Archive for the ‘Canadian ballers’ Category


The Marquette Golden Eagles will do battle with the Miami Hurricanes on Thursday in the Sweet 16. Toronto native Junior Cadougan (@JRwontlose) is the starting point guard for the Golden Eagles. He was kind enough to spend a few minutes with Tourney Central…

Oliver Macklem: Junior, your team has won their two games by a combined 3 points. What have you guys learned from an epic comeback against Davidson and then a back-and-forth game from wire-to-wire with Butler?

Junior Cadougan: I’ve been at Marquette for 4 years now and every season I’ve played in, 70% of our games have been close games, so we’re used to it, especially the guys that have been here.

OM: Looking ahead to Thursday’s game against Miami – they’re a very similar team to yours, in terms of great guard-play and the pace at which they like to play. You’ll be spending a lot of time guarding their leading scorer, Shane Larkin. I don’t think anyone in the country can stop him, but what are the keys to containing a guy like that?

JC: I’ve played in the Big East for 4 years now and I’ve seen a lot of guards similar to him. It’s gonna be a tough task but I just got to come out with the mindset to play hard and grind out every possession and contain him and make him take contested shots.

OM: And it won’t just be you that has to guard him, as one of the signatures of this Marquette team is the depth. Coach Buzz Williams ran out 11 guys against Butler. How does that give you an advantage in this tournament?

JC: It just gives us the opportunity to wear teams down. Some teams go 7-deep, some teams go 6-deep. Even our bench got to build up some confidence, to come in the game and help us do the job. It’s a full team effort – that’s what we believe in.

OM: Junior, this is Marquette’s third consecutive appearance in the sweet 16 – last year you lost to Florida. the year before you got bounced byUNC – what would it mean to you, especially as a senior, to break through into that elite 8 and possibly beyond?

JC: It would be great for us to finally pass the test of the Sweet 16. I’ve been to the Sweet 16 two times and this is my third time. Hopefully I can pass the test the third time.

OM: Your twitter page led me to the website. It’s a fitness and lifestyle brand. Tell us about your involvement with that?

JC: My boy Adam Ali got me involved with that. It’s about having the mentality of I won’t lose, I will never back down, I will never fear, I will challenge. And it’s a great mindset to share to people.

Stephen Harper at the 2012 US Open, probably wishing that he was watching college ball

Stephen Harper at the 2012 US Open, probably wishing that he was watching college ball

Few sporting events capture the attention and imagination of casual or even non-fans like the annual madness of the NCAA basketball tournament, and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is no different.

We’ve discussed the impressive list of Canadians in this year’s tourney already. On Thursday afternoon, Harper offered some words of encouragement to a few of them…

Read the rest of this entry »

Mountain West Basketball Tournament - Championship - UNLV v New Mexico

Canadian-born players are making a bigger impact in the NCAA every year, and 2012-13 has been no different, with an exciting group of Canucks making names for themselves in Division 1 basketball South of the border.

Next year names like Andrew Wiggins and Xavier Rathan Mayes, among others, will join the Madness. For now, here’s a reminder of the Canadians that will be dancing in 2013…

Read the rest of this entry »

Drake v Creighton

The Creighton Bluejays are heading to the NCAA tournament for the second straight year. Ottawa, Ontario native Jahenns Manigat is a big part of their success and he was kind enough to spend a few minutes with the Tourney Central Blog…

Oliver Macklem: We are extremely pleased to be joined by Jahenns Manigat of the Creighton Bluejays. The Bluejays have punched their ticket to the big dance after winning the Missouri Valley Conference Championship. For you personally, it was an incredible effort in that championship game – you had a season-high 16 points and a crucial layup with about 11 seconds left. Would you say that was the best game of your college career thus far?

Jahenns Manigat: I think with everything that was on the line as far as getting an automatic bid and winning back-to-back championships, that was definitely my best performance. I’ve had games where I maybe scored more, but all-in-all that was one of my best games so far.

OM: Last year, Creighton made it to the NCAA tournament where you bowed out to North Carolina in the second round – no shame there – so how do you think this team this team has improved since last year, because you still have much of the same core?

JM: I think we’ve improved tremendously. Like you mentioned we only lost one player – our starting point guard – and everyone that came back remembers how bad it felt to lose in the NCAA tournament and we’re eager to come back and put ourselves in a situation where we can go further this year. In the offseason and throughout the season we’ve worked extremely hard to improve each and every single day and recently we hit a nice stride and we’ve been doing some good things on the floor so we just want to continue that trend.

OM: I know this isn’t your job Jahenns, but if you had to be a prognosticator for a second, what seed are you guys expecting to get in the NCAA tournament?

JM: We’re not sure to be honest. We really felt like we could be a 5-seed and above when we started off the year 17-1 and then we kind of went through a slump in the months of January and February, where we lost a couple of close games and whatnot. So we’re looking at possibly a 7 or 6-seed hopefully. Anywhere close to Omaha, our fans always do a great job of travelling with us so we’d like to see a Kansas City region where fans would have an easy time to get down and cheer us on during the NCAA tournament.

OM: Your teammate Doug McDermott is a fantastic player – an All-American. What’s it like playing with a guy like that who is such a high-volume shooter? How do you have to adjust your game?

JM: It’s a lot easier than people might think because the majority of the shots come within our offence. He’s such a great player that you expect him to make all the shots he takes. He shoots a high percentage so it’s not like he’s being selfish in that he’s going to jack up a three every possession. He picks and chooses his spots really well. He just does it at a high rate and at an efficiency that people haven’t seen before. We just learn to all play off of him and continue to feed him the ball. There are some games that he plays so well, you just have to give him the ball and get out of his way. You just have to learn to pick your spots a bit better and understand what we’re trying to do offensively and when he gets going it opens up the lane for all of us. We definitely feed off him and he does a great job of passing the ball out when he’s double teamed too.

OM: Jahenns, we discovered that your nickname is the Canadian Red Bull. It’s a fantastic nickname and obviously a very complimentary one. Tell us the origins of that nickname and what it means to you?

JM: It came to be in my freshman year. One of courtside announcers came up with it. I think I made two or three hustle plays in a row and he mentioned that I bring constant energy and I’m never tired. Being the first Canadian in our program, he nicknamed me the Canadian Red Bull. At first I didn’t know how to feel about it but our fans really embraced it and started calling me that when they saw me out in restaurants or whatnot. They said “Red Bull, Red Bull, how you doing Red Bull?” I just embraced it and went with it and now it’s second nature when people call me that, I’ll turn and react. It’s really fun and something our fans enjoy so anything to make them happy is what I’m willing to do.

Ohio State v Michigan

The Michigan Wolverines are likely headed for a 2 or 3-seed in the NCAA tournament. Their starting small forward is Nik Stauskas, a native of Etobicoke, Ontario. He was kind enough to give us a few minutes of his time… Read the rest of this entry »

Texas A&M Aggies v Oklahoma Sooners

There is an incredible amount of Canadian talent playing division one basketball this year and as part of the Tourney Central blog, we’re going to conduct interviews with a few of Canada’s finest ballers.

We kick things off with Vancouver’s Ty Nurse, whose Texas Tech Red Raiders start play in the Big 12 tournament tonight.  Read the rest of this entry »

Zags do the Harlem Shake

First, a caveat. The Harlem Shake craze needs to end. Humanity’s salvation depends on it. What we need is more videos like this. With that bit of ‘man yelling at cloud’ business out of the way, I can’t fault the Gonzaga Bulldogs for having a little fun. On their way back from Vegas after capturing the WCC crown, Kelly Olynyk and company decided to be the 61,789,356th group of people to partake in the viral craze that has destroyed families around the world. Locking down a number one seed in the tournament leads people to do regrettable things. It happens.