Why don’t Canadian broadcasters love the beautiful game?

Being a true football fan in Canada has been a pretty lonely existence

Why don’t Canadian broadcasters love the beautiful game?Thirty-six years ago last week, the Calgary Flames scored one of their most famous triumphs – a 3-2 Game 7 playoff victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Edmonton Oilers. Back then I was sports editor of the Calgary Sun, and that playoff run to the finals (Calgary lost to Montreal in five games) consumed…

Business grad manages all-star performance in school and sports

From penalty kicks to the Academic All-Canadians, Kiera Fujimoto was a clutch player on the soccer pitch and in the classroom

Business grad manages all-star performance in school and sportsThe second-last time former University of Alberta Pandas midfielder Kiera Fujimoto took a penalty kick to decide a meaningful soccer game, she was a member of an under-15 Team Alberta playing in the final of the All-Star National Championship in Ontario. Unfortunately, her miss as the seventh shooter resulted in a loss in the final.…

Recreational sport helps people cope with adversity, study shows

Social support in rec leagues builds confidence and offers a reprieve from negative emotions, researcher finds

Recreational sport helps people cope with adversity, study showsBesides the physical fitness and social benefits of sport, recreational athletes use their sport participation as a way to cope with adverse life events, according to a University of Alberta study. The study could help adult sport associations better market and reshape their leagues to combat shrinking participation rates. “It’s not surprising that these recreational…

Liverpool FC finally grabs Premier League title

Liverpool FC finally grabs Premier League titleYou’ll forgive me if we take a slight detour from politics this week. An important event in sports just occurred that requires some personal attention. On June 25, Liverpool Football Club broke a 30-year drought and clinched the English Premier League title. Yes, this winless streak pales in comparison to the Chicago Cubs (108-year drought)…

Sports is the canary in the COVID-19 coal mine

So when will sports be resumed and how can they play a role in transitioning to normalcy again?

Sports is the canary in the COVID-19 coal mineCanada hasn’t been a trailblazer in much of the response to COVID-19. The federal government has been a day late and a quarantine short on some crucial issues. But in becoming the first major Western nation to completely withdraw from the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Canada has made a bold step. Now, an avalanche…

Short and sweet: pro sports need to pare down the length of games

Fans are staying away from stadiums in great part because the games take too long to play. The new XFL is trying a number of modifications to cut the length of games

Short and sweet: pro sports need to pare down the length of gamesFootball fans have spoken: the games last too damn long. Delays, reviews, timeouts and injuries turn 18 minutes of action into three-plus hours. At least that’s the results of research done for the new XFL, a football league that starts play on Feb. 8, right after the National Football League’s Super Bowl. The startup league…

Coming to grips with the gay reality in sports locker rooms

Professional male sports teams are a cross-section of many cultures. But the idea that they agree about much beyond winning is a fabrication. It's time to open up.

Coming to grips with the gay reality in sports locker roomsOne former pro athlete recently observed that an athlete doesn’t mention three things in the dressing room: His playing time. His salary. And the first name of a teammate’s wife. He might also have added whether your favourite jock likes guys or girls when he gets home from the game that night. This prohibition has…

Call for equal pay for women for equal play falls flat

Let's face it: women's sports are second-tier entertainment, which even most women don't support

Call for equal pay for women for equal play falls flatThe men’s final at Wimbledon on Sunday took five immortal sets of tennis over four hours 57 minutes before Novak Djokovic finally outlasted Roger Federer in a stirring contest that ended in a fifth-set tiebreaker at 13-12. Saturday’s women’s final lasted just 56 minutes in two quick sets for Simona Halep to upset Serena Williams.…

Rapinoe’s quest for ‘justice for all’ is quintessentially American

Many people just want Rapinoe to shut up and play soccer because what she says and does makes them feel uncomfortable

Rapinoe’s quest for ‘justice for all’ is quintessentially AmericanAmerica was built by bold people looking for a better life – for themselves and their brothers and sisters.   That’s all U.S. women’s national team soccer player Megan Rapinoe is doing. She’s simply asking that, as a country, America live up to the last three words of the Pledge of Allegiance: “justice for all.”…

U.S. women’s soccer team fighting battles on and off the field

After years of being the best team in the world, they continue to fight for equal status and respect at home

U.S. women’s soccer team fighting battles on and off the fieldSexism sucks.    And nobody knows that better than the U.S. women’s national soccer team. The current team members, and their predecessors, have been fighting gender discrimination on the part of the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) and the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) for decades. The U.S. national team has been the best women’s…

Tied up in knots over ties in sports

Every sport has a different approach to dealing with games that end in a stalemate, including overtime and skills contests

Tied up in knots over ties in sportsThis year marks the 20th anniversary of the debut of the transcendent TV series The Sopranos. As its creator, David Chase understands better than most that a lousy ending can ruin a lot of the good work. Chase famously used a sudden blackout to conclude the final episode while Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ played in the…

How migrants in search of championships hurt pro sports

Expansion meant salary caps and luxury taxes were necessary to keep teams competitive. But the system has failed players and fans

How migrants in search of championships hurt pro sportsThe problem with giving an athlete all the money he’ll ever need is that he’s going to ask you for something you can’t guarantee – no matter how much money you have. And that’s a championship. As the Erik Karlsson drama demonstrated last week, when an athlete gets all the money he can command, he’ll…

How soccer revitalizes nationalism

It’s difficult to detach the World Cup from patriotism, even among the most disenfranchised of citizens

How soccer revitalizes nationalismThe penetrating question of the 2018 World Cup of soccer is: Why do the large, powerful nations have short national anthems while the smaller countries have ones that go on forever? God Save the Queen (England) is over faster than you can say Bobby Charlton. But songs of Iceland and Peru seem more like six-part…

What businesses can learn from Iceland’s World Cup soccer team

Many times in business, we face competitors who have more talent and money. Rarely do we have a strategy to humble them

What businesses can learn from Iceland’s World Cup soccer teamIceland tied Argentina in a World Cup soccer game last week. It was a David-and-Goliath match. A tiny nation, home to only 300,000 people, against a country more than 100 times as large. On paper, Iceland didn’t stand a chance against the much more experienced, highly professional Argentina, which was led by one of the…

Minor soccer celebrates successful season

‘Soccer continues to thrive in Kindersley thanks in large part to some great support,’ said local club president Darin Wildman

Minor soccer celebrates successful seasonKevin McBain of The Clarion Kindersley Minor soccer wrapped up its season last weekend with a fun round of games. This outdoor season saw 200 boys and girls from under-5 to under-17 participate. President of Kindersley Soccer Incorporated, Darin Wildman, said that it has been a great season. “It has been a great season,” he…