The end of the Rogers Centre is nigh, according to a report in the Toronto Globe and Mail as Rogers Communications is in negotiations to demolish the 31-year-old stadium and build a new one.
The stadium, which opened in 1989, was built as a modern update to the multi-purpose, AstroTurf stadiums of the 1970s. It soon seemed antiquated as the opening of Oriole Park at Camden Yards in 1992 led to a wave of retro, natural grass stadiums being built. SkyDome was the first park to have a fully functional retractable roof (Montreal’s Olympic Stadium also was built with a retractable roof, but, umm, it had … issues), and Mike Lupica once derisively referred to the place as “Disneyland.”
Skydome also featured a Hard Rock hotel in the stadium, which led to it being the only baseball stadium where fans and players could simultaneously circle the bases.
SkyDome featured one of baseball’s most dramatic home runs – Joe Carter’s series-winning blast in 1993 off Mitch Williams. But before that, two fans were seen doing the nasty.
From a 1990 UPI report:
Some baseball fans think the Toronto Blue Jays’ retractable roof SkyDome home should be renamed SexDome after fans watched a couple make love in a hotel suite that overlooks the playing field.Tuesday night, during the team’s 4-3 loss to the Seattle Mariners, those with binoculars could see an older man and a buxom, blond woman having sex in their suite. Although the lights in the suite were off, the couple’s room was illuminated by a bank of television lights in the SkyDome.
The incident Tuesday follows one several weeks ago where a male guest in the hotel, built into the SkyDome itself, masturbated in the window of his suite in front of thousands of Blue Jays fans.
That was not the end of the live sex shows at the SkyDome, renamed the Rogers Centre in 2005. In 1996, during a Blue Jays-Red Sox game, 31,000 fans were treated to what was described as a 30-minute sex show.
“It’s a good thing they finished before the game ended or I don’t think anyone would have seen the game,” Blue Jays first base coach Alfredo Griffin said.
Canadiens’ lack of discipline cost them a winnable game in Vancouver – Habs Eyes on the Prize
Nothing can undo a solid team effort on any given night quite like taking a mountain of penalties that interrupt any sort of offensive push. Against the Edmonton Oilers, the Montreal Canadiens were flawless on the penalty kill, including seven kills during Monday’s game alone. On Wednesday night against the Vancouver Canucks, that lack of discipline, aided by a few questionable calls along the way, ended up being their undoing.
There were seven total penalties called in the game, six on Montreal, and the Canucks scored on three of them. The man advantage is where the Canucks got their work done all night, and Montreal’s lack of discipline played right into that. At even strength the Habs were able to wear down Vancouver, and chip away at their various leads all night, while also converting their lone power-play chance.
Perhaps most frustrating about the Canadiens’ penalty issue is that several of them were mental mistakes, things that are directly on the players’ shoulders in-game. Josh Anderson didn’t have to launch Quinn Hughes into the net after the whistle, or fling the puck out of play while not under pressure. Even Jesperi Kotkaniemi, justified as he may have been, did not have to call out an official to earn an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. These are things that are between the ears. Much like Brendan Gallagher with his dangerous hit against Darnell Nurse on Monday, they have to know and be better out on the ice.
Going seven-for-seven on the penalty kill against the Oilers was a massive stroke of luck for Montreal; you can’t often hand a star-studded team that many chances and not have it come back to bite you. Wednesday night in Vancouver, it took a sizable chunk on several occasions, and it prevented Montreal from taking sole possession of first place in the North Division.
As it stands, Montreal’s even strength play is pretty well unmatched so far this year. To continue taking penalties and preventing their four-line depth from shining is shooting themselves in the foot. Whether the officials are looking at them more closely due to some words out of Toronto, or maybe something else, Montreal needs to clean up their game in a big way. The North Division is going to be a hotly contested battle for playoff spots, and the last thing the Habs want is their own discipline issues giving away points to undeserving teams going forward.
Canadiens @ Canucks game recap: Habs lose a barn burner in Vancouver – Habs Eyes on the Prize
Off to one of their hottest starts in recent memory, the Montreal Canadiens headed to visit their westernmost division foes for the first time this season. The Vancouver Canucks had not enjoyed the same type of start, coming in at 1-3 and badly needing a win to get things going in the other direction.
After getting a with with Jake Allen in Edmonton on Monday, they elected to turn back to Carey Price for the first contest of a back-to-back. Braden Holtby was in line for the Canucks, so one may have expected a lower-scoring affair, but one would have been disappointed if they held such an expectation.
The Habs have had some penalty trouble so far this year, which plagued them again in the first period. They took two minor penalties within the first 11 minutes, with Tomas Tatar and Ben Chiarot taking turns visiting the sin bin. The second of those ended up burning them, as Bo Horvat would get one through Carey Price to make it 1-0 for the home side.
Montreal came out flying to start the second, trying to get the equalizer, and their efforts would be rewarded. Jesperi Kotkaniemi found a wide open Tyler Toffoli at the offensive blueline, and the latter made no mistake tying the game on the breakaway.
But the equalizer was short lived. Jeff Petry jumped into a rush trying to get the lead for his team, and it sent the Canucks on an odd-man rush the other way. Tyler Motte was patient, and ended up beating Price to restore his team’s lead at 2-1.
The Habs finally got their first power play chance of the game shortly after Motte’s goal. They’ve been deadly, and that continued as a gorgeous Nick Suzuki pass permitted Toffoli to get a tap in for his second of the night to make it 2-2.
But shortly thereafter, the officials called an absurd unsportsmanlike penalty on Kotkaniemi for daring to mention to them that they missed two trips by the Canucks. Of course, the Canucks capitalized on this gift from the officials, this time with Brock Boeser again restoring their one goal lead at 3-2.
They’d call yet another absurd holding penalty against Brett Kulak, but Montreal would thankfully kill it off. After that, they were playing angry, and Tomas Tatar came screaming in on the left wing before finding Brendan Gallagher out front for an easy 3-3 goal.
Early in the third, Montreal continued their parade to the penalty box. This time with Josh Anderson being penalized for delay of game, a mistake that cannot be charged to poor officiating. Bo Horvat found the net for his second of the game, and just like that the Canucks were back up 4-3.
Kotkaniemi clearly drew the ire of the refs on that previous unsportsmanlike penalty, as he got clotheslined in the third while one of them stared at it but called nothing. He obviously took that to heart, as he turned up his pressure, and was able to get a deflected shot through Holtby to tie the game at four.
And that lit a real fire for the Canadiens, as they began to put on their best pressure of the game, albeit later than they would have liked. None other than Tyler Toffoli would take the lead for his team, scoring his first hat trick as a member of the Canadiens.
Like all leads in this particular game, however, it was short lived. Boeser unleashed a vicious one-timer to tie the game at five, and solidify this game as a true barn burner. Gallagher came close to getting a very late regulation goal, but alas they would head to some three-on-three action.
Though it was quite the eventful overtime frame, it was all for naught, and they would head to a shootout to decide who would get the extra point. While Nick Suzuki was able to pull off a beautiful deke, it was all the Habs had for Holtby, and the Canucks walked away with the victory with two of their own on Price.
- The unsportsmanlike penalty against Kotkaniemi was terrible. Players chirp the refs all the time for calls and it rarely results in that type of measure, particularly when they did miss two clear trips by Vancouver right before that. That they ignored blatant roughing against Kotkaniemi later in the game suggests they kept his number, which is just flat out unprofessional.
- That being said, not all of the calls were of that absurd variety. For example, Anderson’s delay of game was the third the team has taken in only four games. The Habs need to make a concerted effort to stay out of the box, because as good as the penalty kill has been, last night showed that you can only hold off so many. They can’t afford to be giving opposing teams anywhere from 5 to 8 chances every night.
- Tyler Toffoli has been great, and this game was an example of him finally being rewarded for being in the right places. It felt like through the first few games he was just fighting it, and getting no puck luck. If he keeps being as well positioned as he has been, things will keep happening for him, and he’ll keep making Marc Bergevin look very smart for that acquisition.
- Don’t look now, but Brendan Gallagher is heating up. If you had to pick who would lead the team in goals this year before the season started, most would probably have picked him, and he appears to be finding his groove.
As bad as the officiating was, the Canadiens can’t sit around feeling sorry for themselves, and they shouldn’t. This was easily their worst overall effort of this young season, so even if they deserved better from an officiating standpoint, they didn’t do themselves any favours.
Hopefully the questionable officiating lights a fire under them, as they’ll get a chance to make up for all of this in less than 24 hours, right back in action in Vancouver tonight.
Canadiens @ Canucks Top Six Minutes: Toffoli’s hat trick earns a point – Habs Eyes on the Prize
For our new readers and members, the Top Six Minutes is a continuation of the discussion in the game thread. We try to keep it light and entertaining. Full recaps are up the morning after every game.
- I would love if the Habs won convincingly tonight, but I really fear that that won’t be the case.
- Are they really trying to call Weber and Chiarot the twin towers? Maybe don’t?
- Already on the penalty kill? Really? You couldn’t wait a minute?
- Elias Pettersson is now guaranteed to score.
- I’d be ok with a Suzuki short-handed goal. Make it happen, please.
- That was an extremely high high-stick. But also maybe don’t let them do that again.
- ….hold on… VAN was on the power play, but the only shots in the game belong to the Habs? Yes please.
- That was a fun shift from the Gallagher crew.
- Why do the hockey gods hate Artturi Lehkonen and Tyler Toffoli.
- Please don’t do this again.
- Apparently the Habs have decided that the NHL season is too easy so far, so they’ve decided to make it harder for themselves BY TAKING ENTIRELY TOO MANY PENALTIES.
- And that’s why you really shouldn’t have taken a penalty.
- Lol, whoops, skate malfunction.
- Pretty sure Price didn’t even blink making that save.
- Please go stay in the offensive zone for a while, Montreal.
- One of these days Toffoli will actually hit the net, and it will be glorious.
- Exactly no one is surprised that the probably-for-the-best crackdown on cross-checks in front of the net doesn’t apply to crosschecks on Brendan Gallagher.
- Too many odd-man rushes against. Way too many odd-man rushes against.
- Dang, Carey looks really good tonight.
- THERE IT IS. TOFFOLI WITH THE GOAL.
- Not to be that person, but SHOOOOOOOOT.
- Oh Jeff…
- Wait….is that…a power play!?? Oh my goodness, it is!
- Oh look. There are all the Toffoli goals! (Also, that Suzuki pass!!)
- Also… THE HABS CAN ACTUAL SCORE ON THE POWER PLAY!
- Oh geeze. Please go play on the other side of the rink.
- The things that are and aren’t penalties in this game are perplexing.
- Oh Paul.
- Montreal, please tidy things up. This is not gonna cut it.
- Another post.
- Shouldn’t that have been a Montreal penalty?
- WAIT, NOT *THAT* THOUGH. WTF.
- GALLY GOALS ARE THE BEST GOALS.
- It is known.
- The plays Nick Suzuki sets up are just delightful. Eventually his teammates will start getting used to it, and he’s going to rack up a tremendous amount of assists.
- Meanwhile, Habs, please go play in the offensive zone.
- AGAIN? sigh
- Habs. Habs stop this. At once.
- You know that thing I said earlier about crosschecks and Gallagher? It’s relevant again.
- Apparently pulling someone down by the face isn’t a penalty.
- That little kick to the stick, fake and shoot was just *chef’s kiss*.
- You know that thing where usually eventually the calls start swinging back the other way? How about some of that.
- Joel Armia is pretty good. Just saying.
- The Habs definitely look like they have more in the tank than Vancouver right now. That whole rolling four good lines thing is already paying off.
- How was that icing. Seriously.
- TOFFOLI TIMEEEEEEE.
- BRING ON THE (virtual) HATS!!!
- MONTREAL WHAT ARE YOU DOING.
- I just want to sleep.
- Gallagher was SO close. I’m going to cry.
- Well, time for aaaaaall the heart attacks.
- Suzuki in OT is pretty fun.
- However, just because it’s fun doesn’t mean I want to keep having this happen.
- Romanov is also very fun in OT.
- THAT WAS LESS FUN.
- Please not the shootout.
- I hate shootouts.
- I hate shootouts BUT NICK SUZUKI DOESN’T.
- They really are just gonna drag this shoot out as long as possible aren’t they.
- I still hate this.
- Habs lose 6-5 in the shootout.
EOTP 3 Stars
3. Gotta love a good rhyme
2. Those were the days
1. He certainly does!
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