Wednesday, April 24, 2013


The bombings at the Boston Marathon really fired me up last week and I made some comments on Facebook that didn’t sit well with some of my ‘friends’.  You know me.  I’m not the most politically correct person in the world and, sometimes, I maybe go a little too far with my views.  But, I stand by my opinion that law enforcement officers should be able to use any means necessary to keep us all safe, even if all they have to go on is a ‘gut feeling’.  I have no problem being searched and opponents have said that’s easy for me to say because I won’t ever likely be searched for anything.  Well, when I was younger and dressed like a metalhead, I was scrutinized by people in authority rather close.  I didn’t like it, but turns out now that I’m older and can be honest with myself, those people in authority had every right to pay extra close attention to me and, in a few instances, their hunches would have been correct.  Sometimes I was up to no good.

I used the Tom Brady-Tony Romo/Ben Roethlisberger example last week when I said that sometimes you can just go by ‘look’ when deciding who is a more upstanding citizen.  Romo, for example, always wears his hat backwards on the sidelines.  And, what is the knock on Romo or Roethlisberger?  It’s that they are a little immature and give off a bit of a ‘disregard for authority’.  I don’t think Romo has ever done anything really wrong (Roethlisberger has), but it’s perception.  Brady, meanwhile, is the All-American Boy you want to take home to mom.  Looks do account for something whether we like it or not.  I’m not saying every backwards hat wearing man is a bad person, but if you are giving off a perception, you can’t be upset if people form an opinion about you.   It’s not fool proof, but I don’t think there is anything wrong with a police officer taking a closer look at someone who appears as though he/she should be watched a little closer than others.

I read a very interesting article on the airline El Al, which is Israel’s main airline carrier.  They racial profile people and are very open about it.  Security is very strict, and they do look at Muslims a lot closer than Jews.  In our part of the world, that’s wrong.  Their feeling is that all Muslims are subjected to extra scrutiny based on the sins of their brothers.  I wonder how many of us would be open to closer searches, etc. if it meant a ‘safer’ place.  Some say you should just live your life and take your chances and hope what happened to the poor people in Boston never happens to you.  It’s an incredible debate regardless of what side you are on.

The alleged Boston Marathon bombers have an aunt in Toronto and she was all over the news on Friday night proclaiming her nephews innocence despite having not talked to them in years.  This is the type of thing that should, highly, alert Canadian anti-terrorism officials.  I’d watch her so close to the point that I’d know what she puts in her coffee. 

Meanwhile, the older brother (who was killed in the firefight with police Thursday night) was looked into by authorities based on a concern from another country a couple of years ago, but nothing untoward was discovered.  His quote of ‘I don’t have a single American friend; I don’t understand them’ should send off alarm bells.  Hopefully, citizens can help law enforcement by reporting such nonsense to authorities.  We’ve come too far to shrug off such comments.  Even if meant as a joke or something not to be taken serious, it is now a serious opinion, to me.

I expect the Yorkton Terriers to have a successful week at the Western Canada Cup in Nanaimo.  I’m not just saying that because they are our home team, but based on how they play.  They are, an incredibly, difficult team to plan against because of their puck moving defense and I think that translates really well into a tournament setting where it’s a one-game only scenario as opposed to a best of seven where good coaches and teams are able to make adjustments over the course of a series. 

Saskatchewan won’t host the Western Canada Cup until 2016 and I pressed Bill Chow during the Canalta Cup finals to see if there is any one league centre that has stepped up to start organizing a host committee and it doesn’t sound like there is at this point.   Estevan is an obvious favorite based on the gorgeous new Spectra Place.  Bill says it takes more than a nice building, however.  To me, Melville needs to make improvements as far as being able to accommodate dignitaries (they get an F for press box) in order to put in a bid to host.  Yorkton has been a good guinea pig in years past for things like the Top Prospects Game and the World Junior ‘A’ Challenge, so don’t be surprised if Yorkton puts something together for this event too.  Warman will be in the SJHL by 2016 and with Saskatoon so close, it wouldn’t shock me to see them step up too.

Nice person mentions this week to Ron Inkster, Cora Devos, Adam Wog, Parker Rice, and Brady Harland.

Monday, April 22, 2013


Just a few thoughts on sports from the weekend as I stayed pretty close to the television set for a change.

-Tried to watch Toronto and Ottawa Saturday night.  I experienced a few minutes before shutting it off.  The Leafs got a goal called back on goalie interference.  I can't figure it out.  It didn't look anything remotely close to interference to me.  And, even if the Toronto player made contact with the netminder, who cares?  Goalies have soooo much gear on, they can take the odd bump.  We've got forwards and defensemen taking one another's heads off.  A small bump to a goalie isn't going to hurt anyone.  Nevertheless, there was no interference in my mind at all.  It's hard enough to score goals in the NHL.  Let's make it harder.

I really like After Hours on Hockey Night In Canada.  The Ken Holland interview was good and Corey Schneider is an interesting guy.

There is a part of me that really wants to watch the NHL. I'm hoping the playoffs are good.  Usually the first round is.

-The Knicks/Celtics game was fantastic.  Those old guys from the Celtics made it interesting until the final moments and then Carmelo Anthony took the game over.  Carmelo gets criticized because he is a 'ball hog', but I enjoyed watching him.  I don't know how far the Knicks will go, but I'm interested to see.  Regardless, I don't think anyone in the East is even going to come close to challenging the Heat.

-The Golden State/Denver game was unbelievable. Andre Miller drove the basket with only 1.3 seconds left to give his team the win.  Amazing game.  Stephen Curry is quite a shooter for the Warriors.  I remember being captivated by him at Davidson a number of years ago during March Madness.  He got off to a cold start, but I suspect we'll hear from him before the series is over.

-Sunday's games weren't that interesting.  I watched a bit of Oklahoma City/Houston.  The Rockets looked big time overmatched.

-I've been a big Red Sox fan ever since I was a kid and I was totally disgusted at their season last year.  I'm not sure how much better they will be this year, but I don't think the effort will be questioned.  They got swept in a double header against Kansas City yesterday; but rookie pitcher Allen Webster looked good in game two.  He pitched six innings and gave up a couple of homers in the fifth, but was otherwise almost untouchable.  He was part of the Dodger trade last year that sent Crawford, Beckett, and A-Gone to Los Angeles.  It's amazing that the Bosox could get a couple of prospects in that deal in addition to dumping large salaries.

-I feel bad for the Toronto Blue Jays.  Having Jose Reyes on the shelf really hurts them and it appears as though some shoddy defense is going to be a downfall too.  Emilio Bonifacio isn't the versatile player fans thought he would be.  The pitching is starting to come around, however, and the season is still young.  Toronto is still my pick to win the division; but Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista have to start hitting for power and soon.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


As I do a real slow burn over the needless and tragic suicide of Rehtaeh Parsons; I wonder why a few of these simple steps weren’t followed when investigating the alleged gang rape of the young girl:  why wasn’t the first person who was proven to have passed around a photo of her being assaulted charged with possession and/or distribution of child pornography?  Or, at the very least how come pressure wasn’t put on that person to reveal who/how the pictures came into that invidual’s possession?  Once you do that, you follow the trail backwards until you get to the real source.  This just seems so simple to me.  There must be more to the story that hasn’t been reported.  Was she a willing participant who changed her mind after it happened?  Even if that’s the case, you still have the photos and she’s 15  years old.  It’s child pornography at the very least.  Sexual assault at the most. 

Instead of northern Manitoba reserves letting their residents shoot dogs, I wonder if there shouldn’t be actual rules for pets like the City of Winnipeg has.  I bet these rules are in place in just about every municipality in Canada; but I notice that, in Winnipeg, you can be fined $200 if you let your dog run around without a leash.    If you are breeding, then you need a special permit.  So, let’s get some laws in place in northern Manitoba so that kids aren’t killed by stray dogs and dogs don’t  have to be shot like raccoons by people out for a thrill.

I drove by the Gallagher Centre on my way to Humboldt on Saturday for the SJHL game and noticed parking for the Spring Expo was, in true Yorkton form, a gong show.  I think it may be time to point a finger at the Gallagher Centre itself.  There are some areas that are, clearly, marked as a no parking zone and vehicles continue to park there.  Have them towed and collect a bit of revenue.  And, here’s a question I’d like answered from someone ‘in the know’.  Are vehicles allowed to park along the street beside the skateboard park or is that supposed to be a no parking zone?  To me, it looks like two lanes of traffic but folks are using it as a parking lane.   Another thing that’s come up recently as more and more people are starting to support my ‘parking for dummies’ crusade is that some people feel there must be a better place for the big pile of snow other than in the middle of the parking lot.  I have to agree. 

One thing I’d like to see changed is how people park on narrow side streets.  In the winter time, especially, when you have a couple of half-ton trucks parked on either side of the street, it is sometimes not possible to drive down the street to get by.  I would suggest limiting parking on side streets to one side.

Marlene Weber is a good friend and she posted some nasty pictures of an unwelcomed swimming pool on her residential street (Moritz Bay).  Let’s help her get the attention of city officials to see if this matter can be fixed.  There was a ton of water there on Sunday and I can only imagine it’s going to be worse as melting continues.

I wonder, does the Edmonton Oiler scouting staff do any work or do they just listen to Bob McKenzie?  Wouldn’t Dougie Hamilton look better than Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in an Oiler uniform today?  What about Ryan Ellis or Dimitri Kulikov instead of Magnus Paajarvi?  As the Oilers are about to miss the playoffs AGAIN (they’ve only advanced past the first round three times since 1993) I am reminded by Oiler fans that this team is young and will, eventually, be the best ever.  Just give them a couple of years.  Well, I remember getting the same message from Oiler fans about a dozen or so years ago and I am now asking how the following worked out for you:  Michel Riesen, Michael Henrich, Jani Rita, Alexei Mikhnov, Brad Winchester, Jesse Niinimaki, Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Rob Schremp, Alex Plante, and Riley Nash.  Yes, young guys were acquired in trades too.  I remember waiting for breakout seasons from Ethan Moreau, Mike Comrie, Jochen Hecht, Dan Cleary, Mike Grier, Eric Brewer, Tom Poti, Boyd Devereaux, Josh Green, Mats Lindgren, Mike York, and on and on and on.  The truth hurts.  The Oilers are an even bigger laughingstock than the Maple Leafs.

What happened to the Toronto Blue Jays?  All of a sudden Jose Reyes is hurt, Brett Lawrie still isn’t back and now you have guys like Rajai Davis and Mark DeRosa playing every day.  JP Arencibia, a .220 hitter is batting fifth.  Meanwhile, John Farrell has moved on to Boston and has turned water to wine with John Lester and Clay Buchholz.  Can you imagine the outrage and embarrassment in Toronto if the sad sack Red Sox actually finished ahead of Toronto in the standings?

Nice person mentions this week to Graham Condo, Kevin Foote, Arielle Zerr, Davis Vandane, Dean Shyiak, and Devan Brisebois.

Monday, April 15, 2013


I’m currently taking a beating on Facebook over this issue, so I figure why not put it out there for even more people to hammer away on me.

The bombings in Boston today may very well be the result of a suit and tie white guy who, for a lark, decided to see how many people he could kill and maim by setting off a few explosives.  And, if that’s the case then so be it.

But what today has done is it has really brought some feelings I have to the surface about being suspicious of people because of how they look.

One person on my Facebook was a childhood friend and she took me to task because I used to whine and complain about being stereotyped because I had long hair, wore ripped jeans, and seldom smiled.  Well, she’s right.  I was mad.  But now that I’m 38 and not 16 I can be honest about something.  I had a lack of respect for people in authority and I made sure I also looked the part.  So, if a police officer was investigating neighborhood vandalism, he was merely doing his job by asking the defiant looking guy walking down the street metres away from where the crime took place.  It doesn’t mean I was guilty, but it’s not unreasonable to assume a punk looking kid like me maybe knows something about it.

Guys in our group used to get mad all the time because we would be suspected of drug use.  None of us touched the stuff.  But, if you draw a line from A to B, it’s not crazy to think it.  We all looked and dressed like wannabe rock stars.  What do rock stars do?  They do drugs.  What do fans of rock stars do?  They do as much as they can to emulate their idols.  That means look and act the role.  It doesn’t mean that long haired, tough looking guys are the only ones out there doing drugs or that they must, automatically, be doing drugs.  But, I don’t think a police officer should have to disregard my appearance if he’s searching for drugs. 

That brings me to today and a much more touchier issue because it involves skin color and culture.  Upon hearing that police in Boston have a man in custody and hearing that he is a Saudi National who was seen carrying a couple of back packs near the bomb site, I can’t help but get mad because I think this could have been prevented.  On Patriots Day in the United States, seeing a Saudi carrying 2 (not 1) back packs through a very busy area of Boston is suspicious to me.  But, you are branded a racist for even thinking this guy may be a terrorist.  I think a security guard should be allowed to eyeball this Saudi man and search him using a number of factors that give him suspicion and race should be one of them (but not the only one).  Is the world a worse place if the man is searched and nothing is found?  I would say it isn’t.  Instead, that security guard runs the risk of being fired for being ‘racist’.  To me, if you are defensive about being searched or investigated for a crime then you maybe have something to hide and I, for one, would be inclined to look at you even closer.

I know it’s not the right thing to say.  You shouldn’t racial profile.  But, I guess I’ll use this last example and then you can beat me up on this if you like.  Pretend you are on an airplane and shortly after take-off a couple of guys who could be from Afghanistan get up and start arguing with a flight attendant.  Are you more nervous than if those two people were white, black, or of Chinese descent?  I’m not afraid to say I would be more nervous based on the person’s appearance and I would take action a lot quicker simply based on that fact alone.  The white, black, or Chinese individual gets a much longer rope to work out his dispute.  That’s just the way it is.

Suspecting people based on looks isn’t cool.  It’s not right.  But I think we’ve reached a point in society that it has to be a consideration because there are a lot of radical groups out there based on culture and religious beliefs. 

It doesn’t mean things like today will be prevented.  But, I think it does make our community safer.

Sunday, April 14, 2013


As Jay Boyd and I put on miles (or should I say kilometres) over the course of these SJHL playoffs, we have come up with a pretty heated debate as far as the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League's Most Valuable Playoff Player is concerned.

An informal survey shows, at least, on the Yorkton side there is a split almost down the middle.  Here are my three contenders (the Canalta Cup may very well be given to the Terriers tonight and the MVP will go to one of these three fine playoff performers).

-Brady Norrish.  To me, Norrish has been the best player in the SJHL during the entire playoffs.  I don't think he's, necessarily, been the best player in the series against Humboldt; but he's been pretty darned good.    Overall he has 6-goals and 4-assists in 16-games and the six goals are a major stat in a league that has been very defensive.  But, to appreciate Norrish you really have to watch him.  He puts on more miles than any other player as he rushes frequently but is almost always never out of position either.  Melville had no answer for him and he was the single most reason the Terriers defeated the Mils.  Humboldt hasn't been able to handle Yorkton's puck moving blueliners either and Norrish is the best.

-Dawson MacAuley.  MacAuley is the MVP of this series, no question in my mind (3-2, 1.76, .942).  In the last two games he is 2-0, 0.59, .980.  If there is one player who has gotten continually better over the course of the postseason, it's MacAuley.  And, to think he could play in this league for TWO more years.  He'd be a great choice and he may also be the obvious choice to some.  I guess my only strike against him is that he hasn't been asked to 'steal' games.  But, should he be disregarded because he's done his job?

-Patrick Martens.  In a league where goals are hard to come by, Martens has managed to collect 10 in 14 games.  He was the MVP of the Estevan series and the best player in game two when the Terriers tied the series.  But, he hasn't been Yorkton's best forward in this series either.  That nod goes to Tyler Giebel (5-4-2-6).

I don't think you will get much of an argument as far as Humboldt's contenders are concerned; although it's fashinonable to look at the goalie first.

-Joey Davies.  Davies, like Martens, has been an incredible threat offensively despite this being a league chalk full of low scoring games.  He has 13-goals and 4-assists in 15-games; but his offense has disappeared over the last three games.  If Humboldt is to come from behind and win this series, you have to think Davies is going to be the biggest reason why and he will win the MVP should Humboldt mount the improbable comeback.

-Matt Hrynkiw.  The Rodney Dangerfield of goaltenders has stepped up and, likely, is the single biggest reason this series is getting to game six.  I have Yorkton has the better team in four of the five games so far, which would mean the series should already be over.  What else is a guy to do?  He boasts a 1.19-GAA and .962 SPCT over the last two games and is 1.99, .936 overall in these playoffs.  I suppose if Humboldt were to win the next two games 1-0 or 2-1 then he has to win it, doesn't he?

-Logan Sproule.  Aside from Davies and Sproule, the entire Humboldt offense has actually been a disappointment when you look at numbers alone.  For a blueliner to be near a point per game (15-2-12-14) really says something.  Sproule plays a different game than Yorkton's Norrish.  He doesn't really rush into the play, but rather uses his terrific hockey sense back at the blueline either dishing pucks off or firing a shot on goal and seeing if someone can scoop in a rebound.  Sproule's importance is further magnified when you consider injuries to David Stumborg and Cody Pettapiece have decimated their blueline.  It's crunch time for Humboldt and I think Sproule should be on the ice for as much as he can possibly handle.

What are YOUR thoughts?

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Regular blog readers will have already read most of this:

It’s time for the public relations officials at the RBC to make their money.  A CBC story came out over the weekend stating that Canadian workers in Toronto are being replaced with foreign ones.  In fact, the Canadians are training these foreign people to, eventually, replace them. 

It’s a slippery slope.  Someone pointed out to me that it would be very difficult to find any product or service that doesn’t have a finger print of something foreign on it.  At the same time, having Canadians train a person from another country to steal his/her job because they will do it for less pay is just wrong.

Where does it end?  Should my employer decide to do business in a building with no heat and lights in order to cut costs or are some expenses simply the price of doing business?  I think when it comes to this particular case, the job can be done in Canada and wasn’t posing a hardship on RBC so there is no reason to change anything.  Remember, customers are paying service fees that are unlikely to be reduced after this change is made.  Therefore, the savings are going towards an already hefty profit.

Another question needs to be asked here.  Why are foreign workers less expensive?  One theory I have is that in Yorkton, I know it is not unusual for large foreign families to all live under one roof, thus greatly reducing their expenses so they don't need to make as much to live.  Is this something Canadians should start doing?  Some would say 'yes'.  I say 'no'.  That is what makes Canada such a great place to live.  The ability to EARN nice homes, large vehicles, more disposable income, etc.  In fact, I think there should be an enforced law concerning the number of people living under one roof.  Give me an incentive to do a good job and I’ll be the best employee you have ever had.  That’s my thought on it.  If I am just working for The Man with no hope of ever escaping a one bedroom apartment then you are going to get a pretty vanilla employee.

Canadians can look in the mirror when they point the blame finger.  What has happened is that we have gotten lazy and don't have as much pride in our work (or have developed a sense of entitlement) and so companies have gone overseas to hire cheaper labour.  I am assuming they figure if I am going to get less than excellent employees, I may as well pay less for it.  Let’s be honest.  The great service we are receiving from foreign workers right now could, easily, be matched by Canadians but there is a good segment of the population that thinks certain jobs are ‘beneath them’.  So, the onus is on us, as Canadian employees, to step up to the plate and make ourselves as close to irreplaceable as possible. 

I do, however, wonder who is keeping a close watch to make sure there are no qualified Canadians for some of these jobs, such as the ones in the RBC case?  In the RBC case, I would guess either nobody is watching or that particular somebody should be canned.
It reminds me of the time Air Canada lost my luggage and when I filed my claim, I talked to a person in India.  The individual couldn’t speak English very well at all and when I tried to describe my toddler son’s Scooby-Doo running shoes, I was met with complete disbelief on the other end of the phone because the person didn’t know who Scooby-Doo was.  Sure, it costs less to have the man in India find my luggage, but the experience wasn’t good. 

I am extremely upset over the news that came out last week regarding the dog cull on northern Manitoba reserves.  Apparently, people don’t take care of their ‘pets’ and they end up forming packs and then there is a ‘shoot the dogs’ day in order to keep the population down and also to protect children from these dogs as they become deadly predators.  Well, here is a thought:  if you are not cut out to have a pet then don’t have one.  Why is this such a difficult thing to grasp?  I have no idea how to fly an airplane, nor can I afford one.  So....I don’t have one in my driveway.  There is nothing right about a dog cull.  First of all, you would never see a pack of dogs in a city street such as Yorkton, so why is it allowed to occur on Manitoba reserves?  And, if there was a pack of dogs on my street in Yorkton would I be allowed to shoot them or would I have to call the proper authorities?

Is it time to start naming people, specifically, for clogging up the Gallagher Centre parking lot?  While at the game on Sunday night I was approached by a couple of whistle blowers who said they watched certain individuals park, rudely, before entering the arena.  I’m all for publishing names of the offenders.  Considers yourselves warned. 

Nice person mentions this week to Ken Maduck, Trevor Morrissey, Theresa Schmidt, Penny Sandercock, and Karen Ransome.


The more I watch and read the CBC, the more I think they just may be the only the REAL journalism outfit in this country.

This is a great piece that appeared on The Fifth Estate and is now on their website.

I encourage you to find your hospital and rank it.  The more people that do this, the more accurate the rankings are, likely, to be.

Here's Yorkton:

Here's Melville:

And, here's the page where you can search for any hospital in Canada

Sunday, April 7, 2013


Maybe I'm in a bad mood because it's snowing AGAIN.

But I just saw a news report on CBC this morning that raised my temperature in record time.

Here it is:
RBC replaces Canadian staff with foreign workers

It's bad enough when the RBC makes sales calls to me with a person on the other end of the phone that I can't understand because of a serious language barrier, but I am willing to forgive that because I assume English (as a first language) Canadians are either too lazy to do the job or there isn't anyone out there to fill the position.

In this situation outlined above by the CBC, the foreign workers are not even qualified to replace the Canadians.  The Canadians are training the very people who will be replacing them.

RBC has since come out this morning to say they are looking at finding other jobs for the displaced Canadians, but that is only because of the negative feedback that is emerging this weekend.

Keep in mind this is a national bank that makes money hand over fist.  Sure, it's prudent to cut costs where possible; but there should be a limit.  Some things have to be chalked up as 'the cost of doing business'.  If you are the Royal Bank of Canada, then you have to employ people from CANADA.  Is that not in a mission statement somewhere?

The Canadian Government says RBC is breaking the rules by bringing in foreign workers.  Wow.  Bold move by the Conservatives.  "Hey, you are breaking the rules."  So what is the government going to do about it?  Well, if I were Jason Kenney, I'd levy a real hefty fine, fire immigration officials who granted the work visas, and ban iGate from doing business in Canada ever again (Google, iGate and you will find they are a racist company allowed to continue offering its services to Canadian companies iGate fined for discrimination practices).  Questionable ethics from RBC right there just for working with iGate, but that's another story.  Then, I'd force RBC to re-instate the displaced workers.  Too harsh?

An NDP critic was on CBC earlier today and says the time frame to search for a Canadian is quite short.  The rules favor companies to hire less expensive foreign workers.

Why are they less expensive?  In Yorkton, I know it is not unusual for large foreign families to all live under one roof, thus greatly reducing their expenses so they don't need to make as much to live.  Is this something Canadians should start doing?  Some would say 'yes'.  I say 'no'.  That is what makes Canada such a great place to live.  The ability to EARN nice homes, large vehicles, more disposable income, etc.  Unfortunately, what has happened is that Canadians have gotten lazy and don't have as much pride in their work (or have developed a sense of entitlement) and so companies have gone overseas to hire cheaper labour.  I am assuming they figure if I am going to get less than excellent employees, I may as well pay less for it.  And, I don't disagree with that.  So, the onus is on us, as Canadian employees, to step up to the plate and make ourselves as close to irreplaceable as possible.

I do, however, wonder who is keeping a close watch to make sure there are no qualified Canadians?  In the RBC case, I would guess either nobody is watching or that particular somebody should be canned.

I bank at RBC and have friends that are employed there.  It's not personal.  But, I cannot support an institution that does not support those that live in this country.  If the RBC wants to save money by employing foreign workers, then I am going to also help them out by alleviating the expense incurred of managing my accounts.  If you can't afford to do business with Canadians, then don't do business with them then.  Very simple.  So, I think I'll give it a couple of days to see if the RBC has a change of heart and then take measures to put what little money I have somewhere else.

I don't think my doing this will cause even a small ripple.

I just hope, for a change, Canadians will be pro-active on something we all oppose and I won't be the other one changing my banking allegiances.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


As much as I haven't really played close attention to the National Hockey League this year, I have to admit it's fun looking at the different philosophies of various organizations and I think the real losers here, yet again, are the fans.

The fans have supported the Winnipeg Jets 100% since the relocation from Atlanta, and all the Jets have done to show they are serious about contending is add Mike Santorelli off waivers from Florida.  Personally, I've never heard of Santorelli but I am thinking if he was on waivers, he's not much of an impact guy at the NHL level.  The Jets are in 3rd, but could end up 10th because of the division they are in.  I say make a move or two get yourselves relevant and assure an extra home date in the first round of the playoffs and see what happens after that.  The reality is NO trade guarantees you a Stanley Cup.  Instead, the Jets know the rink will be full night after night and spending a few extra million in order to put a better product on the ice isn't worth it.  Think about it.  Would you spend more money on an expense if you didn't have to?

There are teams like Edmonton who preach patience to their fans.  The extent of the patience is ridiculous.  This micro-managed team isn't going anywhere based on how they've spent the last twenty-five or so years rebuilding.  They've done nothing to indicate they are serious about winning other than to make the easy, no brainer, first overall draft selection for the last four or five years.  Again, the rink is full.  So the urgency to be a contender doesn't exist even though, you as a fan, think that it does.

Now, you will say it doesn't make sense for Edmonton to trade a young player or two in order to get better RIGHT NOW.  Well, the Columbus Blue Jackets did that today after being the laughingstock of hockey a year ago.  And, that was WITH Rick Nash on their team.  Too bad Nash didn't stick around because Columbus has a chance to be better than Nash's new team (NYRangers) before the curtain closes on this year.  The Jackets may miss the playoffs and the Marian Gaborik acquisition may not work after all, but what they have done is they have signalled to their fans that they are going to TRY and get themselves into a situation where they can compete with the better teams in the National Hockey League.

Then you have teams like Detroit, New Jersey, Pittsburgh, Boston, Anaheim, San Jose, and Vancouver that don't ever seem to be rebuilding.  I wonder why that is?  To me, if you don't have a fan base that threatens to stay home in the event of your franchise being uncompetitive then you are doomed.  The fans have the hammer.  If you want your team to be good, then keep your $$$ in your pocket and go watch a movie or something until they decide to get serious.


The Yorkton Terriers defeated the Melville Millionaires, at home, in front of 2000 fans on Friday night and then finished them off in Melville on Saturday to advance to the Canalta Cup finals against Humboldt; which start this Friday in Humboldt.  Too bad it took until game five of the division finals, but it was still great to see a nice crowd to support a team that has played, exceptionally, well on home ice all season.  Let’s keep it going for the finals. 

The Gallagher Centre parking lot continues to be a place where you can find the most ignorant the City of  Yorkton has to offer for citizens.  A lot of folks say ‘people don’t know better’.  I disagree.  These offenders DO know better, but because the rules aren’t laid out in black and white, they take advantage of the situation.  Here’s the common sense rule that everyone should abide by:  leave enough room for one lane of traffic each way when going up and down the aisle or in between the two main areas of parking.   If you are parking at the end of the row and there isn’t enough room for free flowing traffic in both directions, then you shouldn’t park there.  Furthermore, if you see a row of vehicles ten or twelve long, chances are pretty good you shouldn’t be cheating and parking where the first vehicle is parked.  Make sense? 

Here is another tip to allow for easy traffic flow:  when leaving an event, try to let in one vehicle and then you proceed in the line to get out.  The vehicle behind you will also let in one vehicle and then it proceeds in line.  This has proven, in every other city I’ve gone to a hockey game to see, to be effective and people leave the facility a lot quicker than if you have a free for all of cars and trucks trying to jam their way in or shutting out long lines of traffic just looking to get into an orderly line to exit.  Trust me.  Go to Humboldt and leave their arena after the game.  It’s what they do and you will be on your way home in under five minutes.

It’s embarrassing to have to point all this out and must be hilarious for non-Yorkton people to read.  I think some of the onus does have to fall on the Gallagher Centre.  Permanent signage needs to be erected to prevent people from taking advantage of situations just so they can save four or five extra steps when trying to enter the building. 

A few weeks ago I wondered why people weren’t attending Terrier games and the parking situation was one answer I got from a couple of older folks.  They are scared to death to try and leave after the game as they fear for their lives.  When I was trying to leave on Friday night, I made a special note to see who was being a jerk in line and every time it was someone my age or younger.  Shame on you.  One guy, with his young son in the front seat, was doing almost 50km/h along the edge of the horse racing track and then barged his way into the front of the line by the YTC building.  Someone like that should be ticketed for dangerous driving.

Another reason given for not attending Terrier games is the temperature inside the arena.  I didn’t get an opportunity to test this out for myself on Friday, but I had a real good talk with a gentleman who said it’s extremely cold on the players bench side of the arena.  Apparently, the heaters are seldom turned on over there and sometimes you even get a blast of cold air from the ceiling fans.  I never gave it much thought until after my conversation with him, but it does seem as though the FAA is a little colder than some of the other rinks around the SJHL, including Melville, and it may be one reason why I see Yorkton area people going to games in Melville even on nights when the Terriers play.  Just a guess. 

Another possible reason for lower attendance was given to me by yet another individual, who says he lives outside of Yorkton and it is just as easy to go to Melville and watch a team play in a beautiful new facility with more comfortable seats.  I said last year when Melville’s new arena opened that it wouldn’t be long before you start hearing rumblings of Yorkton wanting one too.  It’s officially started.

Nice person mentions this week to Tim Ottenbreit, Darrell Halarewich (who is now lobbying to be included on the ‘Nice Person Of The Year’ list), Fred Schrader (Darrell’s main competition for ‘Nice Person Of The Year’), Jennifer Stackhouse (who says she never makes the list, but you have to actually read the column and then you will know you actually make this list more than you think), and Bruce Luebke.

Monday, April 1, 2013


Sometimes I find it interesting to go back and review old NHL Entry Drafts.  Tonight, I spent some time on 1990.  Here's a list of how the first round 'may' have unfolded if General Managers could look into their crystal ball.

What I have listed is the team that picked, who they could've picked, the actual position that player was picked in real life, and then the player who was actually chosen.

1-QUEBEC Martin Brodeur – 20  (Owen Nolan)

2-VANCOUVER Jaromir Jagr – 5 (Petr Nedved)

3-DETROIT Keith Tkachuk – 19 (Keith Primeau)

4-PHILADELPHIA Doug Weight  -  34 (Mike Ricci)

5-PITTSBURGH Sergei Zubov – 85 (Jaromir Jagr)

6-NYISLANDERS Owen Nolan – 1 (Scott Scissons)

7-LOS ANGELES Keith Primeau – 3 (Darryl Sydor)

8-MINNESOTA Slava Kozlov – 45 (Derian Hatcher)

9-WASHINGTON Petr Nedved – 2 (John Slaney)

10-TORONTO Alexei Zhamnov – 77 (Drake Berehowsky)

11-CALGARY Peter Bondra – 156 (Trevor Kidd)

12-MONTREAL Mike Ricci – 4 (Turner Stevenson)

13-NYRANGERS Derian Hatcher – 8 (Michael Stewart)

14-BUFFALO Robert Lang – 133 (Brad May)

15-HARTFORD Darryl Sydor – 7 (Mark Greig)

16-CHICAGO Bryan Smolinski – 21 (Karl Dykhuis)

17-EDMONTON Craig Conroy – 123 (Scott Allison)

18-VANCOUVER Geoff Sanderson – 36 (Shawn Antoski)

19-WINNIPEG Mike Dunham – 53 (Keith Tkachuk)

20-NEW JERSEY Mikael Renberg – 40 (Martin Brodeur)

21-BOSTON Ken Klee – 177 (Bryan Smolinski)

Other notables:  Trevor Kidd (11), Brad May (14), Jiri Slegr (23), Felix Potvin (31), Chris Therien (47), Chris Tamer (68), Richard Smehlik (97)



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