Become a fan of bluetoro on Facebook!

Toronto Rock: Garrett Billings bobblehead night

As if you needed any extra incentive to go to tonight”s Toronto Rock game, the first 5,000 fans into the ACC will get a limited-edition Garrett Billings bobblehead. Here”s what some of his teammates thought casino online about it:

As per Rob Marshall”s comments regarding Howie Mandel, let”s just hope Billings and the Rock don”t put in a comedic effort tonight against the Philadelphia Wings.

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock: Home opener commercial

Can you believe there’s less than two weeks to go until the start of the 2014 NLL season, although technically it’s starting in 2013.

At least the Toronto Rock have got it right, as they don’t play until January 3rd next year. Here’s the Rock’s home opener commercial to get you in the mood for the new campaign:

Hopefully you’re suitably excited after watching that. Click here to buy tickets for the game against the Calgary Roughnecks.

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock unveil new jerseys

Some of the Toronto Rocks cheerleaders made an appearance on TSN yesterday, to unveil their new home and away jerseys for the 2014 NLL season. Kudos to the girls for being able to maintain their poise and grace around the slightly creepy Mike Richards:

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock: 10 days of Roctoberfest prize draws

rock

Today marks the first day of Roctoberfest, meaning the start of 10 days of prize draws by the Toronto Rock.  The first prize features the chance to win one of five pairs of suite tickets to a Raptor’s game at the ACC, with a Toronto Rock Player in attendence.

The prize also includes non-alcoholic drinks and select snacks during the game.  I assume you can also purchase alcoholic beverages, as long as you remember to re-mortgage your house beforehand.

The draws will continue on weekdays between now and October 25th. Other prizes include an autographed game-worn Toronto Rock jersey and a game day experience.

These prize draws are only open to people who hold 2014 Toronto Rock season tickets.  I could just say it’s your own fault if you don’t already have one, but fortunately for you, it’s Thanksgiving Day and I’m in a good mood.

As such, to purchase a 2014 Toronto Rock season Tickets and automatically be entered into the remaining Roctoberfest draws, call 416-596-3075 to speak with a ticket representative.  Also visit torontorock.com daily for details of each prize.

Photo credit: www.barnstormcreative.com

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


NLL draft: Toronto Rock select Ethan O’Connor in 1st round

ethan o connor

Outside of the season, last night represented one of the biggest days of the year for the Toronto Rock: the NLL draft.  Taking place at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre (TRAC) in Oakville, the draft offered the Rock an opportunity to add some key talent to a team looking for their seventh NLL Championship.

As expected, most of the attention was centred around who GM Terry Sanderson would select in the first round.  In the end, they chose Milton, Ontario native Ethan O’Connor, who comes to Toronto with an impressive resume.

The 23-year olds Junior lacrosse career included a Founders Cup Canadian Junior B Championship with the Halton Hills Bulldogs in 2010.  He finished his Junior eligibility with the Burlington Junior A Chiefs and spent this summer in the Major Series Lacrosse (MSL) league, based in Ontario.

O’Connor sounded happy to have the opportunity to play in Toronto: “This is a dream come true.  I grew up watching the Rock and I couldn’t be happier to be selected by Toronto.”

In the 2nd round, the Rock picked Mike Woods, who played NCAA Division I lacrosse at the University of Albany.  Rock assistant coach, the recently retired Blaine Manning, had the opportunity to watch him closely after working with the Oakville Rock of the MSL, where Woods spent this summer.

Overall, the Rock made six selections in the 2013 NLL draft, including Keegan Bal and Eric Law in the 3rd round.  The Rock rounded out their picks with Emerson Clark in the 4th round and defender Alex Lubczuk in the fifth.

Training camp will begin at the end of November, with preseason games slated for the month of December at the TRAC.  The complete training camp schedule is expected to be released shortly.

Photo credit: http://www.torontorock.com

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock: Toronto sports team venn diagram

toronto sports venn diagram

The above picture has been doing the rounds on the internet and given it’s relevance to Toronto sports, I thought I’d share it with you.  Save for the fact it looks like it was drawn by a six-year old, I love the idea behind it and deem it worthy of giving a tip of the hat. (If I owned one.)

However, at the risk of sounding pedantic/finicky, I have to disagree with saying the Rock are doomed to mediocrity.  Despite only being in Toronto since 1999, they have won six championships, including one as recently as 2011, tied for most all-time in the NLL.

And for anyone pointing out that it’s easy to win in a league that has only nine teams, that means they still have to beat those other eight teams to win the championship.  Keep in mind the Leafs were winning the Stanley Cup back in the days of only six teams, but people (rightly or wrongly) tend to overlook this.

You could even make an argument against saying that nobody gives a shit.  When you consider that there are seven professional sports teams in Toronto, (only New York and Los Angeles have more in North America) the Rock still manage to average 11,000+ at the ACC.

However, I do appreciate that the NLL is nearer to or at the bottom in terms of popularity in Toronto.  Plus, it would balls up the whole concept of the diagram if you took the Rock out, although it would actually make a better argument for saying nobody cares about them.

Photo credit: atomicbolt – i.imgur.com

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Leafs Dave Bolland plays lacrosse at Toronto Rock Athletic Centre

Dave Bolland may only have recently signed for the Leafs, but he’s already become one of the more frequently spotted players around Toronto.  Of course, the most high-profile appearance so far, was when the centre took the Stanley Cup home to Mimico, Etobicoke, where he grew up.

Bolland continued the return to his roots last night, by visiting the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre (TRAC.)  While growing up, he used to play lacrosse for the Mimico Mountaineers at the Mimico Arena.

As you’d expect, the Toronto Rock laid out the red carpet for their special guest, providing Bolland with his own personalised jersey:

Dave Bolland 3

(I dunno man.  First of all we have players jumping the line at their local DMV office and now this?  I guess it pays to be a professional athlete, but I suppose I can live with that. Just so long as young, attractive women don’t start throwing themselves at the players.)

I know there isn’t much to top scoring a Stanley Cup-winning goal, but it still looks like Bolland had fun picking up a lacrosse stick again.  He got the chance to rip shots at Paddy Campbell, along with Patrick Merrill, Stephan Leblanc and the recently retired Blaine Manning.

Dave Bolland 2
Dave Bolland 4

After hanging out with the Toronto Rock, Bolland also spent some time with the Mimico Midgets, a minor league lacrosse team:

Dave Bolland 1

The Midgets (don’t worry, I’m keeping a straight face. Just about.) were preparing for this weekends Ontario Lacrosse Association Final 6 tournament, which will be taking place at the TRAC.  We wish them the best of luck.

Photo credits: @TorontoRockLax & @JDawick

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock: Colin Doyle appearing today at Ontario Lacrosse Festival

Colin Doyle

Do you fancy meeting Toronto Rock captain Colin Doyle?   If so, why not head down to the Ontario Lacrosse Festival today, where you’ll get the opportunity to talk to the six-time Champion’s Cup winner between 11:30am-12:30pm.

If you can’t make it down today, fifteen-year veteran Josh Sanderson will also be making an appearance tomorrow, between 2:00pm-3:00pm.  In fact, the Rock will have an interactive booth set up between 9:00am-5:00pm all weekend, with fans also having the chance to meet the Rock cheerleaders and test the speed and accuracy of their shot in the Rock shooting gallery.

Even if you’re not a lacrosse fan, it is still worth heading down to the tenth annual event, which is being held in the Durham region.  With various activities taking place, there’s enough to keep the whole family entertained.  Click here for more details.

Photo credit: http://johnchidleyhill.com

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock: Tribute to Blaine Manning

It’s been a busy few days, including the passing of the MLB non-waiver trade deadline and the Argonauts playing on a Tuesday night game.  As such, a lot of local sports fans may not be aware that this week saw the retirement of one of the most successful athletes to ever play in Toronto: Blaine Manning.

The Toronto Rock forward made his announcement on Wednesday, after playing 12 years in the NLL.  Manning played with the Rock for his entire career, adding to a legacy that has him being called one of the games all-time greats.

The 33-year old was selected 2nd overall in the 2001 NLL draft by the Calgary Roughnecks, who promptly traded him to the Rock.  The dividends were almost immediate, with Manning being named the 2002 NLL Rookie of the Year and helping his team win the NLL Championships.

Manning’s career statistics make for impressive reading.  In 181 regular season games, he totalled 833 points, with 526 assists and 307 goals, which included numerous heating-missiles such as this one:

Manning was almost as impressive in the post-season, with 64 points (23 goals & 41 assists) in 18 playoff games.  In total, he won four Champions Cup rings with the Rock. (2002, 2003, 2005 & 2011.)

At 6ft 1in and 205 lbs, the native of Alberta also wasn’t afraid to get involved in the physical side of the game. (Note how his opponent, Ian Hawksbee, resorts to tackling him to the floor, once he realises he isn’t going to win the fight.)

Despite the Toronto Rock being one of the more accessible teams in the city, not all fans will be familiar with what Manning is like as a person.  This interview gives a good insight into his personality and sense of humour:

Undoubtedly, Manning deserves to make it into the NLL Hall of Fame sooner rather than later.  Details of the Rock’s plans to honour him will be announced in the fall, following the release of the 2014 NLL regular season schedule.

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook


Toronto Rock owner enters World Series of Poker

Jamie Dawick

For any poker fans out there, I assume you’ve been watching the 44th Annual World Series of Poker (WSOP), which is currently taking place in Las Vegas between May 29th and July 15th.  In particular, you’re most probably excited about the main event, which starts today and costs a cool $10,000 to buy-in.

This year’s main event has a local flavour to it, with Toronto Rock owner and president Jamie Dawick taking part.  Dawick will be playing on Day 1B, i.e. tomorrow, as he attempts to win poker’s most coveted prize.

This isn’t the first time the Rock owner has participated, having made it to the end of day 2 last year, before being eliminated.  Dawick’s best performance to date was in 2007, when he finished in 363rd place and won $34,664.

Depending on your level of interest, you can click here to get full coverage of the 2013 WSOP, including a live stream.  If not, you can follow Dawick’s progress on Twitter @JDawick, where he will keep his followers updated.

Blue Toro wishes Dawick the best of luck.  In fact, we can’t stress this enough.  We’d hate his franchise to be used as collateral in the tournament, end up being relocated for the 2014 season and renamed the Las Vegas Rock.

Photo credit: www.torontorock.com

If you have any tips or information about any of Toronto’s sports teams, please email me at Englishpaul@hotmail.co.uk

You can also follow us on Twitter @bluetoro_ca and like us on Facebook