A good crowd and some big hoops happenings in Russia
It’s Friday, time to clear out the notebook and the cobwebs from the brain with a few littler things.
Well, that was a fun night. And very enlightening.
As I’m sure you’ve read, I was Argo Boy for another game – it’s going to be a regular occurrence this summer – and it was the first game I’ve seen in the Skydome (yeah, old habits die hard) since Doug Flutie was running around the joint I think.
Quite an experience.
I’ll preface this by fully admitting that I don’t know a lot of people from Saskatchewan – the ones I do know are really, really nice – but I have nothing but admiration for that province’s sports fans.
And CFL fans in general.
Of the crowd they said was just a bit over 18,000 (I have no reason to doubt them, it didn’t look very big an audience at all), I’d say about half of them had to be wearing green and it once again hammered home that the Roughriders hold a unique place in pro sports in this country.
Had spent the pre-game portion of night hanging out and telling stories in a saloon while having dinner where I saw a lot of green; it was nothing compared to the stadium.
How that team impacts its fans is incredible and quite heart-warming, to tell you truth. There seems to be a sense of ownership among the populace for the team that you really don’t see anywhere else in Canada and perhaps even North America. I’d guess maybe one of few comparisons could be to big time NCAA football but I’ve never seen that so I can’t say with certainty.
But Saskatchewan fans?
Awesome and when the “Lets go, Riders” chant rang through the joint, it was pretty neat.
I remember covering the Grey Cup at the Dome when they beat Hamilton – I have a feeling it was the late ‘90s – and being truly amazed at the support in the stands.
I remember wandering around the Grey Cup hoopla here last November and the green people were putting on a rather impressive party early on a Friday afternoon.
Heck, I remember the last CIS men’s basketball final I did up in Ottawa a few years ago and Saskatchewan had a big following – of travellers and transplanted natives – for that.
It’s kind of cool when you see that civic pride and it kind of reminds you why fans are fans.
You don’t see or feel that same connection in the bigger cities, I don’t think; there’s no “us against them” mentality present, fans in the Torontos and Vancouvers and Montreals are, I think, a bit more jaded, a bit more cynical, a bit more detached.
The Reginas and Saskatchewans of the world are unique and I guess that’s what makes them special.
Wish there were more like it, to tell you the truth.
And now I’m really looking forward to the trip out there later this season to see what the show’s like in their home.
Yeah, this hits the spot right about now, doesn’t it?
The dude who invented Twister died. RIP, indeed.
Kinda makes a fella want to do left foot yellow just for old time’s sake.
Now, who among us Of A Certain Vintage doesn’t remember the odd night of Twister among friends – I cannot imagine an equivalent hitting the market today without being rated PG or worse – as a parlour game.
The mere mention of it harkens one back, doesn’t it?
Who had a favourite?
I remember the appendix was always hard to get out.
Didn’t the little popper in the middle get stuck a lot?
Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots?
Used to kick Super Brother’s butt; and it wasn’t the only combat sport I beat him at, I was the mean older sibling at times.
Second to last shot for mail; missing some familiar names and notes over there at email@example.com.
You know who you are.
Pretty big doings over in Russia for a group of teenaged Canadian basketball players and, once again, the rise of the game in this country.
While this was being type, the boy’s team at the FISU Games (aka the World University Games) knocked off the United States 94-85 to run their record to 5-0 and advance to the quarter-finals.
It was the fourth time this group – coached by senior team coach Jay Triano and his national team staff – has beaten the USA this summer and Canada has been on a roll through an exhibition tour of China before they got to Russia.
It’s a group of names that should eventually become more familiar – Brady Heslip and Kevin Pangos might be the two most recognizable names to casual fans at the moment – but it is a group that will be the foundation to support the senior team in years to come.
Now, I don’t think this is going to go down with the same resonance as the Miracle On Hardwood win at the 1983 World University Games in Edmonton because the gap between Canada and the basketball world is negligible right now and we should be competing with the best countries out there.
But it is significant, and another step in what’s looking like quite the journey for the men’s side of the program.
So, good for the Delabar dude with the TOD, not so good for the TOD as they stumble and bumble along and I’m trying to think of a local team that had such great expectations going into a season only to basically do a pratfall from Opening Day on.
Got one? I don’t.
Going to make for a long, long summer, I fear, for the people who expected big games in September around these parts.
Mexico 2, Canada 0
Martinique 1, Canada 0
Yeah, the football crowd’s got some angst going on I’m sure.