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Last-second field goal gives Stamps thrilling win over Roughriders – TSN

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REGINA — Rene Paredes saved his best for last as the Calgary Stampeders defeated the Saskatchewan Roughriders 22-19 on a last-second field goal Saturday.

Paredes hit on a 44-yard field goal, his fifth of the game, on the final play of the fourth quarter to give Calgary the victory. Paredes initially hit from 39 yards out but an illegal procedure penalty on the Stampeders forced a second attempt.

“I’ve never played with a better kicker,” Stamps quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell said of Paredes. “He’s the guy that every time, I just know that if I can get us anywhere close enough – no matter how far, left or right hash – he’s going to put it right down the middle.

“He’s won me a lot of games in my career.”

It was the second straight victory over the Riders for the Stampeders, who picked up a 23-17 victory last week in Calgary. The win improves Calgary’s record to 4-5 while the Riders drop to 5-4.

It was a tough loss for the Riders who will now go on a bye week before travelling to Calgary on Oct. 23 to finish their regular-season series with the Stampeders.

“We knew we had to win two out of three,” said Craig Dickenson, Saskatchewan’s head coach. “We didn’t have to but we wanted to. If we could win two out of three, we put Calgary behind the eight-ball with them on the outside looking in. Now it’s the opposite. They’re right on our tail now which makes every game that much more important down the stretch.”

The Stampeders started their final drive on their own 41-yard line with one minute on the clock. Two receptions from Nick Holley mixed in with three runs from Ka’Deem Carey totalling 19 yards put the Stampeders into position for the game-winning field goal.

Carey, who was a game-time decision because of a back issue, had a strong game with 109 yards rushing on 20 carries. The Riders knew exactly what they were facing with Carey, who is making a name for himself with a physical running style.

“He’s physical as hell and you’ve got to want to tackle him,” said Riders defensive tackle Micah Johnson. “If you don’t, he’s going to expose you. He’s a big guy, he’s gets north and south fast. You’ve got to make up in your mind that you want to hit him. If you don’t, he can feel that.”

The Stamps, who ran out to a 14-0 lead in last week’s victory over the Riders, had another great start on Saturday.

Mitchell connected with Markeith Ambles on a 71-yard touchdown pass on the first offensive play of the game. Ambles was wide open on the right sideline, hauled in the pass at the Saskatchewan 30-yard line and ran away from Riders defensive back Christian Campbell to the end zone.

Mitchell put up the same stellar numbers in the first quarter, completing 6-of-8 passes for 132 yards and one touchdown.

Trailing 10-3 in the second quarter, the Riders tied the game on a 14-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Cody Fajardo to Ricardo Louis. Catching a short pass along the sideline at the Calgary eight-yard line, Louis cut back inside to reach the end zone.

Both kickers had two field goals in the first half. Paredes was successful from 19 and 12 yards while Saskatchewan’s Brett Lauther split the uprights from 45 and 52 yards. Lauther also chipped in with two special team tackles in the first half.

The kickers exchanged field goals in third quarter. Paredes put Calgary ahead 16-13 with a 27-yarder. Lauther replied with an 18-yard field goal to tie the game 16-16.

The Riders took their first lead of the game early in the fourth quarter following a Nick Marshall interception. Marshall jumped a crossing route by Stamps receiver Hergy Mayala at the Calgary 35-yard line.

The Saskatchewan offence wasn’t able to advance the ball so Lauther was called upon for his fourth field goal of the game to give the Riders a 19-16 lead.

Calgary drove deep into Saskatchewan territory midway through the fourth quarter with a trick play taking the Stampeders to the 24-yard line. Mitchell handed off to Colton Hunchak on a sweep around the left end only to have Hunchak pull up and toss a pass to Josh Huff for a 36-yard gain.

Two plays later Mitchell threw his second interception of the game. He overthrew Henry with Riders safety Loucheiz Purifoy catching the ball on the three-yard line and taking it to the Saskatchewan 28.

Paredes matched Lauther with his fourth field goal of the game, hitting from 43 yards out to tie the game 19-19 with 3:32 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Mitchell finished 20-for-28 passing for 296 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. Fajardo was 20 for 31 for 191 yards and one touchdown.

The Stampeders totalled 422 net yards on offence with 22 first downs while the Riders gained 244 yards of net offence with 13 first downs.

Johnson, A.C. Leonard and Pete Robertson had sacks for the Riders while Mike Rose had two sacks for Calgary.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 9, 2021.

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Hall of Famer Mike Bossy reveals lung cancer battle – Toronto Sun

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Hockey Hall of Famer Mike Bossy has been diagnosed with lung cancer.

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Bossy, 64, announced his illness on Tuesday in an open letter in French on TVA Sports’ website. He is stepping away from his analyst job at TVA Sports, with whom he has worked since 2015.

“Today it is with sadness that I must retire from your screens for a mandatory break,” Bossy wrote in French. “A necessary break during which I will have to receive treatment for lung cancer.

“I can tell you that I intend to fight with the determination and the enthusiasm that you have seen me display on the ice and in my game. That same determination that helped me achieve my dreams and my goals, the one that propelled me to the top of my sport, when I still put on my skates.”

The NHL acknowledged Bossy’s battle on its publc relations account on Twitter: “The @NHL family is with you, Mike Bossy.”

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A four-time Stanley Cup winner with the New York Islanders (1980-83), Bossy recorded 1,126 points (573 goals, 553 assists) in 752 career games. The eight-time All-Star spent his entire 10-season NHL career with the Islanders.

Bossy won the 1978 Calder Memorial Trophy as the NHL rookie of the year, and the 1982 Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player of the playoffs. He also was a three-time Lady Byng Memorial Trophy recipient (1982-83, 1983-84, 1985-86).

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A chronic back injury forced Bossy to retire following the 1986-87 season. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1991.

“The battle I am about to wage will not be easy,” Bossy wrote. “Know that I will give my 100 percent, nothing less, with the objective of meeting you again soon, after a very eventful hockey game. You will never be very far in my thoughts. On the contrary, you will occupy a privileged place and you will be one of my motivations to get better.”

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Raptors Notes: Boucher, Roster, Nurse, Tax – hoopsrumors.com

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After missing the entire preseason due to a dislocated finger, Raptors big man Chris Boucher has been cleared to return for the team’s regular season opener, writes Lori Ewing of The Canadian Press (link via The Toronto Star).

Boucher had a breakout year in 2020/21, averaging 13.6 PPG, 6.7 RPG, and 1.9 BPG in 60 games (24.2 MPG). He’s expected to once again play a regular role in the Raptors’ frontcourt this season before becoming eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2022.

“My whole career, my whole time in Toronto, nothing has been promised … I had to work for everything, I see it the same way this year,” Boucher said of his mindset in a contract year, per Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca (Twitter link). “… At the end of the day I gotta be consistent, that’s the one remaining thing I gotta focus on.”

Here’s more on the Raptors:

  • Toronto’s roster, which is heavy on long, versatile forwards, is unlikely any group the franchise has put together in its 27 years of existence, opines Doug Smith of The Toronto Star. As Smith observes, 11 of the Raptors’ 15 players on standard contracts have listed heights of at least 6’7″, but none are taller than 6’9″.
  • Having lost veteran leaders like Kawhi Leonard, Kyle Lowry, and Marc Gasol in recent years, head coach Nick Nurse will be tasked with leading a less experienced group this season, Smith writes for The Toronto Star. While Nurse adjusts his style to accommodate the new-look roster, Fred VanVleet says he’s helping the newcomers adapt to Nurse’s outside-the-box approach to coaching. “He’s a little weird at times, but he won us a championship, so he knows what he’s doing,” VanVleet said.
  • Following the Raptors’ roster cuts on the weekend, Blake Murphy of Sportsnet.ca took an in-depth look at the team’s cap and tax situation and which recently-waived players are – or aren’t – expected to play in the G League with the Raptors 905. Toronto’s team salary is currently above the luxury tax line, but the club still has the flexibility to duck below that line after pushing back the salary guarantee dates for Sam Dekker and Isaac Bonga.

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Raptors reveal starting lineup for season opener vs. Wizards – Yahoo Canada Sports

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After weeks of speculation, we finally know who Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse is using in his starting lineup — at least to start the season.

The Raptors announced Fred VanVleet, Goran Dragic, Scottie Barnes, OG Anunoby and Precious Achiuwa as their starting five for Wednesday’s season-opening game against the Washington Wizards at Scotiabank Arena. It’s not the most surprising lineup, with Dragic beating out Gary Trent Jr. and Achiuwa earning the nod over fellow big men Khem Birch and Chris Boucher.

Rookie Scottie Barnes (4) is starting the season in the Raptors' starting lineup. (Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports)

Rookie Scottie Barnes (4) is starting the season in the Raptors’ starting lineup. (Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports)

The frontcourt doesn’t possess much size, but Barnes, Anunoby and Achiuwa are all long players with plenty of athleticism to boot. That should make for a strong defensive unit, even without a traditional centre.

In VanVleet and Dragic, the Raptors feature a veteran backcourt that can facilitate for teammates and knock down the three-point shot with consistency.

Whether this five-man unit will be the norm going forward or if Toronto will adapt game-to-game based on matchups remains to be seen.

Nurse said he plans to use nine or 10 players in his rotation on opening night, meaning Birch, Trent, Boucher, and Svi Mykhailiuk should all see minutes off the bench.

Boucher was questionable after missing the entire preseason with a dislocated finger, but Nurse confirmed he was available against the Wizards.

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