This is the opening weekend of the National Hockey League with a full slate of National Hockey League games Saturday night. In the early game of the Hockey Night in Canada doubleheader, the Montreal Canadiens face the Washington Capitals at the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. (City, 4pm PT). The game will feature two of the NHL’s best goaltenders in Canadiens’ netminder Carey Price and Capitals’ netminder Braden Holtby. Both Canadian, Price, from Anahim Lake, British Columbia, won the Vezina Trophy in 2015, and Holtby, from Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, won the Vezina Trophy in 2016.
Here are the other sporting events I will be watching this weekend:
Saturday & Sunday—World Cup short track speed skating—www.cbcsports.ca—This is the second World Cup of the season for the world’s best short track speed skaters, with Dordrecht, Netherlands as the host site. Last week in Budapest, Hungary, Team Canada came away with four medals. Kim Boutin of Sherbrooke, Quebec won two silver medals in individual events and the Canadian men’s relay team won the gold medal in the men’s 5000m.
Saturday & Sunday—World Gymnastics Championships—www.cbcsports.ca—10am PT—For the first time since 1985, the World Gymnastics Championships are on Canadian soil with Montreal, specifically, Olympic Stadium, the host. Canada is not represented in the men’s apparatus finals, but are represented in the women’s finals. Shallon Olsen of Vancouver, British Columbia and Ellie Black of Halifax, Nova Scotia have qualified for the women’s final in the vault on Saturday. Black has also qualified for the women’s balance beam on Sunday. Also on the final day of competition on Sunday, Brooklyn Moors of Cambridge, Ontario qualified for the women’s floor final.
Saturday—CFL—Saskatchewan Roughriders @ Toronto Argonauts—TSN—1pm PT—Two teams around the .500 mark will play this weekend at BMO Field in Toronto. The 7-6 Roughriders host the 7-7 Argonauts. Toronto is the hottest team in the East as they have won three straight games. Since their bye week in Week 12, they have defeated the Edmonton Eskimos 34-26, the Montreal Alouettes 33-19 and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats 43-35. The Roughriders are in a third place tie with the ice cold Eskimos in the CFL West.
Saturday—CFL—Ottawa Redblacks @ British Columbia Lions—TSN—4pm PT—This is a very important game for both teams as both are below .500. The Redblacks are 5-9-1 and the Lions are 6-7. In an interesting statistic, even though the Redblacks are four games below the .500 mark, they are a +32 when it comes to points for and against. That ranks them fourth in the entire CFL. The Lions are out of a playoff spot at the moment, but a win over the Redblacks would get them back to the .500 mark and within striking distance of the Saskatchewan Roughriders and Edmonton Eskimos.
Saturday—NHL—Edmonton Oilers @ Vancouver Canucks—CBC—7pm PT—The Vancouver Canucks will have their regular season opener on Saturday when they host Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers. This will be a memorable night for Travis Green, who will make his NHL coaching debut. The Castlegar native was named the new Canucks head coach on April 26. The Oilers meanwhile won their season opener, 3-0 over the Calgary Flames on Wednesday. Connor McDavid had the hat trick and Cam Talbot had the shutout.
Saturday—NHL—Winnipeg Jets @ Calgary Flames—CITY—7pm PT—The Winnipeg Jets tried to improve their goaltending situation this season. If Wednesday was of any indication, Steve Mason is not an upgrade. The native of Oakville, Ontario struggled mightily in a 7-2 Jets loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday. The Flames just might have the Jets at just the right time on their schedule. They however will need to create more scoring chances than they did Wednesday in their loss to Edmonton.