Regina- Ok, breath in, take a deep breath... ahhhh. Doesn't that feel better?
The Swift Current Broncos prepare for battle in game five at Regina's Brandt Center pretty relaxed and loose actually. The mood I get is a "nothing to lose" attitude with a chance to make something special happen. Although a tough hill to climb, the Broncos know they've been pretty much written off now in this series... except by themselves.
So can they send it back to Swift Sunday night? Stay tuned.
Just a couple of observations...
Cracked open the Leader-Post this morning. Thanks for the plug Rob Vanstone. He had a story on Myles Rumsey as the "Leader Post Motivational Pin-up" from game two continues to get more ink.
Here's his article:
Rumsey ready to rumble, I'm not
Rob Vanstone, The Leader-PostPublished: Friday, March 30, 2007
The Swift Current Broncos were written off faster than Kevin Federline's career.Their efforts were disparaged in this space after a 4-0 loss to the Regina Pats in the opener of a WHL Eastern Conference quarterfinal one week ago.
Swift Current's players were so moved that they affixed the front page of Saturday's Leader-Post sports section to a wall in the Broncos' dressing room before Game 2 at the Brandt Centre.
The Broncos responded by winning 4-3 in overtime. In the aftermath of victory, defenceman Myles Rumsey had a question for play-by-play man Jon Keen: "Where's Rob Vanstone?''The record shows that I was in the vicinity. However, I never crossed paths with Rumsey. This, I concluded, was fortunate.
Did he intend to inflict any damage? If so, I was doomed -- being that my history of combat includes a TKO loss in Grade 9 to a glowering intimidator by the name of, er, June.With this in mind, I courageously left a telephone message for Rumsey. We chatted on Thursday. Nice guy.
"I was just wondering because there was a little blurb about me (in Saturday's column),'' Rumsey said from Swift Current. "I was just interested to see, because you always hear some random stories about media guys and some of them are real big homers and (have) some bones to pick with guys.
"I was just interested to see what the whole background check was. If you can't handle the media, you're in the wrong business.''Was he planning to (gulp) manhandle the media?"Oh, no,'' the Broncos' captain said with a laugh. "I've had worse things said about me before. The guys on the ice can say some pretty crazy things, so I wasn't too worried about that.
"You kind of build off that for motivation and try to prove people wrong.''The Broncos did precisely that on Saturday. Regina responded by winning back-to-back games in Swift Current to assume a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series. Game 5 is today, 7 p.m., at the Brandt Centre. Once again, the Broncos are looking to rebut the dismissive skeptics.
"We know the team that we have, even though we haven't really shown it yet for a full 60 minutes,'' Rumsey said. "Just to have that feeling that people view us as washovers, it's not a very good feeling. We like to come out and prove them wrong and on that Saturday we did. Unfortunately, we kind of fell asleep here for a period or two and it came back to bite us.''
The Broncos must bare their teeth tonight if they are to extend the series -- and if the 20-year-old Rumsey is to prolong his major-junior career."We have to come out with the will and desire to win the game right off the bat,'' he said. "We have to come out physical, shooting the puck."We have to play a good, greasy road game. We have no one to impress here. If we play New Jersey Devils-style hockey like that, it's going to take the crowd out. It'll hopefully be a boring game for them.''
Pats fans are salivating at the notion of Regina winning a playoff series for the first time since 1998. Rumsey would like to snap a protracted drought of his own.Rumsey has not scored a goal since Dec. 10, 2004, when he tallied against the host Spokane Chiefs. He had two goals that season, but has since gone 182 games (playoffs included) without scoring.Surely, Rumsey's two WHL goals were reminiscent of Wayne Gretzky and Teemu Selanne ... right?
"Oh, absolutely,'' the fourth-year Bronco said with a chuckle. "Looking at the player that I am, those are dandies. The first one actually went off my shin pad when Tyler Redenbach went end-to-end. That one was all finesse. The other one was a lucky shot from the point, right along the ice. It was a howitzer.''
Rumsey is renowned for his ability to prevent goals. In Game 2, for example, his shot-blocking prowess was a major reason why the Broncos prevailed. Now, can they do it again ... and again ... and again?
"A lot of people picked us from the start not to win the series,'' Rumsey said. "We are underdogs and Regina was the better team throughout the season, but by no means at all are we out. That's why it's a seven-game series. You're allowed to lose three games."We just have a mountain to climb now.''
Ok, Rob now how 'bout some inspiration? Sadly I didn't see any LP writers at the two games in Swift. They may have been there, but not in the media circles.
Did anyone see Dean Chynoweth's comments following Game four? It was on CTV, maybe Global too. "I'm sure they're (the players) are pissed off... I hope they would be, we were horse-s#!t. Oh I guess I can't say that, you'll have to edit that out."
Interesting. That clip will have some shelf life for awhile. Look for it in a Year in Review type piece in the near future.
This whole Vaseline thing on the side of the broadcast booth is getting out of hand. Fans have been banging on the side of the box for years... in fact I don't even hear it anymore. It's just become part of it. They don't slap the side to "diss" the opposing broadcaster. They do it to make noise. I don't even think they know what box they're pounding on. For all they know it could be the WHL stats people up there. I think Roddy thinks they do it because of "him". Not so. Sorry to say Roddy, it isn't about you, and I've told you that. I do see how it could be annoying though. Can you even hear it over the airwaves? . With the horn and the siren and everything else going on I think it's doubtful. If anything it can rattle the nerves I guess. Our fans are harmless... unless provoked. If it does go back to Swifty for game six. Nothing will happen. Although I do suggest Roddy check his chair, doorknob, side of the walls, etc. haha.
Watch for the Prairie Post today. George Bowditch will have an article on his Regina experience. We'll see what he has to say.
I feel like I've lost my life! I misplaced my cell phone and I can't find it anywhere. It just becomes an extension of your hand after awhile. I remember receiving a text at about 11:30pm after game four and then.... who knows. I've called it a hundred times to no avail. I think the battery is dead. It's not the phone or the inconvenience of going without, it's the 300 contact names and numbers of friends, family, WHL contacts, former Broncos, NHL contacts and other media. I'll give it to Saturday to show up. Maybe I was due for an upgrade anyways.
Game five tonight... we're on the air with the Big Show at 6:30pm, play-by-play at 7pm. Enjoy the weekend. Remember game six Sunday!