Mak­ing an im­pres­sion

Pan Am Games bas­ket­ball pushes Maple Leafs, Blue Jays out of spotlight

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - Hockey Golf Har­ness rac­ing Fred Mac­Don­ald’s col­umn ap­pears ev­ery Satur­day in The Guardian. He can be reached at fid­dlers­facts@hot­

Per­haps the big­gest sur­prise in the sports world so far this sum­mer is the strong per­for­mances by Canada at the Pan Amer­i­can Games in Toronto and specif­i­cally the bas­ket­ball teams.

No­body ex­pected the women to win gold at these games and most were stunned at the man­ner in which Team Canada dis­posed of Team USA to win their first ever gold at the Games, which are run the year be­fore the Olympics.

The Cana­dian men drubbed Mexico 96-76 on Thurs­day night to ad­vance to Fri­day night’s semi­fi­nal against the USA, who lost 93-83 to Brazil. The men have never won a medal at the Pan Am Games and to­day they play for ei­ther bronze or gold.

Our own Bruce Rain­nie and Hal­i­fax-based Mickey Fox, who was drafted in the NBA, will cover the play-by-play broad­cast, which makes the game that much more in­ter­est­ing for us.

In this coun­try even in the mid­dle of the sum­mer, hockey still com­mands at­ten­tion. The Toronto Maple Leafs are all ex­cited about sign­ing Lou Lamor­iello as their new GM, although at age 72 “new” is hardly ap­pro­pri­ate.

The jury is still out on whether pres­i­dent Bren­dan Shana­han is com­pe­tent or not and Lou is hardly my idea of a re­build. Head coach Mike Bab­cock in­her­its a team that lacks size and will be with­out top scorer Phil Kes­sel. I don’t know if Lou will be around when the Leafs next make the play­offs.

For­mer Leaf David Clark­son has re­gained his scor­ing touch, his 10-foot putt at Belvedere July 23 lifted he and part­ner Trent Birt to vic­tory over Cal­gary Flames de­vel­op­ment coach Troy Crow­der and Bruce Guthro in the celebrity part of the Boys & Girls Club of Char­lot­te­town tour­na­ment.

For­mer NHL de­fence­man Doug Bodger and his team of Ryan Power, Wade Hul­bert and Jeff MacEach­ern shot a com­bined 56 to win Fri­day tour­na­ment, which raised a record $45,000 for the club.

In lo­cal golf, Tyler Hashmi is headed to the Cana­dian na­tional ju­nior next month and he’s only 15. He must get the golf prow­ess from his mother’s side.

Si Se­malu, who was roughed up in last Satur­day’s Gover­nors Plate, has drawn the rail tonight in the $2,400 top class at the city track and he needs a con­fi­dence builder right now.

Rac­ing is tough here at Red Shores at the Char­lot­te­town Driv­ing Park, but the big drop in class should get him to the win­ner’s cir­cle. The field in­cludes For­ever Par­adise, Jersey Joe, Cabo Pan Lu­cas, Tempo Seel­ster, Water­side Light, Likely to Win and Smi­ley Bayama.

The $7,500 Nova Sco­tia Ex­hi­bi­tion Cup In­vi­ta­tional goes tonight at Truro and it should be a dandy as highly touted All Tu­rain, The Rev, Mach It Big, Big Surf, R Caan and I’m Drink­ing Dou­bles have all drawn in­side DGs Camme. The Rev set­back in the Gover­nors Plate was a ter­ri­ble de­ci­sion by the judges.

At Mo­hawk tonight, Dr. Ian Moore could win the two $105,000 On­tario Sires Stakes three-year-old colt fi­nals, as he has Shoe Shine in one and Phys­i­cally In­clined in the other.

At Saratoga tonight, Mark Mac­Don­ald drives Luck Be With You in the $260,000 Joe Ger­rity me­mo­rial.

Fid­dler’s Facts

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