Random Thoughts From Motown Mitch: Sept. 17

Mitch Kasprick is the “Motown Curmudgeon” aka “Motown Mitch”

Odds and Ends, Thoughts and Questions, from this past week in sports – 

Just so there’s no confusion when I’m spewing my bias, I am a fan of the Winnipeg Jets, Arizona Coyotes, Manitoba Moose, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays, Arizona Diamondbacks, Winnipeg Goldeyes, Toronto Raptors, all curlers from Manitoba, and all Canadian athletes competing on the international stage. 

I am NOT a fan of Gary Bettman or as I call him, Count Chocula.  I am a big believer in the 7Ps.  You’ve been warned.

1.  Jets:  Okay Jets fans, you can exhale now.  Josh Morrissey and the Winnipeg Jets have agreed on a two-year contract worth $6,300,000.  The two-year deal has an AAV (average annual value) of $3,150,000. 

It’s hard to believe the boys hit the ice on Friday and the Winnipeg Jets actually have a pre-season game tonight.  Where did the summer go?  Matt Nichols must have thrown it ….. too soon? 

2.  Booing:  After the recent events at IGF and the booing of Blue Bombers QB Matt Nichols, I promised I would give my thoughts on booing so here it is.

I have no problem with a paying customer showing their displeasure or frustration and booing.  I don’t think any less of those fans but it’s something I choose not to do.  Have I ever booed a player at a hockey or football game?  HELL YA but it’s usually an opposing player.  Don’t get me wrong, when I’m in my man-cave, I’ve been known to bitch, piss and moan, and say many many bad words.  Ask my wife.  

Throughout my many years of watching sports I’ve had players on the home team I haven’t really liked but as long a they were wearing my team’s colours I supported them.  As much as I can talk a big game and be an incredible A-HOLE in my own confines, I don’t have the makeup to want to hurt somebody.  As a matter of fact, as pissed off as I was at Matt Nichols last Saturday, I couldn’t help but have an extreme amount of empathy for him.  He doesn’t want things to happen the way they have happened.  I still believe that there is more going on with Matt Nichols than meets the eye and I still believe he can lead this team.  Matt Nichols has not forgotten how to be a QB.         

3.  Jets:  I don’t think the release of the Winnipeg Jets third jersey last Friday will impact my life in any way whatsoever but there sure was a lot of interesting feedback on social media. 

4.  Jets:  I must admit I was one of the yahoos calling for Paul Maurice’s head after the Winnipeg Jets first two games last year.  My emotions got the best of me an I was sucked into the Twitter “mob mentality”.  The funny thing is I’m usually pretty level-headed (wife snickers in the background).  I’ve been around for a while and should have known better. Tsk tsk.  I don’t agree with a lot of Maurice’s decisions but in the grand scheme of things I have ZERO say in the matter. 

5.  Jets:  I wonder how many guys that hated Toby Enstrom are pumping the tires of Sami Niku?  

6.  NHL Wayne Gretzky retired in 1999 but if he didn’t retire and played until 2017 without scoring another point he would have still been a point-per-game player.  To quote the guys from Letterkenny, “I suggest you let that one marinate”.    

7.  Humboldt Broncos:  The town of Humboldt, the SJHL, the Humboldt Broncos, and TSN did a terrific job covering the SJHL’s and the Broncos season opener last Wednesday night.  The whole evening was very classy and respectful.  It was a tough night for everybody in the hockey community but especially the families that lost loved ones.  Hopefully, seeing their team back on the ice and the support they’ve received gives them some closure.

8.  Vikings I may be biased but I can’t think of another wide receiver I would rather have than Stefon Diggs.      

9.  NHL:  If you can get past the original shock of the trade that sent Erik Karlsson to the San Jose Sharks and look at it piece by piece, it was actually a pretty decent haul for the Ottawa Senators.  I don’t know what the offers were at the NHL trade deadline but you would think that is when the Sens would have received their best offers.  That’s hindsight now but they received decent value for what will probably be a one-year gig for the San Jose Sharks.  The popular belief is that he will become a UFA and sign in Tampa.  

10.  Jets:  Back to the Winnipeg Jets third jersey.  I thought it was actually pretty creative how the crossed T is a jet plane.      

  Winnipeg_Jets_third_ jersey

11.  Blue Bombers:  The Winnipeg Blue Bombers really needed this bye-week to try to find their mojo again and I think the fans needed it even more.  Most of the negativity seems to be quieting down and the villagers have put their torches away.  For now.  Most fans are just hoping for a win versus Montreal and seeing where it goes from there.

12.  Blue Bombers:  In my humble opinion, Matt Nichols will be the starter next home game BUT I think he will be on a shorter leash and maybe the Blue Bombers might utilize a bit of a platoon situation like the Edmonton Eskimos did back in the days of Tom Wilkinson and Bruce Lemmerman.  Dude! How old are you? 

13. PGA:  The PGA Tour was in a bye-week last week but the top 30 golfers are set to battle it out in the Tour Championship in the final event of the season for the FedExCup.  The boys tee it up this Thursday at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia.  The final 30 and what they need to happen to win is >>>> here.  I think I will be putting my money on Dustin Johnson.  

14.  Blue Bombers:  Chris Streveler is better than Johnny Manziel.  Discuss.  

15:  MLSSaturday night I was watching Sports Center on TSN and they showed a highlight of LA Galaxy striker, Zlatan Ibrahimovic scoring a highlight reel goal AND it was his 500th career goal to boot (pun intended) but after showing the replay 4 or 5 times and interviewing Ibrahimovic they never once mentioned the score.  If you were wondering, the score was Toronto FC 5 – LA Galaxy 3. 

16.  PGA:  One of my favourite events of the year is following this week’s FedExCup.  The best golfers in the United States face off against the best that Europe has to offer in the 42nd Ryder Cup in a suburb southwest of Paris, France called Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines.  I don’t think I ever know who I’m pulling for until Sunday.    

17.  Blue Jays:  Kevin Pillar continues to be a disappointment for me.  I see no growth in his game whatsoever.   

18.  Blue Jays:  I’ve been quietly watching Jays starter Sean Reid-Foley and I really like what I’ve been seeing but I was trying to hold back my enthusiasm until I saw his latest start in New York on Saturday night.  He passed with flying colours.  After being shelled by the Yankees earlier on in the season (Aug. 18), he bounced back with an impressive 10 strikeout performance.  Reid-Foley has a plus fastball (94-96 mph) and a nice slider that should see him in the Toronto Blue Jays starting rotation next year.    

19.  NHL:  That loud cheer you heard after the Erik Karlsson trade has been traced to the office of Joe Sakic.  Why?  Because the Colorado Avalanche own the Sens 2019 first round pick from the Matt Duchene trade.  Lots of pundits are wondering why the Sens didn’t exercise their option to have Colorado use that pick this past June?  I guess they really liked Brady Tkachuk.    

20:  Key dates:

  • Sept. 17:  Minnesota Wild at Winnipeg Jets (pre-season)  
  • Sept. 21:  Winnipeg Blue Bombers (5-7) vs Montreal Alouettes (3-9).
  • Oct. 4:  Winnipeg Jets season opener in St. Louis. 
  • Oct. 9:  Winnipeg Jets home opener vs Los Angeles.

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Thanks, Mitch 

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