Hot takes with Steltsy and Still

Graphic by Bram Keast

Every Tuesday morning from 10 to 11 a.m. on 101.5 UMFM, clad in tropical t-shirts, Manitoban sports editor Mike Still mans the soundboard while chatting with his co-worker and reporter Ryan Stelter about everything going on in the world of sports.

Starting this week, Steltsy and Still are proud to give you their hottest takes from the week that was, as well as general grievances about rules, protocol or anything else that comes to mind from the NHL, MLB, NBA, NFL, or CFL.

For a more detailed breakdown (including a lot of talk about the Edmonton Oilers from Ryan), tune into the show.

Puck over the glass (Ryan)

This is a stupid rule in my opinion, as most of the time a player accidently clears the puck out and over the glass. Why penalize a team for something like that? It seems so innocuous. I believe that if a player does clear the puck out and over the glass without it hitting another player’s stick that his team should not be able to change, similar to an icing call. Get rid of that delay of game penalty, NHL.

Maurice’s ejection (Ryan)

On Thursday night, when the Winnipeg Jets were taking on the Tampa Bay Lightning in Tampa, Fla., Jets head coach Paul Maurice found himself ejected at the beginning of the third period. He was clearly upset over a hit to the head that Bryan Little sustained earlier in the game, which left him unable to return.

It was the second time during the game Little was hit while in a vulnerable position and the player who laid the hit (Anton Strålman) was neither ejected nor sent to the penalty box. If you watched the game or saw the highlights, you would have noticed that the referee never explained his decision about the hit on Little and he never even went over to the Jets’ bench.

As a coach, all you can ask for is a simple explanation in a situation like that. The coach may not like the result that referee Francois St. Laurent made, but at least he should be able to get a reason as to what happened. I am fully on the side of Maurice, as his actions were completely warranted because he was never given that explanation and he was clearly furious over that.

The way that whole situation was handled was very poor and I would hope that the NHL’s head of refereeing will have a chat with St. Laurent.

Cam Newton is human, too (Mike)

Immediately after Super Bowl 50, media flocked to the podium where Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton was sitting in order to ask him about his team’s loss. The pivot was naturally quiet and upset, due to the game still being fresh in his mind.

Despite his giving short two- to three-second answers, reporters continued to hammer him with questions, for some reason fully expecting that he would eventually “snap out of it” and talk candidly to them. This was likely due to the fact that Newton has traditionally been known for his colourful interviews.

This situation is far different, though. It was the biggest game of Newton’s career and he came up short. Of course he’s going to be upset and was likely still processing everything that had occurred.

As a journalist I understand that after a game, you have a job to do and you need comments – in this case from Newton. But it was pretty clear that after the first few questions he didn’t have much to say. Just get what you have, be respectful, and leave. If he didn’t say more than two-to-three words, that’s what you should be putting into the story, and not trying to fish some sort of monologue out of the guy just because you’re used to getting quality content from him.

I challenge any member of the media to try sitting in Newton’s shoes in that situation and not respond in the exact same way.