Thursday, December 15, 2016

Personally, It's Been A Season of Transition...

There is plenty on the go these days as we head toward the 2016 calendar year finish line.

The World Junior Hockey Championship gets rolling soon, a Boxing Day start in Montreal and Toronto. It's a fabulous tournament, an event I have had the pleasure of covering in person on two occasions; 2006 and 2010. The tournament in Saskatoon was especially a highlight.

It was fun to be a part of the Hockey's Future team between 2006 and 2016. In July, the site owners put the site out to pasture. Such is life in the (ahem) high stakes world of Internet marketing and advertising revenue generation.

The HF information package was consistently solid, organized by managing editor Ken McKenna. None of us among the troops got rich, but I can assure that we were all enriched by the experience.

It has been a different hockey season to date for me, as the regular HF coverage articles and associated deadlines are no longer part of my life. I'll watch the tournament with the same interest I've always had, but again, it will have a different feel.

With the cities of Victoria and Vancouver being awarded the 2019 WJC, perhaps there will be an opportunity for me to get back in the saddle.

On the upside, the young guns at have been kind enough to invite me along for the ride. Paul Figler and Jesse Phillips are the powers that be, creative guys with some terrific ideas.

I suspect there have been some growing pains as the crew navigates the gamut of hurdles media wags can encounter. As a group, the contributing writers have enough knowledge and insight to ask some real hard questions, but it has been my experience that major junior teams and leagues are not always keen to accept what can occasionally come across as an intrusion.

Over time, I think the guys at will continue to establish it's credibility, which will eventually lead to even more open dialogue with teams and the league office. Part of working together is that "feeling out process" and unfortunately, it doesn't always evolve quickly.

The fellas at the Kelowna Daily Courier swung open the door for me this fall; a totally unexpected opportunity. As a freelance writer, I have generally worked with soft deadlines, producing ranking articles and player features. But when the Daily Courier came calling, they assigned me to cover Kelowna Rockets mid-week home games.

Event coverage is fun, though it comes with a hard deadline. I have to file by 10:15pm on game night, after most contests end around 9:30pm. It has been a terrific experience.

Larry Fisher and Doyle Potenteau have been invaluable resources during the first half of the WHL season.

The hockey world has provided some unique opportunities over the years, some great times and interactions with some very interesting people. From time to time, I'll post some of my archived interviews, both the written and the audio versions.

There is an exciting "newness" to things, but at the same time there is a huge void with the disappearance of the Hockey's Future gig. This hockey season has certainly been one of transition.

On the other hand, the golf business in my world can be summed up in one word for 2016: tumultuous. More on that later...

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