Almost guaranteed to happen in the final six months of 2023:
July — Cam Smith makes headlines by being the first LIV Golf Tour player to win a major, taking the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool; Leylah Annie Hernandez of Canada captures the women’s singles crown at Wimbledon; Major news out of New York: Hot dog eating champion Joey Chestnut chokes on frankfurter No. 53 during the annual Fourth of July competition on Coney Island and is given the Heimlich manoeuvre by a quick-thinking bystander.
August — The Blue Jays maintain a top-two standing in the A.L. East, led by the slugging heroics of Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., the pitching of free-agent right-hander Chris Bassitt and the flashy outfield defence of Kevin Kiermaier; Canada’s Alphonso Davies leads Bayern Munich to the Champions League title; Rory McIlroy’s victory at the Tour Championship for the Fed-Ex Cup is mocked by Patrick Reed for having been won “against a second-rate field.”
September — It’s the month of debuts, as Connor Bedard skates in his first pre-season NHL game with the (Blackhawks, Blue Jackets, Flyers … ?); Former Calgary quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell guides his new CFL team, Hamilton Tiger-Cats, to first place in the East Division; and Canadian QB Nathan Rourke gets his first NFL action in a pre-season game with Jacksonville, wowing the coaching staff and football fans.
October — Tom Brady leads his newest team, the Las Vegas Raiders, to a 5-0 start in the NFL while Aaron Rodgers is the toast off New York as his new team, the Jets, scoot off to a 4-1 start; Seattle Mariners knock off Toronto Blue Jays in the American League championship and then go on to beat Los Angeles Dodgers in an all-West Coast World Series.
November — The all-Connor scoring race is heating up in the NHL, with McDavid holding a slight edge over Bedard after 20 games; Winnipeg Blue Bombers knock off Hamilton to win their third Grey Cup in four years; French-born basketball sensation Victor Wembanyama makes the biggest rookie splash in the NBA since LeBron James.
December — Once again, Patrick Reed will not receive a Christmas card from Rory McIlroy; Alex Ovechkin gets to within 40 goals of Wayne Gretzky’s career total of 894, and North American calls grow louder for Putin to bring the Great 8 home to fight in the war with Ukraine; O.J. Simpson concludes another year without finding the real killer.
- Jason Sobel of Sirius SX, on Twitter: “Patrick Reed threw a tee at Rory McIlroy, which might not sound like much, but this is essentially golf's version of a bench-clearing brawl.”
- From Pro Golf Stuff, on Twitter, expanding on the Rory McIlroy-Patrick Reed rivalry: “Patrick Reed spoke out against Rory saying ‘He’ll never win a Masters to complete a career Grand Slam.’ Rory later said ‘The only chance Reed has of getting a Grand Slam is at Denny’s.’”
- Blogger Gregg Drinnan in his very entertaining Taking Note column, quoting 1970s Winnipeg junior defenceman Kevin McCarthy, who, when as a member of the Vancouver Canucks, was part of a group mugged by a gang of youths in Chicago: “One guy started it by suckering Jere (Gillis). “I thought I was back in Queen’s Park Arena.”
- Comedy writer Alex Kaseberg: “PGA golfers Patrick Reed and Rory McIlroy are in a feud. Golf feuds are different. McIlroy accused Reed of wearing white after Labour Day, and Reed mocked the pleats in McIlroy's khakis.”
- Columnist Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel: “I just saw where ‘Triangle of Sadness’ got nominated for an Academy Award. I haven’t seen it, but I’m thinking it’s a documentary about the weekly meetings last season between USF’s offensive, defensive and special teams coordinators.”
- RJ Currie of sportsdeke.com: “The Edmonton Oilers hung updates of their 20 total NHL division, conference and Cup banners at Rogers Place. Not to be outdone, the Winnipeg Jets installed new Plexiglas”
- Headline from fark.com: “Chet Holmgren voted as an All-Star starter by several NBA players presumably because they all wanted to take turns dunking on him.”
- Former junior hockey player Brant Kersey, reacting to a Lethbridge Hurricanes’ Wall of Honour recognition for longtime coach and scout Bob Loucks: “The guy has such a terrific eye for talent, watched me in ’94 and knew I wasn’t good enough.”
- Steve Simmons of Sunmedia: “Depending on who you follow, listen to, or read, the Maple Leafs will be acquiring Ryan O’Reilly, Timo Meier, Bo Horvat, Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Max Domi, John Klingberg, Jake McCabe, Vladislav Gavrikov and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir at or around the NHL’s trade deadline next month.”
- Golfer Max Homa, basking in the glow of a victory at the Farmers Insurance Open in an interview with Kira K. Dixon, when it was mentioned it was his first win since becoming a father: “This will definitely be the best-smelling diaper I have changed.”
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