You have to think warning bells are going off in team offices of various leagues these days.
The CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders didn’t practise on Tuesday. They didn’t practise on Wednesday. Their scheduled game against the visiting Toronto Argonauts on Saturday is likely to be postponed.
All because the team has had 13 players and five members of its support staff test positive for COVID-19. TSN’s Dave Naylor reported that “at least one QB” had tested positive.
Jeremy O’Day, the Roughriders’ general manager and vice-president of football operations, told reporters on Wednesday: “We’re not at the point where we’re changing or postponing any games right now, but it is getting close to the point where it becomes difficult to have a game if you haven’t had enough time to practise or to make sure that you have enough players to put on the roster.”
The Roughriders last played on Saturday when they dropped a 30-24 decision to the Argos in a game played at Acadia U in Wolfville, N.S.
It turns out that Saskatchewan had one player miss that game with symptoms; he later tested positive.
Rob Vanstone of the Regina Leader-Post wrote on Wednesday: “Comprehensive testing has been a daily occurrence since the team returned to the Queen City. Dating back to July 12, the Roughriders have had 13 players and five staff members test positive. Three players had been removed from COVID protocol, as of Wednesday afternoon.”
Vanstone’s comprehensive story is right here.
As the pandemic drags on — I see some in the medical/scientific communities are referring to a seventh wave on the way or maybe even here already — I continue to be dumbfounded by the apparent inability of provincial health officials to get on the same page. Some recent headlines . . .
From Winnipeg radio station 680 CJOB on Wednesday: Manitoba’s chief public health officer says the province has no immediate plans to expand fourth COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to include all adults.
From CBC News on July 13: Sask. not offering 2nd COVID-19 booster doses to people under 50 until fall, despite low booster rates.
From CBC News on Tuesday: Alberta expands access to second COVID-19 booster shots to all adults.
From the Saanich News on July 7: B.C. rolling out fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose in the fall.
Jim Souhan, a columnist with the Minneapolis Star Tribune, writing in advance of the PGA Tour’s 3M Open in Blaine, Minn., this week: “Imagine being worried about losing Dustin Johnson to LIV Golf. Have you ever met Dustin Johnson? He needs a caddie to make it through a sentence. Beige wants its personality back.”
More from Souhan’s column: “The only humorous aspect of LIV has been watching formerly popular golfers who joined it trying to defend the move. They can’t, and they embarrass themselves trying.
“On Friday (at The Open), Woods limped to the 18th green while receiving a massive ovation as he missed the cut. Phil Mickelson also missed the cut. LIV golf’s biggest name received a few golf claps.
“Woods will be remembered as a champion. Mickelson will be remembered as a sellout. Even LIV money won’t buy back his reputation.”
Souhan’s complete column is right here.
The tweet above is Marc Habscheid introducing himself to fans of his new team. . . . Over the past couple of days, the Pioneers have signed former WHLers Matt Revel and Clayton Kirichenko.
THE COACHING GAME:
The QMJHL’s Cape Breton Eagles have hired Jon Goyens as their new head coach. He was the head coach of the Baie-Comeau Drakkar for 2019-20, but left the team during the pandemic season of 2020-21. Prior to that, the Montreal native was with the Lac St-Louis team in the Quebec M18 league. . . . Goyens replaced Chadd Cassidy, who resigned as the Eagles’ head coach on July 6. . . . BTW, the Eagles issued the news release announcing Goyens’ hiring at midnight local time. Why? Because it’s the Q. . . .
The Salmon Arm Silverbacks have added Angus Redmond to their staff as the goaltending coach. Redmond, 26, is from Langley, B.C. He is a former Silverbacks goaltending, having played 132 games over four seasons (2012-16) before moving on to Michigan Tech for one season. He has spent the past five seasons playing in the ECHL and AHL.
THINKING OUT LOUD: Does anyone have any idea what Hockey Canada will look like in a year? Two years? . . . Hey, Calgary Flames fans, how are you coping? First, Johnny Hockey takes a hike and now it seems that Chucky is going to follow him out the door. Ryan Pike (@@RyanNPike), the editor of @FlamesNation, points out that “in the salary cap era (2005-06 onward), there were 39 100+point seasons prior to 2021-22. All 39 of those players were on the same team the following season. To call Calgary’s off-season ‘unprecedented’ would be an understatement.” . . . Pike also points out that “Jaromir Jagr being traded by Pittsburgh following the 2000-01 season is the last time a 100-point player changed teams before the following season.” . . . The MLB All-Star Game always seems to be worth watching, but those uniforms have got to go. Whatever happened to each player wearing his club’s uniform?
If you are interested in being a living kidney donor, more information is available here:
Living Kidney Donor Program
St. Paul’s Hospital
6A Providence Building
1081 Burrard Street
Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6
Toll free: 1-877-922-9822
Vancouver General Hospital Living Donor Program – Kidney
Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre
Level 5, 2775 Laurel Street
Vancouver, BC V5Z 1M9
604-875-5182 or 1-855-875-5182
Or, for more information, visit right here.