The Canadian teams making it exciting

The National Hockey League, like everything else that matters in our world, couldn’t escape when COVID-19 swept across North America just over a year ago. The pandemic took on the 100-year-old league at centre ice and won. The repercussions disrupted the 2019-20 season far more than even a world war could 80 years earlier. It...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Leafs gone, but Moose remain

I’m doing okay, but thanks for asking. Die-hard Toronto Maple Leafs worshippers like myself have become well accustomed to watching the final rounds of the Stanley Cup playoffs with the renowned blue and white uniforms nowhere in our sights. We’ve been finding excuses year after year for a long, long time. It’s now 52 consecutive...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Does hockey not take a vacation?

It was just after seven o’clock in the morning and my two Shih Tzu pals, George and Gracie, were taking me for my first walk of the day. That’s customary. It happens every morning before breakfast. But one day last week, as we were checking out the power poles in our Portland Hills neighbourhood in...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Now there’s hope for Leafs

For passionate and steadfast Toronto Maple Leafs disciples like me, it’s been a long, long agonizing ordeal. A long, long confinement in hockey hell. It’s lasted for 51 years and 70 days. That’s 18,628 days if you’re counting. It began so far back, at the time I was 29 years old, only eight years into...

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Pictou Advocate sports

A dear friend faces comeback

If you know Donald Gavin Murray — and who doesn’t around Pictou County? — you’re fully aware of his life-long passions. Family comes first. It always has. It begins with his wife Jean, who may be even better known than Donnie himself, notably when it comes to church, politics and community affairs. And I mustn’t...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Plunging into a different pool

It can’t be categorized as anything serious. It surely can’t be considered a life-threatening situation. So there’s no need to call my family doctor or send an ambulance. But, if you’re a hockey nut, you might sympathize with me — if only a wee bit. The diagnosis: a lack of fantasy hockey. It’s affecting me...

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Pictou Advocate sports

A lesson from an old teacher

I’ve had good reason to know David F. Scott all my life. He and my sister Barbara were born on the same day, in the same year, at the old Aberdeen Hospital on Stellarton Road. Through all these years, I’ve repeatedly reminded them that they were roommates way back when. I was three years older,...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Bowling memories from the past

I haven’t forgotten. It would have been more than six decades ago, in either 1953 or ‘54. A Friday night I seem to recall. At that time I was a high school student in New Glasgow and a couple friends convinced me to drop by and take a look. Hey, why not? It was only...

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Pictou Advocate sports

The wrong sweater was under the tree

There was no hockey sweater for me under the tree this Christmas morning. There wasn’t supposed to be. I hadn’t asked for one. That wasn’t the case, however, 70 years ago – on Christmas Day in 1946. That was the year, for an eight-year-old in New Glasgow, that Santa was asked to bring – get...

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Pictou Advocate sports

Fantasy collapse leaves a big void

I suspected it might happen. Yet when it became official, it still took me by surprise. For me, it was a huge disappointment, one I might not get over for quite a while. Not even my good doctor can help me on this one. No, I’m not talking about the Blue Jays failing to get...

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