It is the weird season in sports, and this year it’s even more weird than usual. Normally as October draws to a close we would be finalizing playoff matchups in Canadian football, remembering the baseball season that was, and watching to see how our draft picks are doing in the early games of the National Hockey League.
As this is written, the Roughriders are back in the playoffs after a one year absence. They will play in the western semi-final in Calgary, and the Blue Bombers won’t likely play anywhere in the postseason. Their new ballpark will be rested and ready in 2013, a year late. Hamilton Tiger Cats might squeeze into the postseason, but they have no idea where they’re playing next year.
In baseball, they are no longer The Boys of Summer. The World Series between the San Francisco Giants and Detroit Tigers may extend into November, and it wouldn’t be the first time. I’m betting it’s mostly Tiger fans who care on the prairies. It was a great year for minor league and semi-pro ball in these parts. Both Winnipeg and Regina won championships in their leagues, and wouldn’t it be great if they both played in the same league.
There’s lots of hockey being played already, but not in the big show. The NHL and the Players Association are still far apart on key issues and the lockout drags on. It’s particularly painful for the Winnipeg Jets and their fans, who are still riding the wave of euphoria that went along with the return of the NHL after 15 years without.
Until they figure this out, why not go out and cheer on the Brandon Wheat Kings, the Regina Pats or the Saskatoon Blades, or maybe the Melfort Mustangs. If you’re not close to any of them, head to your local rink and cheer on the bantams and the pee wees. They deserve it, and so do you.
I’m Roger Currie
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