Normally at the ESPN campus, there's an Anerican flag. But in honor of the deeply patriotic John Saunders it's 🇨🇦 pic.twitter.com/OFygPrKuTR— Adnan Virk, ESPN (@adnanESPN) August 12, 2016
F Shayne Wiebe (Kamloops, Brandon, 2006-11) has signed a one-eyar contract with Pusteral/Val Pusteria (Italy, Alps HL). Last season, with Olten (Switzerland, NL B), he had 19 goals and 16 assists in 41 games. Pusteral’s head coach is former Prince George head coach Mark Holick. . . . Pusteral plays out of Brunico, Italy. . . .
D Neil Manning (Vancouver, 2006-12) has signed a one-year contract with Fassa (Italy, Alps HL). Fassa plays in Canazei, Italy. Last season, he had four goals and 10 assists in 22 games with the U of British Columbia. . . .
D Ian Schultz (Calgary, 2006-10) has signed a one-year contract with the Edinburgh Capitals (Scotland, UK Elite). Last season, he had four goals and five assists in 14 games with the Allen Americans (ECHL). Schultz finished the season with the Allan Cup-champion Bentley Generals.
Elliotte Friedman, who is the best part of Sportsnet’s NHL coverage, made the biggest error of his broadcasting career while calling a race involving American star Michael Phelps at the Olympics in Rio on Thursday.
Later that night, Friedman owned it all on Twitter. On Friday, he owned it again, this time in an interview with Michael Rosenberg of SI.com.
“He only has two requests,” Rosenberg writes. “One is that I write that if an athlete messed up like that, we would want the athlete to talk, and that’s why he is doing this. He is no hypocrite. The second request is that I put the mistake entirely on him. When I ask if a producer or production assistant was in his earpiece during the race, he bristles. It’s his fault, he says. Entirely his. Write it that way.”
Rosenberg’s complete piece is right here.
Which brings us to Chris Jones, the vice-president of football operations, general manager, head coach and defensive co-ordinator for the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders.
The CFL fined the Roughriders $60,000 and took at least $26,000 off their salary cap on Thursday for a handful of rules violations. They were cheating and got caught.
In his media briefing on Thursday, Jones read from a prepared statement and refused to answer any questions involving the cheating scandal.
When Jones met with the media on Friday, he again refused to take any questions involving the scandal. One question was asked. Jones greeted it with silence. Not one media person asked a question involving today’s game against the visiting Calgary Stampeders.
“We owe it to our fans to do everything possible to field a winning team,” said Jones. You will note that he didn’t say “everything possible within the rules . . .”
Jones also said that he hopes the situation results in all nine teams being held to the same standard. Uhh, the Roughriders are reported to have had as many as 95 players in town, some of them sleeping and eating in two houses, all of them being paid.
While Jones bailed, Craig Reynolds, the franchise’s president and CEO, returned from vacation to face the music. He met with the media later in the day, answered questions and among other things, said: “I take accountability for this. This is something I ultimately own as president-CEO of this organization.”
Which is all fine and good. Except that Reynolds did what Jones should have done.
A year ago, Jones was the head coach of the Edmonton Eskimos, who are the reigning Grey Cup champions. He signed with Saskatchewan eight days after that Grey Cup victory. Perhaps we now are learning why there was nary a whimper of protest from the Eskimos when he left.
Rob Vanstone of the Regina Leader-Post has more right here.
In hindsight, take a look at some of what Edmonton Sun columnist Terry Jones wrote as Chris Jones was leaving after two seasons with the Eskimos:
“Can a man who didn’t even come close to figuring out the off-the-field part of the head coach until sometime around Labour Day in his second season, possibly become a general manager, head coach and defensive co-ordinator at the same time?
“In his first year as a head coach, Chris Jones couldn’t get his team lined up for the national anthem three times (including once in front of the Prime Minister in Ottawa the day after touring Parliament Hill) and was fined $5,000 by the league.
“Now Jones will have to look after the salary cap, contracts, the waiver wire and . . . well, he probably won’t be going to the banquets in Elbow, Eyebrow, Climax, Antelope, Porcupine Plain, Reward, Urin or Zip Lake.
“It’ll be very interesting how Jones, who wouldn’t let his team attend Monday Morning Magic in Edmonton two years ago, will handle the expectations that way from an entire province that views the team as a part of the fabric of every community large and small.”
Whoops! Yesterday, I mentioned having been told that Ray Zhang, a businessman from Beijing, had purchased the BCHL’s Cowichan Valley Capitals at least in part so that a son would have a place to play.
“There actually won’t be a Zhang on the roster,” a source who is familiar with rules regarding junior A hockey tells Taking Note, “certainly not because the father didn’t want that, but because the son doesn’t have Canadian/U.S. citizenship. All BCHL players have to be Canadian, or teams are allowed up to six Americans. It appears dad wasn’t aware of that prior to purchasing the team. It’s really incredible!”
Why do I think we haven’t heard the end of this?
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The Ryerson U Rams, who play out of Toronto, have hired Kori Cheverie as a full-time assistant coach. Cheverie is the first female full-time assistant coach in the history of Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) men’s hockey. Cheverie is preparing for her fourth season at Ryerson, for the first three she was the skate training specialist. With the Rams, she will work alongside interim head coach Johnny Duco. . . . From a news release: “Cheverie played her collegiate hockey at St. Mary’s University in Halifax where she was a three-time AUS first-team all-star, team captain, an Academic All-Canadian, and two-time St. Mary’s female athlete of the year. She has also played in the Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL) for the past six seasons.”
The QMJHL’s Val-d’Or Foreurs have added Pascal Morency to their staff as an assistant coach. Morency, who signed a two-year deal, played four seasons in the QMJHL (Chicoutimi, Cape Breton, Hull, Rouyn-Noranda, 1999-2003) before going on to play in the AHL and Europe. Morency, 34, has been living in Fernie, B.C., where he was the head coach at the Fernie Academy.
The SJHL’s Weyburn Red Wings are prepared to introduce their new general manager and head coach on Tuesday. The new man will take over from Bryce Thoma, who left after three seasons for an assistant coaching position with the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades. . . . The SJHL’s Battlefords North Stars also are in the market a general manager and head coach, Kevin Hasselberg having left to become head coach of the SPHL’s Pensacola Ice Flyers.
On drive to Rio Olympic Park, countless motorcycles fly by between backed up car lanes. Driver: "Unsafe, yes, but no organ donor shortage."— Rick Westhead (@rwesthead) August 12, 2016
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