The games between the Pats and Warriors this season have all been epic, and the last time they met - February 1 in a sold out Regina Brandt Centre - the game wasn't decided until the final 24 seconds when Connor Hobbs beat Zach Sawchenko for a 4-3 Pats win.
It seems these two teams will meet in the WHL Playoffs somewhere down the line and we're getting to the "message-sending" time of the season. That includes tonight.
And the Queen City Kids will be in an owly mood after losing 5-3 in Brandon last night.
2 - It's been so long since the Queen City Sports & Entertainment Group made their bid to host the 2018 Memorial Cup that most people have forgotten about it. The Pats, Oshawa Generals and Hamilton Bulldogs all made their bids on January 25 in Toronto and then we were supposed to find out who won on February 4. Then ... February 11. Now, it's Febuary 18 and we're still not entirely sure when the announcement will be made.
Frankly - as a Pats fan, supporter and their TV broadcaster - my knees are knocking. From all accounts, this was supposed to be an open-and-shut case because Regina's bid was head-and-shoulders above the others.
Now I'm told the selection committee has run into a few snags.
I don't like snags. Snags aren't good.
3 - I get why it's done but I loathe when fans and media bring up team records in a season like the Pats are currently enjoying. "What's the club record for wins in a season?" is an oft-asked question around the Brandt Centre these days. (It's 49, set in 1980-81). The Pats have 41 wins with 16 games to go so they should be able to smash that record without breaking a sweat. Buuuuut, you never know and that's why I wish nobody would've mentioned it!!
Don't forget I wrote in early October that this is a 50-win team.
However the only way this becomes the best Pats team ever is if they win the 2017 Memorial Cup in Windsor, ON. That's it. That's the only way. Until then, the 1974 Memorial Cup champion Pats are still the best team of all-time and even then you'd get a debate from long time fans even if this Regina won it all.
So there's a helluva lot of work to do yet. This team could still get upset in the first round! Some annoying habits are setting in.
4 - I'm a huge, huge fan of NFL super agent Leigh Steinberg. He's the guy the movie Jerry Maguire was patterned after and I've followed his career for 25 years. Even read his book "Agent" from cover-to-cover, a couple of times. So it was a huge pleasure and an honour to welcome him to the SportsCage on Friday on 620 CKRM to discuss his latest client, Vince Young.
The 33-year old Young is indeed attempting a comeback and his desire to join the Saskatchewan Roughriders is real. Although Steinberg Tweeted on Thursday that he and the Riders have entered contract negotiations, he backed off somewhat on Friday saying they're "still at the exploratory stage".
Speaking from his office in Newport Beach, CA, the agent pointed out his client is a college football champion, 2-time NFL Pro Bowl'er and NFL Rookie of the Year.
He also said he'd like Vince Young to come to Regina and check out the New Mosaic Stadium facilities and see what this franchise has to offer. As any agent would, Steinberg was painting the picture that the Riders would have to woo them into signing.
As for Young himself, the agent said he truly wants to resume his career even though he hasn't played since 2011. He's not doing it for the money ... Young has plenty of that. And he didn't get a fair shake with the Tennessee Titans so therefore he has some unfinished business.
Most importantly, Steinberg said the idea isn't to use the Saskatchewan Roughriders as a springboard back to the NFL. Vince badly wants to play pro football, and wants to win a Grey Cup, or Grey Cups in Saskatchewan. They're not thinking about the NFL.
Lastly, Steinberg has represented a host of former CFL'ers - headlined by Warren Moon - so he has a very good handle on what this league is all about. It's not like he thinks Young will come up here, dominate, and then look for his first NFL opportunity. They're very respectful of the talent level of this league.
5 - Why would the Riders be going after Vince Young if they plan on aquiring James Franklin from Edmonton?
It's because I still don't think it'll happen.
6 - Steinberg inspired me so much back in the day that I actually seriously considered being an agent. I actually got an offer from a Canadian agency, but I had to start at the bottom which meant poaching other agents' clients and waiting outside bantam hockey dressing rooms to wine-and-dine 14-year old hockey players.
Nooooooo thanks. On second thought, I liked what I was doing just fine.
7 - I was a little disappointed at the comments of the "Flyin' Hawaiian" Chad Owens on the SportsCage on Friday. After the rush of signing with the Riders on Wednesday wore off, the reality set in that Owens would be leaving his wife and kids in Toronto this season, and that he'll be filling a "diminished role" with the Roughriders (his words).
I encouraged him to focus on the positives and it seemed to cheer him up, but I was surprised at the tone of the interview early on.
Once he straps on the /=S=/ and hears the roar of the Rider Nation, he won't be able to think of anything else, I'm sure.
8 - You're hearing it a lot across the CFL: "Who's winning free agency?" The fact is I don't know and really don't care. Maybe it's because I'm getting on in years but it doesn't matter anymore to me who's winning in February. Or for that matter, July or August. All that matters is who's playing in November.
Now, what happens now affects that, certainly. Last year the Winnipeg Blue Bombers won free agency (although we might've said otherwise here) and that translated to four wins and a road date in Round 1 of the CFL Playoffs.
But it didn't translate into a playoff win. Who's going to be winning in November?
Are the moves they made this week turning you onto the Green & White?
I'll admit that the signings by Jones and Co. look good right now.
9 - Stayed home Friday night and binge-watched Narcos on Netflix. We'll probably wrap up the entire series on Sunday. Then what do you suggest we watch? I'm a TV neophyte and could use some recommendations. All I prefer to watch are live games, Sportscentre and Sportsnet Connected, and Law & Order SVU.
10 - Interesting move by B.C.'s Wally Buono to snatch up Chris Williams in free agency on Friday. The one-time CFL Most Outstanding Special Teams Player comes with the reputation of being a soft player, and one who isn't fond of working too hard. One of his former coaches told me he only plays "one game out of four". That's why Hamilton and Ottawa deemed him expendable, but Wally's willing to take a chance on him. Interestingly, former Rider scout Joe Womack pleaded with the Saskatchewan brass to add Williams back in the day but never got his wish.
You can get by with players like that, but they're tough to rely on.
11 - It's that time of year again; I'll be watching curling since they're down to the national championships including the Scotties Tournament of Hearts which is ongoing right now. I don't dislike the sport, but can't pay attention until these championship tournaments/bonspiels come around.
Bring it on.
12 - BIRTHDAYS: Happy birthday on Friday to Rider alum Kye Stewart, and Pats alum Victor Bartley and Darren Wilcox!
THAT'S ALL! TALK TO YOU TONIGHT FROM MOOSE JAW