It's a much needed week off for the Broncos who won't play until Friday night when they host the Regina Pats.
The break will be just as much of a mental one than physical. The boys have played a lot of hockey in February. It's been an absolute grind. The days off will also be good for all those bumps and nagging injuries.
F Matt Tassone may be ready to go by the weekend while D Reece Scarlett will be out a little longer.
The Broncos are stinging from a 3-2 loss last night against Prince Albert (see game recap below). Assistant Coach Tim Kehler was frustrated in our post-game show.
"It's inexplicable," commented Broncos Assistant Coach Tim Kehler on the Eagle 94.1's post-game show.
"You peel some paint (in the dressing room) after 40 minutes and then you get a response for the third. It's very little consolation to come up short in a game we pissed away in a period of play."
Cody Eakin played a great game despite some personal turmoil. Cody's grandfather past away on the weekend. I've been told they were very close. Cody scored and added an assist in the loss and was chosen as the game's 2nd star.
My condolences to the Eakin family.
This isn't a Rider news blog by any stretch of the imagination but running back Wes Cates had some interesting things to say regarding his future with the Riders. He was one of the guest speaker's at the Field of Dreams Sportsmans Dinner Saturday night.
"Technically I'm not a Rider as we speak," said Cates of his free-agent status.
"Hopefully we can get something done and on paper but maybe my time is up. Hopefully not, I've enjoyed my time but you never know."
Cates admitted they contacted the Riders last week but as of Saturday night he hadn't heard anything from them.
Sounds like he's done. In talking to him it just felt like he had played his final game with the Green and White.
Cates did a great job and was very honest with his assessment of Rider players and coaches when he took questions from those in the crowd.
Back to Bronco news now... former Head Coach Randy Smith was our pre-game show guest last night. He had his "AAA" Saskatoon Blazers in town to play the Legionnaires this weekend.
Of course I asked him about his time...and his dismissal after just one season as Head Coach in the 03/04 season.
"It's kind of weird honestly (to be back). When you're here for four years and then come back it's kind of strange to tell you the truth. Not a lot has changed though. It's good to be back. We enjoyed our time here and it's unfortunate that it didn't last a little longer."
Randy was miffed following his 2004 dismissal and didn't have much to say at the time. Now, talking about what happened it appears there are still some unanswered questions.
"The hockey business is a funny game. There is far better coaches than Randy Smith that have lost their jobs, there's far worse coaches that have kept their job. I haven't really spent a lot of time focusing on it. Would I have liked to stay and been given a longer opportunity...of course. I think any coach that leaves somewhere wants to finish that job.
It didn't happen, I don't really know that exact reasons of why and how and what and all that. It ended and I moved on."
I appreciated Randy sitting down for the "60 Minutes" type interview. Randy and Rene Lemire are running the Blazers. It was good to see Rene too. He was always a friendly guy on the WHL circuit when he was with the Warriors.
That's it for me... the blog will be on hiatus for the next eight or nine days. Thanks for checking in from time to time.
Good luck to the guys over the next stretch of games. Hopefully they can turn it around on home ice and get it done this coming weekend against Regina and Vancouver.
Talk to you next week,