Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sports Fix Recap and More.

Good morning!

Due to the Federal Election, the Co-Op Leisure Time Sports Fix aired last night instead of it's usual Monday time-slot. I always enjoy having 'first-timers' on the program, and last night's show featured two.

Guest one was the new head-coach of the Battlefords Midget AAA Stars, Lorne Neilsen. It's no secret that this program has seen it's share of struggles over the years, to the point where Neilsen is the fourth coach in five seasons to try and lead this team to the playoffs.

I first met Neilsen by accident a few summers ago at the Canada Baseball Cup in Kindersley. He had to remind of this, but Neilsen did color-commentary with me during the Gold-Medal Game. I was impressed with him then, and was even more impressed with him after last night's show. Neilsen has a definitive passion for the game, and strikes me as the type of personality who is up to the task. He expects a better work-ethic, better leadership and a classier approach to the game and the community. Neilsen also hopes to continue the Midget AAA's positive rapport with the Junior A North Stars.

My second guest was the play-by-play voice of the Kootenay Ice, Jeff Hollick. Hollick is originally from the Battlefords, and actually got his start at CJNB. Hollick and I discussed the Kootenay Ice in great detail. The Ice are set to battle the Portland Winterhawks for the WHL Championship. At the start of the season I expected Portland to win the whole thing, and that hasn't changed. But in the same breath, I have a tough time predicting a Kootenay loss after they've swept both Medicine Hat and Saskatoon in the playoffs.

My third guest was Fox Sports Radio's Tomm Looney. Looney is the co-host of Game Time React with JT The Brick. Game Time React can be heard coast-to-coast across North America every night on Fox Sports radio. Looney's energy is contagious and is somebody who I am long looked up too in the business. Looney and I discussed the NBA playoffs, and then we also discussed the reaction in the United States when they learned of Osama bin Laden's death. As always, it was a compelling show, and I sincerely hope you got a chance to hear some or all of it.

Remind me one day to tell you how I met Tomm Looney. It's one of my favorite stories to tell, but it would be better suited for a different entry than this one.


Yesterday I did a fourth interview that did not run on the program. For the first time, I had the chance to speak with the new head-coach and GM of the Estevan Bruins, Kevin Cassidy. Cassidy was recently hired in Estevan, and will be charged with the responsibility of leading that squad into a new building, and a new identity.
Coach Cassidy impressed the heck out of me. He spoke very confidently, and honestly about his transition into the SJHL, and I'm expecting big things from that program this season. I expect the Sherwood Conference to be very wide-open on 2011-2012, and I would not be at all surprised if Estevan was in the thick of things with the likes of Dylan Smith, Cole Olsen, and Justin Waskewitch all eligible to return and contribute.

That interview with Kevin Cassidy will run on next Monday's episode of the Co-Op Leisure Time Sports Fix.


I guess the next target for the show will be Gavin Holcomb who was recently named head-coach and Director of Hockey Operations for the Melfort Mustangs. I'm sure there were many deserving candidates out there, but I defy anybody to argue the reasoning behind this choice.

Holcomb has won two championships alongside one of the best in the business in Bob Beatty, and I'm sure has learned a ton along the way. I want to sincerely congratulate Coach Holcomb on landing the position with Melfort, and I look forward to dealing with him on 2011-2012. And Coach, if you're reading this: Expect a phone call from me sometime soon!


Earlier this week I officially started my 8-week training for my 10 K Run. So far I'm underwhelmed by Week 1, and I'm tempted to try and up the anti a little bit. But I'm sure it's going to get more strenuous, and it's probably wise for me to slowly pace myself rather than do things "my way." This training forces me to go to the gym six days a week. It's going to be a lot of fun, and extremely rewarding in the end. Today is my cross-training day where I need to do 30 minutes of 'non-running' cardio.


Remember that Sunday is Mother's Day. This is the first Mother's Day for me without my Mom here. I'm sure Sunday will be an emotional day of sorts, but let my story be a reminder to everybody to appreciate the time you have with your Mom, and make sure you recognize her on Sunday, if not every other day of the year. Not a day goes by where I don't think about my Mom, and I miss her more than words can say.


A couple of brief thoughts on the Canucks-Nashville Series.

1) If not for Pekka Rinne, this series is easily 3-0 Vancouver, and it would be over tomorrow.

2) The penalty-call on Shea Weber was atrocious, but so was the non-call moments earlier on Kevin Bieksa.

3) Glenn Healy needs to lighten up and have some fun in life.

4) I think the Green Men are hilarious, and the fact that Nashville complained to the NHL is even more hilarious. What is this? the No Fun League? My stance has always been: If a fan is going to pay their admission to get into a game, they can scream, boo, dance, and hand-stand until their heart's content. They're not verbally or physically assaulting anyone, and their antics have no REAL affect on the outcome of the game. So lighten the hell up already!

Take care, and enjoy your day. As always, I encourage you to weigh in on the topics above.

- Dan

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