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Thursday, April 12, 2018

10 THINGS I THINK I THINK

1 - FOREVER 306: Where to start? The events of the past week are indescribable and in this week's 10 Things, I'm just going to open up and spew. Just when you think the province is moving forward after Friday's disaster by the tiniest of baby steps, a new tragedy strikes all over again. Brendan McGuire called it "our 9-11" and he's not wrong. However that event changed New York forever - somehow for the better - and I can only hope the same will happen here. We were already a special place so I can't imagine how Saskatchewan will look after its darkest day, but that's a long, long ways off.

2 - CANADA: Toronto sportscaster Jim Lang said on the SportsCage that not since the Terry Fox Run in 1980 has this country been so unified. That's a positive, but obviously we'd all give that back in exchange for those 16 Humboldt Broncos. I'm still struggling to see any bonuses but the Broncos parents have already begun to look ahead. That takes an heroic amount of guts. Meanwhile I'm sure they've drawn a lot of strength from the countless vigils and tributes from across the land. Thanks for that.

3 - R.I.P. DAYNA: The nightmare continued on Wednesday with the news that 25-year old Broncos therapist Dayna Brons succumbed to her injuries sustained in Friday's crash, and ultimately lost her battle. The Roughriders made a statement on Dayna's passing, saying she served as a team therapist for their 2016 Training Camp in Saskatoon. I remember her now. She had fire in her eyes and was all business. I guess God needed a trainer for that hockey team He’s assembled in that Rink in the Sky. Beyond tragic.

4 - NO PRESSURE: At a Regina Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Wednesday, Roughriders President Craig Reynolds proclaimed that if Saskatchewan wins the Grey Cup in 2018, they are immediately taking the trophy to Humboldt. No pressure Jones!

5 - #PUTYOURSTICKSOUT: The phenomen which swept the globe this week where supporters placed sticks on their porch for the (then) 15 Broncos was started by Winnipeg Jets broadcaster Brian Munz. He attended high school in Humboldt and a school chum sent him a photo of the very first gesture of its kind on Sunday, which Brian promptly put on Twitter. From there, it took off like wildfire with CAF soldiers in Afghanistan joining the movement to, remarkably, autoracing legend Mario Andretti. And everywhere in between. I smiled when I was driving home Wednesday evening, listening to Munzie on the air broadcasting the Jets-Wild playoff game. Well done my friend.

6 - BENEFIT GAMES: Fundraising hockey games have sprung up all over the province in support of the Broncos and the SJHL. On Friday, WHL and SJHL alumni will take to the ice in Moosimin to raise funds while there are a pair of games next Thursday. One takes place at Farrel Agencies Arena in Yorkton with a social to follow and the other is in Moose Jaw, where the Generals will host a benefit game in honour of the Broncos' Evan Thomas. His father Scott is a Warriors Hall of Famer. The admission charge is a donation to the cause. Methinks the $9-million raised at GoFundMe is going to end up looking like a drop in the bucket by the time the donations have all been added up.

7 - THE SJHL: Hats off to everyone in the SJHL for banding together but particularly to President Bill Chow and Marketing Director Logan Fraser. They've been absolute heroes over the past week in the most-trying of circumstances. While they've displayed top-level leadership, the stress in their voice is evident every time we talk on the phone. This league is mom-and-pop and probably always will be but these two have been rockstars. It appears the League will come back stronger than ever before.

8 - CARRYING ON:  It was not a surprise that the SJHL's Board of Governors voted in favour Wednesday of continuing the playoffs, and staging the Canalta Cup between Nipawin and Estevan. TSN's Farhan Lalji reported the vote was unanimous but the League wouldn't confirm that. Most importantly the Humboldt Broncos endorsed the decision saying "The power of healing is in the game". I've heard the argument against continuing, but the SJHL refuses to allow the bus crash to defeat them anymore.

9 - NEUTRAL SITES: Many have suggested the Canalta Cup be played in bigger arenas in Saskatoon and Regina in order to pack the places and raise more money. However the Hawks and Bruins have battled all year for the right to play in their own arenas and they need to be at home. The scheduling of the series was another great move by the S-Jay.

10 - JERSEY DAY: Canadians from coast-to-cast will wear hockey jerseys to work on Thursday to show support for the game and the Broncos. All I ask is that in doing so, remember why you're doing it. Think of the 16 Broncos, the survivors, and if you actually want to help, donate financially. I'd hate to see this just be a fad or the "in thing" to do.

Meanwhile people are seeing celebrities like Hockey Night In Canada personalities and Premier Scott Moe wearing Green & Gold ribbons to support the Broncos.. They're wondering where in Regina can they can get them? The only place I've heard right now is Western Pizza on Broadway although a visit to your local hobby store or Walmart will do the trick too. (Buy spools of ribbons and stick pins). Meanwhile those H-Strong T-shirts from 22 Fresh will be available in your local Coop as soon as they're printed. Meanwhile in all Famoso restaurants across Canada on Saturday, $1 from every pizza sold will go to #HumboldtStrong.

STAY STRONG,
RP

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know I have been walking around in a daze all week. Everyone at work is subdued also.

Both my husband and I have shed many tears since the accident.

And, the winter that never ends does not help things either.

I am still waiting for the Robins to come back. Do you know that in the past 2 years, I spotted Robins March 23 and March 25? We are now at April 12, and still none to report.

IMAGIRL

Anonymous said...

Dayna's passing another kick in the teeth. Make it stop.

Anonymous said...

Did you hear about the Social Activist scum bag in Quebec who wondered because of who they were why they were getting the sympathy? This world can make me puke. Then you get the sector of our community who believes they never get justice. They want everyone to know a semi-pregnant lady called 911 and gave up her place on the ambulance. Yeah had she not called 911 I'm sure they'd all still be laying there. Quite the world we live in.

Anonymous said...


You guys have been great this week especially yesterday combining tough times with laughs.

I understand the need to have games played in Estevan and Nipawin, but I also think one game at SaskTel Centre wouldn't be the worst thing. I am guessing one of the networks would be there to showcase the first responders from the area, the communities, the players, the league etc. etc. etc. It would be a chance to show how we are Saskatchewan strong in the wake of this awful event.

Kelly

Eastender said...

Love point #10 re. keeping the focus on what happened/trying to support and help. Lots of good happening. Dairy Queen in Estevan donated all proceeds and the worker's time yesterday and raised over $23 000 for the families. Good people doing good things is good to see.

@mrt_man said...

ONE OF THE ARTICLES THAT HIT ME THE HARDEST WAS ONE THAT SAID PPL WERE PUTTING FLOWERS AND NOTES ON THE GUYS' CARS... LIKE THEIR CARS THAT WERE STILL SITTING AT THE RINK, BECAUSE THEY WERE GONE TO PLAY HOCKEY... WHO HASN'T SEEN SOME OF THOSE VEHICLES SITTING AT THE RINK?... STILL SITTING THERE... (It was a few days ago, no clue if they actually still are)

Anonymous said...

Rod, I agree with your comments. The teams need to play. These teams have worked all year with a goal in mind, to win a championship. As unbelievably horrific as this accident was, it doesn't change that their dream/goal was to win a championship when they started the year back in September. I can guarantee you that each one of those players, coaches, managers, broadcasters, therapists and stats folks will do it with a heavy heart and with absolute honour of those that have passed, are injured or experienced the trauma in some way.

Here's my thing. Let the teams continue their quest without the media diving into their world. Let them play, compete and heal without the additional burden of carrying the world on their shoulders. My belief is that each of the teams will show their respects prior to the game privately and publically. They'll all have stickers on their helmets and will be playing for their fallen friends. Can we give them have their earned moment to focus on the biggest tournament of their lives. Let's not distract them from their place of normalcy that they are trying so hard to find. The world is grieving and placing their emotions on their sleeves for everyone involved to see but lets not make this into a continuous circus of one up-men-ship by having the games played any differently than how they would have played out if this didn't happen. Let's leave that for the start of next season when the emotion aren't so raw.

I have friends that were injured, were part of the response teams and ultimately lost kids and family members in this tragedy. I have played sports at a high level and "team" is so important, so I say this with the utmost respect, let these teams play and not make this a showcase of why's, who's, what if's, etc. There will be plenty of time for that when the season ends.

I wish every involved my sincerest condolences. I grieve with all of you and wish the teams still playing my greatest gratitude and admiration for leading us back to normalcy, yet never forgetting all that has occurred in the past 7 days.

DS - Saskatoon

Anonymous said...

I've been thinking of nothing but Humboldt and the Broncos community ever since Friday night.

Maybe Estevan and Nipawin could but the Broncos logo at the centre of their ice surfaces for the finals.

LC

Anonymous said...

Well said DS-Saskatoon.

LC

I AM A ROBOT said...

The thought of playing the championship series on Neutral sites to raise more money is laugable. Even a single game. Maybe next years preseason but a the leauge championship...Common

Anonymous said...

Today is the first day that I have not cried since Friday night. I never really thought of it but this really does feel like 9-11 all over again. So much pain and grief! It really is difficult to handle. It helps to hear of the positives of increased blood donations and people signing their organ donor cards or registering to become organ donors. At least some good is coming out of the tragedy. Continued prayers to all the families as they say their final good-byes.