I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Sportsnet Broadcaster Dave Randorf and Sportsnet Co-Anchor Ken Reid. In this interview we discuss the NHL, Maple Leafs and sports hiatus due to Coronavirus.
During the Interview all individuals will be referred to by their last name.
Ridgewell: How weird is it having all live sports on hiatus?
Randorf: Players and coaches are creatures of habit and I believe broadcasters are as well. I know I am. So it is weird to not be travelling on a Friday to get to a city for Hockey Night in Canada on a Saturday. I usually watch a hockey game or two every night so that is not happening. It’s strange but it’s a small sacrifice to make in this big picture.
Ridgewell: In the grand scheme of things, that is very true.
Reid: It feels really weird. I guess it was something we always took for granted – that sports would always be there. Sports are the toy department of life. It seems like someone took our toys away.
Ridgewell: Do you think the NHL will find a way to finish this regular season?
Reid: It is tough to say. I hope they do but people’s health is the top priority.
Randorf: The NHL will finish this season and award the Stanley Cup if they can do so without too much of an affect to the 2020/21 season. My read is the league and the players are motivated to make this happen if at all possible. They both have financial reasons for this and I feel they both genuinely want it to happen as well.
Ridgewell: What are your thoughts on having an expanded playoff format instead?
Randorf: There are so many uncertainties that lead to so many variables of what a playoff format would look like. To me, expanding the playoff pool is not a good idea. All the teams have played about an average of 85% of their regular season games. We pretty much know who is a playoff team and who is not. To open it up to more teams would be unfair to the others already in a position.
Reid: I’m up for anything. I’d like to see the Cup rewarded.
Ridgewell: Who would be your pick to win the Stanley Cup?
Reid: Tough one. If we do have a playoffs this year everyone will be healthy for a change. Do we start right away? Will there me mini training camps? How long will a series be. Will we be at a point where there is single game elimination. If so one hot goalie could make all the difference. So this is a long way of saying I don’t know – so let’s say Boston.
Ridgewell: That will not sit well with Leafs Nation
Randorf: Picking a Stanley Cup favourite right now is hard. Teams like Boston, Tampa, Washington, St.Louis remain well built contending teams and will still be front runners. The question would be can they just pick up where they left off? All the momentum built up over the grind of the regular season would be pretty much non-existent.
This lay off would have many effects. For one, there are almost certainly going to be injuries to guys jumping right back into the action. Also, teams in the middle of the pack who have had key guys injured are going to be healthy and better on paper. The front runners would remain the front runners going in but the field would be levelled off considerably.
Ridgewell: Do you think this Maple Leafs lineup would make them Cup contenders?
Randorf: The Leafs have proven over the course of their 70 games that they are an good, upper echelon team but not a great contending team – yet.
Reid: No I don’t. I love watching them, they are beyond entertaining but I don’t think their type of style works in the playoffs, at least in the traditional best of seven format. The Leafs are a little too loose for me and I don’t think they have a deep enough blue line to go on a deep run. Please show this to me in a few months to show me how wrong I was.
Ridgewell: I will be sure to do that.
Ridgewell: What would you say the Maple Leafs are missing?
Reid: A big nasty D man, but so are about 25 teams in the league. They also need into the playoffs a more tight defensive game. Having said that I would love to see a team that plays river hockey win the cup. It would be so entertaining and great for the game.
Randorf: Quite simply, a team has to be able to defend and keep the puck out their net in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Toronto has not been able to do this on a consistent basis this season. Offense is not a problem. Team defense 5 on 5 is a problem. Injuries to Rielly and Muzzin have not helped but this is more of a team approach to team defense.
Ridgewell: What have each of you been doing since the hiatus started?
Randorf: I have been taking my 10 year old lab for lots of walks. He is wondering why I am home so much! I go for runs. I am reading a lot and I have dusted off my guitar and taking some online lessons.
Reid: The same as everyone else. On lockdown with my family. We have not been at work at all. All studio shows have been out on hold. Lots of road hockey, mininsticks and baseball with my sons. I’ve been trying to remain active on social media and actually started an Instagram account too. Kenreidsportsnet
I would like to thank both Dave Randorf and Ken Reid for taking the time to do this interview. It was so great chatting with both of them. This has definitely been a weird time for all of us. Having no sports is something none of us are used to, but a sacrifice I think we are all willing to make for a healthy future.
Also, be sure to check out the Overtime Heroics Forums page to join in on the discussion!
Be sure to check out our partners at Repp Sports! They offer the first-ever crowd-sourced, no carb, no sugar, energy drink called RAZE and much more! Use the link above or add the promo code OTH1 at checkout to get 30% off your order!