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Friday, March 2, 2012

FRIDAY RODSERVATIONS


It's our weekly collection of sports notes and quotes.   The football followers may as well stop reading right here.   It's pretty much all hockey from here on in:

* Fighting isn't going away without a fight!  I read with great concern this week the quotes from CHL President David Branch and Hockey Canada President Bob Nicholson about eliminating fighting from major junior and amateur hockey.  Nicholson said they can't get rid of it fast enough.  These two guys are in the top five most-powerful men in hockey and if they want to see fighting go the way of the dodo, they certainly have the power to get it done.   However they're wrong.  And if they get their way, this game will soon teeter on extinction as well.   Fortunately, several of us on the other side of the argument aren't willing to give up quite so easily.

* This stems from last summer, the most tragic summer in the history of hockey, which was marred by the deaths of NHL fighters Rick Rypien, Derek Boogaard and Wade Belak.  All three of them were friends of this blogger/broadcaster.  The hockey big shots think fighting is the reason these guys died, however they're wrong there too.   For instance, in the case of Rick Rypien, his depression wasn't caused by hockey or anything surrounding the game at all.   It's truly ironic that these players' deaths could possibly lead to the end of fighting in hockey, yet none of the three of them would have made it in the NHL if it wasn't for their ability to fight.   True story.

* Regina's Jamie Heward, a veteran of 394 NHL games, was on CBC Radio on Thursday discussing this very topic.  Heward's career was ended by a concussion.  In fact, it was ended on a hit-from-behind by Alexander Ovechkin.  However as Jamie pointed out, he'd only been in 10 fights in his life.   FIGHTING DIDN'T END HIS CAREER!  A cheapshot did.  And if these guys eliminate fighting, the cheapshots are going to escalate dramatically.   I have to think Branch and Nicholson know this, don't they??

* Last year I said at this time hockey was broken and I was scorned.  Scoffed hat.  Well, I'm sorry to say, I was right.  And now the bigheads are going to tinker and screw with it even more to the point where it may never be fixed.   Let me ask you this: how much have the NFL, MLB and NBA changed over the years?  Hardly at all.   But ask yourself how much the NHL has changed in the past 20 years?  It's barely recognizable except for the pucks.

* And thank God people in hockey are speaking out against Branch and Nicholson's agenda.  Boston Bruins forward Milan Lucic told the Vancouver Province this week "I'm totally against it.  I think there will be more injuries because there'd be no fear of fighting.  The game will become dirtier. And, for myself, I don't think I could have made the NHL the way I did without it."

* Former WHL enforcer Brett Breitkreuz from Springside, SK is playing in Europe this winter but has been following this situation closely.  Brett wrote on Twitter this week: "Enough of this no more fighting in hockey BS!  Make the ice bigger and the concussions would be cut in half without changing one other rule."

* If Branch and Nicholson have their way, a player's first fight would come once he made the NHL.  This is so senseless it makes you want to cry.

* And now for Saskatoon.   Come on you guys, you're like an unruly teenager.  Just when we got after you for your last caper, you go out and pull another boner.  Mitchell Blair alerted me yesterday to Bob McKenzie's TSN report that representatives from Saskatoon have approached the NHL about franchise relocation.  My immediate reaction?  Uproarius laughter.  It's not that I'm NOT in favour of the NHL in Saskatoon.  I am.   However I didn't see it going down this way.  I thought the NHL, 10 years from now, would finally have its act together and will have relocated its struggling teams to suitable markets but were looking for just one more hockey-mad city to situate a team.   That's when the NHL would contact Saskatoon.  Not the other way around.

* This is like when Katy Perry and Russell Brand divorced.  It would be like me calling Katy Perry's publicist and saying "Can you tell Katy that I'm available?".   I can hear it now: "Don't call us, we'll call you."    The same thing applies here.

* First a CFL team and now an NHL team.  What's wrong with you Saskatoon?  When the Saskatoon Blades average more than 5000 fans per game, then let's talk.  Sheesh, you only cheer for the Saskatchewan Roughriders when they're winning!  Otherwise it's the Regina Roughriders.

* Look, as I said, I'm all for the NHL in Saskatoon.   There would be nothing better.   But there's been something sticking in my craw about Saskatoon which goes back exactly one month.   At the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame fundraising dinner, CFL legend Henry "Gizmo" Williams said something to the effect of "You guys are the best fans in the CFL and you deserve a brand new, indoor facility here!  What do you think?".   The place immediately erupted in robust applause.   Except, I might add, for a table of Saskatoon delegates who refused to clap their hands and stared at the floor.  They're against our new stadium.  At a banquet in Saskatoon two years ago I asked the crowd how many were in favour of a new stadium for the Roughriders and about 25% of the crowd put up their hand.  Here's the point: when you get on board with our new stadium and can the anti-Regina crap, and then we'll support your NHL dream.

Until then, get your head out of the clouds.

* Great story in the Edmonton Journal this week about Strasbourg, Saskatchewan's Nick Schultz choosing number-15 with the Edmonton Oilers in honour of Regina Pats coach Pat Conacher.  Schultz was traded from Minnesota to Edmonton on Monday.  "I looked back at the guys in Oilers' history who'd worn 15 and there was Pat Conacher," Schultz told the Journal.  "Before the NHL draft, Pat was part of recruiting me for (agent) Mike Barnett.  Pat's been a good influence on me ... he actually took the Pats out to my hometown in Strasbourg for a practice."  

In the words of legendary Yankees announcer Mel Allen, "How 'bout that?"

* The Regina Pats play two home games this weekend, Saturday against Brandon and Sunday against the P.A. Raiders.  Both are evening games.  Please plan to attend.

* I'll ask for your help with the Pats year-end awards right now.   Who are your top two votes for the following year-end awards: MVP, Top Defenceman, Top Rookie, Unsung Hero and Most Sportsmanlike Player?

* Like we really need two votes for MVP.

* It's time to bring back the Regina Pats year-end awards banquet.   Why did it ever become extinct?  As a kid I'll never forget going to the basement of the Travelodge or over to Queensbury to watch the awards with my Dad and hearing the speeches from Doug Sauter, Dennis Sobchuck and the like.   It was always a magical evening.   I'd even MC it if they'd let me.

* Once the Pats have clinched a playoff spot, they need a theme.   I see the Phoenix Coyotes are doing it already with their "March To The Whiteout" campaign which began way back in Winnipeg with the old WHITEOUT promotion.  The Pats should get all their fans to come in blue.   Has anyone done that before?  The Blue Wave.  I can see it now.

* Nice to see the Pats are playing Fluxland when the team comes on the ice again.   It's our theme music for the Pats on the Sports Cage.

* First-year Warriors coach Mike Stothers is on the verge of some impressive company.  CTV Regina's Chris Hodges tweeted this week: "One more victory and Mike Stothers becomes the 4th MJ head coach to guide the Warriors to a 40-win WHL season - (Hunt, Young, Hunchak)"

* U of R Cougar womens basketball coach Dave Taylor was listening to the Sports Cage last night when I apologized for having to miss their Final Four playoff games this weekend at the Cookhouse.  Friday night our girls are playing their final game of the season at Sheldon Williams Collegiate and Saturday night I'll be watching Jay Onrait at the Regina Rams dinner.  Taylor replied on Twitter "No Pedersen jinx in the gym this weekend.  Whew."  In the words of Bob Hughes, Y'er welcome.

* As I write this, the podcast of that Onrait interview on the Sports Cage has experience 1941 downloads from this blog.  People in internet and radio reading this will understand this is a mind-boggling number for a local Regina radio show.  Staggering.

* There's something eerily creepy about the phrase "The Cialis Highlight of the Night".

* Hate when hockey announcers say "He beat the goalie but couldn't beat the post".  No, he didn't beat the goalie.  Did he score?  No.   The post is part of the equipment.

* Another pet peeve: young broadcasters who take to Twitter and Facebook to complain about their shift or their hours.  I see it all the time.  Look, for some reason someone saw fit to give you the job.  If you don't want it, get the hell out of the way so someone who really wants the job can have it.  Quit, or pipe down.  In 2009 I had five days off over the course of 10 months.  Guess who cared?  Nobody.

* Let me say ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd is the best sports talk radio host on the planet.  I mean, for a guy to sit in a studio for three hours and basically talk the WHOLE time and not get boring, well that's simply amazing.   I can't do that.  I simply am too laid-back and don't have enough strong opinions (except for today).   But Cowherd out-did himself this week when the Pittsburgh Steelers cut franchise receiving-leader Hines Ward.  Cowherd called up a Steelers fan message board and read on air some of the idiotic comments from the posters.   And named them.  Then he said "Steelers fans, just shut-up and stop embarrassing yourselves".    I think we will be doing that this summer regarding Rider fans on the forums.

* I will likely never have an Iphone.  I need tools.  Not toys.

* God I miss Buffet Village.

* Some Show Your Rider Pride photos in the blog mailbag (sportscage@620ckrm.com):


Hi Rod,
My brother took these photos of his new son, Kyler Fox. Thought you might be able to squeeze one of them into your blog sometime!  I think they are pretty cute, but of course, I’m biased as his Auntie!!!
Thanks!
Marilyn


The Ken Miller family is gone but not forgotten.  Remember Ken's daughter Colleen in Redlands, California?:

Hey Rod, We're having some weird weather in SoCal...Cameron took the opportunity to make a Rider snowman! Hope this message finds you well!
Colleen

* Here's a poster for an upcoming sports dinner you may be interested in attending:


* I got more but I'll save it for the Monday Morning Goalie.  Here's the Press Box Sports Bar Friday lunch buffet menu courtesy Chef Trent, who the ladies really like:

Roast Beef
Mashed Potatoes and gravy
Carrots
Pasta Carbonara
Caesar Salad
Garlic Bread
Pizza
Honey Garlic Wings
Beef Ghoulash

HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND!!
RP

86 comments:

Anonymous said...

Rod, get your head out of your a**...........your always going on rants in the summer saying that you shouldnt judge a fan base by the few idiots who publicly make them look bad and now your lumping an entire city and regions view on one table of people who were in disagreement? I'm not a Saskatoon resident but for you to suggest that the only people who support the riders and there stadium are from Regina is pathetic. I travel 4 hours to use my season tickets and know people in Regina who dont support the stadium, riders or Pats. I also agree that Saskatoon will never get an NHL team but I certainly wont publicly critisize them for putting the city and provinces name out there, its great exposure even if it gets promptly rejected, and it blows me away that people in this entire provice wouldnt line up to support it because it would take everyones support and everyone would bennifit.

mister winnipeg said...

" It's truly ironic that these players' deaths could possibly lead to the end of fighting in hockey, yet none of the three of them would have made it in the NHL if it wasn't for their ability to fight. "

Hate to break it to you, but there is no irony there whatsoever. If those guys weren't in the NHL, they would probably still be alive today. Are you telling me that Boogard is better off a dead NHLer than being an ordinary guy with a family selling used cars for a living in Saskatoon? Give me a break. Lives are being ruined to support this fighting fetish.

And all this talk about cheap shots running rampant is nonsense. The REAL pussification of hockey comes from people not wanting to use the ban-hammer to get rid of dirty players. This isn't rocket science. You punch someone in the nuts, you get banned. Should be the same thing for stickwork or questionable hits.

Anonymous said...

hum I used to like this blog but when crap like that come on makes me think otherwise. maybe you should call it rods regina blog. geesh if you want it to be the regina roughriders then maybe you should be paying for the stadium. i love the riders and can't make it to many games with 3 small kids but i support them it any way i can much the same as i would a team in saskatoon

Anonymous said...

Rod I love you like a brother but I'm gonna have to rip your argument to shreds on this one. First off, Blades attendance does NOT reflect hockey passion in Stoon. There are tonnes of minor hockey teams here and in the surrounding areas who are mad about the game. I don't see Pats having 5000 a game too often either so that point is moot. Second, a table or a banquet doesn't reflect this area's support for a stadium in Regina. I do a lot of business in stoon and everyone I talked to wants this thing built. Plus Chevy is the MLA who is heading up the project, where is he from? Saskatoon! Finally, if Saskatoon gets a brand new arena or a luxury upgrade to SK place, how many Regina people are gonna support that? It's a two way street Rod. I know there will be plenty of great Regina sports fans who will support this but there are no doubt some who will piss and moan about their city not being the center of the province for everything.

Anyway, I hope that if this does get serious we put our arguments aside and support this thing. Rod you got behind MJ building a new rink and keeping the Warriors, I hope you'll do the same here. This province deserves it.

Rex

Mr. Yodafull said...

I'm from Regina and i would support anything that improves ,inhances or promotes Saskatchewan ! but i have to agree with Rod here ,Saskatoon bitches and complains whenever Regina gets something they dont .

Gored said...

LOL - Winnipeg will have trouble attracting quality free agents - what chance do you think Saskatoon would have?

Agree with your position on fighting in hockey - the reason 66% of the NHL players want the instigator rule abolished is so the players can police themselves and a lot of the cheap shots will be eliminated. What drives me nuts is when two guys want to go and the linesmen jump in between them and hold them back. Jeeze, do the linesmen think the players just cool down and forget it? Heck no, they go to the penalty box and yell at each other then try to hurt each other on the ice in other ways. Better to just let them duke it out and get it out of their system.

Anonymous said...

For me watching two players dancing while hitting their fists on the other players helmet is laughable.I don't care. But what bothers me is head shots like the one that put Sydney Crosby out.Where is the cry about this?

Cory-Yorkton SK said...

Fighting is part of the game but these highbrows want it out. I have said before the instigator rule is the problem. I liked Brett's comment about the ice(I'm biased-he's from Springside). Milan Lucic talking about dirty hockey is the funniest comment I've seen on rodpedersen.com, sort of like Nixon saying"I'm not a crook". Keep up the good work Rod and congrats on getting hitched.

Anonymous said...

Rod,

I really enjoy your blog...when it is sports related. While opinions are part of sports, you berating the people of Saskaton on this blog and The Cage is no less than those who you ridicule for tweeting their dissatisfaction with their jobs.
They are free to aspire to have an NHL team just like the people of Regina are free to aspire to have NHL hockey. Regardless of whether or not it happens or it is feasible is not your call. You can tell us you don't think that it makes sense and won't work but to publicly ridicule the city of Saskatoon like this; a little too much if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

Disagree on the radio comments. Radio = great job, but a lousy business.

Anonymous said...

My picks for the Regina Pats Awards:
MVP - Jordan Weal, Matt Hewitt
Top D - Brandon Davidson, Colton Jobke
Top Rookie - Kyle Burrows, Morgan Klimchuk
Unsung Hero - Adam Beukeboom, Artem Bidlevskii
Sportsman Like - Chandler Stephenson, Matt Marantz

Tyson.

Caesar said...

Fighting is not part of the game anymore. And when you get rid of it, you get the referees to start calling what is in the rules to be called. ie. the whack from behind with your stick IS STILL SLASHING. When you hit said player on the wrist, that pisses him off, he turns and fights. Get rid of it.

We need to wear red as the colour, as it intimidates the opposition. Blue is kind of "warming, come on in and beat the crap out of us" kind of colour.

And I gotta disagree with the goalie and his post comment. The goalie is beat most of the time on that one....the post saves our asses when you look back and hear the "PING"

Love the friday morning goalie!! Have a good weekend. Spring Training bound!

Anonymous said...

One of the best postings you have had in recent memory. I love how Saskatoon people have their back-hair up already. They just can't look in the mirror and see the Regina envy. It is sad!

Keep up the great work!


Mike

Doug said...

Hi Rod,
Firstly, I have to say that I love you blog and turn to it at least a couple times a day.

I grew up in Regina, but we moved to Saskatoon in the late 60's. There is a bit of a jealously toward Regina and I felt it when I moved.
But, Saskatoon is one of the truly respected cities in all of Canada. I have lived in both Alberta and Manitoba and it is Saskatoon that I brag more about.
I get the feeling following your blog, you have some jealously, detest toward Saskatoon. I have surmised this over the past few years.
They may never get a NHL team, and Regina may never get an indoor stadium, but there is nothing wrong with dreaming and trying.

Doug

Anonymous said...

Still laughing at your iPhone comment. I work at an IT firm, Blackberrys are the absolute worst tools. Everything they do can be done faster and easier with an iPhone. Stop sprouting advertising catch-phrases.

reginawing said...

Excellent report. You are right on about fighting. Without the threat of reaction cheap shots by players who would never do it for fear of being beat up would increase. The place for the little guy would be gone because he'd get creamed and nothing could be done to stop it. Top stars would be a target. Concussion would increase. The problem now is cheap shots from behind and the lack of respect for fellow players. Saskatoon took a deserved hit from you. One point you didn't mention was a wish of mine. Why can't we get an American hockey league team. I follow the Grand Rapids team being a wing farm team. We'd get to see the future NHLers. The attendence isn't much more then junior hockey in most centers. More hockey does not affect attendance at the junior level..the more interest in hockey the better. We are a big city lets move on and get big city stadiums and big city hockey.

Jeremy (S'toon) said...

Great straight talk to SOME Saskatoon fans, it is much needed and I hope it goes viral. The litte brother inferiority complex has always been front & centre in this city.

To those S'toon fans who are supportive of Riders & Stadium - like me -- the comment isn't directed to you so don't take it personally.

Bigger ice = better & safer game. the solution will hit owners in the pocket book but this is a rare solution where there IS a silver bullet solution.

Jeremy Karwandy
Saskatoon

Anonymous said...

"Here's the point: when you get on board with our new stadium and can the anti-Regina crap, and then we'll support your NHL dream.

Until then, get your head out of the clouds."

Wow - Rod all you ever do is bash Saskatoon. Not from either place, but prefer Saskatoon - maybe realize that not everything revolves around Regina.

Jeremy (S'toon) said...

What is "Formal Wear" in Zenon Park?

Anonymous said...

Hey Rod
GREAT post today. Your points about fighting in hockey are spot on! It's scary to think about what the game will become without it - Even scarier to think of the injuries it will bring and what careers it will end if fighting is removed from the game.

To those who think that the deaths this past summer had everything to do with fighting in hockey need to go and educate themselves about the real underlying issues involved.

Have a great time at the Rams dinner tomorrow! I wish I could be there... Jay Onrait is amazing (your high podcast download numbers are proof) and I'm sure it'll be a fantastic night!

Thanks for the blog Rod! Have a great weekend.

Nic

Anonymous said...

year-end awards: MVP, Has to be Weal,
Top Defenceman Brandon underwood
Top Rookie Morgan Klimchuk


Unsung Hero Lane Scheidl

Most Sportsmanlike Player
Dominik Volek

Anonymous said...

If an iPhone had a physical keypad, then I would probably switch to an iPhone, but it's a touch screen and hard to type with my big fingers. I like my BB Torch.

I never liked fighting when I played junior, it stressed me out before games that I knew I might have to fight in. I did notice when I got to CIS hockey that a lot of guys who were wimps in junior were all of sudden tough in CIS, because they knew they didn't have to back it up. I'm torn on fighting. I only fought 10 times in 3 yrs of junior and had 3 concussions. 1 was from a fight, the other 2 were from cheapshots. I could go either way on fighting.

Loved hearing Rimer on the cage yesterday, especially when he said "It's a 11 o'clock and THIS IS SPORTSLINE!" Brought back some memories.

Mike

J FRENCH said...

As a Saskatoon person I can say that most of this blog post is BS. First, the Saskatoon hockey team thing, I can tell you that most of the people in Saskatoon that I talked to in the last few days since this story broke (which is more media hype than actual news IMHO) think the same as most outside Saskatoon, NHL in Saskatoon is a big stretch at this time. Might do better than a couple current NHL teams, but the bar is set really low. there are better spots. Having a couple people with big pockets inquire about an NHL team, or a second CFL franchise, or a LFL team, etc is not an accurate picture of what the citizens want.

As for your comments about Saskatoon people not wanting a new stadium 1) not all Saskatoon people feel that way. 2) not all Regina people WANT the new stadium 3) people that don't want the new stadium shouldnt be seen as slighting Regina.

Personally I'm in the camp that isn't sure it is a good idea. We aren't many years removed from empty seats in the stands and telethons for the team. A couple more seasons like last season and the Riders may not be the cash juggernaut anymore. I would feel exactly the same way if the team was located in Saskatoon.

I really wish people would stop hyping the Saskatoon vs Regina thing, because to almost everyone, this isn't an issue. It is a select few that have a Saskatoon vs Regina bias, and just gets hyped up as newsworthy.

J FRENCH said...

PS - last year was the first year for the Zenon Park sports dinner and it was top notch. I highly suggest attending this great event. I'm looking forward to it !

Anonymous said...

Hockey always has been a dirty sport. Get rid of the instigator rule and you get the game the way it was in the 50's, 60's etc. Back then it was a brutal game. Lots of cheap shots, stick swinging incidents(Ted Green/Wayne Maki). Why does hockey think they need fighting? There is no fighting in college hockey and the games, when reffed properly are great. Hockey needs to come out of the stone age or it will always be a minor league joke.

Anonymous said...

What nhler would want to live in a sh** hole place like Saskatoon? Seriously!!

Anonymous said...

Why do people think hockey needs to have fighting? Move out of the Dark Ages people and into the Main Stream. Fighting in hockey is what makes the sport the bush league sport it is. Milan Lucic? Please. The game would be a better if those goons that make it to the NHL because of fighting never made it. The world would be a better place if those 3 gentlemen that passed because of the fighting were still with us. Ban fighting in hockey and see a great game.

Anonymous said...

Question: Your Onrait podcast is almost at two-thousand listens. That is huge! What I want to know is how many people are listening live to the Cage. Is there any way that can be measured or is it just people listening to CKRM in general. The only time I really listen is for Pats, Riders, Cage and I'm one that wishes you would go all-sports as I'd never turn it off 620. I don't listen to Remenda and his gang of goofs because he (they) are just idiots. I imagine Sportscage must be kicking the hell out of that show but do ratings like the Onrait show show that?

A confused radio listener

Chris said...

Roddy,

I agree with Hewey's comments regarding the link between fighting and concussions.

I fought 20-25 times in junior and never once did I get a concussion from those fights. I did have 7 or 8 concussions from cheap shots, hits from behind and good hard hits both given and taken.

Last time I checked Crosby, Letang, Giroux and a large majority of the players who are out or have been out with concussions didn't get them from fighting, they got those concussions from hard checks, dirty cheap shots, or freak accidents.

What happened this summer was regrettable for the game, those players families and everyone that knew those 3 great guys. I met, played with, or against all 3 of them and they were all stand up guys and their loss was tragic.

But for bloggers, writers, the New York Post etc, to jump on the game and think that fighting is the reason that it is broken is inaccurate in my opinion.

Mike - You are completely correct in your assessment of what happens in a league that does not allow fighting - CIS. It drove me crazy to see a guy acting tough and playing dirty in the CIS and hiding behind the rules. The same guy wasn't so tough in Junior as he would have to answer for his actions and I saw this for the 3 years that I played in the CIS.

The game has some issues, but taking fighting out of the game is the wrong way to go in my opinion. It is a tough game to play and compete in. That's why everyone doesn't or can't do it for a living. That's what makes them professionals. They all know the risks that they take every time they go on the ice, could be a concussion, could be a knee, shoulder, teeth, cuts etc.

Just my opinion.

Chris

mister winnipeg said...

@ Jeremy - "Formal attire" usually means tuxedos and ballgowns. Maybe in Zenon Park it just means your cleanest t-shirt and ballcap :-)

Parkside said...

Whoa, I think you need to check yourself RP. Anti-Regina? Seems the feeling is mutual with you! Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Who are these delegates you seen that you could single out for not clapping about a stadium? I would bet they were some yahoo's from Credit Union Centre/Saskplace. The idiots have been fierce out there for years. They do not reflect Saskatoon as a whole. So get your head out of the clouds Rod. Take a game day off and drive hwy 11. SASKATCHEWAN ROUGHRIDERS.
ps. Go Raiders on Sunday

Inferior fan from Saskatoon said...

Way to paint all of the Saskatchewan Roughrider fans from Saskatoon with the same broad stroke.

I quote here: "Sheesh, you (Saskatoon) only cheer for the Saskatchewan Roughriders when they're winning! Otherwise it's the Regina Roughriders."

Where the hell do you get off spouting off with such actuations? Way to not only insult Rider fans from Saskatoon, but those who travel further to support SASKATCHEWAN's only professional sports team. I know many who defend this team, including myself, when the teams lays an 5-13egg, but you know must know differently. We argue with Stamps, Esks and Bomber fans just as much as the 'superior' fans from Regina. Its bad enough when they are announced at the game as the Regina Roughriders, now the voice of the team is dissing us?

I am proud to be from Canada, proud to be from Saskatchewan and proud to be from Saskatoon. I am sure most people from this province share the same sentiment with the first two because they are most important (Country and Province.) Not sure where all this apparent envy comes from Saskatoon, but once again you must know because it consistently is spouted in your blog. Perhaps as I age I may start feeling this envy towards Regina, but I don't think so.

Perhaps if enough inferior fans from the North complain to your boss about your ignorance you may get your pee-pee slapped? Just saying...

Sincerely,
Inferior fan from Saskatoon

PS Notice how I didn't resort to childish insults about Regina? Maybe make note for future reference

Anonymous said...

Why isn't there fighting in football, soccer, rugby, baseball etc? Because it's barbaric and goonery, that's why.

Anonymous said...

I'm so tired of the very flawed argument that fighting cleans up the game and reduces cheapshots. How about if you cheapshot you are out for a year, you think guys will cheapshot then? That's what every other league in the 21st century does.
The only thing fighting in hockey does is teach kids that this is an acceptable way to solve your problems.

I love you Rod but stop bashing Saskatoon, we are all Saskatchewanians and Rider fans.

Derek Davies

David D. said...

Any chance you get to be a dick towards the people of Saskatoon, you take it. Your blog is becoming a joke.

By the way, Saskatoon is averaging 4,902 fans this year through 34 games, while Regina is averaging 4,023 through 30, while the teams are currently separated by one point. Saskatoon has had 13 crowds over 5,000 this year (including three over 7,000) while Regina has managed only six.

Let's look at football. So many people in Regina say Saskatoon is not a sports city and Regina is. Yet the Saskatchewan Huskies averaged 6,101 through four games last year, while Regina averaged 2,246. Those numbers are similar when you look at junior football or other CIS sports, as well.

You look at those numbers and tell me which is the real sports city. It looks to me like Regina supports the Roughriders, and nothing else. Regina is not a sports city, but a Roughrider city.

I'm not sure what your problem is, but give up this garbage against Saskatoon. Is it because they're now much bigger than Regina? Is it because all the good concerts go to Saskatoon? Is it because even though Regina has the Roughriders, is the capital, and is growing well, Saskatoon is still the economic and cultural centre of the province and is growing twice as fast as Regina?

You are a petty little man. A few people seeking a team and having a vision for something you would never consider is no reason to deride an entire city. Grow up.

Dodge said...

I have lived in Saskatoon for years, and the only time I ever hear about this Regina/Saskatoon rivalry is on this blog. Nobody smart thinks having an NHL team in Saskatoon is likely, but what harm is there simply getting your name on the list? It's like you asking for Tom Brady to come on your show. It's not going to happen, but how can it hurt to ask?

Also, I don't think anyone against a new stadium for the Riders is against it because it would be in Regina. It's because of the (perceived) cost to taxpayers. I for one am pulling for Mayor Pat's Regina revitalizing plan (stadium included) because it seems like it would be great for the city. The city I don't live in and have very little reason to visit other than sports.

Anonymous said...

I always thought a larger ice surface just gives these already very strong and very fast players more room to gain more momentum. That doesn't seem like a solution to me.

There's gotta be better technology for the boards/glass, do something about the suits of armor the players wear and dare I say...full visors? Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Derek fell off the turnip truck Rod.

Great blog today. You told it just like it is. Those that wanting fighting eliminated are just asking for stickwork to be increased. Go to a CIS game where is there no accountability. Yes, you get kicked out if you fight, but do you see the hacking and whacking that takes place. Chad Lang was right on that issue.

As far as Saskatoon goes, the amount of griping they do about this and that when it comes to Regina is ridiculous. They bash Regina and for the most part Reginans just sit back and laugh. Saskatoon gets bashed and they think its the end of the world. Somebody here mentioned Toronto West..that's a good analogy because both have their noses in the air and are hoping someday they get a football and a hockey team.

Fred

REP said...

Hey Rod

I love the comments in the thread from the guys who played in Junior and CIS... Get them on the show! I'd love to hear this talk.

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps if enough inferior fans from the North complain to your boss about your ignorance you may get your pee-pee slapped?"

Really???? What are five?? Get better at life!!! if you don't like it, don't read it!! Go back to the basement! Save your next rant for when the volume is too loud at a concert! Wow!

Anonymous said...

Inferior fan = inferior intellect. What the hell are "actuations"?

mister winnipeg said...

Kind of surprised to see the haterade being directed at Saskatoon here. It seems to be pretty personal for the Regina crowd around here.

In fact, it kind of reminds me of how the most vocal opponents of the NHL coming to Winnipeg happened to be in Edmonton. The reason being is that a lot of people in the City of Memories clung to their NHL team as a status symbol that put them over 'lowly' burgs like Winnipeg. A NHL team in the Peg made them feel less speeeecial. Kind of a sad reason to oppose something if you ask me.

S'toon has supported the Riders, so it should be expected that Regina would show some class and support S'toon in getting a NHL team. CUC would be a fine home for a team. "Saskatchewan Coyotes", I like the sound of that.

Anonymous said...

Rod,

The NFL has hardly changed? Are you kidding? That league is the most pro active by far! They have constantly made changes their rules to ensure player safety.

Philip

Anonymous said...

All this needs is for Obama to weigh in. Calling Obama!!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
If you are taking out fighting,might as well take out body-checking also. What I can't stand about todays game and I watch at least 4-6 games per week is this.If there delivers a clean body check,the guy who delivered the hit is attacked almost at once.. Years ago,you got him back in this game or whenever the time was right. I can see a hit from behind, a hit to the head or the like,then yes there should be retribution... But you know what, guys like Lucic ADMIT,they could never play in the NHL without them fighting,roughhousing or bullying another oponent into submission. Does the NHL really need players like this? Maybe there should be a WWF brand of Hockey league and another game with skills and finesse. I wonder which one would outsell the other in terms of fan attendence??? Polkabill from Regina

Anonymous said...

So, watch the NFL much champ? To say the NFL hasnt changed is so sad and wrong. More rule changes for safety reasons than any other sport. Thats our Pet Peeve, loud mouths who try to prove a point by lying and then refusing to post comments to show it.

The Woz said...

To all you Tooners....read Rod's post again.

He clearly says he is all for an NHL team for Saskatoon (who wouldn't?).

But he, like many of us, is simply saying that we will support you in your dream of an NHL team, but in return we expect your support for a new stadium for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The stadium will cost some public money out of Provincial coffers. Everyone in this province claims to be a Roughrider fan and bleeding green. Fine...but then support the new stadium for YOUR team.

Lets just remember that if Saskatoon ever got an NHL franchise there would need to be significant tax money going into the current arena or a new one would need to be built. I just can't see people from Regina being against spending the necessary money to get the arena to NHL standards (did we complain when tax dollars went to build the original Sask Place in the 1980's...no). Do we complain when you get money for a new bridge...no. Do we complain that the province chose to build the new children's hospital in Saskatoon...no!!!

But whenever Regina gets thrown a few crumbs or asks for support for a new stadium from all Sask residents then we get crapped on.

What should happen is that all residents support both the stadium and the NHL dream since it will result in a better PROVINCE for all of us. Just like Regina sees value in your bridge, Sask Place and children's hospital you should see value for our new stadium. Period.

And that is all Rod is trying to say.

Have a good weekend everyone.

jim said...

Hey Rod,

What you say about the fine people of Saskatoon are simply amazing.

I am a Saskatoon resident and I bleed green.

I'm glad the Riders don't have you as there marketing guru.

Would Mr. Hopson say things like that about Saskatoon, the Rider store in Saskatoon brings in tons and tons of money for the Riders.

The good people of Saskatoon spend a lot of money in Regina when we come up for football which is great for the business's of your fine city.

Geno and Jeff to great Riders are from our fine city.


Take the money away that comes from Saskatoon that helps the Riders run their operation .

Don't bite the hand that feeds you Rod.

Who knows maybe one day you will be doing play by play in Saskatoon.

J French said...

To have the opinion that a new stadium in Regina is a bad idea is not necessarily saying you are against Regina or against the Riders, and to polarize the province by making such a statement is just wrong. I would feel the same if the Riders played in Saskatoon, North Battleford, Davidson or Whitefox. It is a signifigant amount of investment from all areas of government, and has a certain amount of risk. There is also the open air vs coverered facility. Putting an open air facility costs less but sits empty 1/2 the year. However you lose some atmosphere, like the rain game vs Edmonton our grey cup year. It isn't a black and white, Regina vs Saskatoon discussion.

The whole Regina vs Saskatoon, inferiority complex, etc etc is largely made up nonsense. There is a little friendly joking in the spirit of Woolerton vs Dog River, but I seldom see something more serious than that. I don't know anyone that feels superior for living in Regina or Saskatoon. I choose to live near Saskatoon and love it, but that doesn't mean I think any less of Regina or anyone living there.

We need to stop thinking of terms of "Them" and "They" and start thinking in terms of "Us" and "We".

Anonymous said...

Why does Saskatoon always think that the Riders will "someday" move to saskatoon. LOL

Anonymous said...

Your Saskatoon thoughts are so true and bang on Rod. There must be something there drinking in the water up there causing jealousy or is it not being the capital city? or is it us(Regina) having the Roughriders? I agree it would suck to live in Saskatoon and not have much going for you except Fuddruckers and thats where the jealousy comes in I guess. Saskatoon is way too small to ever get a NHL team and even a CFL team with the Riders here and no stadium up there. Suck it up tooners and get used to playing second fiddle to Regina!

Anonymous said...

Notice how the Riders don't even want to hold their training camp up there anymore? Can you blame them?

Anonymous said...

To Fred with the CIS argument. CIS hockey is brutal for stickwork but if you call penalties on it, it stops, you don't have to have fighting, geezus, i feel like i'm taking crazy pills. Heavily suspend the stickwork, the cheapshots, and it stops, end of story. If you want to watch a guy's head get beat in, go watch UFC.

Derek

Parkside said...

The Riders don't WANT to hold camp in S'toon? Check your facts. The ignorance of some people is absolutely astounding. Stoon wants the Riders? What? Because some losers at CUC wanted to blow some money at an NFL game, the best excuse they came up with was investigating a CFL franchise for Stoon. It won't happen. But who cares. Don't ball me and the rest of us hard working Rider fans in Stoon for their stupidity. We play second fiddle to nobody.
Go Riders.

Anonymous said...

Hey, could it be that this is all just a test drive for Rod in the more opinionated seat? Kind of like throwing a big juicy steak into a pack of hungry dogs and watch the fur fly. He alluded to as much regarding Colin Cowherd: “…Then he said "Steelers fans, just shut-up and stop embarrassing yourselves". I think we will be doing that this summer regarding Rider fans on the forums.”

Or an attempt to beat the downloaded pod cast number for the next Sports Cage? Or at least dive up radio ratings or blog hits. I don’t think it is a simple case of ‘my city is better than your city’; as one poster said here, I think, it is not always back and white.

I could also be dead wrong; it was just a thought.

Ryder

Anonymous said...

Great points on the ban on fighting. The deaths in the hockey world recently are linked directly to depression and drug/alcohol abuse, and not fighting. The NHL's substance abuse program is more to blame than fighting is. Also, with the zero obstuction penalty standard the game is much faster than it used to be which leads to bigger collisions between players, and more injuries. The game is more entertaining now than it was 10 years ago, but with that comes a price.

If you think fighting is the problem with hockey, go watch a CIS game where it's a 3 game suspension to fight. Then compare the stick work, questionable hits, and garbage after the whistle to a WHL game. Everyone is a tough guy when nobody has to answer the bell.

Leave the fighting rules how they are, let goalies play the puck again and allow a bit of clutching and grabbing and you will see injuries drop significantly.

- Derek N

Rod in Saskatoon said...

Hey Roddy - c'mon don't paint us all in Saskatoon with the same brush....

Rod
Saskatoon

Anonymous said...

Hey Parkside I know you are the one who needs to get your facts straightened out. Talk to some players and see if they want their training camp up in the wannabe big city of Saskatoon.

Anonymous said...

(This is said with tongue firmly planted in cheek)
I have got a solution for the sports teams/stadium/area funding for Regina and Saskatoon. This will work especially well if fighting is taken out of the NHL.
Set up a bar between Craik and Girvin, Saskatchewan (this appears to be a rough midway point from city centre to city centre). Draw a line down the middle and call the south side Regina and the north side Saskatoon. Call it Scrappers’, charge $10 at the door and let the good times roll. Half of the cover charge goes to each city’s professional sports fund; domes, arenas and teams for all!! Of course there would need to be a non biased owner.

Ryder

Anonymous said...

I guess I'd like to know Rod if you would like people from Saskatoon to stop going to rider games ? Because according to you we only have fair weather fans here. How many people would attend rider games from only in Regina? Take away weyburn, estevan, saskatoon, north battleford, prince Albert, yorkton and I bet you wouldn't have 20,000 in that stadium.

As far as the NHL thing in Saskatoon, it would only succeed with the support of the whole province including Regina. Judging by the posts on here, that support will never come. I think people wouldn't support the Saskatoon team out of spite but without us the riders would have folded long ago!

As far as jealousy, how pissed off where the lot of you in Regina to learn team Canada would only play exhibition games in Regina for the world juniors.

Anonymous said...

Because a group from Saskatoon have made inquiries about bringing an NHL team here you call people in Saskatoon a bunch of unruly teenagers and say that the Roughriders are really the Regina Roughriders? Are you making a case that the Roughrider change its name? Are you suggesting that the Roughriders should close its Riders store in Saskatoon? Do you want the Riders brass just to come out and say that they don't need Saskatoon people to buy tickets, travel to Regina, or buy merchandise as it is really a Regina team and not a provincial team? If Saskatoon doesn't support the Riders then why should the Riders waste their time, energy, and resources in Saskatoon?

As for an NHL team coming here - I doubt it will happen. But I'm not against the idea.

Truth Speaker said...

Fighting in hockey will eventually disappear. Change is hard for most people to accept. In the mean time bitch and moan about it (a la Rod style) but change will come. You don't see fighting in Olympic hockey so change is upon you already.

MurrayFischer said...

Rod, you know that you'll never win. People will always call you out when you sit on the fence on a matter and not have an opinion either way. And the rest will flame you for not sharing their own opinion on a given matter. Please don't put any stock into what a lot of these anonymous idiots have to say. The stronger you feel about something, the more important it is for you to air it on your blog. Please keep the great columns coming!!

Furthermore, when we include fighting in ANY sport, what are we teaching our kids? When you have a problem with what someone did on the school ground, you are to drop your "mits" and beat him until his head bounces off the ground?

I don't care for the sport of hockey, and probably never will. If I want to watch fighting, I will go to a "School Of Hard Knocks" event. Watching trained MMA fighters is far better value than watching Hockey players square off at centre ice. But that's just me.

Murray Fischer from Estevan

Anonymous said...

One more thing Rod, you forgot to plug one very important event going on in Regina this weekend that we can all throw our support behind. Telemiracle 36 will be at the Connexus Arts Centre starting at 9:00 PM Saturday and ending at 5:00 PM Sunday. Come on down and watch some great entertainment as we ring some phones.

Where are we going? HIGHER!!!!


Rex

Anonymous said...

"Here's the point: when you get on board with our new stadium and can the anti-Regina crap, and then we'll support your NHL dream."

Weird comment considering there is a lot of "anti-Saskatoon crap" in this post.

Anonymous said...

He hasn't posted on here for a long time and for good reason.

Obama has no opinion until mid March. He is resting comfortably in Arizona, and could careless about what is going on here.

Mind you take a wild guess, he doesn't want a stadium built, and he advocated a long time ago that fighting in hockey be eliminated.

Signed
Friend of Obama

Anonymous said...

Come on Rod! I really lost respect for you in this latest blog!
The whole "code", "be a man", and "fear of fighting" arguments are insulting and indicate what is wrong in a weak weak product. Why do players need to police the game? Why can't officials do that job as in most major sports?
Getting rid of fighting, widening the ice surface, and enforcing tough cheap shot rules could also improve the game. Marginal players could be eliminated from the sport, and speed and skill could be made more important.
The current hockey mindset is really sad. I find players attacking others, and essentially bullying, not entertaining at all. Nothing frustrates me more than seeing a bunch of goons rouging up smaller, skilled players. Is that what you are supporting?Changing these rules at the pro level would influence all leagues. Most importantly, the younger leagues, where people are more impressionable, would change in mindset. There is a serious lack of respect in hockey right now. The threat of getting beat up is the way to police it? Who did you quote? Do all players agree? How does that sound Rod? Smarten up!
I won't even get into your Saskatoon comments!
Get it together!

Anonymous said...

Dear Rod,

Your obsession with us, while flattering, is unhealthy. Regina will never have Saskatoon's beauty or attractiveness to those from outside the province, and you need to come to terms with that. Your jealousy will not serve you or your city, and it will ultimately lead you to further problems as Saskatoon pulls away from Regina even further than we already have.

Even though we really don't care, we urge you to seek help before you're put out to pasture like other irrelevant Regina media figures, like Bob Hughes.

Sincerely,

All but five people in Saskatoon.

Anonymous said...

Rod, Rod, Rod.......don't paint every picture with the same brush. Take it easy on the majority of us Saskatoonians that cheer for the RRs through thick and thin....not the one table of guys that didn't clap. Come on now.

Anonymous said...

Since dickhead I mean Obama is on vacation I guess Rod has to be the one to post stuff to stir it up.

Anonymous said...

I would love to see the NHL in Saskatchewan, the reality is that we do not have the population or business climate to support it. That being said the business climate and support could possibly be in place sooner than one might think.

As a proud Regina resident I would think that Saskatoon would be the logical place for an NHL team, They have the building, are centrally located and the Riders are in Regina, spread the municipal reponsibilities around.

If the people in charge of hockey ban fighting and can not protect the current players how do they expect to police the game without fighting. Take the Jamie Heward incident as one prime example. I agree with the idea of a larger ice surface as well to help end injuries.

JC

Switzer said...

I'm not from Regina or Saskatoon, and I love today's column. Best blog post in a long time Rod.

Gotta call you on the iPhone comment. Clearly a sponsor wanted you to say that. Even suggesting a Blackberry is better than an iPhone is like saying Snooki would be a better date than Kate Opton.

RWAH said...

here's my votes
MVP Weal, Hewitt
Top D Underwood, Davidson
Top Rook Klimchuk, Volek
Unsung Olstad, Dyson Stevenson
Sportsman C Stephenson, Maranze

Anonymous said...

Great read Rod! Bang on about Saskatoon as well. Cheers.

Anonymous said...

Saskatoon is just another dumpy small town on the prairies. Saying it has all this beauty over Regina is comical. And what's up with the skyline downtown saskatoon? And saskatoon doesn't have anywhere near the money Regina has. So please, give it up.

You do have the government subsidized university and that fancy raygun. Maybe your super zapper could actually create you a stadium. Think of that. Wow. The possibilities are endless when you are saskatoon.

Parkside said...

Anonymous that replied to me. Loosen up and get a handle at least. ha.

Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

in regards to Regina getting a lfl team....how many bush league football teams does one town need? Riders suck!

Anonymous said...

The tough talking guys who don't put their name on the comments should be ashamed. It is not anything new that most of Saskatoon is jealous of anything Regina gets, has or wants. It is a fact, even Gormley agrees.
If the group at the HOF dinner wouldn't clap and they were there as a Saskatoon delegation, then it is a shame to Saskatoon. If they won the tickets and were just a bunch of dorks..nuf said.

PB

Anonymous said...

WOW! I used to think you were a pretty cool guy. I've just lost a whole lot of respect for you by your immature ranting. I was unaware of any Saskatoon jealousy toward Regina?? Certainly not me :) Where do these rumors start?? wink, wink

Anonymous said...

Rod; What's your motive in trying to alienate everybody in Saskatoon?
If you think that the Riders can make it with a 'Regina only' crowd you're sadly mistaken. The Riders are a provincial team. A Saskatoon based NHL franchise would be also. I'm thinking your rant may get you in deep dodo. I don't imagine Jim Hopson is all that pleased with your idiotic comments.

BB

GWil26 said...

How about they are both equally shitty. Now move on.

Anonymous said...

Once again, Saskatoon people can't see the truth when its right in front of their eyes. Lets see Regina build an 20-thousand seat NHL ready arena and take that from them too. They'll likely ask if they can be a part of Alberta or Manitoba then. Brutal!

Parkside said...

After some time to think about this "my city is better than your city" stuff, this is what I think. We're talking Saskatoon and Regina. If you want to diss one or the other, not only have you not explored your own city enough, you haven't explored the other. Both great in their own way.
Also, Rod works for CKRM. He can say what he likes. But he is the 'Voice of the Riders'. That's why his comments disappointed me.

Anonymous said...

regina last time i checked was still the armpit of sask... yuk yuk yuk

Anonymous said...

Relax guys. Rod is just trying to stir the pot & create controversy to increase hits to his blog. He's admitted to doing this before and people fall for it every time. If you disagree with his business model & really want to get your point across, the biggest message you can send is to stop visiting his blog.

SK Oiler Fan said...

Agreed last anonymous - Blogging 101 - Post about a topic that is relavant to your audience for which there where there will be wildly varying and deep rooted opinions.

What better way to boost visitation and commentors than the generations old Saskatoon vs. Regina chest pounding and a hockey fighting vs. no fighting standoff. I'm surprised Rod needed to bring out the big guns all at once, but I guess it's a bit of a dead period for his intended audience.

It's hilarious how worked up some people get over plain text. Just because a blogger posts something doesn't mean he/she believes in it. Whatever generats hits - doesn't matter if it's fact or fiction. Kind of sad really - it's become hard to distinguish between honest opinion and generating profit on blogs. Oh well, it's entertaining, none the less