Tuesday, March 30, 2010

SportZone lineup for March 30

Here's the tentative lineup for this week's show, airing tonight at 9 p.m., tomorrow at 3 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. on Access channel 7:

SportZone Guests for Mar 30/10
Community Co-Host: Mitchell Blair

1. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the University of Regina track and field team. Guests: Bruce McCannel (Interim Head Coach), Jeremy Eckert & Nicole Breker (Cougar athletes).

2. A preview of the annual Kids of Steel Icebreaker Triathlon. Guest: Terry Hooper (Organizing Committee) & Paul Tokarz (Youth Participant).

3. A report on Regina Ringette Association playoff action, featuring the Misfits and the Blitz. Reporter: Brendan Pawliw.

4. A Regina man is trying to revive the sport of tractor pulling. Horsepower ensues. Guest: Stacey Getz (United Promotions Inc.).

5. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the U of R wrestling team. Guests: Steven Schneider & Gilbert Musonza (Cougar wrestlers). (These guys didn't show up. Quelle surprise! And thus ends my interest in providing any further coverage to the Cougar wrestling program.)

6. The Blair Necessities. Our weekly sports commentary by local sports raconteur Mitchell Blair.

SportZone trivia: How many gold medals did the U of R track and field team win at the 2010 CIS championships? Send us your answer, and your contact information, for a chance to win a free pizza from Panago!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Monday musings

Assorted thoughts after a whirlwind weekend of birthday debauchery:

  • The garlic bread with cheese at the Keg is the best in town, hands down.
  • The pizza at WestSide Pizza is rivalled only by the pie at Sparky's and Tumblers.
  • High Impact Wrestling was everything it was cracked up to be. And more!
  • It was an honour to treat the J-man to some birthday wrasslin', and to sit with the likes of Rob Vanstone (who I think may hate jogging more than I do), Mitch Blair and Tony Playter. Truly, a unique experience.
  • The following night, I survived the J-man's birthday party, including the all-night slumber party. I'm thinking there are some tired boys wandering the halls of Jake's school today!
  • Now that the NCAA basketball tournament is down to the final four, I suppose I should start watching!
  • The sports talk stations on Sirius have been absolutely obsessed with March Madness. Well, that and baseball spring training.
  • Good luck finding some U.S. coverage of the NHL though.
  • The Moose Jaw Warriors travel to Calgary tonight for game seven of their first round WHL series. The Warriors led the series 3-1 at one point.
  • I was pulling for a Moose Jaw (what?) upset, but now I think the Hitmen are back in control.
  • Speaking of Hitmen, Brett the Hitman Hart was a featured performer at last night's Wrestlemania pay per view. I missed it, and I suspect I'll live.
  • I must have missed the news release about SGI proclaiming Saturday "Give a Driver's License to the Mentally Incompetent Day". Good lord it was scary out there!
  • The last remnants of the winter's worth of snow will be gone by Easter. That works for me!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Friday thoughts

Only one thought that matters today: Happy Birthday Jacob Andrew!

I never would have believed 11 years could fly by so quickly, but lo and behold - they have! And I've loved every minute of watching my boy grow into a fine young man. Let the party begin!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thursday Cheers and Jeers

It would be tempting, but very career-limiting, for me to opine about yesterday's provincial budget. However, if you want to, be my guest. In the meantime, here's my list for this week.

  • Sports Exchange (again). Good deals on used sporting gear - and a chance to get some money back on your own "gently used" gear. What's not to love?
  • Mitch Blair and Rob Vanstone, for cajoling me into treating the J-man to the cultural phenomenon known as High Impact Wrestling on his birthday tomorrow. This entry could be moved to the jeers category next week, depending on how the show goes!
  • Access Communications - hopefully Access helps fill the void (even more than it already does) for locally-produced tv programming created by the impending end of the Saskatchewan Communications Network. Okay, I guess that was sort of budget-related.


  • Whoever came up with the brilliant idea of forcing Regina police to write more tickets for inconsequential vehicular issues, rather than focussing on actually getting lousy drivers off the roads. Mind you, the young female cop who cancelled my ticket on the weekend was quite fetching, so it wasn't all bad!
  • The stomach flu. Just because.
  • The lack of a proper indoor tennis facility in this city. Granted, the courts at the Fieldhouse are better than nothing. But just barely.

C'mon, let's hear from the raging masses! What or who is making you happy/ticked off this week?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

SportZone lineup for March 23

Having the stomach flu can really put a crimp into a guy's blogging routine! Well, I'm back off the dl, and offer you this preview of this week's show - airing tomorrow at 3 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. on Access channel 7 in Regina.

SportZone Guests for Mar 23/10
Community Co-Host: Carlo Palazzo

1. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the University of Regina women’s basketball team. Guests: Becky Schmidt (Guard) & Brittany Read (Post).

2. A preview of the 5th annual Regina Red Sox sports dinner, and the 2010 season. Guest: Rob Cherepuschak (Red Sox Head Coach).

3. A review of the 2010 provincial high school basketball (Hoopla) championship tournament,a and the end of an era in Regina high school athletics. Guests: Skip Campbell (Campbell Tartans Head Coach), Matt Campbell, Mike Malecha & Jessee Cole (Campbell players).

4. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the U of R women’s volleyball team. Guests: Meagan Onstad (Outside Hitter) & Solveig Nilson (Middle).

5. The Blair Necessities. Our weekly sports commentary by local sports raconteur Mitchell Blair.

6. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the U of R men’s hockey team. Guest: Caine Pearpoint (Forward).

SportZone trivia: Which member of the U of R women's volleyball team was named an All-Canadian this season? Answer: Beth Clark.
Congratulations to Cody Kezama of Regina, who collects a free pizza from Panago for being the first person to email in the correct answer!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thursday Cheers and Jeers

It's time again for a weekly look at those who go above and beyond the call of duty, and those who missed the call completely.

  • O'Hanlons. Regina's only (at least that I know of!) authentic Irish pub was super busy at lunchtime yesterday, but the service and food were still excellent. Good job!
  • Regina Minor Football. Registration started on time on Monday, and the process was seamless.
  • Jersey City (Cornwall Centre). I polished off my shopping for the J-man's birthday, and got a deal in the process. Works for me!


  • The thought of Jordan Eberle not being able to finish his junior hockey career with a playoff run. Hell, even a playoff game!
  • The latest (stomach?) flu bug making the rounds in Regina. The J-man is ill, and I'm not far behind!
  • The dimwits on my street who've been parking in front of my house because their back alleys are a slushy mess. Did anyone consider for even a moment that I might want to do the same thing? I almost feel bad about slashing their tires. (Okay, I made that last part up. But it was tempting!)

Okay folks, who is on your list this week?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

SportZone lineup for March 16

Here's the lineup for this week's show. We're preempted by WHL playoff action next week, but the show still airs tonight at 9 p.m., tomorrow at 3 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. on Access channel 7 in Regina.

SportZone Guests for Mar 16/10
Community Co-Host: Carlo Palazzo

1. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the University of Regina men’s basketball team. Guests: Paul Schubach (Guard).

2. Registration has begun for the 2010 Regina Minor Football season. Guest: Kelly Hamilton (RMF President).

3. (ENG) A report on the city 5A boys high school basketball city final. Reporter: Brendan Pawliw.

4. (ENG) An interview with Pats star Jordan Eberle, as he looks back on his four years in Regina, and ahead to his pro hockey career. Reporter: Mitch Blair.

5. A post mortem on the 2009/10 season for the U of R women’s hockey team. Guests: Kelsie Graham (Forward) & Stefanie Banilevic (Defense).

6. The Blair Necessities. Our weekly sports commentary by local sports raconteur Mitchell Blair.

SportZone trivia: How many years in a row have the U of R Cougars qualified for the CIS women's basketball championship? Congratulations to Tiffany Caron of Regina, who knew the correct answer is 3, and scored herself a free pizza from Panago!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Monday musings

The random thoughts of a man. Not just any man. But yet, everyman.

  • The Regina Pats' season came to another early end on the weekend, and Jordan Eberle fell one point short of the scoring championship. Double bummer.
  • Want to know why the Pats missed the playoffs again this year? I don't think it's that complicated: the blueline wasn't good enough, the goaltending was average, and the bottom six forwards contributed next to nothing. At least that's how it looked from my vantage point.
  • So what happens next? Frankly, I don't know. What I do is, what's been happening clearly hasn't produced the desired results. So, more of the same likely won't get the job done.
  • The Atom Blackhawks season also came to a merciful end this season.
  • The Hawks started the year with a 3-1 record, then only won ONE game the rest of the season! Ouch.
  • Next up for the J-man is the North Regina Little League season. The fun never ends around our house!
  • Tough break for the U of R women's basketball team, failing to win a medal at nationals. They'll be back next year.
  • Still, a 4th place finish at nationals in a supposed rebuilding year isn't half bad!
  • These are heady times for SportZone - our little tv show was mentioned on Rod Pedersen's blog today, and in Rob Vanstone's weekend Sun column. Thanks fellas!
  • Is it Friday yet?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Thursday Cheers and Jeers

A weekly compendium of tributes and criticisms, brought to you from the home office in Pense:

  • Yarnton Decorating - a great selection of paints, and a friendly staff that will walk an inexperienced painter through the process.
  • Paypal - made a purchase on eBay. Purchase never arrived. Paypal got my money back.


  • Hockey Regina - a scheduling snafu resulted in a wasted trip to the Staples Arena for a game that didn't happen. That was preceeded by a game that someone forgot to assign referees to. Nice.
  • Walmart Supercentre - How does a store that big still manage to run out of stock all the time? Not exactly a well-oiled machine!
  • Certain coaches at the U of R. Apparently returning a phone call or email is just too strenuous a task for some folks. Not impressive.

That's my list for this week. Who is on yours?

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

SportZone lineup for March 9

Here's the lineup for this week's show. In case you haven't heard, it airs tonight at 9 p.m., tomorrow at 3 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. on Access channel 7.

SportZone Guests for Mar 9/10
Community Co-Host: Mitchell Blair

1. Another update on a busy off-season for the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and the CFL. Guest: Marc Parenteau (Rider offensive lineman).

2. (ENG) A report on the University of Regina women’s basketball team, as they prepare for another trip to the national championship tournament. Reporter: Brendan Pawliw.

3. The former head coach of the U of R track team signs on with Athletics Canada full-time. Guest: Carla Nicholls (National Talent Development Coach, Athletics Canada.

4. A preview of the annual Regina Thunder fundraising dinner, and an update on preparations for the 2010 season. Guests: Erwin Klempner (Head Coach) & Lisa Swallow (Sports Dinner Committee).

5. The Blair Necessities. Our weekly sports commentary by local sports raconteur Mitchell Blair.

6. A recap of the 2010 Winter Olympics, from a local perspective. Guest: Rob Vanstone (Regina Leader-Post Sports Coordinator).

SportZone trivia: Which NCAA school did Rider offensive lineman Marc Parenteau play for before launching his CFL career? Send us your answer, and your contact info. The first correct answer wins a free pizza from Panago!

Monday, March 08, 2010

Monday musings

Time to clear the fog - now if only the weather would do the same!

  • Don't look now, but the Regina Pats are riding a two game winning streak!
  • With only three games left in the regular season, Regina's Jordan Eberle and Jordan Weal are 1-2 atop the scoring parade.
  • Has a WHL team ever missed the playoffs while boasting the two top scorers in the league?
  • Well then, who says the Pats haven't had a record-breaking season?
  • Something dawned on me while watching the Leafs take on the Senators Saturday night. Why can't Saskatoon have an AHL team? After all, Toronto has two!
  • The Atom Blackhawks are one loss away from elimination in the double knockout Hockey Regina playoffs.
  • The J-man missed his team's playoff opener in favour of an ice fishing tournament. Go figure.
  • It's taken me many, many years to figure it out, but it's true. No matter how hard you try, or what you try, you cannot fix stupid.
  • That realization can dramatically lower a person's stress level, believe me!
  • I'm a little surprised The Hurt Locker captured the Oscar for Movie of the Year, but it was a pretty darn good film.
  • Do you think James Cameron enjoyed watching his ex wife and her movie clean his clock at the Academy Awards?
  • Then again, how much has Avatar made at the box office? Methinks Mr. Cameron will be okay.
  • Congratulations to Telemiracle organizers for topping the $4 million mark this weekend. Way to go, Saskatchewan!

Friday, March 05, 2010

Trestman wins

Montreal Alouettes head coach Marc Trestman has been named CFL Coach of the Year. Riders coach Ken Miller was a finalist, along with Hamilton's Marcel Bellefeuille.

Friday thoughts

It's a hodge-podge, but it's my hodge-podge, damnit!

  • The Regina Pats limp towards the finish line of the WHL season with a couple of home games this weekend. I'll be there to inspect the carnage tomorrow night.
  • From the "you gotta just shake your head" category: the J-man's hockey team plays its first playoff game Sunday morning. My offspring won't be there, however. He'll be ice fishing instead. Ice fishing over playoff hockey. Unfathomable.
  • Now, I could see it if it was me making that decision. As a Leafs fan, I don't even know what playoff hockey is!
  • Speaking of stupid, how about the Harper government's plan to make the national anthem more politically correct? That passes for a priority item worthy of inclusion in a throne speech?
  • I'm sure the thousands of unemployed auto workers in Ontario appreciate the fact their elected representatives are tackling the truly important national issues!
  • The Regina stadium proposals are coming out of the woodwork now! I'm still in favour of the original plan, pending more information on how it will be paid for.
  • If its publicly funded, does that mean a portion of future operating profits will be returned to the taxpayers somehow? Dare to dream, I guess.
  • Anyone familiar with the name Brendan Cross can't be surprised he finally snapped, running around city hall naked.
  • My question is, unless mental health services improve dramatically, how long will it be before someone is seriously hurt, or worse?
  • I make my return to Krav Maga training this weekend, after being out of commission since before Christmas. Pray for me.
  • For those of you wondering when Corey Matthews will return to the co-host's chair on SportZone, unfortunately I don't have an answer for you. Soon, I hope.
  • In the meantime, thanks to Mitch Blair and Carlo Palazzo for filling in.
  • Happy Birthday to co-conspirator Kelly McElree! If you're in the Moose Jaw area, you can drop off your gifts at the Moose Jaw Health Foundation. Cash, preferably.
  • Speaking of birthdays, only three more weeks until the J-man turns 11! Man, how the time flies. Maybe I'll take him ice fishing...

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Thursday Cheers and Jeers

So many worthy targets, so little time:

  • The detailed and comprehensive feasibility study on a new multi-purpose facility/stadium for the city of Regina and the Riders. The conceptual designs are breathtaking!
  • The people who (I assume!) are working on creative ways of getting this project financed, without saddling taxpayers with an enormous debt.
  • Gold's Gym North - bright, clean with lots of available cardio machines. If only the south location was run as well!
  • Sports Exchange - a great place to find inexpensive sports gear for a (rapidly) growing youngster. And they do a fine job of skate sharpening too.


  • Whomever thought detailed information on funding options wasn't necessary in that $1 million feasibility study. Who's gonna pay for it?
  • Dilawri Acura. When I can get parts for my vehicle cheaper from a dealership in New York than from the local dealer, something's wrong!
  • Co-operators Centre. Gotta love 7 am hockey games at the new rinks, especially when the on-site Tim Horton's doesn't start serving coffee until 7:30! That's just evil.

So, who is on your naughty/nice list this week?

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

SportZone lineup for March 2

Here's the lineup for this week's show, airing tonight at 9 p.m., tomorrow at 3 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. on Access channel 7:

SportZone Guests for Mar 2/10
Community Co-Host: Carlo Palazzo

1. An update on a busy offseason for the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the CFL. Guest: John Lynch (Rider broadcaster).

2. A report on the SFMAAHL playoff series between the Regina Rebels and Swift Current Wildcats. Reporter: Brendan Pawliw.

3. A busy season of alpine skiing is starting to wind down in Saskatchewan. Guest: Terry Hooper (Alpine Saskatchewan President).

4. A preview of the city high school wrestling championships. Guests: Mark Fitzpatrick (Head Coach, Miller Marauders), Katelyn Wilkins & Blake Terry (Miller wrestlers).

5. A preview of the annual Battle of the Prairies boxing show put on the Lonsdale Boxing Club. Guests: Frank Fiacco (Lonsdale President) & Mike Parisone (Coach).

6. The Blair Necessities. Our weekly sports commentary by local sports broadcaster/blogger Mitchell Blair.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Stadium report released

Actually, the feasibility report on the multi-purpose facility (I get annoyed when people refer to it as only a football stadium for the Riders), was released today. Some darn interesting stuff, including some dazzling concept designs (pages 100-107 of the corresponding pdf), are at the bottom of this page.

Yes, I know it represents spending a huge chunk of change. I just don't know how we can afford not to do it. Or, to be even more direct: I want it.

Monday musings

You go ahead and nurse your Olympic hangover. I won't be too loud:

  • When I was trying to predict who would score the overtime winner (for Canada, duh!) in yesterday's men's gold medal game, the first name that came to mind was Sidney Crosby. However, I rejected the idea, as Crosby had done nothing offensively for about three games.
  • Always trust your gut, I guess.
  • So, how does Crosby's goal rank up there with Paul Henderson's in 1972? Or Mario Lemieux's in 1987? How about Darryl Sittler's (first Canada Cup) in 1976?
  • I'd put Sid's goal third on that list, behind Henderson and Lemieux.
  • Is yesterday's result what Leafs fans can expect if Burke, Wilson and Kessel get us to a championship game? I'd still take it.
  • It's not going to be easy to go back to watching regular season NHL games after that fantastic display of hockey at the Olympics. Canada vs the U.S., or Toronto vs Edmonton? Hmm, tough call!
  • Congrats to all the Saskatchewan athletes who represented this province so well at the Olympics. 11 athletes from Saskatchewan took part, and nine of them brought home medals. Impressive!
  • Joannie Rochette was absolutely the right choice to carry the Canadian flag for the closing ceremonies. Her courage and grace in the face of incredible personal adversity won't soon be forgotten.
  • Although the opening and closing ceremonies were a bit "out there", I think the folks in Vancouver and Whistler deserve a huge thumbs-up for putting on a terrific Olympics.
  • And that's despite what the English (bitter and buck-toothed) and American (jealous) media might say!
  • Now it's back to reality, I guess. And the reality is, the Regina Pats aren't going to make the WHL playoffs for the second year in a row.
  • This, despite having three NHL first round picks in the lineup. And super sophomore Jordan Weal.
  • With a beefed-up offensive line, an elite receiving corps, key additions in Dominique Dorsey and Prechae Rodriquez, and another year of experience for Darian Durant, is there any reason to think the Saskatchewan Roughriders won't have the CFL's best offense in 2010?
  • Now, about that defensive line...