The Thompson Sports News

Jets beat Flames 4-3 to start the season

Patrik Laine scored his second goal of the game in overtime, and the Winnipeg Jets started their season with a 4-3 win at home over the Calgary Flames.


The Finnish winger put away the winner 1:18 into extra time, using his speed to create space before beating Flames goalie Jacob Markstrom in tight.


Markstrom made 30 saves in his Flames debut.

Homegrown star Andrew Harris signs one-year extension with Winnipeg Blue Bombers

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have signed star running back Andrew Harris to a one-year contract extension.


The Winnipeg native returns to the Blue Bombers for a fifth season.


The 33-year-old Harris has led the CFL in rushing the past three years. He was named the game MVP and most valuable Canadian in Winnipeg's Grey Cup win over Hamilton in 2019.


During the 2019 season, Harris passed Ben Cahoon to become the CFL's career leader in yards from scrimmage by a Canadian. He also moved past Normie Kwong as the Canadian career rushing leader.


A five-time CFL all-star, Harris also was named the league's most outstanding Canadian in 2017.

Norman Northstars home opener this weekend

The NorMan Northstars Home Opener will be this weekend


Vice President of the Northstars Mike Krentz explains that while spectators will still be allowed to watch in the stands, they will be required to wear masks in the arena and will be asked to stay in their seats once they’re seated, even between periods.


Additionally, people who are feeling unwell and are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms are asked to stay home.


Krentz says those who wish to view the games in their homes can do so through a Hockey TV subscription. 


As Thompson is seeing an uptick in cases, Krentz says the league would cancel a week of games or postpone them to the end of the season if there was a documented case of COVID-19 within the team, and there are safety measures in place.


The Northstars will be facing off against the Parkland Rangers Saturday night at 7:30 and Sunday afternoon at 1:30.


For updates on the NorMan Northstars season, visit

Northstars release roster, looking for billet homes for out-of-town players

The roster for the 2020-2021 Norman Northstars has been released.


The team includes players from Thompson, Flin Flon, The Pas, and Creighton, as well as Norway House, OCN, Cross Lake, York Landing, and Split Lake.


The Northstars board says that some out-of-town players are looking for billet homes to reside in for the season.


Anyone interested in housing a Northstar or have any questions about billet homes can call Mike Krentz at 679-2746, or email Krentz at

Marte's homer gives Marlins 3-2 win over Blue Jays

MIAMI - Starling Marte celebrated his Miami debut with a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning, helping the Marlins top the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 on Tuesday night.


Marte, who was acquired in a trade with Arizona on Monday, drove a 1-0 pitch from Shun Yamaguchi (1-3) deep to left-centre for his third homer. He also reached on an error in the sixth and scored from first on Garrett Cooper's double.


James Hoyt (1-0) got the final two outs in the eighth for the win, and Brandon Kintzler pitched a perfect ninth for his eighth save.


Jon Berti homered for Miami, which moved back above .500 with the win. It had dropped its last eight home games.


Robbie Ray made his debut for Toronto, pitching 3 1/3 innings in relief of Julian Merryweather. Ray, who came over in a trade with the Diamondbacks on Monday, allowed two runs, one earned, and four hits.


Jonathan Villar, who was traded from the Marlins to the Blue Jays at the deadline, drove in the first run of the game with a grounder in the first. But he also committed the error that put Marte on in the sixth.

Raptors beat Bucks 114-106; key players for both teams sit

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Chris Boucher scored a career-high 25 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to help the Toronto Raptors defeat the Milwaukee Bucks 114-106 on Monday.


Though the meeting featured the top two teams in the Eastern Conference standings, both teams were missing key players.


Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo, the reigning MVP, missed the game after undergoing oral surgery. Bucks coach Mike Budehnolzer said Monday it was uncertain whether Antetokounmpo would play in the team's final two seeding games Tuesday against the Washington Wizards and Thursday against the Memphis Grizzlies.


For Toronto, Kyle Lowry sat out with a sore lower back, Serge Ibaka missed the game with a bruised right knee and Fred Van Vleet was out with a hyperextended right knee.


The Bucks already had clinched the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference for a second straight season, and defending NBA champion Toronto was locked into the No. 2 spot, so there was little to gain for either team.


Rookie Matt Thomas scored a season-high 22 points and Norman Powell added 21 for the Raptors.

NHL reports no positive COVID-19 tests in second week in Toronto, Edmonton

NEW YORK - The NHL says it has had no positive COVID-19 test results in its first two weeks in secure zones in Edmonton and Toronto.


The league says it administered 7,245 tests in its second week, from Aug. 2-8, with no positive results.


In the first week, from July 27 to Aug. 1, the league says it had no positive results in 7,013 tests.


Testing is done daily on all 52 members of each team's travelling party.

Eight of 24 teams have now been eliminated and have exited the secure zones.


Players and staff in the secure zones are separated from the general public and no fans are in attendance at games.

2020 Hockey Hall of Fame induction ceremony postponed due to COVID-19

TORONTO - The Hockey Hall of Fame has postponed its 2020 induction ceremony due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


The ceremony was originally scheduled to take place Nov. 16 in Toronto.

The 2020 class of forward Jarome Iginla, winger Marian Hossa, defencemen Kevin Lowe and Doug Wilson, Canadian women's goaltender Kim St. Pierre and longtime general manager Ken Holland was announced by the Hockey Hall of Fame in June.


In a release Monday, the hall said rescheduling plans for the induction celebration will be addressed at its board of directors meeting on Oct. 29.


Hockey Hall of Fame chairman Lanny McDonald said the most likely scenario is to postpone the ceremony to November 2021, either by waiving the 2021 election or combining the 2020 and 2021 classes.


McDonald said the hall has ruled out a virtual induction ceremony.

Flames defeat Jets 4-0 to win NHL qualifying series three games to one

EDMONTON - The Calgary Flames overwhelmed the injury-addled Winnipeg Jets, beating them 4-0 Thursday to knock them out of the NHL's post-season.


Dillon Dube, Sean Monahan, Sam Bennett and Rasmus Andersson scored for the Flames while Cam Talbot made 31 saves for the shutout at Rogers Place.


Calgary won the best-of-five qualifying series 3-1.


Connor Hellebuyck stopped 30-of-32 shots in net for Winnipeg.


It was a series the Jets were chasing from the get-go, when they lost elite scorers Patrik Laine and Mark Scheifele to injury in Game 1, and two other top point-getters Blake Wheeler and Kyle Connor failed to step up to fill the void.


Wheeler and Connor (the regular season team leader with 38 goals and 73 points) combined for just two assists in four games.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers unveil Grey Cup championship rings celebrating 2019 win

WINNIPEG - The Winnipeg Blue Bombers unveiled their 2019 Grey Cup championship rings on Thursday night.


Made by Canadian jeweller Baron Championship Rings, the diamond-studded two-toned ring celebrates Winnipeg's 33-12 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats last November.


The distinctive Blue Bombers “W” made of diamonds and custom blue enamel sits atop the ring.


The outer edge of the face is lined with 11 sapphire stones representing the organization's total championship wins and is complemented by the title of “Grey Cup Champions.”


One shoulder displays the player's name and number in diamonds over the IG Field background.


The opposite side features the Winnipeg skyline behind the Grey Cup and the Golden Boy, framed by the team name and year.

Winnipeg Jets douse Calgary Flames 3-2 to even up qualifying series

EDMONTON - The Winnipeg Jets recovered from a gaffe and bad luck to edge the Calgary Flames 3-2 on Monday and draw even in their qualifying-round series.


Nikolaj Ehlers broke a 2-2 tie with a goal at 10:24 of the third period, and the Jets held on to even the best-of-five series at 1-1.


Adam Lowry led the Jets with a goal and an assist.


Nikolaj Ehlers scored the eventual winner in the third period, rookie Jansen Harkins also scored for Winnipeg and Jack Roslovic contributed a pair of assists.


Vezina Trophy finalist Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves for the win.

Elias Lindholm and Sam Bennett scored for the Flames. Calgary starter Cam Talbot stopped 23 shots in the loss.

VanVleet has 36 points, Raptors stretch win streak to six with win over Miami

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Fred VanVleet scored a career-high 36 points and had a big deflection in the dying seconds to lead the Toronto Raptors to a 107-103 victory over the Miami Heat on Monday.


Pascal Siakam had 22 points, while Serge Ibaka had 15 and Kyle Lowry chipped in with 14 points and eight rebounds as the Raptors (48-18) stretched their win streak to six games, and improved to 2-0 in the NBA's restart after the COVID-19 hiatus.


Goran Dragic had 25 points to top the Heat (42-25). Kelly Olynyk of Kamloops, B.C., had 17 points, two nights after a big game against Denver that saw him score 20 points in the fourth quarter of a 125-105 win. Jimmy Butler, who'd missed Sunday's practice sparking speculation he was in quarantine, had 16.


The Raptors, who were slotted into Monday's matinee spot because of the holiday in most of Canada, led for most of the afternoon and broke the game open with a 20-7 third-quarter run that put them up by 17 points. But Miami sliced the difference to 84-79 with one quarter to play.


Olynyk's three-pointer midway through the fourth put Miami up by three, but Siakam's three-pointer sparked a mini Raptors run and when Lowry dished off a short pass to Ibaka for a dunk, Toronto was back up by six with 6:11 to play.


Tyler Herro's driving layup got Miami back within two. Free throws from Lowry and VanVleet had Toronto up by six, but a big Jae Crowder three-pointer and Dragic layup made it a one-point game with 41 seconds to play.

Thompson's Jennifer Saunders to be inducted in Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame

Eight athletes will be inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame, including a racquetball player who grew up here in Thompson.


Jennifer Saunders has won eleven Canadian Women’s Singles Championships, and 13 Canadian Women’s Doubles Championships, which combined are a record number of 24 titles.


Internationally, Saunders won 11 medals in Singles, Doubles, and Team competitions in World Championships, and has competed for Canada 29 times in various competitions.

Taylor, Suzuki lift Nats past Jays 6-4 before 4-day break

WASHINGTON - Michael A. Taylor's second homer of the season helped the “visiting” Nationals knock around struggling Hyun-Jin Ryu and beat the home-away-from-home Toronto Blue Jays 6-4 Thursday before both teams head into a coronavirus-caused “mini All-Star break,” as Washington manager Dave Martinez called it.


Kurt Suzuki delivered a two-run double and Asdrubal Cabrera added an RBI double off Ryu (0-1), who gave up Taylor's two-run shot to straightaway centre that he celebrated with a socially distanced dugout dance in the fourth. Taylor is now 2 for 14 this season, a .143 average, but both hits cleared the fences.


Ryu's ERA is 8.00 after he allowed five runs and nine hits in 4 1/3 innings, his second start under an $80 million, four-year deal Toronto gave him after he was second in NL Cy Young Award voting for the Dodgers in 2019.


Erick Fedde, making his second start in place of a sidelined Stephen Strasburg, gave up two runs in 3 1/3 innings. Ryne Harper (1-0) followed and got five outs for the win. Daniel Hudson pitched the ninth to earn his first save of the year.


Nationals rookie third baseman Carter Kieboom reached base four times - two singles, two walks - and scored twice.


Teoscar Hernandez homered twice, giving him four during this four-game series at Washington, and Cavan Biggio hit a solo shot for Toronto.

Cross Lake's Brady Keeper to play second NHL game in exhibition play against the Lightning

Today at noon is the exhibition game between the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning, and if you look closely, you'll see Cross Lake's own Brady Keeper.


Keeper played for the Norman Northstars and the OCN Blizzard, and was the MVP in his final years in the MJHL in 2016-17.


He plays defense for the Panthers, and this will be his second game in the NHL.

Source: Canadian Premier League to play 2020 season in Charlottetown

TORONTO - The Canadian Premier League will play its 2020 season in Charlottetown.


A source, not authorized to speak on the record because the official announcement had not been made, confirmed that the eight-team league is headed to Prince Edward Island.


The league has scheduled a media conference call with commissioner David Clanachan for 1:20 p.m. ET.


Langford, B.C., had also been in the running to host the season with Moncton reportedly another contender.


The CPL's original schedule was to have started April 11 and conclude on Oct. 4 with teams playing a 28-game schedule, a plan derailed by the global pandemic.

Toronto Raptors lose final scrimmage in bubble 117-106 to Phoenix Suns

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - The weary-looking Toronto Raptors dropped a 117-106 decision to the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday, suffering their only loss in three scrimmages in the NBA's restart.


Pascal Siakam had 17 points, Norman Powell scored 14 off the bench, and Fred VanVleet, who was back after missing most of Sunday's scrimmage with a minor knee injury, had 13.


Kyle Lowry had 11 points, seven assists, and took a couple of charges.

Mikal Bridges had 26 points to top the Suns, while Ricky Rubio chipped in with 22.


Four days before the Raptors tip off their eight-game seeding round against the Los Angeles Lakers, coach Nick Nurse gave his starters more minutes.


But playing their third game in five days, and coming off an unheard-of four-month layoff due to COVID-19, the defending NBA champions were both sloppy and a step behind the Suns, who are 13th in the Western Conference and have the worst record of the 22 teams in the bubble (26-39).

Kerfoot scores twice, Leafs down Canadiens in exhibition play as NHL returns

TORONTO - Morgan Rielly had a goal and two assists, Alexander Kerfoot scored twice, and the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Montreal Canadiens 4-2 in their exhibition matchup Tuesday as the NHL's restart to its pandemic-hit 2019-20 season got into full swing.


Ilya Mikheyev had the other goal for the Leafs, who got 28 saves from Frederik Andersen. Thomas Tatar and Paul Byron replied for the Canadiens. Carey Price stopped 19 shots for Montreal.


The Canadiens open their best-of-five qualifying round series against the heavily-favoured Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday - the first day the games will truly matter - before the Leafs do the same 24 hours later against the Columbus Blue Jackets.


Mikheyev, who suffered a gruesome wrist laceration in late December, scored just 33 seconds into his first game back inside an cavernous Scotiabank Arena as the league resumed action without fans after shuttering operations in mid-March because of COVID-19.


Kerfoot made it 2-0 at 6:46 of the second when he roofed a rebound after Kasperi Kapanen was stopped on a shorthanded breakaway.


Tatar got one back for Montreal with 3:04 left in the second on a power play off a nice feed from Nick Suzuki, but Kerfoot tipped Rielly's shot past Price late in the period to make it 3-1. Leafs rookie Nick Robertson, who was making his NHL debut after a 55-goal season in the Ontario Hockey League, picked up the second assist.

Oilers defeat Flames 4-1 in exhibition debut of Edmonton's NHL hub-bubble

EDMONTON - Connor McDavid scored two goals Tuesday to pace the Oilers to a 4-1 win over the Calgary Flames in the official debut of Edmonton's NHL post-season hub-bubble.


Kailer Yamamoto and Patrick Russell also scored for Edmonton while Elias Lindholm replied for Calgary.


It was the lone exhibition game for the two teams prior to the weekend start of the NHL's play-in round.


It was played before thousands of empty seats at Rogers Place, which has been locked down to prevent any spread of COVID-19 as Edmonton hosts the Western Conference play-in/play-off series to finish the 2019-20 season.


The game was only a minute old when Oiler centre Leon Draisaitl chased down a dump-in to Calgary's end to spark an attack that ended with Yamamoto firing a rebound over goalie Cam Talbot's glove to make it 1-0.


The Oilers' power play, the league's best at 29.5 per cent in the regular season, made it 2-0 at the 7:44 mark. Draisaitl threaded a cross-ice pass through heavy traffic in the slot to McDavid on the doorstep who then flicked the puck over a sprawling Talbot.

Tam: Feds, CFL in discussion about NHL-style cohort quarantine for Winnipeg hub

OTTAWA - Canada's chief public health officer says the federal government is in talks with the CFL about applying quarantine rules to returning American players that are similar to the cohort approach used by the NHL.


Dr. Theresa Tam said Tuesday that protocols the NHL has in place, which includes the concept of teams entering quarantine together, is being discussed with the CFL, though she said she did not have an update on how far talks have progressed.


The federal government approved a cohort quarantine approach for NHL teams entering Canada to resume the season in the hub cities of Edmonton and Toronto during the COVID-19 pandemic. The teams are isolated from the general public in “bubbles,” and players can quarantine together instead of being subjected to the individual 14-day quarantine required of those crossing the international border.


The CFL, which employs many American players who would need to cross the border, has approved Winnipeg as a hub city should a shortened 2020 season take place.


Under the Manitoba government plan, CFL players and coaches would be in a bubble consisting of hotels, practice fields and a stadium. Players would have to isolate at home for 14 days prior to departing for Winnipeg, be tested for the novel coronavirus upon their arrival then go into quarantine for another seven days.


A quarantine plan is not the only hurdle the CFL faces. The league needs to secure financial assistance from the federal government, and the CFL and CFL Players' Association need to come to terms on a new collective bargaining agreement, for a shortened season to get the green light.

Game on: NHL returns after months-long hiatus due to the COVID-19

NHL hockey returns today after a months-long hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


The Montreal Canadiens are in Toronto to take on the Maple Leafs and the Edmonton Oilers meet the Calgary Flames at Rogers Place as part of today's three-game exhibition schedule that kicks off Phase 4 of the league's return-to-play plan.


The Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers square off in Toronto in today's other game.


Edmonton and Toronto are serving as hub cities for the 24 NHL teams that are returning to action, though the Canadiens and Flames are listed as the home teams tonight.


Each team will play an exhibition game at Scotiabank Arena or Rogers Place between today and Thursday before the playoff qualification round begin on Saturday.


The NHL suspended its season March 12 due to the spreading global pandemic and announced its four-stage return plan May 26.

Hernandez hits 2 of 4 Blue Jays homers in 4-1 win at Nats

WASHINGTON - Because of injuries, the can't-play-in-Toronto Blue Jays were without their leadoff hitter and their closer against the Washington Nationals on Monday night.


The two guys who took over those jobs came through. Teoscar Hernandez replaced late scratch Bo Bichette and hit two of Toronto's four solo homers off Anibal Sanchez, Anthony Bass got the save while filling in for Ken Giles, and the Blue Jays beat the 2019 World Series champions 4-1.


Hernandez drove the game's second pitch over the wall in right-centre, and started the fifth by homering to the same part of the park.


“Teo got us going right off the bat. ... Bass came in and was lights out. Shut the door. That's what everyone knows he's capable of doing. That was definitely a positive sign,” said Toronto's Trent Thornton, who started and pitched four innings, before being followed by five relievers.


“Two guys stepped up and got the job done,” Thornton said. “We have plenty of guys who are fully capable of doing that.”


Rowdy Tellez and Danny Jansen also went deep for the Blue Jays, who put Giles on the 10-day injured list Monday and pulled Bichette from the lineup about 15 minutes before the first pitch with a tight left hamstring.


Manager Charlie Montoyo's team already had to deal with the inconvenience of not being allowed to host any 2020 games in Toronto.


Indeed, the Blue Jays' first two “home” games of this pandemic-altered season will be played in Washington on Wednesday and Thursday while they wait for Buffalo's minor league park to be prepped for them.


Toronto improved to 2-2 and dropped the World Series champions to 1-3 by going deep - over and over again.


Washington kept getting hits, 11 in all. But other than Kurt Suzuki's double that scored Eric Thames from first base in the fourth, the Nationals could not come through.


“Just one of those days we weren't lucky,” said manager Dave Martinez, who was critical of baserunning by Victor Robles and Thames.


The Nationals hit into four double plays. Three times, they stranded a man on third. They left a total of 10 runners on base.


Ryan Borucki (1-0) got four outs to earn the win, before Bass recorded his first save of the year.


Toronto, meanwhile, kept getting the big swings: Of the six hits given up by Sanchez (0-1), four left the yard - including Hernandez's seventh career multi-homer game - and the others were doubles.


Asked about not allowing a single, Sanchez smiled widely and joked: “Almost a no-hitter.”

Ryan Stuart named Northstars head coach for upcoming season

Ryan Stuart has been named head coach of 2020/2021 Northstars.


Stuart served as assistant coach from 2010-2012 and his 5 years experience with Thompson Minor Hockey.


Thompson's own Ryan Monias has been picked up by the Winkler Flyers. The gigantic winger scored 20 goals and added 25 assists with the NorMan Northstars last year.

Blue Jays hold pair of workout sessions as summer camp continues

The Toronto Blue Jays resumed summer training camp at Rogers Centre on Tuesday with a pair of workout sessions that came amid the continued uncertainty about the team's present and future plans due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Few details were available as a planned conference call with manager Charlie Montoyo was pushed to Wednesday and media access to the stadium was postponed a day until Thursday.


Social media did provide a glimpse into the stadium as a photo of the empty ballpark with roof open was posted on the Blue Jays' Twitter account on Tuesday afternoon, complete with a “Home Sweet Home” caption and a pair of emojis.


Players arrived in town Sunday night via team charter from Dunedin, Fla., and began working out a day later. The Blue Jays' 60-game schedule was released Monday evening but the team still doesn't know where it will play home games this season.


The team has expressed its desire to play at Rogers Centre but as was required for training camp, approval would be needed from the government and health authorities.


There was no word on when a decision might be made. Messages left with the provincial government and the Public Health Agency of Canada were not immediately returned.

NHL/NHLPA announce tentative agreements on return-to-play protocol, new CBA

The NHL and NHL Players' Association have taken a massive step towards resuming the pandemic-hit 2019-20 season later this summer in Edmonton and Toronto - along with securing labour peace for the foreseeable future.


The league and its union announced Monday the two sides have hammered out a tentative deal on the return-to-play protocol as well as a memorandum of understanding on a four-year extension of the current collective bargaining agreement.


The NHL board of governors, the NHLPA's executive board and full membership must now ratify the documents, which are tied together, in three separate votes. If the proposals get the green light, training camps would begin July 13, with the 24 teams set to resume heading to the two Canadian hub cities on July 26. Competitive game action would then commence Aug. 1.


The league has yet to announce the two hubs for its return-to-play plan this summer, but Toronto and Edmonton are the destinations, a person with direct knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press.


The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the league and the NHLPA have not released this information. The person said the league is in part being cautious and allowing itself flexibility in the event of potential spikes in COVID-19 infections in not yet determining which cities will host the conference finals and Stanley Cup final.


Hashed out in the shadow of unprecedented economic conditions brought on by COVID-19 - and viewed as crucial for a resumption of play - the proposed CBA would bring at least 14 consecutive years of NHL-NHLPA harmony after lockouts wiped out the 2004-05 season, and cut the 1994-95 and 2012-13 campaigns to 48 games.


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