Thompson Sports News

Ryan, Macleod, Cheverie to coach Canada's PWHL teams


Troy Ryan, Carla MacLeod and Kori Cheverie were announced as head coaches of Canada's teams in the Professional Women's Hockey League on Friday.

Ryan will coach Toronto, MacLeod in Ottawa and Cheverie in Montreal.

Courtney Kessel (Boston), Charlie Burggraf (Minnesota) and Howie Draper (New York) round out the six-team coaching contingent for the PWHL's inaugural season starting January.

Ryan took over as head coach of the Canadian women's team during the 2019-20 season.

He navigated the squad to Olympic gold in 2022, back-to-back world titles in 2021 and 2022, and world silver this year in Brampton, Ont. Ryan signed a four-year contract extension with Hockey Canada last year.

The appointments shake up the university coaching ranks in Alberta as MacLeod, a two-time Olympic gold medallist in women's hockey, and Draper will leave their coaching jobs with Calgary and Alberta respectively.

NHLPA execs meeting with Blue Jackets players over Babcock reports

The NHL Players' Association says its executive director and assistant executive director are in Columbus, Ohio, to investigate reports of Blue Jackets head coach Mike Babcock invading players' privacy.

Marty Walsh and Ron Hainsey were meeting with some Blue Jackets players on Thursday as part of the investigation.

Babcock said Tuesday he had done nothing wrong by asking players to show him family photos from their phones, clarifying he was trying to get to know them.

Ex-NHLer Paul Bissonnette said on the “Spittin' Chiclets” podcast he was told by an unidentified player that Babcock asked players to see photos on their phones and would then stream them on his television.

Babcock and Columbus captain Boone Jenner said in a joint statement released by the Blue Jackets that the report is “a gross misrepresentation of those meetings and extremely offensive.”

Babcock has spent nearly four years out of the league after being fired by the Toronto Maple Leafs, with former players criticizing the Stanley Cup winning coach after his departure.

Canada's Pospisil beats Sweden's Borg in Davis Cup singles match

BOLOGNA, Italy -

Vasek Pospisil downed Sweden's Leo Borg in a Davis Cup singles match to continue Canada's winning streak in the group stage of the finals.

Pospisil of Vernon., B.C., outlasted the the son of tennis great Bjorn Borg 7-6(5), 5-7, 6-2 in Bologna on Thursday.

Montreal's Gabriel Diallo was scheduled to meet Elias Ymer in the second singles match of the tie, with Pospisil and Alexis Galarneau, of Laval, Que., teaming up for a later doubles match against the Swedes.

Canada opened defence of its Davis Cup title by sweeping host Italy 3-0 on Wednesday.

The Canadians defeated Australia in last year's final to win the biggest men's team event in tennis for the first time.

Both countries qualified directly to the group stage of this year's finals, which consists of four groups of four teams. The top two in each group advance to November's final eight in Malaga, Spain.

(The Canadian Press)

Defenceman Matheson named assistant captain of Montreal Canadiens


Defenceman Mike Matheson has been named an assistant captain of the Montreal Canadiens, the team announced Monday.

The club said the decision was made by the Canadiens' management team.

Veteran Brendan Gallagher will continue to serve as an assistant captain, while forward Nick Suzuki retains his role as team captain.

The 29-year-old Matheson led the team's defencemen with 34 points (8-26) in 48 games last season. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound blue-liner also set career highs for assists (26), points (34), power-play points (9), and average time on ice per game (24:27).

In eight seasons in the NHL, the Pointe-Claire, Que. native has accumulated 172 points (57-115) in 465 games with the Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Canadiens.

Matheson, who was selected in the first round (23rd overall) by the Panthers in the NHL draft in 2012, was acquired from the Penguins along with a draft pick in exchange for defenceman Jeff Petry and forward Ryan Poehling on July 16, 2022.

Hockey Canada summit puts elite men's hockey under the microscope


The closed door of the locker room and violence presented as toughness were among the themes kicking off Hockey Canada's Beyond The Boards Summit.

The two-day summit in Calgary tackles toxic masculinity in elite men's hockey as a root problem that causes racism, sexism and homophobia in the game.

Attendees also heard how toxic masculinity also hurts men playing hockey.

Hockey Canada is under pressure to change its culture and that of hockey following reports and allegations of sexual assaults and hazing in the game.

The audience at the summit includes leaders from minor and professional hockey.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 8, 2023.

Canada's Henderson, Conners to team up at Grant Thornton Invitational

Canada's top-ranked men's and women's golfers are teaming up.

Brooke Henderson and Corey Conners will be partners at the Grant Thornton Invitational.

The unique event will see 16 LPGA and 16 PGA Tour players compete together in a co-sanctioned tournament for equal prize money of US$4 million.

Henderson, from Smiths Falls, Ont., has the most professional wins of any Canadian golfer with 13 on the LPGA Tour.

Conners, from Listowel, Ont., is a two-time winner on the PGA Tour.

They both represented Canada at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

The Grant Thornton Invitational will be held Dec. 4-10 in Naples, Fla.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 30, 2023.

(The Canadian Press)

Winnipeg Blue Bombers can become first CFL team to cement playoff spot with win


The Winnipeg Blue Bombers can become the first CFL team to cement a playoff spot this weekend.

According to the CFL, Winnipeg (9-2) would become the first team to punch its post-season ticket with a road win Sunday over the Saskatchewan Roughriders (5-5).

Winnipeg is 5-1 away from IG Field this season and 6-1 within the West Division. Saskatchewan has won four-of-seven games against conference rivals and is 3-2 at home.

With a win, Winnipeg would clinch a playoff spot for the seventh straight year. Last season, Winnipeg cemented its post-season berth after its 12th regular-season game.

The Bombers are chasing a fourth straight Grey Cup appearance and third title in four seasons.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 29, 2023.

Gilgeous-Alexander has 27 points, Canada routs Latvia 101-75 at basketball World Cup

JAKARTA, Indonesia -

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had a game-high 27 points and Canada overcame a sluggish first quarter to rout Latvia 101-75 on Tuesday at the FIBA Basketball World Cup.

Canada trailed 23-13 after the first quarter and led by just one point at the half before dominating the rest of the game.

Gilgeous-Alexander added six rebounds, six assists and two steals for Canada. RJ Barrett had 22 points and five rebounds, with Kelly Olynyk (15 points) and Nickeil Alexander-Walker (14 points) also scoring in double digits.

Andrejs Grazulis had 16 points for Latvia.

Canada finished Group H play at 3-0, outscoring its opposition by an average of 37 points a game.

Canada and Latvia (2-1) will next go into a group with the top two teams in Group G, which wraps up play Wednesday.

(The Canadian Press)

All-star shortstop Bo Bichette put on Blue Jays' 10-day injured list


All-star shortstop Bo Bichette has been put on the 10-day injured list by the Toronto Blue Jays.

Bichette is out with a right quad strain retroactive to Aug. 28.

Infielder Mason McCoy was selected to Toronto's roster in a corresponding move.

Bichette leads the Blue Jays with a .314 batting average and 152 hits. His 18 home runs are second most on Toronto.

It's Bichette's second time dealing with an injury after he missed 16 games because of right knee tendinitis. Toronto went 8-8 without him.

Blue Jays third baseman Matt Chapman was placed on the 10-day IL on Monday with a right middle finger sprain.

Toronto is currently 2 1/2 games behind the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers for the third and final wild card berth in the American League.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 29, 2023.

Veteran quarterback Collaros resumes practising with Blue Bombers


Veteran quarterback Zach Collaros is back practising with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Collaros was again leading Winnipeg' starting offence Monday as the Bombers (8-2) began preparations to host the Montreal Alouettes (6-3) on Thursday night.

Collaros missed Winnipeg's 19-18 road win over the Calgary Stampeders on Friday night due to a neck injury. Dru Brown drew the start, completing 17-of-27 passes for 171 yards.

Collaros was injured in the first half of Winnipeg's 38-29 road victory over the Edmonton Elks on Aug. 10.

Brown entered the game with the Bombers trailing 22-0 but rallied the defending West Division champions by completing 17-of-24 passes for 304 yards with four touchdowns and an interception while adding a 15-yard run.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 21, 2023.

(The Canadian Press)

Vancouver Whitecaps place back-up goalie on season-ending injury list


The Vancouver Whitecaps say goalkeeper Thomas Hasal has been placed on Major League Soccer's season-ending injury list.

Whitecaps sporting director Axel Schuster says the move is related to patellar tendinitis.

Schuster says Hasal has been managing the condition through the season but the move will help the goalkeeper focus on his recovery.

Hasal, 24, came up through the Saskatchewan branch of the Whitecaps academy and signed a professional contract with the team in 2019.

He has made three starts for the Whitecaps this season, primarily backing up starting goalkeeper Yohei Takaoka.

Hasal was called up to the Canadian national team in 2022 but did not make an appearance in the match.

Canadiens trade Petry for second time in just over a year in deal with Red Wings

Jeff Petry's second stint with the Montreal Canadiens lasted just over a week.

The Canadiens announced Tuesday that they have dealt the veteran defenceman for the second time in just over a year. His destination this off-season is the Detroit Red Wings, in exchange for defenceman Gustav Lindstrom and a conditional fourth-round draft pick in 2025.

Montreal acquired Petry from Pittsburgh on Aug. 6 as part of the three-team trade that sent star defenceman Erik Karlsson from San Jose to the Penguins.

Petry had five goals and 26 assists for the Penguins last year after Pittsburgh acquired him from Montreal in an off-season trade.

The 35-year-old played the previous eight seasons with the Canadiens, collecting over 40 points in four consecutive seasons from 2017-18 to 2020-21 to lead the team's defence in points every season during that span.

The Canadiens are retaining 50 per cent of Petry's remaining salary of US$4.5 million. The Penguins are retaining another $1.56 million as part of the Karlsson trade.

Raptors announce training camp to be held in Vancouver area


The Toronto Raptors are returning to British Columbia for training camp.

The NBA club announced Friday that it will open camp for the 2023-24 season on Oct. 3 at Christine Sinclair Community Centre in Burnaby.

The team will hold practices through Oct. 7, including an open practice Oct. 6 at Simon Fraser University's West Gym on its Burnaby campus.

Toronto previously announced it will open its pre-season schedule with a game against Sacramento Oct. 8 at Vancouver's Rogers Arena.

It will mark the eighth time the Raptors have held their camp in B.C., and the sixth in the Vancouver area.

The Raptors held training camp for the 2022-23 season in Victoria.

Blue Bombers earn top marks in CFL's weekly honour roll

Zach Collaros and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' offensive line were graded as some of the top performers Tuesday in the CFL's weekly honour roll.

Collaros earned a grade of 92.9 after completing 19-of-27 passes in the Blue Bombers' 50-14 hammering of the B.C. Lions. Players in nine specific position are highlighted as per data points registered and compiled by Pro Football Focus, a sports analytics company.

The veteran quarterback had 369 passing yards and three touchdowns, which both matched season-highs, while the Bombers' offensive line had a grade of 84.2. Teammate Kenny Lawler (90.4) was named the top receiver of the week while defensive lineman Willie Jefferson had a grade of 85.6.

The Argonaut's Royce Metchie was named the top defensive performer (86.6) of the week with a season-high nine defensive tackles in the Argo's 20-7 loss to Calgary. Toronto's AJ Ouellette (77.5) was the top running back.

The Ottawa Redblacks Jovan Santos-Knox (85.2) and lineback Gary Johnson Jr. (91.6) also earned nods.

Offensive lineman Nick Callender, of the Montreal Alouettes, had a grade of 76.9 while Calgary Stampeders punter Cody Grade had 78.8.

Blue Bombers dominate Lions 50-14 in battle of West Division's best


Brady Oliveira and Dalton Schoen each had two touchdowns, Kenny Lawler and Nic Demski added their own and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers delivered some payback to the B.C. Lions with a 50-14 victory on Thursday.

The last time the Lions were in Winnipeg in June, they left IG Field with a 30-6 win.

The two clubs are tied atop the CFL West Division with 6-2 records.

Winnipeg's victory in front of 30,874 fans was a shot to the Lions' top-ranked defence.

B.C. had only allowed five touchdowns through its first seven games.

Bombers quarterback Zach Collaros completed 19 of 27 pass attempts for 369 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. He was replaced by Dru Brown late in the fourth quarter.

Blue Jays put reliever Trevor Richards on 15-day injured list; call up Bowden Francis


The Toronto Blue Jays have placed reliever Trevor Richards on the 15-day injured list with neck inflammation.

The team also recalled fellow right-hander Bowden Francis from Triple-A Buffalo.

Francis will be available for today's matinee against the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre.

Richards (1-1) has been a reliable middle-innings option out of Toronto's bullpen this season.

He has a 2.98 earned-run average with 83 strikeouts over 54 1/3 innings pitched.

Francis (1-0) has a 2.30 ERA and 14 strikeouts over 15 2/3 innings in seven games with the major-league club this year.

Oaks winner Elysian Field, Plate Trial victor Paramount Prince to run in King's Plate


Oaks winner Elysian Field and Plate Trial victor Paramount Prince will both run in the $1-million King's Plate.

Mark Casse, the trainer for both horses, said Elysian field and Paramount Prince will be in the field for the first leg of Canada's Triple Crown on Aug. 20 at Woodbine Racetrack.

Elysian Field won the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks by 2 1/4 lengths July 23 at Woodbine Racetrack. The 5-1 pick covered the 1 1/8-mile race on Woodbine's Tapeta course in 1:49.83 with jockey Sahin Civaci aboard.

Earlier on the same card, veteran jockey Patrick Husbands rode Paramount Prince to a convincing five-length, wire-to-wire win in the $150,000 Plate Trial. The 11-1 longshot covered the identical 1 1/8-mile distance on the Tapeta course in 1:49.99.

Husbands earned a fourth Trial win.

Casse, 15 times Canada's top thoroughbred trainer, will chase a third Plate win. Both of his previous victories came with fillies (Lexi Lou in 2014, Wonder Gadot in 2018).

Whistle Sliding Centre will host 2025 World Luge Championships


The Whistler Sliding Centre will host the 2025 FIL Luge World Championships, Luge Canada announced on Wednesday.

The event will take place Feb. 5-8, 2025.

Whistler was the host mountain resort for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and previously hosted the world championships in 2013.

Luge Canada was originally scheduled to host the 2021 world championships but the event was cancelled due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

The16-corner Whistler track is scheduled to host a World Cup race this December.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 2, 2023.

Canada, Australia square off at Women's World Cup with tournament future on the line

MELBOURNE, Australia -

Canada's future at the FIFA Women's World Cup is on the line today Down Under.

The seventh-ranked Canadians take on No. 10-ranked Australia in Melbourne in the final round of Group B play at the 32-team tournament.

A win or draw and Olympic champion Canada advances to the knockout round of 16. The co-host Australians need a win to be certain of moving on.

The Canadians could still advance with a loss, providing group leader Nigeria loses to Ireland and the tiebreakers go their way. Tiebreakers would also come into play for Australia if it ties Canada and Nigeria loses.

The top two in each of the tournament's eight groups advance to the knockout rounds, while the others go home.

Canada's previous best tournament finish was a fourth in 2003. It lost to Sweden in the round of 16 four years ago in France.

Mixed doubles wheelchair curling added to 2026 Paralympic Games in Italy

BONN, Germany -

Wheelchair mixed doubles curling added to the 2026 Paralympic Winter Games is music to the ears of Karen O'Neill.

The CEO of the Canadian Paralympic Committee says that addition plays to the country's strength in the sport.

Since four-person wheelchair team curling was introduced to the Paralympic program in 2006 - the rule is one person on the team must be female - Canada has finished on the podium every time with three gold medals and two bronze.

“When I look at the depth now in wheelchair curling, and the talent and the shifts in some of the coaching, it's only going in one direction and that's up,” O'Neill said Monday.

“So I couldn't be more excited about increased opportunity, especially mixed, to shine a further spotlight I think on one of Canada's best kept secrets around wheelchair curling.”

The International Paralympic Committee announced Monday both curling disciplines will be played in Milano Cortina.

De Grasse, Brown among Olympians to take part in 100 metres at Canadian Championship


Canadian Olympian sprinters are taking to the track for the men's and women's 100-metre semifinals and finals tonight at the Canadian Track and Field Championship.

Olympians Andre De Grasse, Aaron Brown, Jerome Blake, Bolade Ajomale and Bismark Boateng are scheduled to compete on the men's side.

Crystal Emmanuel and Khamica Bingham will compete on the women's side.

De Grasse says he's looking to return to form after a foot injury derailed his 2022 season.

On the field, Richmond, B.C., native Camryn Rogers is looking to clinch the Canadian hammer throw title.

Rogers came second in the 2022 world championship and has twice broken her own record in 2023.

(The Canadian Press)

06:00ET 28-07-23

CF Montreal acquires 19-year-old defender Alvarez from Pachuca of Liga MX


CF Montreal has acquired central defender Fernando Alvarez via permanent transfer from C.F. Pachuca of Mexico's Liga MX.

The Major League Soccer club and Alvarez have agreed to a contract through the 2025 season, including two option years in 2026 and 2027.

The 19-year-old joined the Pachuca organization in 2020. He made his first-team debut on Oct. 25, 2021, in a 1-1 draw with FC Juarez

Born in the United States to Colombian and Mexican parents, Alvarez is eligible to represent the United States, Colombia and Mexico internationally.

He has previously received call-ups to Mexico's U16 and U18 teams. He represented Colombia at the U20 World Cup and the South American U20 Championship in 2023.

“We are delighted to welcome Fernando to the club,” Montreal vice-president and chief sporting officer Olivier Renard said in a release. “He is a player who stood out this summer at the U20 World Cup in Argentina as one of the tournament's best central defenders.

Elks, Lions to be first pro football game broadcast in Punjabi


The Edmonton Elks home game against the B.C. Lions on Saturday will be the first professional football game broadcast in Punjabi.

The Elks announced Tuesday that it is partnering with Edmonton multilingual radio station My Radio 580 AM to broadcast the CFL game across Alberta on radio and throughout Canada through the station's online player.

Canada is home to a Punjabi population of roughly one million people, according to the 2021 Canadian census. Alberta has the third-largest Punjabi population among Canadian provinces at 126,385 people according to the census.

British Columbia has the second-largest community at 315,000 people.

The Elks were also part of the first Indigenous language broadcast in CFL history last year when they partnered with Windspeaker Media to air a game against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in Cree.

Sports broadcasters Harpreet Pandher and Taqdeer Thindal, who work on Hockey Night in Canada's Punjabi crew, will call the game.

(The Canadian Press)

BC Hockey reclassifies its three junior B leagues to junior A to replace rogue BCHL


BC Hockey will have a new junior-A system in place for the 2023-24 season.

The provincial sports organization will promote all three of its junior B leagues to junior A.

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League, the Pacific Junior Hockey League, and the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League will all move up one level.

BC Hockey reclassified its junior B leagues after the British Columbia Hockey League, its former junior A circuit, broke away from Hockey Canada.

The BCHL left Hockey Canada to give it more options for players under 18 years old that are looking to compete in college hockey in the United States.

There are 18 teams in the BCHL and all of its franchises started operating outside of Hockey Canada's system starting June 1.

The move allows BCHL teams to recruit 16- and 17-year-olds from other provinces, which is currently against Hockey Canada regulations.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 25, 2023.

Canadian men's relay team to receive Olympic silver medals at reallocation ceremony


The Canadian men's 4x100-metre relay team from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will finally receive its silver medals.

The Canadian Olympic Committee announced Monday that team members Andre De Grasse, Aaron Brown, Jerome Blake and Brendon Rodney will get their upgraded medals Saturday at the Canadian national trials in a medal reallocation ceremony.

The group had initially earned bronze at the Tokyo Games two years ago.

However, an official upgrade came in May 2022 following the disqualification of the British team due to a doping violation by team member CJ Ujah.

Canada had finished the race in 37.70 seconds, while Britain stopped the clock at 37.51. Italy claimed gold at 37.50 seconds.

China, which had finished fourth at the time, was moved up to bronze.


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