Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Trolling Replacement Refs

Don’t you hate it when you have a problem that’s causing you some serious grief and someone tries to make you feel better by letting you know that things could be worse?

So do I, but if you’re a hockey fan looking for some “lockout sympathy” from a football fan, that person may be correct this ONE time.

You see, while the NHL has locked out its players, the NFL has done something that might even be a bit more damaging to the game: they’ve locked out the referees. If you haven’t watched any football yet this season, you’re probably wondering what the big deal is…but if you have, you know exactly what I’m talking about: the replacement refs are brutal & things are getting very interesting!

If you missed Monday Night Football this week, the Seattle Seahawks beat the Green Bay Packers on a last-second Hail Mary into the end zone that appeared to be intercepted, confusing the two refs on the scene, who both called the play differently. What followed was a total mess, but it was also the most fun I’ve EVER had on Twitter!

Between the funny tweets from fans and the NSFW tweets from guys like TJ Lang, Jermichael Finley and Josh Sitton of the Packers, I actually started to enjoy the replacement refs...then I started to realize that maybe they’ve been around this whole time and we just didn’t notice them.

I did a bit of digging and as it turns out, they’ve actually been a part of some of the biggest controversies and conspiracies in recent US history, like the Muhammad Ali “phantom punch” in 1965:

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A few years later, the replacement refs turned up again to dispute the lunar landing, flagging Neil Armstrong for zero gravity pass interference, a call that was later overturned by an intergalactic review panel:

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Following that debacle, the replacement refs decided to lay low for a while, but surfaced again in May of 2003 on the USS Abraham Lincoln:

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Now that they’re in the spotlight though, the replacement refs can’t seem to get enough face time – here they are trying to take away Blue Jays ace Ricky Romero’s first win since June!

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The crazy thing is, you might know a replacement ref and not even realize it! It turns out my water bottle has been contacted about filling in, and I caught it studying the NFL website & watching game tapes just the other day:

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If you’re not quite convinced that I had an absolute blast with this story on Monday, here’s an example of some of the fun I had on the air at the expense of the replacement refs:



I can’t wait for week four to start on Thursday!

15 Minutes of Fame

Happy Tuesday!

This week on 15MOF, we discuss a chance encounter between Geoff & the NHL’s deputy commissioner and the latest lockout news, a potentially embarrassing situation for the NHL coming up in January and the new fighting rules in the OHL. Also: The Eskimos continue to struggle, more developments in the NFL bounty situation, Manny Pacquiao changes his mind on Mayweather & the Edmonton Indy gets turfed.

In the GABBYs: Jose Reyes, Max Talbot & Bruno Gervais, Old Navy, Joshua Morgan, replacement refs and crazy soccer fans. The Punchline this week is the Bakersfield Condors!


See something you think should be a GABBY? You can get a hold of us on Twitter @15MinutesYEG, “Like” us on Facebook or shoot us an email at 15MinutesYEG@gmail.com!

For last week's episode, click here. Thanks for watching!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Oilers arena talks get testy

When it comes to hockey, fans in Edmonton have more than just the lockout to worry about these days.

If and when a new CBA is reached and the NHL returns to rinks across North America, it's a given that the Edmonton Oilers will once again hit the ice at Rexall Place. Beyond that though, the future of the team in the City of Champions is at least a bit up in the air.

It's overly premature to say that the Oilers are on the way out, but without an agreement on a new downtown arena, that might just be the case.

Things have been getting a bit testy between the city and the Katz Group lately, starting with a request from the group last week for more public money for the proposed development. That request was turned down, information about it was leaked to the media and this week, the rarely heard from owner of the Oilers decided to speak up.

"The information was part of a confidential, ongoing negotiation and a confidential briefing to council," Katz told 630 CHED's Oilers Now. "It didn't come from us, so you have to ask really, who leaked it and what they were trying to do by facilitating such a leak."

The good news is that both sides are still committed to getting a deal done and both say they're hopeful that an agreement can eventually be reached. The bad news is that without a new downtown rink, the Katz Group says the Oilers likely won't be able to stay in Edmonton. Katz said on Tuesday that public money is key to this project and pointed to recent history to try and prove his point.

"There's only one NHL arena in Canada built entirely with private funding that hasn't been a disaster, and that's the ACC in Toronto, where they have Canada's largest media market and both an NHL and an NBA team," explained Katz. "Everyone else has lost their shirts, their buildings and their teams, so this has to be a private-public partnership."

"What matters here is whether we can come to an agreement on a partnership deal that will enable Edmonton to sustain the Oilers for the long term, secure the arena, and deliver all these great things for the benefit of all Edmontonians."

Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel is denying that any leaked information came from his side and is calling on the Katz Group to come to City Hall and release its full position to the public. In a statement released on Tuesday, Mandel said the city is at a "significant crossroads" and having the Katz Group clarify its position is the only way to move things along.

While it might sound like things are heading in the wrong direction here, there are definitely some things to keep in mind: first of all, both sides will absolutely benefit from this project going ahead and it genuinely sounds like they both want to make it happen. Secondly, this whole thing could easily be chalked up as nothing more than a normal part of the negotiation process, with both sides doing whatever they can to get the best deal.

Now, I'm no genius (not even close, actually), but if you want to know what I think will happen going forward, here it is:

The city will meet with the Katz Group soon, the two sides will go back and forth a bit before getting on the same page with a few concessions made on each end, and then a rink that is slightly more expensive than the agreed upon $450-million price tag will be built. I think both sides know that they will live to regret it if they let this slip away, and that will be one of the motivating factors for getting a deal done in the near future.

Then again, what do I know?

What do you think: Will the Oilers get a new rink, or will they be forced to skip town when the lease at Rexall Place expires in 2014?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

15 Minutes of Fame

Happy Tuesday!

This week on 15 Minutes of Fame we get into NHL lockout mode, discuss players heading off to Europe & the big contracts handed down pre-lockout and take a look at a disappointing loss by the Edmonton Eskimos on the weekend.

In the GABBYs: the Baltimore Orioles, Shannon Eastin, JJ Watt, Panama soccer, Napoli and the Denver Broncos. The Punchline this week is the Memphis Grizzlies!


See something you think should be a GABBY? You can get a hold of us on Twitter @15MinutesYEG, “Like” us on Facebook or shoot us an email at 15MinutesYEG@gmail.com!

For last week's episode, click here. Thanks for watching!

Monday, September 10, 2012

15 Minutes of Fame

Happy Monday!

This week on the show we look at the latest Edmonton Eskimos news, check out what's happening between the NHL & the NHLPA, plus some notes from around the league and the latest on the NFL bounty scandal.

In the GABBYs: Gabriel Landeskog, Sarah Crilly, Manchester United, the Maple Leafs, Paul Ryan and the MLB. The Punchline this week is a school district in Colorado.


See something you think should be a GABBY? You can get a hold of us on Twitter @15MinutesYEG, “Like” us on Facebook or shoot us an email at 15MinutesYEG@gmail.com!

For last week's episode, click here. Thanks for watching!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

15 Minutes of Fame


Happy Tuesday!

This week on the show we look at what has stalled talks between the NHL and the NHLPA, the Taylor Hall & Jordan Eberle contracts, a recap of the Labour Day Classic between the Eskimos & the Stampeders, an interesting story from the Paralympics and the Stephen Strasburg situation in the MLB.

In the GABBYs: EA Sports, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Joey Chestnut, Penn State, the Little League World Series and Charl Schwartzel. The Punchline this week is the Toronto Maple Leafs!


See something you think should be a GABBY? You can get a hold of us on Twitter @15MinutesYEG, “Like” us on Facebook or shoot us an email at 15MinutesYEG@gmail.com!

For last week's episode, click here. Thanks for watching!