot air, however I was very impressed with a couple of callers last night.  One came from a gentleman who has spent time in the Armed Forces and he talked about attending all of the Roughrider practices.  He pointed out a number of things with the special teams that were very interesting, to say the least.  The most important point was the yelling and screaming that is, apparently, being done.  A second caller is a high school coach and he talked about how he always assigned two players to make sure the punter/kicker kicks the ball one hundred times out of a hundred.  It's obvious the Riders don't do this or if they do, there are a couple of players failing miserably at the only assignment given to them on punts and kicks.  Either way, it's unacceptable and these two players or the coach should have been shown the door long ago.

The circus act known as the Cincinnati Bengals lost again today.  It's further evidence to my belief that you cannot win when your star players have motives other than the team at the forefront of their respective agendas.  Sure, Terrell Owens had 102 yards and a touchdown today, but he was also fined for sending a Twitter message close to game time.  The NFL has instituted a new rule that states there is to be no social media posts within 90 minutes of kick off.  Another point on the Bengals:  Carson Palmer has been terrible since opting not to undergo surgery on his throwing arm two years ago.  He's finished.

The San Diego Chargers are the Saskatchewan Roughriders South.  Poorly coached, bad special teams, and wasting away a roster that may be the most talented in the league.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are 2-and-0.  You can catch the parade on TSN tomorrow morning provided SportsCentre isn't too busy telling us Mike Komisarek has been demoted to the third defense pairing.  I get that TSN is in Toronto and, therefore, we are bound to receive a bit more info on the Leafs than we do other teams.  But, it's overkill.

I am predicting the first NHL coach to be fired will be Claude Julien.  My good buddy from Cape Breton, Perry Chandler, posted on my Facebook page yesterday that Julien should have been canned while his players were in the shower following game seven's loss to Philadelphia in the playoffs last year.  He might be right.  I watched the Bruins yesterday afternoon and I saw a team that had some goofy line combinations, uninspired play on defense, and a questionable powerplay that gave up two or three breakaways.

Why I hate salary caps:  Edmonton will not be able to keep Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, and Magnus Paajarvi six years from now.  If the Oilers develop a club that contends yearly for the Stanley Cup, they'll have to break it apart eventually due to the cap.  It's like telling Tim Horton's they have to donate some of their profits and recipes to a competing dough-nut shop because they've been too successful.  Look at the Pittsburgh Penguins.  They said good-bye to their powerplay point-man (Gonchar) over the summer because they want to hang on to Malkin and Crosby for as long as possible.  They may be able to do it, but they won't win Stanley Cups if those are the only two star players on the roster.  If there was no salary cap, the Washington Capitals would have a good goalie.  Even with the salary cap, the Florida Panthers are a joke.  They send one of their best prospects back to junior even though he made their team because he will cost too much money.  This, despite, a hard cap on rookie salaries as well as a hard cap on an overall team salary.

You have to wonder about the Tampa Bay Rays and manager Joe Maddon.  Everyone loves Maddon, but that was a bird brain move in game two against Texas to start James Shields, who has given up more than 30 homers this year.  The better play would be Matt Garza on the road against the power hitting Rangers and then get Shields in for either game three or four with the Rays at home and, presumably, with a win under their belt.  Nevertheless, I like Tamps's chances in game five even though they have to go up against Cliff Lee.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Brian Boechler sent this out today:

Hi Everyone,
Sorry it has been so long since the last update, but there have been so many ups and downs over the last couple of weeks that it seems anything we tell you may not be correct the moment we hit the send button.  Overall, Luke has been doing really well - better than we could have expected.  The toughest time began last Monday (September 28 - 11 days post-transplant) and lasted about 4 days - he had severe mucositis (from chemo and radiation) in his mouth and throat (meaning that he couldn't swallow anything at all) and was in lots of discomfort.  However, during that time his levels of white cells, red cells, and even platelets and "neutrifils" (main disease fighters) began to rise - meaning the new stem cells were setting up shop and beginning to do their job of creating a new immune system for him.  Less than a week after the tough time, they released him from hospital on pass (yesterday) for the afternoon and today, doctors are thinking he can stay home overnight at the condo!  He has been walking as much as possible and the exercise certainly helps.  He has contracted the common cold virus and has a bit of a cough and once in awhile spikes a fever - there are so many things that could cause the fever that they're just trying to eliminate anything serious.  The antibiotics he's on and his developing immune system keep things manageable.  Sitting in a hospital room vs being out and about makes little difference in terms of his health, so they encourage him to take advantage of the leaves when he can.

His hair is gone again and eating is still a challenge after a week of not being able to swallow.  But both of these should come along quite quickly from this point on. The next week should bring the first signs of "graft vs host disease" GVHD - as his new immune system strengthens, it will attack his own tissues to some extent (depending on the genetic match).  Some GVHD is good because the first cells it will recognize and attack will be fast growing cancer cells (if any made it past the chemo and radiation) and hopefully eliminate any leukemia remaining.  Hopefully, the GVHD will be minimal and he will be well on the road to recovery.  I guess that will be a story for the next update.

Thank you all for the incredible support you have shown for Luke and our family.  We wish you all the best as well.
May God bless you all.
Brian, Jeannine, Brittany, Paul - and especially Luke


I'm not really a fan of the New England Patriots or the Minnesota Vikings; but the clear cut winner in the Randy Moss to the Vikes for a 3rd round draft pick is:  NEW ENGLAND.

Over time, I have become a big believer in locker room chemistry throughout all sports.  Teams can't win with Moss when he's the focal point of the team.  He's a 'me' player and now he goes to a club that has another significant 'me' player in Brett Favre.  The little publicized part of this trade is that Favre was, quietly, threatening to quit ASAP if the Vikings didn't take a step towards improving their receiving corps. Minnesota is a mess.  The players don't like the coach, Favre and Moss are playing for the wrong reasons, and there are plenty of other good teams in the NFC who don't have similar issues.

Look at the last few Super Bowl winners and cinderella stories.  New Orleans, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, Arizona, and the Patriots.  There was no controversy (Spy Gate, but all that did was bring the Patriots even closer together).  In the case of all teams, except maybe Pittsburgh, the focal point of each of those teams is known as a tremendous team player (Brees, Manning, Warner, Brady).  The support players were also good citizens (Bush, Wayne, Freeney, Fitzgerald, the New England defense).

Meanwhile, New England wasn't going to win a Super Bowl this year with Moss and they may not without him.  But, they will be a better team.  They put up 41 on Miami on Monday night and Moss didn't even have a catch.  He's a major league distraction on a major league team and the Patriots (look at how many Super Bowls they've won) know they can't win with this guy.  So, time to move on.  Don't worry about the Patriots.  Brandon Tate is about to become a house hold name.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall created a bit of a stir last week when he wondered aloud just how prepared a Saskatoon high school student would be for the real world if he or she wasn't seriously penalized for handing in a late high school assignment or plagiarizing the work.

We sometimes wonder why our politicians don't come out publicly with their own personal opinions, well this is Exhibit A right here.  Wall says something that makes perfect sense and a few NDP supporters from the general public chastise him for what they perceive as him butting his nose in somewhere it doesn't belong.  Well, Wall should be entitled to state his opinion on this and he should be well within his right as Premier to act swiftly to try and pressure the school board to rethink a decision that wasn't thought out in the first place.

Here's the latest on this story:

Saturday, October 2, 2010


I often check my site stats and thought I'd share them.

In recent days, here are the top cities that are visiting my blog:

6-Wesley Chappel, Florida

I'd also like to thank the following blogs for linking to my blog and helping push some visits:



--The SJHL Game Of The Week was at the Northern Lights Palace in Melfort last night.  The game didn't start until 8pm due to local figure skating tests that were being conducted.

--Brody Hoffman has had the best game of any SJHL netminder that I've seen this year.  He stopped a 4-on-0 in the second period and was the difference in a 3-2 shootout victory.  I would expect to see him play upwards of 45 games this year.

--The word is out on how good Matthew Spafford really is.  At least with Melfort.  They were extremely physical with him last night.  Once Spafford finds a way to battle through that, he's going to be unstoppable.

--The Hawks are in good hands with Doug Johnson has their new coach.  I've been very impressed with him both personally and professionally so far.  The key is going to be stability.  Sounds like he's going to have to deal Jeff Lorenz fairly soon, however.  Too bad because Lorenz was a guy that I figured would be a big factor for them.  For family reasons, he's going closer to home in Alberta.

--Brody Haygarth has an extra jump to his step this year.  If he can stay healthy, I am predicting a 65-70 point season.  Regan Nabseth's breakout is for real.  Ditto on Owen Roschuk.  In fact, Darrell Mann is calling Roschuk the best captain he's had in Melfort.  I would love to see Adam Wihak and Darren Gillen play a bit more.  Wihak, in my opinion, was the best Mustang on the ice last night.

--Here's why you have to let the future considerations play out before you evaluate a trade:  Melfort received 'futures', Haygarth, and Gillen from Flin Flon for Deven Stillar.  I like Stillar, but what team wouldn't move Stillar for those three entities?  Likewise, the Yorkton Terriers have had to ante up Clark Byczynski, Drew McDermott, and 'futures' for two and a half months of Troy Smukowich.  That's one of those trades that's harder to judge because Yorkton came within two wins of a league championship with that deal.  But, are they ever paying the piper after the fact.

Next SJHL Game Of The Week is Friday, October 8 in Weyburn as the Red Wings host Estevan.  Having Jay Boyd provide color for me has been great.  I'm really enjoying my new role with the league, as I wouldn't be able to offer these editorial comments otherwise.   People have to understand when issuing information on the SJHL website, you have to keep it pretty vanilla in the interest of fairness.  Don't expect to see me get real critical on here though either.  Remember, these are still boys aged 17-20 who have real feelings and a mom and dad who are extremely proud.  If one of them screws up or has a bad game, I can assure you that nobody will feel worse than the player himself.  He doesn't need me calling him out on a public forum.