While Brett Boyko dreams of playing in the NFL again on day, he has found a home for now in the Alliance of American Football.
The brand new eight-team league held its opening games this weekend and Boyko, who is from Saskatoon, suited up for the San Diego Fleet in its matchup against the San Antonio Commanders.
The B.C. Lions drafted Boyko 14th overall in the 2015 CFL draft, but he never played for the team. Over the last three years, the offensive lineman has been on and off of various NFL teams’ practice squads and even started a game for the San Diego Chargers before finally landing with the AAF.
“Me and my agency, we had our mind set on the NFL, so I wasn’t really aware of (the AAF) but obviously jumped at the opportunity,” the 26-year-old told the Calgary Herald. “You get paid pretty well and it still gives you an opportunity to go play in the NFL, so absolutely you can make it work.
Some observers have worried that the AAF might threaten the CFL as it will likely bleed players from the league once free agency opens this month. But others say the Canadian game is unique enough that it will survive.
An Irish hockey team says Canada was instrumental in plans to build a new rink for the country’s players.
The Republic of Ireland has been without a permanent rink since 2010, when its last such facility closed down, CBC News reported. Since then, players have trained on temporary rinks during the winter and have used in-line skates during warmer months.
Plans for a new rink started to be laid when a local Irish team — the Flying Ducks of the Irish Ice Hockey Association — visited Montreal to march in the St. Patrick’s Day parade in 2017 and met Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The hockey players told the prime minster about their predicament.
Four months later, Trudeau mentioned the rink predicament during public comments he made on a trip to Ireland to discuss CETA. Hockey players credited his comments for getting local politicians on board and plans are now underway to build a new rink.
While lawyers are still finalizing details, the new rink is expected to be built in the same location as the old one that closed in 2010, according to CBC.
Halifax football fans should know by Canada Day whether their city will get a CFL team.
One of the principle owners of the proposed franchise, Anthony LeBlanc, told the Chronicle Herald that he expects the Halifax Regional Council to consider their proposal to build a new stadium in late spring, and that the group will finalize its plan shortly after.
“Everybody agrees that we have to figure out if this is a go or a no-go by the midpoint of this year,” he said.
LeBlanc and his partners have been negotiating the purchase of a plot of land that they hope will serve as the home of a 24,000-seat stadium for the franchise — the Atlantic Schooners.
The cost of the facility was first estimated between $170 million and $190 million, but the group has revised that amount to $130 million.
Vincent Lefaive says medical marijuana
saved his life.
The retired Durham Regional Police Service
sergeant was diagnosed with PTSD in 2016 after 28 years of responding to 911
calls. He used a prescription for medical marijuana to successfully treat the
nightmares, anxiety and other symptoms that came along with the affliction.
But Lefaive is worried about the cost of
the drug, which recently became more expensive with a new tax.
As of October 2018, when the federal
government legalized recreational marijuana, all marijuana producers have been
charged excise tax. Advocates say that tax has been passed along to medical
cannabis patients, who were already paying sales tax for their prescriptions.
As medical marijuana is not covered under
insurance plans, advocates say the taxes have made the drug’s cost prohibitive.
This prompted Lefaive and other patients to
join a campaign — launched by non-profit
Canadians for Fair Access to Medical Marijuana — asking the federal government to do away with all taxes on medical
marijuana in its upcoming budget, which is expect to be unveiled this month.
The CFAMM has argued that medical marijuana
should be treated like other prescription drugs, which are not taxed at
Lefaive said the costs are pushing
patients, many of which are seniors, to choose between the drugs they need and
“They are now deciding, I’ve got a medicine
that works for me, and it’s working well, but do I have to cut my grocery
budget? Do I have to cut my heating or hydro budget, or my clothing budget?” he
Advocates say the excise tax and sales
taxes combined have increased the cost of medical cannabis by up to 25 per cent
in some provinces.
Lefaive has already spent more than $1,000 in HST alone since he first started using medical marijuana.
“Even with my financial stability, I am
worried that I cannot afford this,” he said.
Advocates warn that if the cost of medical
marijuana is too prohibitive, it could also push patients to riskier
alternatives that are covered under drug plans, such as opioids.
The federal government has said in the past
that the tax framework is necessary to stop recreational users from abusing the
medicinal prescription system.
A spokesman for Finance Minister Bill
Morneau did not provide comment before deadline.
Two American men could face charges in Saskatchewan for illegally hunting a number of animals before hauling their carcasses back to the United States.
The duo, who have been convicted of deer poaching in Missouri, allegedly shot a number of animals, including white-tailed deer, a coyote, an antelope and a badger in 2016, according to Yorkon This Week.
Two Canadians have been charged for allegedly helping the two men.