Tuesday, March 5, 2019
THROWIN' ELBOWS WITH BRENDAN MCGUIRE
2. ALL-TIME FAVORITE ROUGHRIDER: Mike Saunders. His first game was my first game in the front row behind the bench the day after the Blue Jays won the ’92 World Series. A recent cut of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Saunders ran the ball and returned kicks to the tune of nearly 200 yards and 2 touchdowns wearing number 33, rather than the number 32 he would later make famous. In an era when good players would suck with the Roughriders and then star somewhere else again, Mike Saunders was the exception. My all-time dream jersey is to somehow snag one of those “Canada125” beauties with number 33 and ‘SAUNDERS’ on the back. Where’s Norm Fong when you need him?
3. RAIDERS IN REGINA: No interest in buying a ticket for that whatsoever and I hope they make the NFL play on a CFL-sized field in retaliation for making our CFL teams play on those crappy, undersized U.S. fields in the 90’s. Tit-for-tat, how do you like that?
4. JOHNNY MANZIEL: I’m really heartbroken about this. Guy had a world of sizzle waiting to be unleashed in this game. All the tools, but in the end, no toolbox. We love the comparisons to Doug Flutie but sometimes we forget there are plenty of athletes as good as Flutie, but none with the heart or the brilliance of Flutie. Johnny Manziel has neither.
5. KAVIS REED: He’s taking a beating over the Alouettes dysfunction and deservedly so. No-one admires Kavis and his character for accepting responsibility over the 13th man fiasco of Grey Cup 2009 more than I do. And while I see a good guy/smart football mind doing things to appease his owner and head coach, a point comes where you have to know better and take a stand against irrational choices. Danny Maciocia did it when he turned down the job to begin with. Kavis needs to start making his own choices to save his own credibility here.
6. VINCE YOUNG: Looks heavier each time he’s photographed and his latest DUI doesn’t help. What a dumb idea those Chris Jones-signing-NFL retreads turned out to be. Aside from maybe Marcus Thigpen, not one of them made a serious impact up here.
7. ALLIANCE SUGAR DADDY: I heard new Alliance of American Football chairman Tom Dundon try to rationalize his decision to pump 250 million dollars into this league by explaining it’s long-term potential. The reality is, this bozo would have a lot more fun and a lot more time before the money disappears, had he invested that money into one of the CFL teams in Toronto, Montreal or Vancouver. This AAF is a sinking ship, just like the XFL will be in 2020.
8. DID YOU KNOW: Saskatchewan has the longest drought of any province who has ever won the Brier dating back to Rick Folk winning in 1980 when they still used corn brooms? Unbelievable.
9. THE RUSH KNOW HOW TO MARKET: From the cheesy “Baby It’s Cold Outside” promotion to rallying around David Assman, the Rush are better than anyone at reminding us sport was never meant to be serious.
10. PATS SHOULD BE IN PLAYOFFS NEXT YEAR: Jared Dumba thinks so and I agree. I asked Director of Hockey Operations, John Paddock about that to which he scoffed, “It’s too early to project that.” I’m happy to report this post-Memorial Cup rebuild looks short and sweet. See you in the playoffs at the Brandt Centre in 2020.
(Follow Brendan on Twitter at @brendanhowardmc)