There’s not much doubt that Kevin Koe of Calgary deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as the likes of Kevin Martin and Randy Furbey when it comes to being one of the greatest Brier Skips of all time. Last night in Brandon, Koe captured his fourth Tankard trophy with a 4-3 win over Provincial rival Brendan Bottcher of Edmonton — now zero for the last two years in the Brier final after losing to Brad Gushue in 2018. Bottcher was just a tad heavy on his final shot as he tried to draw to the tee line. And that opened the door for Koe to execute a double hit — and stick around as second shot rock for the game winning deuce.
The Calgary skip says this particular victory had a special meaning for a couple of reasons in that it was the first Brier win for rink mates B.J. Neufeld and Colton Flasch. And it will also provide Koe with the first chance he’s had to curl in the World Men’s Championship in front of Canadian fans. This year’s event gets underway on Saturday, March 30th in Lethbridge.
The Winnipeg Jets certainly played well enough to take three out of four on their week long road trip which ended last night in Washington- but they had to settle for a split after losing 3-1 to the defending Stanley Cup Champs who have now reeled off seven straight wins. Winnipeg outshot the Capitals 34-18, and that was reflective of the territorial advantage the Jets had. But Mathieu Perrault’s first-period goal was all that the visitors could get past Phoenix Copley — not including Bryan Little’s disallowed goal midway through the third. Jets now have three home games this week — also against a trio of Cup contenders as they host San Jose, Boston, and then Calgary.
The Flames regained first place in the West — one point up on the Sharks — with a 6-3 win at home versus Vegas as Matthew Tkachuk scored a hat trick. Boston lost outright for the first time since Jan.19 when they dropped a 4-2 decision in Pittsburgh. The LA Kings edged the rival Anaheim Ducks 3-2, and Fliorida bombed Detroit 6-1 in the other games.
Michael Spacek scored in overtime and Mikhail Berdin made 32 saves as the Manitoba Moose completed a weekend sweep of Rockford with a 2-1 win and remain four points back of Texas for a playoff spot in the AHL Central Division. And the Stars will be here for a doubleheader starting on Wednesday.
The Winnipeg Blues are down two games to none in their MJHL first round best of seven series versus Steinbach after losing 6-4 at home to the Pistons last night. Portage, Swan Valley, and Virden are also leading their series 2-0.
It will be the St. Paul’s Crusaders and the Sturgeon Heights Huskies in tonight’s Provincial High School Hockey championship final at 6:30 p.m. at the Bell MTS Iceplex. Sturgeon Heights is looking to sweep both titles after a dramatic win over Garden City in the third and deciding game of last month’s Winnipeg High School Hockey Championship series.
The first round of negotiations for a new Canadian Football League Collective Bargaining agreement get underway today in Toronto. The current CBA expires on May 15.
The Toronto Raptors tied a franchise record with 21-three point buckets in a 125-104 win at Miami.
Blue Jays rookie shortstop Bo “The Flow” Bichette smacked a pair of homers in a 10-1 exhbition rout of Minnesota. Toronto now with eight straight wins to tie Philadelphia for the best Grapefruit league record at 9-6.
You have to wonder about Tampa Bay. Yes the Rays are a budget team. But the decision to renew the contract of AL Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell with a raise of $15,500 to just under $574,000 is flat out cheap.
“The Rays have the right under the collective-bargaining agreement to renew me at or near the league-minimum salary,” Snell said. “They also have the ability to more adequately compensate me, as other organizations have done with players who have similar achievements to mine.”
Read between the lines and you can bet the Rays are going to pay when Snell is arbitration eligible. And he’ll either be traded, or will sign elsewhere as a free agent when that time comes. Things like this, players don’t tend to forget.
Bianca Andreescu is on to round four of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells, California — needing just 56 minutes to put away Stephanie Voegele of Switzerland in straight sets. Denis Shapovalov won his second round match on the men’s side.
And British Open Champ, Francisco Molinari rolled in a 45 foot birdie putt on 18 — with the flagstick sill in the cup — to cap off an 8-under-64, and overcome a five-stroke deficit going into the final round of the Arnie Palmer Invitational at Bayhill in Orlando.