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Blue Jackets’ Laine the big winner in latest post-trade battle against Dubois, Jets



WINNIPEG — Patrik Laine took a much more casual approach to his second game back in Winnipeg, combining his trademark sense of humour while downplaying the importance of facing his former teammates.

Pierre-Luc Dubois hardly recognizes the roster of the Columbus Blue Jackets team he left in that blockbuster trade from January of 2021.

In this latest battle of those involved in the blockbuster deal, all three players involved found the scoresheet and made a contribution, with Laine scoring twice and just missing out on a hat trick (hitting the post and having Blake Wheeler make a kick save with the Winnipeg Jets net empty in favour of an extra attacker) in what would become a 4-1 victory for the visitors.

Jack Roslovic also played an inspired game, chipping in an assist and blocking three shots while Dubois scored the lone goal for the Jets, who had a three-game winning streak snapped and fell to 14-7-1 on the season as they prepare to welcome the Anaheim Ducks to town on Sunday afternoon.


The temptation when these two franchises get together is to get out the measuring stick, not for how it was used earlier this week when the Jets earned a decisive victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Colorado Avalanche, but to try and get a handle on where things stand when it comes to the trade that altered the future of these two franchises.

In this hot-take society, we are often far too quick to declare the winners and the losers, looking for any sort of edge that is to be gained by one side or the other.

The truth is that weighing in before the future of Dubois is determined leaves the picture incomplete.

The Blue Jackets certainly have an edge in one department, since Laine signed a four-year extension worth $34.8 million (and carrying an AAV of $8.75 million), something he conceded was a huge weight lifted off his shoulders earlier in the day.

“Yeah, it helps. At least I don’t have to answer those stupid questions for the next couple years, so that’s kind of off the table now. So I’m happy about that,” said Laine, who has been limited to nine games this season because of a pair of injuries. “Still got to do the same job, still got to prepare the same way whether you’re playing for a contract or have one in your pocket. Still got to work the same way. But I think it just gives you a bit more freedom. People always say don’t think about it. But it’s not as easy as it seems. It’s always in the back of your head. So that’s kind of gone now.”

Laine wreaks his revenge to lead Blue Jackets to comfortable win over Jets

Dubois made it clear during the off-season that he had a lot of thinking to do before he was ready to decide whether he was going to make a long-term commitment to the Jets.

But Dubois wasn’t going to be doing a lot of that thinking during the course of the season.

When it comes time to iron out his next contract once the current one-year pact expires, he will deal with most of the particulars.

He was going to focus on growing his game and he’s done just that through 22 outings.

For the record, Dubois has done nothing but raise his value for negotiations on his next contract.

He’s producing at nearly a point-per-game rate (11 goals, 21 points in 22 games) while sitting near the top of the league leaders in penalties drawn.

When it comes to his own game, Dubois is a hard marker.

He appreciates the strides he’s taking, while always searching for other areas to improve or augment.

“Yeah. I’ve said this a lot in the past. The player that I want to become, the player I know I can become, I think it takes time,” said Dubois. “It will keep taking time. I don’t think I’m there, either. When I sit next to (Cole) Perfetti, I feel old, but when I sit next to other guys, I’m still young. I feel like I’m getting to where I want to be, but there are still a lot of steps to learn, still a lot of things I can do better, especially as a centreman. It can be a complicated position if you want to perfect it. I really want to get to the level where I feel I am the player I know I can become. I’ll only get there with hard work and the help of everybody in this organization.

“Especially defensively, the play without the puck, it’s a lot of systems, it’s less creativity with the puck than more creativity. Without the puck, it’s more reads and anticipation. That’s the hard part of the game. You really see some of the guys, the best two-way players in the league, they’re at their eighth, ninth, 10th season. For some guys, it’s obviously a little bit earlier, but it’s hard. I know I can do a better job at that. I’m somebody that’s never fully happy with how my game is and that’s definitely an area I know I can clear up and develop.”

One of the things Dubois clearly wanted to figure out this season was where he fit with incoming head coach Rick Bowness.

The early returns on that front are obvious. Bowness trusts Dubois and believes he can be an impact player for a long time.

Fellow pivot Mark Scheifele loves what Dubois has done in helping the Jets have that one-two punch on the top two lines that is rounded out by Adam Lowry and David Gustafsson.

That’s part of the reason GM Kevin Cheveldayoff pulled the trigger on this deal and paid a premium to get it done.

“He’s a guy that is powerful, skates well, strong, good hands, good in tight, he does it all,” said Scheifele. “He’s a tough guy to play against when he has the puck on his stick and when he has it down low. When I played against him, he was still a young buck. He’s grown before our very eyes. He works at his game. He comes in and he has that edge to him that everyone loves, and opponents hate. He’s a guy that gets into the dirty areas, gets to the net, has great hands in tight.

“When he has the puck down low, he’s pretty impossible to take off the puck. That’s why he draws so many penalties, that’s why teams get a stick in there, holding, whatever it is. When he’s doing that, it makes our team pretty lethal.”

But will it be the long-term fit for the Jets, since both Scheifele and Dubois are eligible to become unrestricted free agents in the summer of 2024?

That’s why there’s a pronounced sense of urgency when it comes to the results for the Jets this season.

As much as the Jets fan base is enjoying this organization battling for top spot in the Central Division, how things progress on the contract front with Dubois is a question that could ultimately determine how the trade is viewed in the future.

As for the present, the Jets came up with an effort that was not up to the standard they’ve established in the first quarter of the campaign.

“We had a lot of bad performances from a lot of players in that room. We did. The team game kind of went out the window at times, defensively. We gave them those goals on terrible coverage that we normally cover very well,” said Bowness, who was asked if his team had a letdown after an emotional victory over the Avalanche earlier this week

“It shouldn’t. It shouldn’t. Listen, we’re in a dogfight to make the playoffs. Every game is important. I don’t care who we play. Like I said this morning, we set the standard of how we’re going to play, regardless of who we play. And as I told them after the game, it’s on every individual to look at yourself first. Don’t look at anything else. Look at yourself first and foremost.”

Bowness was adamant this was just one of those rough nights that teams have over the course of an 82-game season.

He expects his group to respond and you can understand why he would feel that way, since the Jets won three consecutive games — all within the Central Division — after a listless performance against the Minnesota Wild nine days ago.

With Friday marking the start of a stretch 16 games in 30 days, the Jets don’t have much choice — not if they want to remain in this chase to remain one of the top teams in the division and the entire Western Conference.

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A Look At Today’s Best Live Dealer Online Casino Games



Online Casino Games

Some of the most popular games you can play at fully licensed online casinos today are live dealer games, such as Live Dealer Roulette, Live Dealer Blackjack, TV Game Show-themed live dealer games, and Live Dealer Slots. Here is a closer look at some of the best live dealer games from three leading software providers – Evolution Gaming, Pragmatic Play, and OnAir Entertainment.

All of these state-of-the-art live dealer games are now available to play in the real money mode at a fully licensed online casino called Lucky Spins Canada, which is free to sign up to and is currently offering all new Canadian players up to 500 FREE SPINS for Play’n GO’s iconic Book of Dead online slot, plus a 100% matching deposit bonus worth up to C$500.

Top 10 Live Dealer Games in the Spotlight

Here are ten of the best live dealer casino games that you must check out. These games have wide betting ranges that cater to low rollers and high rollers alike (and pretty much all other betting ranges in between low rollers and high rollers), and you can often play one round/hand/spin from as little as C$0.10 to C$0.50 up to C$1,000.00 or more.

The top ten live dealer games from Evolution Gaming, Pragmatic Play, OnAir Entertainment,, Ezugi, and eBET that you must check out include the following mixture of live table & card games, live slots, and television game show live dealer games:

  • Live PowerUp Roulette from Pragmatic Play
  • Live Andar Bahar from Ezugi
  • Live Teen Patti from Ezugi
  • Live XXXtreme Lightning Roulette from Evolution Gaming
  • Live Crazy Coin Flip from Evolution Gaming
  • MONOPOLY Live from Evolution Gaming
  • Live Wheel of Fortune from
  • Live Airwave Roulette from OnAir Entertainment
  • Live Black Sports Arena from OnAir Entertainment
  • Bet On Poker Live from

How old do I have to be to play live casino games?

To play live dealer games at online casinos, such as Lucky Spins, you generally need to be at least 18 years old. However, always check because, in some regions where online gambling is legal, it could be 21 or 20 years old.

What devices can I play live dealer games from?

You can play live dealer games from all of the providers mentioned above using either a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer. Just make sure that it has decent Wi-Fi or internet connectivity. Most games can be launched instantly in your web browser, plus you also generally have the option to download and install a free casino app directly onto your smartphone or tablet and then play from within the secure app.

What to remember when playing for real money

When playing for real money, don’t forget to set deposit limits where possible. Don’t ever chase your losses because it may result in you losing even more money, and don’t gamble just for the sake of it. Try and have fun, and always remember to gamble responsibly. Gambling is meant to be fun, so if you aren’t having fun anymore, it might be a good idea to take a break from gambling for a while.

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Gambling in Ireland vs. Canada



Regulation of Online Gambling in Ontario: The Fight Against Black-Market Operators Continues

Gambling has traditionally played a significant role in Irish society. Naturally, the advancement of technology has changed how Irish gamblers conduct their business. Because of cell phones, placing bets is now simpler than ever (You could check here for a few trustworthy ones). However, Irish individuals must be cognizant of the country’s licensing laws.

Irish gamers can wager on bingo, lotteries, casino games, poker, sports, and more about the regulated and licensed gambling websites, making internet gambling in Ireland a multi-million-dollar business. This is not so dissimilar from the humongous gambling industry in Canada. For the past couple of years, gambling practices have been on the rise in Canada. So in today’s article, we’ll be looking at how gambling has fared in Ireland vs. Canada.



According to the most recent statistics from Ireland from 2022, approximately half of the Irish population (49%) partakes in gambling, while its estimated prevalence for gambling addiction is 0.3%, meaning there are 12,000 problem gamblers in Ireland. Since only a small percentage of those with an issue with betting seek treatment, there is a need to try and understand Irish gambling behavior and treatment adoption.


According to industry statistics, Irish gamblers ended up losing over €1.36 billion the year before last, or around €300 on average for every person, ranking them as the fourth-largest gamblers throughout the EU. According to industry researchers H2 Gambling Capital, Ireland places 14th internationally for the biggest median gambling losses, comfortably ahead of the UK but behind Sweden (€325 per adult), Malta (€334), and Finland (€342).

Revenue rose €51.9 million in conventional betting duty revenues and €40.6 million in online betting receipts in 2019, almost twice as much as the corresponding amounts from the preceding year ($28.9 million & €21.7 million, respectively). Sports betting is the most well-liked online form of gambling, comprising over 41% of the industry and bringing in €10 billion in 2019, claims the European Gaming and Betting Association.

Instead of using desktop computers, over 44% of all internet wagers are placed from a phone or tablet. By 2025, it is anticipated that approximately 6 out of 10 online wagers will be placed using mobile devices. Despite representing just 1.1% of the total population, Ireland generates 2.6% of Europe’s online gambling market in terms of revenue, according to the H2 data.




Like many other nations, Canada has a large gambling industry. The majority of gamblers don’t suffer any consequences, but a small percentage will. The number of gambling options in Canada has grown over the years, and new gambling innovations like online poker & sports betting have increased the significance of more thorough and ongoing oversight.

A study used information from the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) to assess gambling and gambling-related issues among adults aged 15 and over. Those who may be at risk of developing a problem with gambling are identified using a Problem Gambling Index. This evaluates problem gambling behavior and the effects of that behavior on the individual or others.

Of the 18.9 million Canadians aged 15 and over, nearly two-thirds (64.5%) reported betting in the previous year, & 1.6% of those gamblers were exposed to a substantial risk of gambling-related issues. Men were more prone than women to file gambling in the previous year across all age categories. Additionally, men were more likely to have a relatively high risk of developing gambling-related issues.

Though they were more prone to developing gambling problems, people in lower social households were less inclined to wager than those of relatively high-earning households.


For instance,


  • 1% of Canadians at significantly higher risk for gambling issues were among the 71.5% of those living in higher-earning households who reported betting in the last year.
  • 8% of people from low-income families gambled in the preceding year, and 2.7% of them were at moderate to high risk for developing gambling addictions.


The likelihood of gambling-related issues rose with the quantity of casino games played.

In the multivariate analyses, the majority of factors, such as engaging in various gambling activities, living single (or separated or divorced), being unmarried, and possessing poor or fair mental well-being, remained independently related to gambling problems.

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Canada Soccer has hit the big time with coach John Herdman



John Herdman, Head Coach of Canada, reacts during a press conference at the Main Media Center on Nov. 30, during the World Cup in Doha, Qatar.Mohamed Farag/Getty Images

In every team’s final news conference at a World Cup, it’s tradition to ask the head coach if he plans to stick around.

Someone threw it up at Canadian national men’s coach John Herdman following this country’s measured success in Qatar.

Herdman gave a meandering answer of 1 minute 15 seconds that ended this way: “[Belgian assistant coach] Thierry Henry told me this team played [Belgium] off the park. I’ll take that. Because if that’s our foundation? We’ve got a great four years ahead, and I can’t wait to get after it.”

Though that reply didn’t contain the crucial word, people took it for a “yes.” Because what else would it be?


Few coaches in the world have a gig this sweet. Herdman is such a big fish in Canada’s soccer pond that he essentially runs the program. He’s got a guaranteed spotlight in the next World Cup, which Canada will be in by virtue of being a co-host. He’s still young (47), says he loves living here and is signed for the long term.

Maybe he’d like to coach at a sexier program in Europe. Wouldn’t anyone in his position?

But with that caveat, from the outside looking in, Canada is a great job. It wasn’t always, but Herdman (with a major assist from Alphonso Davies’s parents) turned it into one.

Which makes it curious that reports out of New Zealand on Wednesday claimed that Herdman was about to be appointed the coach of that country’s men’s national team.

In a report from the NewsHub network, Herdman was described as “the clear top pick” for the job. To hear this story tell it, it was just a matter of fussing with details.

Canada is the 53rd-ranked team in the world and on the rise. New Zealand is 105th and just barely treading water. New Zealand is Canada 10 years ago, and not in a fun, preinflation sort of way.

A complicating factor – Herdman’s son, Jay, plays for New Zealand’s under-19 national team. An even more complicated one – money. Some people love their job, but everyone loves money.

That said, judged from the perspective of social capital, the New Zealand job is not a promotion. It’s not even a lateral move. It’s trading the big leagues for the bush leagues.

So what’s going on? Does Herdman want out of Canada? And if so, why? Does he want more money? Is he a secret Lord of the Rings superfan?

This is what happens when a story like this is loosed into the world and not recaptured immediately – people begin to wonder all sorts of fantastical things.

As usual, whenever a story about it is breaking, Canada Soccer was caught in a blank stare on Wednesday morning. It wasn’t until early afternoon that an official denial was put together.

Three people commented in that statement – Herdman, Canada Soccer general secretary Earl Cochrane and Canada Soccer president Nick Bontis.

Bontis affirmed the “full confidence” of the board in Herdman, which is weird. He just took Canada to its first World Cup in 40 years. Why wouldn’t the board have confidence in him?

Cochrane noted first and foremost that Herdman is under contract until after the 2026 World Cup, which is also weird. That’s not news.

Herdman was unequivocal: “I’m not going anywhere.” But he also felt the need to mention that he’s got “several offers” recently, including one from New Zealand, which is super weird. If you’re happy where you are, why do so many people think you aren’t? And why do you feel the need to share that information?

Another oddity – no one mentioned anything about the story out of New Zealand being wrong. Actually, none of them mentioned the story at all.

If there were no truth to any of this, all that was required was a straight denial. That should have taken 15 minutes to put together.

Instead, it took hours to wrangle all the top decision-makers at Canada Soccer to patch up a complex, interwoven, multiperson denial. That has the whiff of an organization protesting o’ermuch.

So no fire, but plenty of smoke and lots of time left to sit around doing a paranoid arson investigation.

Nothing has come of this little fizzle, but something’s coming. That’s how this works. Not always, but often enough to make it a rule. It’s just a matter of figuring when, where, who and how it can hurt the most.

Can the Canadian men’s program survive without Herdman? Of course it can. Every graveyard is full of indispensable men, but none are as chock-a-block as the crypts of sports. Herdman’s done the hard work of stitching the Canadian team into a unit. All the next person has to do is hold that group together until 2026.

A better question is can the men’s team thrive if we’re going to spend the next three years trying to figure out when John Herdman is leaving, and where he’s going, and who’s to blame for that, and what does Alphonso Davies think about that, and why is Canada Soccer always like this, and exactly how long is a regulation pitchfork?

Those questions are a lot more interesting, and the people who care about them – it’s a small group, but it’s growing – will spill barrels of virtual ink interrogating them.

Uncertainty is an enemy of successful sports organizations, and intrigue is its accelerant. From player strikes to spats over pay to people rubbishing the organization after they’ve left, Canada Soccer has always had these twin weaknesses much worse than most. The difference is that now people have started paying attention.

At the very least, making the World Cup in Qatar was supposed to graduate Canada out of this high school state of affairs. Canada was a big-timer now, with a big-time coach with big-time plans. Well, I hope Canada Soccer is happy. Because now it has a big-time HR headache, and shouting at people that you feel fine, fine, totally fine is not going to make them believe you.


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