Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Random Ramblings

Tis been a while!

Since last time I mustered up a post, the Yorkton Terriers won an SJHL Championship, the Stanley Cup playoffs came and went, and so did summer.

Just figured instead of cramming thoughts on Twitter, I'd throw something together, and maybe sleep better tonight with my thoughts on paper (or a screen)!

- I'm past my one-year anniversary at DR Auto Extras.  We had a very good summer for RV sales, despite winner hanging around well into April this year.  Yes, things are slowing down a little now, but there are certainly deals to be had this time of year (so ya know, come see me!).  Still enjoying the change, but always missing what I used to do, as I knew dang well I would.  A gal I worked with at DR just took the receptionist job at GX and asked me about working there, and I couldn't think of a bad thing to say if I tried.

- My wife and kids were in Saskatoon for a wedding over September long, and went up a few days early.  I painted a bathroom, and thought I was throwing in an old "mix CD" while I was working.  Turned out it was 10 or so intermission 'features' I ran during my first season of broadcasting games, 2005-2006 at CKDM in Dauphin.  Unreal to think that's closing in on 10 years ago!  Jeez I was a young pup.  Turned 19 the day that season started.

- My daughter Bailey turned 3 in May, and Kaiden will be 7 months this week.  He's just started eating solid foods (well, mush), and is FINALLY starting to sleep all, or most of the night.  Not that I know the difference... you think I was waking up with him??

- I'm like a little kid, as I think that it's '4 more sleeps' until the next Rider game.  I heard the saying that there are 2 days in Saskatchewan. 1) Rider Game Day 2) Waiting For Rider Game Day.  Ain't that the truth.  What an eye-glazer of a Banjo Bowl, though.  The Bombers deserved kudos, but as a Rider fan, I'm worried.

- I'm not worried because of how they played Sunday, losing to a 1-8 team.  I'm worried because I truly believe this team, albeit 8-2, has played MAYBE 3 complete games this season, and I'd even say they haven't had a 'great' game since Week 4.  Week 1 in Edmonton, they dominated start to finish, taking their foot off the gas only when it was well out of reach in the 4th quarter.  They trailed Calgary by as much as, I think, 17-3 the next week, before storming back in the second half, and that's been the theme.  They were okay in Toronto the next week, one of their more complete games, and then whitewashed Hamilton 37-0 at home the next week.  I was there for that one, and even it was a slow start.  If I'm not mistaken it was scoreless after one quarter, and 13-0 at half.  At Hamilton, they were down early... at Calgary, turned the ball over on offense for the first time all season, on the first offensive series of the game, were down 7-0, and never got back into it... home to Montreal, absolutely should have lost, and would have had Calvillo played the whole game - needed an unprobable 2-minute comeback to steal it... at Edmonton, again, trailed early, Chris Milo had them up 12-10 at half, they made Mike Reilly look amazing, and won by a field goal... Labour Day, another slow start, down at half time, and then steamrolled them in the second half.  And the Banjo Bowl was, well, the Banjo Bowl.

- Like Coach Chamblain says... you're not going to blow teams out every week.  I get that.  It's an 8-team league and it's competitive.  But if you're a so-called elite team, why does take until halftime to get going?  The experts say they 'wait to see what the other team's doing, and then adjust.'  Again, if you're 'elite', then make them play YOUR game, make THEM adjust.  They've got 8 tough games to go, and against Toronto, BC and Calgary especially, they can't expect to win by playing 30 minutes.

- I'm not of the one extreme of fans who thought everyone should be fired and Durant should be benched when they were 6-1 and Durant's TD-INT ratio was 17:0.  However I'm not the sunshine and roses breed either, who thinks "as long as they win that's all that counts, who cares how they play!"  Ultimately, I guess it doesn't matter a whole lot... you play for wins and losses, and playoff positioning.  I just don't see Calgary losing a game they should win, meaning if the Riders don't beat them there in October, it'll mean 2nd place at best... and should they, say, win only 1 of their 3 meetings with BC (or, none)... that would likely mean NO home playoff game.

- Darian Durant IS the QB who can get this province their next Grey Cup.  I sure hope it's this year.  But stop calling for his head!  I'd put Ricky Ray ahead of him (and he's hurt) this season, and that's it.  Sure hope the fans don't end up running him out of town.

- I think it will take 14 wins to host the West Final, and with the team regressing lately, I just don't see them going 6-2 down the stretch to attain 14 W's.  I wouldn't doubt they go 4-4 and finish 12-6.  12-6 will leave them 2nd with B.C. breathing down their necks.  3 BC's @ Calgary, vs Edmonton twice, vs Toronto, at Montreal.  Are there 6 wins there?  Sure could be, just not banking on it.  It's a huge back to back weeks at home coming up, with the Argos here Saturday night and BC the following Sunday.  Sweep those two, and top spot is more than realistic.  I think they needed the loss in Winnipeg to wake up.  Part of me also worried that they'll be stuck in mediocrity and lose some close games they were winning earlier..... or worse, that the Banjo Bowl could start a free-fall, a la last year (5 game skid around this time of the season).

- I feel like a Debbie Downer here, but I want this team to succeed as much (or more) as any other fan, and probably take it more seriously than I should.  I've just always been cautiously optimistic.  In my years as a Rider fan, there've been some lean ones (90's), and some close calls that almost rip a person's heart out (09). 

- Last time I posted something, I said how pumped I was for Blue Jays baseball.  What a disappointment.  Can't tell you the last time I watched a whole game, or inning.  Call that a bandwagon jumper, but they're still my favourite team, but if I'm going to spend 3 hours watching something, I'd like it to be relevant.  I don't think there's any sense blowing it up.  Anthopolous made the moves to go for it and we all thought he was a genious for it.  Keep it together for another year at least, try to add a pitcher or four, and give the AL East a run.  They've got the horses.

- I was at a wedding during the NHL Draft weekend, and I either forgot or never knew that the Toronto Maple Leafs sent picks to Chicago for Dave Bolland at the draft.  I'm on Twitter, just about constantly, so I have no clue how I could have missed/forgot, but I did!  Just today, the Leafs, finally worked something out with Kadri, too.  So a team that struggled with depth at centre this time last year, can now throw out Bozak, Kadri, Bolland & McClemment on lines 1 through 4.  I like that dynamic.  No, there's no Crosby or Datsyuk or even Bergeron in that mix, but it's two who should clearly be in the top 6, and two can check and do a little of everything.  Here's hoping they make it 2 straight years in the playoffs and maybe win a round (or more) this time.

- SJHL Pre-Season is in full swing, and I'm still doing my thing with the SJHL & Yorkton Terriers websites.  There are three new coaches in the SJ this season (Estevan, Weyburn, La Ronge), so it could explain why we're not getting ALL game sheets from exhibition games.  It's tough to get info, and I saw the diehards already have their annual "SJHL WEBSITE SUCKS" thread going on the fan forum.  It's tough to get info this time of year.  Most coaches don't want to tell us what rookies are good bets to make the team, and want things to play out through camp, and understandably so, and as mentioned, even game results aren't always sent in.  It'll be better once the regular season kicks off Sep/19.

- I hunkered down and tried to work and sell as much as I could all summer, so I didn't really take holidays.  Just a few days last week to help with harvest, and that was out of the blue.  But I've got the next 2 weeks off.  Heading to Minot with the family early next week.  Never been there before, but we're staying at the Sleep-Inn with the Waterpark, Mall, etc.  Any other Minot recommendations?  I hear there's a good zoo, and have heard of some good places for grub.  Looking forward to getting out of dodge.  Not sure the last time we were out of the 'Yorkton-Farm-Saskatoon' triangle.

Well that was a good head-clearing session!  If you're reading, and you obviously are if you can see this... thanks for stopping by!

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