That was a farce!

Normally, I would not write about an NFL exhibition game but football fans in Winnipeg watched the Oakland Raiders “B” team beat the Green Bay Packers “B” team 22-21.

Sure, the pre-season glorified scrimmage may have ended on a last-second field goal, however that doesn’t overshadow the “field”, the lack of “star” players and the “huge” ticket prices.

The game was played on a field shortened to 80 yards because of concerns over the condition of IG Field.

A statement from the NFL said “Tonight’s game is being played on a reconfigured field.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention there were no kickoffs.

Making no apologies, the Packers sat 33 players, including quarterback Aaron Rodgers and running back Aaron Jones, plus many other first-stringers.

(Rodgers hasn’t played in the pre-season)

The Raiders did not play quarterback Derek Carr, new receiver Antonio Brown and many other starters.

The privilege to be attendance cost a bundle.

Tickets prices ranged from $75 to $340 before taxes and fees.

Really?

Announced attendance was just shy of 22,000.

I hope they had a good time as I doubt many football fans would want to shell out megabucks to watch second, third and in some cases fourth stringers.

Some of the fans may have believed the promotion that some of the bigger name players would take to the field, even for a short time, but coaches are evaluating “bubble” talent, which comes before playing time for the “stars.”

I can’t imagine paying top dollar for any exhibition pro sports game, novelty or not.

For those that choose to use their entertain dollars in that fashion, that’s fine for them, but I believe the vast majority of sports enthusiasts don’t care about any pre-season games.

The Prince George Cougars made a wise move this year, as for the first time they will not have an exhibition game in PG.

Generally, they have hosted the Kamloops Blazers in their final tune-up, but dragging fans out to CN Centre in mid-September for a “nothing” game has been a major challenge.

Instead, the Cougars will head north and go to Dawson Creek, a city that will embrace them for a pre-season doubleheader against the Edmonton Oil Kings on September 12th and 14th.

The NFL and other leagues have discussed reducing exhibition games and that’s because hardly anybody wants them.

Especially, when leagues and/or promoters try to gouge the public for a $300 plus ticket.


FROM THE QUOTE RACK:

Mario Andretti has been named honorary pace car driver of the Roval Cup in North Carolina. Not to say Mario is getting older, but his car will be the one with the left turn signal always on.

*Comedy writer Jim Barach http://jokesbyjim.blogspot.ca/

In Las Vegas, the most preseason Super Bowl bets are being placed on the Chicago Bears and Cleveland Browns. Yes, there’s a reason they’ve been able to afford to build all those amazing resorts.

*Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

Odell Beckham, Jr. is being elevated to near rock-star status in Cleveland—who needs a publicity agent to make him look good when he’s got, Antonio Brown?

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

Simone Biles recently shocked the gymnastics world by landing a triple-double, which is three flips and two twists.  I’ll tell you, she is sure of turning a lot of heads.

*Contributor Marc Ragovin 

Former baseball star Doug DeCinces was sentenced to eight months of home confinement for insider trading.

In other words, now would not be a good time to get called out at home.

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Tennis ace Novak Djokovic has denied reports saying he used an egg-shaped hyperbaric chamber in his prep for the US Open. So there goes my Yokevic punchline.

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

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Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca