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Harris the X-factor for Eskimos in CFL East final in Hamilton
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QB set to lead team at Tim Hortons Field against Ticats, who are 9-0 at home
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By DAN RALPH
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B17


It's hard to forget the last time Trevor Harris faced the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Harris had a CFL playoff-record six touchdown passes in last year's East Division final. Of course, that was while he was a member of the Ottawa Redblacks, which secured a 46-27 victory before dropping a 27-16 decision to the Calgary Stampeders in the Grey Cup.

On Sunday, Harris will lead Edmonton into Tim Hortons Field for the East final against a Hamilton squad that posted a CFL-best 15-3 regular-season record. Included were two victories against Edmonton that Harris missed due to injury.

Edmonton is attempting to become the first crossover team to reach the Grey Cup.

But to do so, the Eskimos will have to do what no other CFL team has done this season: Win at Tim Hortons Field.

The Ticats are a perfect 9-0 there, including a 42-12 decision over Edmonton on Oct.

4. Quarterback Dane Evans threw for 277 yards and two TDs, but it was Hamilton's defence that stood tall with three interceptions and five sacks.

Both Edmonton and Hamilton were very good this year getting to the quarterback.

The Eskimos finished tied with Saskatchewan for the league lead (56), with Hamilton third (54). Harris stole the show in Edmonton's 37-29 East Division semi-final win over Montreal on Sunday. He completed his first 22 passes - one short of the CFL record held by Hamilton's Jeremiah Masoli - and finished 36-of-39 passing for 421 yards and a TD as the Eskimos had the ball for over 36 minutes.

Montreal converted a Harris interception into a 10-yard TD run from quarterback Vernon Adams Jr., that pulled Montreal to with 34-29 in the fourth. But Josh Johnson's second pick of the game in the fourth set up Sean Whyte's 36-yard field goal to make it 37-29 before his third cemented the Edmonton win.

Hamilton's offence could give Edmonton all it can handle as the unit led the CFL in offensive points scored (28.2 a game), touchdowns (57), net offence (395.8 yards a game), average yards a play (6.84) and passing yards (313.3). The Ticats were also fourth in rushing (100.4 yards a game), impressive considering the abundance of running backs the team used due to injury.

Quarterback Dane Evans was 9-2 replacing Masoli (season-ending knee injury), passing for 3,754 yards and 21 TDs. Brandon Banks (CFL's leading receiver with club-record 112 catches, 1,550 yards, 13 TDs) and Bralon Addison (95 catches, 1,236 yards, seven TDs) anchor Hamilton's receiving corps. But someone worth watching could be veteran Luke Tasker (36 catches, 406 yards), who missed much of the season with injuries but has since returned to the starting lineup. Hamilton's offence line allowed 37 sacks this season (fourth over all) but if there's a concern, the Ticats did throw 24 interceptions - second-most in the CFL.

Harris has no shortage of weapons at his disposal. There's receivers Greg Ellingson (86 catches, 1,170 yards, five TDs) and Ricky Collins (78 catches, 1,103 yards, three TDs) and dual-threat C.J. Gable (1,003 rushing yards, 53 catches for 417 yards). Edmonton's offensive line allowed a CFL-low 25 sacks.

But playing at home would appear to be the equalizer for a Hamilton team that won its final six regular-season games. And in the space of a week Edmonton will have had to travel to Montreal, back to Alberta and then return to Ontario.

Pick: Hamilton WEST DIVISION FINAL Winnipeg Blue Bombers versus Saskatchewan Roughriders At Regina, Winnipeg starter Zach Collaros returns to where he began the 2019 season.

Collaros opened under centre for the Riders before suffering a head injury just three plays into their season-opening road loss to Hamilton.

Cody Fajardo took over and promptly led the Riders to a 13-5 record and top spot in the West for the first time since 2009. Saskatchewan dealt Collaros to Toronto on July 31 before the Argos dispatched him to Winnipeg on Oct. 9.

Collaros is 2-0 as Winnipeg's starter, combining with backup Chris Streveler to lead the Bombers past the defending champion Calgary Stampeders 35-14 on Sunday. Collaros was 11-of-21 passing for 193 yards and a TD while Streveler, despite an injured ankle, ran 13 times for a game-high 82 yards and a touchdown.

Winnipeg's rushing prowess isn't anything new. The Bombers averaged a CFLbest 147.9 yards a game as Andrew Harris was the league's top runner (1,380 yards) for a third straight year.

Streveler certainly did his part, rushing for 726 yards and 12 TDs. Trouble was, he threw more interceptions (14) than TDs (eight), the majority coming after replacing incumbent Matt Nichols (season-ending shoulder injury).

Collaros's passing numbers aren't eyepopping (414 yards, three TDs, one interception). But he's completed 33-of-49 attempts (67.3 per cent) and gives Winnipeg an experienced player who's capable of making the crucial downfield completion.

Saskatchewan won the season series 2-1 and Fajadro finished the season as the CFL's passing leader (4,302 yards). However, the West Division's outstanding player nominee missed the Riders' regular-season finale, a 23-13 home win over Edmonton that cemented top spot in the division, with an oblique injury. Fajardo is expected to start Sunday and is coming off a 429-yard, two TD passing performance in his last season, a 27-24 victory over Edmonton on Oct. 26.

Against Winnipeg, Fajardo was 59-of-91 passing (64.8 per cent) for 796 yards with two TDs and three interceptions. But a healthy Fajardo also contributes to Saskatchewan's ground attack with 611 rushing yards (5.7-yard average) and 10 TDs on the ground. Saskatchewan was 8-1 at home while Winnipeg was 3-6 on the road.

Pick: Saskatchewan Last week: 1-1 Overall: 59-24.

Associated Graphic

Edmonton QB Trevor Harris makes the throw against Saskatchewan on Oct. 26. Harris had a CFL playoff-record six touchdown passes in last year's East Division final against Hamilton. Of course, that was while he was a member of the Ottawa Redblacks,who went on to lose to the Calgary Stampeders in the Grey Cup.

JASON FRANSON/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Calgary will ride Mitchell's arm in West semi
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Alouettes have imaginative playcaller, but Eskimos have huge arsenal at their disposal in East semi-final
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By DAN RALPH
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B14


Zach Collaros and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers have a tough row to hoe.

Collaros is expected to start for the Bombers (11-7) when they visit the Calgary Stampeders (12-6) in the West Division semifinal Sunday. He took first-team reps Wednesday.

The winner will face the Saskatchewan Roughriders (13-5) in the West final Nov. 17.

Winnipeg is chasing its first Grey Cup title since 1990. But the 2005 Edmonton Eskimos are the most recent team to win a CFL title after finishing third in the West Division standings.

Now, the Bombers do have some things going for them.

Winnipeg won the season series 2-1 and Collaros has won his past three starts versus Calgary.

The 31-year-old Ohio native was 22-of-28 passing for 221 yards with two touchdowns and an interception in his Bombers debut, a come-from-behind 29-28 home win over the Stampeders on Oct.

25.

However, Winnipeg was a dismal 3-6 on the road this season and lost 37-33 in its only regularseason visit to McMahon Stadium on Oct. 19. Calgary quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell - who has an 11-3 regular-season mark against the Bombers - is 5-0 at home during the playoffs since becoming the Stampeders starter in 2014.

But after finishing atop the West Division the previous three seasons, Calgary faces a longer road to a fourth straight Grey Cup appearance and second consecutive title win.

The offence will ride Mitchell's strong right arm considering Calgary averaged a CFL-worst 73.4 yards rushing per game this season. The Stampeders ran for just 44.7 yards in the three contests versus Winnipeg, whose defence surrendered a league-low 64.2 yards rushing per contest.

However, Calgary will counter with the CFL's No. 2-ranked aerial attack (312.3 yards a game).

Mitchell has two 1,000-yard receivers at his disposal in Reggie Begelton (100 catches, 1,492 yards, 11 TDs) and Eric Rogers (85 catches, 1,080 yards, 10 TDs).

As solid as Winnipeg's defence was against the run, it was ranked sixth against the pass (303.4 yards a game). But the Bombers finished second over all in interceptions (24, two behind league-leading Calgary) with Winston Rose (CFL-high nine interceptions) leading the way.

Winnipeg's biggest advantage, though, is its rushing attack. The Bombers averaged a CFL-high 147.9 yards a game, anchored by Canadian Andrew Harris (league-best 1,380 yards).

It marked the third straight CFL rushing title for Harris, who registered the achievement despite missing two regular-season games after a positive drug test.

Calgary's defence allowed 96.3 rushing yards but led the CFL in forced turnovers (47) and interceptions.

Calgary was 7-2 at home this season and 8-2 within the West Division. Winnipeg struggled away from IG Field but was 7-3 against conference competition.

Pick: Calgary.

EAST DIVISION SEMI-FINAL Edmonton Eskimos at Montreal Alouettes The Alouettes (10-8) play host to their first playoff contest since 2014 after finishing second in the East Division behind Hamilton (15-3).

The two teams split their season series 1-1 but haven't met since Montreal's 20-10 home victory July 20. The Alouettes ran away with that game, outrushing Edmonton by a 132-49 margin while forcing three turnovers (two interceptions, downs).

Vernon Adams Jr. was 15-of-22 passing for 191 yards and a TD and was on the receiving end of Eugene Lewis's 21-yard scoring strike. Adams also ran seven times for 44 yards.

The Ticats will play host to the winner in the East final Nov. 17.

Adams was a key figure in Montreal's resurgence under first-year head coach Khari Jones, who's also the club's offensive co-ordinator and quarterback coach. Adams threw for 3,942 yards and 24 TDs while running for 394 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Montreal's offensive line will have to deal with an Edmonton front that finished tied with Saskatchewan for most sacks (56).

But Adams has the ability to run upfield or use his legs to extend plays.

And there's the matter of Jones, a former CFL quarterback who's an imaginative playcaller with a deep bag of tricks.

Trevor Harris starts for Edmonton (8-10), which finished the regular season with two straight losses. Harris has played just once since suffering a shoulder injury Sept. 7.

But Harris had an Edmonton debut to remember June 14, completing 32-of-41 passes for 447 yards and three TDs in a season-opening 32-25 home win over Montreal. Running back C.J.

Gable ran for 154 yards on 20 carries while Ricky Collins had nine catches for 175 yards.

Last year, Harris threw for 367 yards and a CFL-record six TD passes in leading the Ottawa Redblacks past Hamilton 46-27 in the East Division final.

Harris finished second in CFL passing (4,027 yards) and was intercepted just six times in 478 pass attempts. Edmonton's offensive line surrendered a CFLlow 25 sacks.

Harris has plenty of weapons at his disposal. Collins (78 catches, 1,103, eight TDs) and Greg Ellingson (86 catches, 1,170 yards, five TDs) anchor the receiving corps while Gable is coming off a second straight 1,000-yard rushing campaign.

Montreal was 6-3 at home and 5-5 versus West Division competition. Edmonton was 3-6 away from Commonwealth Stadium but 5-3 against Eastern rivals.

Two factors hard to overlook are a) Harris's playoff experience and b) Edmonton's offensive line facing a Montreal defensive front that had a CFL-low 27 sacks.

Pick: Edmonton.

Last week: 3-1 Over all: 58-23.

Associated Graphic

Calgary quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell, seen passing against the Lions in Vancouver on Saturday, is 5-0 at home during the playoffs since becoming the Stampeders starter in 2014.

DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Nurse knows how much every game counts
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Basketball star didn't think twice about flying 26 hours to help Canada during second round of Tokyo 2020 qualifying
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By LORI EWING
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B17


Every game is important in Canada's quest for an Olympic women's basketball medal in Tokyo.

That's why Canadian star and globetrotter Kia Nurse was nonchalant about flying 26 hours to Edmonton for her team's second round of Olympic qualifying this week. Or about dropping everything once again for the third and final qualifying round in February (location TBD).

"You get on an airplane. That's what they're made for," Nurse laughed.

"Going to the Olympics, every single game that we play, no matter who we're playing against and when we're playing, if we don't get through this [qualifying round], then we don't get a chance at the Olympics right?" the 23-year-old said from Edmonton on Tuesday. "So, it's coming in every single day and making sure and understanding that every single game that we play has its own importance, not only in our development as a team moving forward, but to get ourselves to the Olympics and to the podium."

Canada tips off the tournament ranked an all-time high fourth in the world, and will field one of its strongest teams in history this week. The Canadians play Cuba on Thursday, Puerto Rico on Friday and the Dominican Republic on Saturday, three countries they clobbered in the FIBA AmeriCup in September - without Nurse and Natalie Achonwa, who were wrapping up their WNBA seasons.

Nurse, who was a WNBA allstar in her second season with the New York Liberty, took a brief break to rehabilitate an elbow injury before flying to Canberra, the team she helped to an Australian league title last season.

Nurse was named WNBL player of the week on Tuesday after leading the Capitals to a pair of wins on Thursday and Saturday in Melbourne. She then flew to Edmonton by Sydney and Vancouver.

Bridget Carleton similarly flew halfway around the world to suit up for Canada. The 21-year-old from Chatham, Ont., is playing for the WNBL's Townsville Fire and, like Nurse, had only been down under for about a month before jetting back to North America.

"Jetlag brain is alive and well here in Edmonton," Carleton tweeted on Monday.

A large chunk of WNBA players spend their winters playing abroad. Because they're paid peanuts compared with their NBA counterparts, it's a financial necessity for most.

Carleton had a roller-coaster rookie season in the WNBA. The former Iowa State Cyclones star was drafted 21st by Connecticut then waived in early-July. She signed as a free agent with the Minnesota Lynx in late-August.

So the 6-foot-1 guard is appreciating the Aussie experience.

"Australia has been a great place to develop as a basketball player, it's a good spot for me to be in, I have a good coach who's willing to work with me on things I want to focus on, obviously I'm growing as a person, first time being really far away from my family and what I'm comfortable with in North America," Carleton said. "So yeah, in terms of just developing as a player and person for sure, I think I will be better because of the overseas experience for the national team and hopefully the WNBA." Arriving in Edmonton in waves late last week from posts around the globe, the Canadian women will have had three days to practise before tipping off the tournament.

"What's special about this group is we're all committed to this program, coming back from all over the world to play for Canada ... we all love to be a part of that," Carleton said. "We come from everywhere and then we get to reunite, it's always fun to get on the court with these girls."

Picked from a Canada Basketball pool of the country's top women, the majority have played together at various tournaments for years. So when they are reunited, they can slip almost seamlessly back into the Canadian team chemistry they've developed.

"We get a good understanding of playing with each other as we continue to do that year after year," Nurse said. "So when we come back and get back into the swing of things, it's always really easy and really fun to be back playing with great players."

Canada must finish top two to earn a spot in one of the four global qualifying tournaments in February. The top three in each of those four tournaments earn a spot in the Tokyo Olympics.

The Canadian women were ousted in the quarter-finals of both the 2012 and 2016 Olympics.

The Canadian men missed a chance at qualifying for Tokyo at the World Cup in China in August. They'll play in a last-chance qualifying tournament in June.

Associated Graphic

Kia Nurse, right, is keen to be back with Team Canada for Olympic qualifying: 'When we come back and get back into the swing of things,' she says, 'it's always really easy and really fun to be back playing with great players.'

FRANK GUNN/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Stampeders miss chance to repeat as Grey Cup champs on home turf
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By DONNA SPENCER
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


CALGARY -- The Calgary Stampeders' season was short by their own standards.

After playing in five of the past seven Grey Cup games and winning two of them, their exit in the CFL's West Division semi-final Sunday at the hands of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers felt sudden.

Calgary fell short of a club-record eighth straight appearance in the division final.

So any satisfaction that could be drawn from a dozen wins to finish second in the division was overshadowed by the knowledge the team won't be in a position to achieve a rare feat - repeating as Grey Cup champions on their home turf in Calgary on Nov. 24.

"A good year, but not a successful year," head coach Dave Dickenson said Monday. "We're disappointed.

"Feels very abrupt, but it's the reality of sports. Really no excuses. We didn't play a good enough game and we got beat."

Calgary was a victim of its 2018 success, losing big name players on both sides of the ball to CFL free agency and the NFL.

Unlike previous seasons, the Stampeders didn't have the same depth to withstand the loss of players to injury.

Half of Calgary's 12 wins were by five points or less.

"We were really scratching, clawing and fighting for the last six to eight weeks to the point where everything was just so difficult," Dickenson said.

"I do think we ran out of gas.

You could see in their faces they wanted to keep playing, they want to keep going, but everybody, it's been a tough year on us."

An offence that relied heavily on passing was minus star receiver and playoff performer Eric Rogers (high ankle sprain) in a 35-14 loss to the Bombers.

Calgary's offence couldn't match, nor could the defence defend against Winnipeg's rushers, who exploited the absence of Stampeder defensive end and sack leader Cordarro Law (separated shoulder).

How much credit the Bomber defence deserves for halftime adjustments that held Calgary to zero points in the second half, and how much blame quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell should assume for not overcoming that is a matter of debate.

"I think you should take criticism when it comes to performances like that," Mitchell said. "It was literally the worst game of my entire career, statistics-wise.

"Playoffs is where I've always stepped up and become a different player. With success comes failure. It's going to happen.

Hopefully throughout a long career it doesn't happen very often."

Calgary managed to go 4-3 through July and August when Mitchell, the CFL's Most Outstanding Player in 2018, was sidelined with an injured pectoral muscle and Nick Arbuckle was under centre.

But the Stampeders arrived at the Labour Day game in the unusual position of looking up at three teams above them in the division standings.

Defensive back Brandon Smith, who will retire after 12 seasons and three Grey Cup wins with the Stampeders, is of the opinion that Calgary overachieved in 2019.

"We scratched, clawed and fought for every point we gained this year," he said. "The standard we set here is Western Final, Grey Cup calibre teams. It's tough losing in the semis like we did.

"This is kind of an overachieving team because a lot of people didn't think we'd be where we were. We came away with 12 wins, which is huge for a young team like we had.

A silver lining for Calgary is Rogers's injury isn't the knee that had him considering retirement last off-season.

The owner of eight career playoff touchdowns on just 16 catches expects to recover from his ankle sprain in time to get quality prep in for 2020.

Receiver Kamar Jorden played his first game Sunday since a catastrophic knee injury midway through the 2018 season. He says he, too, will be ready to go for 2020.

Cornerback Tre Roberson, the team's interception leader, has another year remaining on his contract.

But Arbuckle will likely pursue a starting job somewhere. Receiver Reggie Begelton, who totalled 1,440 receiving yards and scored 10 touchdowns, may be NFL-bound.

Dickenson said Monday linebacker Dexter McCoil will be released to pursue NFL opportunities.

The coach and several Stampeders said they'll participate in Grey Cup week festivities, but might not be at the game to watch an opposing team run out of their dressing room onto McMahon Stadium turf.

"I'm not going to hide my head for the Grey Cup week," Dickenson said. "I'm not going to be out having tons of fun, but I'm going to be part of the community.

"I'm going to celebrate what I believe is a great sport in the CFL and the Grey Cup. I think our people here in Calgary should as well. We're not in the game. It's disappointing. It sucks. That's pro sports."

Kane, Lehner lead fast-starting Blackhawks
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By MATTY CARLSON
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


CHICAGO -- Patrick Kane had two goals and an assist, Robin Lehner made 53 saves and the Chicago Blackhawks struck early and then held off the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-4 on Sunday night.

Jonathan Toews, rookie Kirby Dach and Brandon Saad also scored. Alex DeBrincat had three assists and Dylan Strome added two.

William Nylander scored twice for the Maple Leafs, and John Tavares and Andreas Johnsson added power-play goals in the third as Toronto stormed back with 26 shots in the final period. Auston Matthews had four assists for Toronto, which entered on fivegame point streak (3-0-2) and lost in regulation for the first time in two weeks.

Toronto backup Michael Hutchinson stopped 29 shots and remained winless at 0-4-1.

The Maple Leafs took - and the Blackhawks allowed - a seasonhigh 57 shots.

Kane, Chicago's 30-year-old offensive whiz, has four goals in three games and 11 points in his past six.

The Maple Leafs played without star forward Mitch Marner after he suffered a right ankle injury in the second period on Saturday night in a 3-2 home loss in Philadelphia. Marner underwent an MRI exam and will be out of the lineup for a minimum of four weeks. The 22-year-old has four goals and 14 assists through 18 games. He led the Maple Leafs last season with career highs in points (94) and assists (68) and had a career-best 26 goals.

Toronto's troubles in this one were in its own zone, however.

The Blackhawks jumped ahead 3-0 lead on its first six shots and led 4-1 after the first period.

Kane opened the scoring 5:18 in when his centring pass to Dylan Strome deflected in off the stick of Toronto defenceman Cody Ceci.

Dach made it 2-0 at 12:00 when he plowed toward the net and buried a fat rebound from the lower edge of the right circle.

Kane connected again just 10 seconds later for a 3-0 lead. Kane misfired from the left circle, but controlled the puck, cut across the slot and fooled Hutchinson with a backhander.

DEVILS 2, CANUCKS 1

VANCOUVER New Jersey scored goals 22 seconds apart in the first period then used some key stops by goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood to defeat Vancouver. Wayne Simmonds, on the power play, and Jesper Bratt scored for the Devils (5-7-4). Blackwood made 30 saves. Brock Boeser, on a power play, scored for the Canucks (96-3), who are winless in their past four games (0-3-1).

JETS 3, STARS 2 (OT)

WINNIPEG Mark Scheifele scored 21 seconds into overtime as the Winnipeg Jets ended the Dallas Stars' winning streak at four games with a 3-2 victory on Sunday. Scheifele got his seventh goal of the season when he went in on a two-on-one with Kyle Connor, but kept the puck himself and beat Anton Khudobin with a low shot. Patrik Laine snapped a 10game scoring drought with a power-play goal and Andrew Copp also scored at even strength for the Jets (10-7-1). Connor Hellebuyck made 26 saves for Winnipeg, which has points in its past five games (4-0-1).

CLARK SCORES HAT TRICK, CANADA BEATS U.S. TO SWEEP WOMEN'S HOCKEY SERIES

CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, PA. Emily Clark capped a hat trick with a short-handed goal late in the third period, and Canada beat the United States 5-3 on Sunday to sweep the two-game series between women's hockey rivals.

Melodie Daoust and Natalie Spooner also scored for Canada, which won the opener 4-1 at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex on Friday night. Kendall Coyne Schofield, Dani Cameranesi and Kelly Pannek scored third-period goals for the U.S., pulling the Americans within one before Clark sealed it. Canadian goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer made 31 saves. Kaitlin Burt stopped 23 shots for the United States.

Foles will start at QB for Jaguars over Minshew after bye week
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By MARK LONG
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B14


JACKSONVILLE, FLA. -- Jaguars coach Doug Marrone believes quarterback Nick Foles gives the team "a better chance of winning right now."

Marrone announced Tuesday he will start Foles over rookie sensation Gardner Minshew "going forward."

He made the decision during the team's bye week, saying Foles is ready to return from a broken left collarbone and will start next week at Indianapolis.

"For me, it was looking back at all the work we put in," Marrone said.

"I just go back to the experience and what he's going to be able to do.

"I think that's going to give us the ability, a better chance of winning right now."

Marrone told both players before a team meeting.

Players were not available to the media afterward.

Marrone said Minshew took the news like "a competitor."

"When I say someone's a competitor and they hear something like that, I think everyone can figure that out," Marrone said.

Foles was injured while throwing a 35-yard touchdown pass to DJ Chark on the second series of the team's season opener.

Minshew replaced him and went 4-4 as the starter, throwing for 2,285 yards, with 13 touchdowns and four interceptions. He also ran for 235 yards but has lost seven of an NFL-leading 11 fumbles.

"What he's done, he's done a great job," Marrone said.

"I feel a whole different about him now than I did prior to him playing, in a very positive way.

We took some things and had some discussions on things that we're going to work on going forward, which will give him the ability to be a player in this league for a long time. I really believe that."

Minshew was a sixth-round draft pick from Washington State and became a fan favourite by giving the Jaguars a chance in nearly every game.

His 1970s look - he rocks a groovy headband, an unkempt mustache, jean shorts and throwback T-shirts - is as much a part of his engaging persona as stories that range from pregame stretching while wearing only a jock strap to trying to break his hand during college in hopes of earning an extra year of eligibility.

But most everyone expected the Jaguars to go back to Foles, a former Super Bowl MVP who signed a four-year, US$88-million contract to leave Philadelphia in March.

Minshew looked more like a rookie than a savvy vet in three of Jacksonville's past four games.

He was jittery in the pocket and mostly inept in the red zone.

He led the Jags to a mere field goal in a 26-3 drubbing by Houston in London on Sunday. He threw for 309 yards, most of them in garbage time.

The other numbers were more telling: 27 of 47. Two interceptions. Two lost fumbles. A number of off-target throws. Passer rating of 59.6, his second-lowest of the season.

Marrone said he tried to ignore Minshew's performance across the pond while making his choice.

"I tried to take that out and put it as a body of work, and that's what I did," Marrone said.

"I think that's important. I think emotions can run sometimes differently, so I looked at the body of work."

Jacksonville waived another former Super Bowl MVP, former Seattle linebacker Malcolm Smith, to make room for Foles on the 53-man roster.

Foles, who led the Eagles to four playoff victories over the past two seasons, returned to practice two weeks ago and was officially activated from injured reserve Tuesday.

"We've progressively brought him back into drills and brought him into some high-speed, closequarter rushing, where guys were coming at him, blitzes where people were coming free," Marrone said.

"We felt like we did the best job to make sure that he was in position to be ready once he was healthy."

AROUND THE NFL
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


406: Passing yards for Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford on 26 completions of 41 attempts and three touchdown in the Lions' loss to the Raiders.

160: Rushing yards for Houston running back Carlos Hyde on 19 carries in the Texans' win over the Jaguars.

180: Receiving yards for Tampa Bay wide receiver Mike Evans on 12 receptions and one touchdown in the Buccaneers' loss to the Seahawks.

Dolphins win: The Miami Dolphins avoided what would have been the second 0-8 start in franchise history, joining 2007.

The win leaves Cincinnati (0-8) on the bye week as the NFL's lone winless team this season and, for now, the frontrunners to win the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NFL draft. It was the Dolphins' first win since the "Miami Miracle" over New England last season.

What's in a name: For the first time in the Super Bowl era, three quarterbacks with the same surname have gone 3-0 after starting in the same week: the Bills' Josh Allen, the Panthers' Kyle Allen and the Broncos' Brandon Allen all won Sunday. They are not related.

Peterson's strong start: Washington running back Adrian Peterson had 101 of his 108 yards rushing in the first half, topping 100 yards for the second time this season and 56th of his career.

The kids these days: Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster is the youngest player in NFL history to reach 200 career receptions. SmithSchuster reached the milestone with a 12-yard reception on Pittsburgh's first snap against Indianapolis. He finished with three catches and 16 years. The 22-year-old Smith-Schuster reached this 200th reception in his 38th career game. In a victory over Miami last Monday, SmithSchuster became the first player to collect 12 100-yard receiving games before his 23rd birthday.

OBJ a shoe-in for trouble: Browns receiver Odell Beckham Jr. seems to attract controversy.

On Sunday, his cleats were under scrutiny. The CBS broadcast mentioned Beckham and fellow wide receiver Jarvis Landry needed to change their footwear, or be at risk of not being allowed to play in the second half. Beckham was wearing white cleats with red and blue paint resembling the face of the character in the Joker movie; Landry had gold cleats with orange laces.

Fitzpatrick strikes again: The Steelers paid a hefty price in September, when they traded a 2020 first-round pick to Miami for safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. In six games, he's done a little of everything. His interception was his fourth of the season and third in the span of six days. His 96yard sprint to the end zone tied the game when it appeared the Colts were ready to go up by double digits.

CANADA DROPS TO 1-1 AFTER LOSS TO SOUTH KOREA AT PREMIER 12 OLYMPIC QUALIFIER
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16


SEOUL -- SEOUL The Canadian men's baseball team dropped to 1-1 at the Premier 12 Olympic qualifier with a 3-1 loss against host South Korea on Thursday.

Canada, ranked 10th in the world, is now tied for second in Group C with No. 5 Cuba. The third-ranked Koreans lead at 2-0.

Canada plays its final first-round game on Friday (Thursday night at 10 p.m. ET) against No. 7 Australia (0-2).

The top two teams advance to the Super Round in Tokyo.

Korea starting pitcher Kwanghyun Kim allowed just one hit in six innings while striking out seven.

Canada cut Korea's lead to 2-1 in the eighth on an RBI double by Wes Darvill before the hosts added an insurance run in the ninth.

"We faced a very good [pitching] staff over there with Korea, they threw the ball extremely well," Canada manager Ernie Whitt said. "I'm proud of our guys, they hung in there to the end.

"But give credit to Korea, they pitched [well] and played good defence."

Canadian starter Rob Zastryzny scattered three hits over 51/3 innings while striking out six.

Chris Leroux replaced him with runners on first and second and one out in the sixth.

"He ran out of gas," Whitt said of his starter. "He probably threw 10 more pitches than we wanted him to and his pitch count was up so I had to remove him from the game."

Leroux got the first batter he faced to pop out before loading the bases on a walk.

Jaehwan Kim then lined a single to right to give Korea a 2-0 lead.

Canada will send right-hander Brock Dykxhoorn to the mound to face Australia.

The Australians have won their past four international meetings against Canada.

Canada will need to finish as the top team from the Americas region - which also includes the United States, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela and Cuba - to secure an Olympic berth.

Another qualifier, featuring just teams from the Americas, will be played in March for a second spot in the sixteam Olympic tournament in Tokyo next summer.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

AUSTRALIA BEATS CANADA, OUSTING IT AT PREMIER 12 BASEBALL TOURNAMENT
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S2


SEOUL -- SEOUL Logan Wade broke a tie with a two-run triple in the bottom of the eighth and Australia beat Canada's men's baseball team 3-1 on Friday to eliminate the Canadians from the Premier 12 Olympic qualifying tournament.

Canada's hope of earning a spot in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics is put on hold until March, when the Americas Olympic Qualifier will take place in Arizona with one spot up for grabs.

"We're very disappointed in the loss," said Canadian manager Ernie Whitt. "Our pitching was outstanding all tournament but you have to score runs to win games and we failed to do that."

Closer Scott Mathieson of Aldergrove, B.C., entered the game in the eighth with two out and runners on first and second before Wade hit ball into the gap in right-centre.

"My only regret is that we walked the leadoff hitter and it seems any time you give up a free pass in these tournament it comes back to haunt you," Whitt said. "We got beat with our best pitchers today but again, you have to score runs to win games."

Starter Brock Dykxhoorn of Goderich, Ont., allowed just a run in the first inning and held Australia to two hits and walk while striking out seven over six innings of work.

Canada, ranked No. 10 in the world, finished round robin with a 1-2 record. The Canadians opened with a win against Cuba before losing to South Korea.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Japan's NFA becomes 11th international organization to form partnership with CFL
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- Japan became the 11th country to become partners with the CFL and its 2.0 initiative Monday.

The league had reached similar agreements with football organizations in Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Norway, Sweden and Great Britain.

"We are proud to join our friends in the CFL in a partnership designed to strengthen our game here in Japan, Canada and, ultimately, around the world," Riichiro Fukahori, commissioner of Japan's National Football Association (NFA), said in a statement.

According to the CFL, there are currently 442 teams throughout Japan registered with the country's national association.

That includes 206 college teams and 111 high-school squads.

The country's top tier is the X-League, which consists of 53 teams. Its players are amateurs and belong to either club teams, which are supported by sponsors, or company squads that are owned and operated by a business whose employees are also players.

"We welcome Japan, one of the great sporting nations in the world and a country that has been playing gridiron football for decades," CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie said. "We have agreed to work together to grow the great game of gridiron football in our two countries.

"And with this partnership comes an opportunity to work with others around the world who share our vision and goals."

On fiscal stabilization, Alberta has a legitimate gripe
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By DAVID PARKINSON
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


W ouldn't it be nice, as the Alberta government struggles with a deficit and an impaired oil sector while bristling at being ineligible for federal equalization funds, if the country had a transfer program to help the country's relatively wealthy provinces in times of economic and fiscal shock?

Something that might make equalization less inequitable for a net contributor to the federal system that finds itself in need?

The country does have such a transfer program. Maybe you've never heard of it.

Probably because it doesn't work.

It's called the Fiscal Stabilization Program, and it has been around for more than 50 years, although rarely used. The general idea is this: If a province gets hit by an economic shock that deals a big blow to its finances, it can apply to Ottawa for funds to top up provincial revenues and soften the blow.

The formula for this is a bit complicated (would we expect anything else from a Canadian federal-provincial program?), but basically, if your non-resource revenues fall more than 5 per cent, you are eligible for federal help.

Only it's not much help. Tragicomically little help, in fact.

It wasn't always supposed to be that way. But in 1987 - a time, notably, that the federal government was dealing with some pretty monstrous deficit problems of its own - Ottawa put a cap on payments under the program at $60 a person.

You can guess how $60 a person works in the case of a major shock, such as the one Alberta suffered with the oil collapse of 2014-15. In the 2015-16 budget year, Alberta saw its total government revenues plunge $7-billion. In return, it received $250-million in fiscal stabilization. Drop, meet bucket.

There are a few obvious issues with fiscal stabilization that need addressing. One is the treatment of resource revenues, which, unlike non-resource revenues, need to plunge 50 per cent or more in a single year before they would be taken into account under the program. Another is the program's focus only on revenue declines over a single year; as Alberta's now-fouryear slump reminds us, serious economic shocks take considerably longer to run their course, yet the program offers no continuing support, unless your tanking economy tanks further.

(Unfortunately for Alberta, its economy has. The severe downturn in prices for Alberta crude prompted a second-round slump last year, prompting the province to apply for another $250-million payment.)

But the big, glaring flaw, one that effectively renders the program next to useless, is the $60-a-person cap. It fights a forest fire with a watering can. It stabilizes nothing.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has begun publicly lobbying Ottawa to remove the cap. That alone, if applied to the two claims under the program that Alberta has made since 2016, would mean an additional $1.7-billion into provincial coffers. It doesn't make up for the revenues Alberta has lost, obviously - but it's a meaningful amount that could help smooth the way as the province wrestles its costs under control.

Mr. Kenney has been referring to the Fiscal Stabilization Program as an "equalization rebate." It's not. Alberta does not directly pay into the equalization fund that gets distributed to provinces with weaker revenue bases - that's paid out of Ottawa's general tax revenue. And any province is eligible for fiscal stabilization, not just the "have" provinces, such as Alberta, that don't receive equalization payments.

Still, it's not hard to envision a betterbuilt Fiscal Stabilization Program as a potential support for the country's strongest provinces that, in times of economic and fiscal strain, don't have the safety net of equalization.

In a paper from the University of Calgary School of Public Policy earlier this year, economist Bev Dahlby said the Fiscal Stabilization Program could function as a risk-sharing mechanism between the country and its "rich but risky" regions - economic powerhouses whose downside of their potency is a tendency toward volatility. While Alberta is the obvious case in point, it's notable that many of the provinces with large resource-revenue streams - leaving them more susceptible to fiscal volatility - are also those that do not, typically, receive payments under Ottawa's equalization program.

Dr. Dahlby suggests that fiscal stabilization could be redesigned to provide a form of "insurance" to protect these resourcedependent provinces that the country leans on as net contributors to the federal system. At the same time, that fiscal insurance would provide a greater benefit from the Canadian federation for its richer members.

A repaired Fiscal Stabilization Program could act as, essentially, an equalization equalizer. And a big part of the fix is easy.

Remove the nonsensical cap.

TSB calls for measures to reduce small commercial plane accidents
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By ERIC ATKINS
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


Canada's aviation safety investigator is urging the government and the small-aircraft sector to take steps to reduce the number of crashes and deaths in the air-taxi industry, pointing to unsafe practices that have made travelling in small passenger planes a riskier way to fly.

The Transportation Safety Board on Thursday issued new recommendations to address the poor safety record of small commercial passenger planes and helicopters, including that Transport Canada pass regulations that address "gaps" in the laws that govern the sector. These gaps include: a lack of training to fly in mountains or coastal regions; special credentials for those holding key positions; psychological trauma training for air ambulance pilots; and rest requirements for aircraft mechanics.

The TSB also said plane operators should be required to track and report to Transport Canada the number of hours flown, takeoffs and landings in order to properly gauge any changes in crash or fatality rates.

Although overall aviation safety has improved in the past several years, "the air-taxi sector continues to have more accidents and more fatalities than all other sectors of commercial aviation combined," said Kathy Fox, chairwoman of the TSB, as she presented the results of a five-year study on the safety record of the sector that includes all aircraft, excluding jets, that carry fewer than 10 passengers.

This includes air ambulances, float planes that carry hunters, fishers and commuters, and other small planes that bring people and supplies to remote communities or mining camps.

"Although these vital air links have helped build Canada and sustain its population, airtaxi operations are at higher risk than other sectors of the commercial aviation industry," Ms. Fox said at a news conference in Gatineau on Thursday.

Ms. Fox said this is partly because the airtaxi industry operates in unique and tough environments. The aircraft often fly without schedules into uncontrolled airspace without navigation aids or proper weather information.

"Flights tend to be shorter, resulting in more takeoffs and landings," Ms. Fox said.

Between 2000 and 2018, commercial aircraft with fewer than 10 passengers had 789 crashes that caused 240 deaths, which represents 55 per cent of all commercial air accidents and 62 per cent of the fatalities, the TSB said.

During the same period, airlines had 93 accidents and 15 fatalities. Aircraft conducting aerial work - carrying external loads for construction or site surveillance - accounted for 466 accidents and 98 deaths.

Privately owned aircraft flown for recreation are involved in the most fatalities, accounting for 29 of 36 deaths in 2018 alone.

Pilots involved in 167 of the air-taxi crashes studies by the TSB had an average of 5,000 hours of flight time, signaling that a lack of experience was not a cause of the incidents, the TSB said.

Ms. Fox said there are two reasons so many people die in small commercial-plane crashes: the acceptance of unsafe practices, and inadequate management of operational hazards.

For example, the pilots - often without enough rest - fly with too much weight on board, with minimal reserve fuel in bad weather in decades-old planes that lack proper navigation aids.

"I'm not talking about flagrant rule violations. I'm talking about a gradual drift that occurs over time that occurs with every successful, though not necessarily safe, flight," said the TSB's Glen Whitney, who led the investigation. The danger of these safety lapses are compounded by bad management practices - poor pilot pairings, sending a different pilot when the first refuses to fly, or having no weight scales available.

The TSB is Canada's investigator of accidents in the air, rail, marine and pipeline industries.

It investigates crashes, collisions and other industry occurrences, and issues reports and recommendations to highlight safety and regulatory shortcomings. Federal ministers must respond to the recommendations within 90 days but are not required to take any action, nor are any industry participants.

Alexandre Desjardins, a Transport Canada spokesman, said department officials are reviewing the TSB's report and recommendations, and will respond by the 90-day deadline.

"Transport Canada shares the Board's commitment to advancing the safety of Canada's air transportation system and we will continue to work with them, and our industry partners, to address all identified safety risks," Mr.

Desjardins said."

The TSB has previously issued 22 recommendations that affect safety practices and standards in the air-taxi sector, including the use of shoulder harnesses in seaplanes and ensuring adequate de-icing equipment is where it is needed. All 22, Ms. Fox said, are "outstanding" and unresolved.

Starbucks licence holder sells South African outlets for cheap
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Brand's failure to thrive in country's stagnating economy results in meagre $465,000 sale to shareholder group
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By GEOFFREY YORK
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


JOHANNESBURG -- At the opening of the first Starbucks Corp. café in sub-Saharan Africa three years ago, the company's then-chairman, Howard Schultz, hailed the "growing middle class" of Africa and predicted the continent would become a "significant market" for the coffee chain.

His local licence holder, Taste Holdings Ltd., quickly spent more than US$5-million to set up a dozen Starbucks outlets in Johannesburg and other South African cities, and Mr. Schultz talked of opening 150 to 200 more. Customers queued up in long lines for the novelty of trying the iconic U.S. brand.

But today, the dream has turned sour. The long queues are gone. The expansion has slowed to a crawl as the economy slumps. And now Taste Holdings is abandoning the chain, unloading its 13 Starbucks cafés to a shareholder group for a bargainbasement price of just US$465,000. On average, the sale price is about US$36,000 an outlet, less than a 10th of the cost of opening them.

Starbucks says that it still expects the new owners to continue with the long-term expansion plan, which had been suspended last year. But the cut-price sale is a sign of the complex challenges of the African market, even at a time when investors have been intrigued by the rising consumer class in most African countries.

Foreign investors, including Starbucks, often choose South Africa as their entry point for the African market, since it is the most industrialized and stable large economy on the continent, with relatively good infrastructure, a reliable legal system and a significant middle class. South Africa's fast-food sector has attracted a range of U.S. companies: McDonald's, Burger King, KFC, Domino's Pizza and most recently Krispy Kreme and Dunkin' Donuts.

Many South Africans, fascinated by the sight of the famous American coffee giant, crowded into long queues to place their orders at the first Starbucks outlet in Johannesburg in 2016. But after the novelty wore off, Starbucks has been hampered by a weak economy, a slump in consumer spending, fierce local competition and a perception that its products are high-priced by local standards.

Another South African company, Grand Parade Investments, announced last February that it was shutting down its loss-making Dunkin' Donuts and BaskinRobbins outlets after a failed three-year experiment with the two U.S. food brands. It opted to focus on expanding its Burger King outlets instead.

After five years of stagnant economic growth and frequent electricity shortages, South African consumers have been tightening their belts. Unemployment remains high and the government has been plagued by corruption, mismanagement and soaring debts. Economic growth is forecast at just 0.5 per cent this year.

Moody's, the only major credit-rating agency that still rates South Africa as investment grade, announced on Friday that it is revising its outlook from "stable" to "negative," leaving the country on the brink of junk status.

Taste Holdings, announcing the sale of its Starbucks business on Friday, said it could not afford the heavy cost of expanding the coffee chain.

It estimated that it would need to raise at least US$45-million in capital to attain a positive cash flow at its two food operations: Starbucks and Domino's Pizza. It would need to expand to 150 to 200 Starbucks cafés, while tripling the 81 restaurants in its Domino's chain, and this could take several more years, it said.

"After careful consideration, following months of operational reviews and canvassing potential partners and capital providers on this long-term objective, it has become evident that the capital investment required for this expansion strategy cannot be secured, given the current structure of the business and existing market conditions," the company said, announcing its decision to exit the food business entirely.

The new owners of the Starbucks outlets are a consortium that includes Adrian Maizey, a non-executive director of Taste Holdings.

Starbucks, in a statement quoted by Reuters, said the sale would provide the necessary capital to help achieve its goal of having up to 200 outlets in South Africa.

The company has been relatively slow to enter the African market, after focusing on Asia and Europe for most of its international expansion.

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Hundreds of people line up for the official opening of South Africa's first Starbucks store in Johannesburg on April 21, 2016. Today, the novelty has worn off amid a weak economy and slump in consumer spending.

GIANLUIGI GUERCIA/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Organigram expects sales to slump on pot oversupply, product returns
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Company's shares slide 20% after it warns about quarterly decline amid mixed results from rivals
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By MARK RENDELL
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


Organigram Holdings Inc. sent a shock through the cannabis sector on Monday evening when the company revealed a dramatic revenue miss due to industry oversupply and product returns - two problems that are top of mind for cannabis companies and investors during a critical week of earnings.

Organigram now expects its quarterly sales to decline 34 per cent compared with the previous quarter. The announcement sent the company's share price down 20 per cent on Tuesday.

Producers are now growing more cannabis than is being sold in legal retail stores, and wholesale price compression and product returns are starting to show up in financial statements.

New Brunswick-based Organigram doesn't report its fourth-quarter financial results until Nov. 25, but it is expecting to announce $16.4-million in sales, down from $24.8-million in the preceding quarter. The company said it shipped $20-million worth of product, but expects $3.7million to be returned unsold.

"While we have largely anticipated little to no top-line growth for upcoming Canadian LP [licensed producer] results, the magnitude of the sequential decline is unexpected," wrote Eight Capital analyst Graeme Kreindler in a note on Tuesday.

Organigram blamed its poor quarter on the low number of retail stores in Ontario - only 24 legal stores are open - as well as the increase in supply across the industry. In the lead up to the wave of earnings this week, analysts have been warning that the vaults of provincial wholesalers are filling up with product that retailers don't want and wholesalers are making fewer new purchase orders.

Michael Gorenstein, chief executive of Cronos Group Inc., highlighted the challenges facing the Canadian market on an analyst call on Tuesday morning, after Cronos reported $12.7-million in quarterly sales, up from $10.2-million in the preceding quarter but short of consensus expectations.

"The number of retail stores as well as warehousing and logistics needs are in the process of catching up to meet the demand of consumers. As a result, we're still not able to fully reach the long-term total addressable market represented by this population," Mr. Gorenstein said.

Although Cronos doubled the number of kilograms of cannabis it sold in the quarter, a large portion of those sales were low-priced bulk sales to other producers. Mr. Gorenstein acknowledged that Cronos was "opportunistically" unloading cannabis on the wholesale market, owing to expectations that prices were about to drop sharply.

Tilray Inc., which reported after markets closed on Tuesday, showed relatively strong sales growth, with revenue increasing to US$48.2-million from US$42million the previous quarter.

However, the company reported a net loss of US$35.7-million and an adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) loss of US$23.5-million, both worse than analysts had expected.

Cannabis companies are hoping that derivative products, such as cannabis-infused edibles and vaporizers, will help drive sales and widen profit margins when they enter the market later this year. But concerns are emerging that these "Cannabis 2.0" products may take longer than expected to show up on store shelves.

On Tuesday, MediPharm Labs Corp., a cannabis-extraction company based in Barrie, Ont., reported strong revenue growth as well as a $5.4-million profit, something rare in the cannabis industry. Still, the company's stock dropped 12.5 per cent.

In a Tuesday morning analyst call, MediPharm's CEO Pat McCutcheon said that derivative product sales might not have a significant impact on the company's revenue until the second half of 2020.

"Various retail distribution models used by different provinces have resulted in backlogged orders ... [and] we expect the cadence will likely not measure up to initial expectations in the near term," Mr. McCutcheon said.

All eyes are now on Canopy Growth Corp. and Aurora Cannabis Inc., Canada's two largest cannabis growers, which both report earnings on Thursday.

ORGANIGRAM (OGI) CLOSE: $3.57, DOWN 89¢ CRONOS GROUP (CRON) CLOSE: $10.40, DOWN 29¢ TILRAY (TLRY) CLOSE: US$21.57, DOWN 35 US CENTS MEDIPHARM LABS (LABS) CLOSE: $4.42, DOWN 63¢

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Organigram, whose plants are seen growing in a facility in Moncton on Oct. 12, says it expects to announce $16.4-million in sales in the fourth quarter, down from $24.8-million in the preceding quarter.

JOHN MORRIS/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Fund spun out of BDC looks to boost institutional investment in biotech
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By SEAN SILCOFF
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


A new Canadian-focused biotech venture fund spun out of Business Development Bank of Canada has raised more than $100-million as it aims to woo reluctant domestic investors to an asset class that has enjoyed one of its strongest years in Canada.

Amplitude Venture Capital, led by former BDC fund managers Jean-François Pariseau and Dion Madsen, said it has secured financing from a handful of Quebec institutions that have been Canada's most active funders of domestic biotech venture capital. They are Teralys Capital, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, FTQ Solidarity Fund and the Quebec government's investing arm, Investissement Québec.

Now, the pair hopes to reach their $200-million target by convincing other investors in Canada and abroad that there are more opportunities like the string of investment successes they've had at BDC. "We want to expand and amplify what we are doing," said Mr. Madsen, who joined BDC in 2013 to co-manage its first dedicated closed-end life sciences fund.

Amplitude's official launch follows a windfall from one of the pair's first investments, through BDC earlier this decade, in Montreal-based Clementia Pharmaceuticals Inc. Mr.

Pariseau was Clementia's first funder, which helped founder Clarissa Desjardins secure a licence from Roche Pharmaceuticals to redevelop a failed emphysema drug as a treatment for a rare, debilitating tissue disorder. The company went public in 2017 on the Nasdaq and was sold this year to Paris-based Ipsen Pharma for US$1-billion. BDC's stake, an investment of less than $20-million, netted the bank a profit of more than $110-million at the time of Clementia's IPO.

That amounts to the biggest return by any BDC investment ever. Combined with its investments in other Canadian biotech developers that went public in the United States - Zymeworks Inc., Milestone Pharmaceuticals Inc.

and Profound Medical Corp. - the BDC health-care fund became "one of the highest performing funds in Canada [of any type], full stop," said Jérôme Nycz, executive vice-president of A BDC Capital.

"Amplitude has great poten- p tial to be successful," Teralys s partner Cédric Bisson said. d "They've done it before, they k know what they're doing, they know how to guide companies d and to finance them properly to h success." c But other than Amplitude's t initial backers, Canadian institutions, including pension funds p and insurance companies, have C been absent from the early-stage P biotech sector in Canada, raising T questions about how much more the new fund can raise at home. "I think institutional investors here still don't have the confidence yet to invest locally," Clementia's Ms. Desjardins said. "I think they should look at the track record of these individuals and at the maturity of the various companies we now have, because now we have a bunch of foreigners coming to invest."

Mr. Dion said he and Mr. Pariseau "feel pretty confident" they can reach at least $150-million from Canadian backers.

But they also plan to target foreign investors, who have increasingly invested in Canada alongside the country's handful of domestic biotech funds.

Canada's domestic biotech sector used to consist primarily of small, underfunded early-stage drug developers, many of which struggled or sold out earlier.

But the industry has changed. Pharma giants that once might have funded early-stage research and development in-house, instead use the money to help selected startups through the lengthy process of getting drugs approved and to market. This way, Big Pharma offloads some of the development costs, while at the same time sharing its risk with venture capital funds.

Nowadays it's more typical for early-stage Canadian drug developers with promising science to raise $100-million or more in funding rounds to advance their discoveries and then to list on the Nasdaq.

The Amplitude spinout is part of a shift by the federal Crown corporation in how it finances Canada's technology sector. Under the arrangement, Amplitude will continue to manage BDC's existing biotech venture portfolio.

BDC struck a similar deal last year when two BDC venture capitalists left to run their own information technology fund, Framework Venture Partners. BDC is focusing on investing in areas that have had difficulty attracting funding, including women-led startups and clean-technology companies.

Democrats seek Trudeau's help to ensure Mexico enforces USMCA
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By STEVEN CHASE, ADRIAN MORROW
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The Democratic chair of a powerful U.S.congressional committee met with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Wednesday to seek Canada's help in ensuring Mexico enforces stricter labour standards in the renegotiated NAFTA deal.

The White House and the Democraticcontrolled House of Representatives are still in negotiations over possible changes to the deal as the Trump administration tries to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement before the end of 2019, despite an impeachment inquiry and the looming U.S. presidential primary season.

Richard Neal, chairman of the House ways and means committee, said he's not seeking to reopen the trade deal, but is looking for guarantees that tougher labour standards will be followed.

The Democrats won control of the House in 2018 and their caucus, which has long been concerned about job losses to Mexico, is now crucial to passing the USMCA.

"I think what we're going to prioritize here is clearly the issue of labour enforcement, and we think that on USMCA, we're very close, but we need some guarantees as it relates not just to Canada, but also their help as it relates to Mexico," Mr. Neal told Global News as he arrived on Parliament Hill for the meeting.

"We think that we want a series of guarantees," Mr. Neal said.

"They're pretty basic, and we've reached accord on many of these issues but we've also decided on the ways and means committee with the working group that nothing is settled until everything is settled."

He later met with other officials including Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland and Employment Minister Patty Hajdu.

Canada has begun assisting Mexico in efforts to enforce tougher labour standards. In August, Ms. Hajdu visited Mexico to help set up working groups. The Mexican embassy in Canada said in a statement on Wednesday that the two countries have had several meetings on "best practices on collective bargaining, union registration, protection of independent unions and independent and impartial procedures in labour lawsuits."

Ms. Freeland's office later described the Neal meeting as "an occasion to discuss the ratification process for the new NAFTA and the shared commitment between Canada and the United States to support the implementation of important labour reforms in Mexico."

Mexico has already bristled at the idea of foreign monitoring of its labour practices. Several weeks ago, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador vowed wage increases and funding for the implementation of labour reforms, part of a campaign to persuade U.S. Democratic lawmakers to ratify USMCA.

Dispute resolution in USMCA has been a focus of negotiations between Democrats and the Republicans. Jesus Seade Kuri, Mexico's chief trade negotiator for North America, told reporters this week that he expects these talks might lead to the addition of a measure to prevent USMCA member countries from blocking the formation of panels to resolve disputes.

Last week, Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives, signalled that Democrats are still committed to passing USMCA, despite impeachment proceedings that now dominate Washington.

On Wednesday, Mr. Trudeau, prior to his meeting with Mr. Neal, said he's pleased that the revised deal is moving forward.

"It is a pleasure to see the positive momentum that seems to be happening on this renewal of this very important trade deal."

The Democratic-controlled House must vote on the USMCA as part of the process of ratification of the new trade deal in the U.S. Mexico has already ratified the agreement, while Canada has not, saying it will move in tandem with the U.S.

A Canadian official said conversations did not discuss in specific terms what is being negotiated between the Democrats and Republicans on USMCA. The Globe and Mail is keeping the official's name confidential because he was not authorized to speak on the record about the content of the Neal talks in Ottawa Canadian trade lawyer Mark Warner said he thinks USMCA could be in jeopardy if it doesn't pass Congress by end of December. Presidential primaries begin in February. "Once you start getting into presidential primary season, particularly on the Democratic side, with candidates who have to campaign but also vote, you get into the silly political season."

Canadian crude discount grows amid Keystone spill, shutdown
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By TIM SHUFELT
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The discount on Canadian crude widened to its highest level in nearly a year after a major oil spill forced the shutdown of the Keystone pipeline, a key conduit for energy exports to U.S. markets.

Pipeline operator TC Energy Corp. has not given a timeline for a return to service of Keystone, which ruptured and leaked an estimated 1.5 million litres of crude oil in North Dakota last week.

The outage helped drag Alberta crude prices down to about US$34 a barrel as of Monday, compared with US$56.54 for West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark for oil.

The last time the gap between the two was that wide was last December, at the tail end of a crash in Canadian oil prices caused by a shortage of pipeline capacity.

"Canadian crude differentials can temporarily blow out again, until either rail responds or Keystone returns," Michael Tran, a commodity strategist at RBC Dominion Securities, wrote in a report. "The next week to 10 days will be a white-knuckle ride."

The Keystone pipeline, which originates in Hardisty, Alta., is one of the primary ways of moving heavy oil-sands crude destined for American refineries. TC Energy is also proposing to build the US$8-billion Keystone XL pipeline linking Alberta to the Gulf Coast.

Shipments on the existing line account for up to 18 per cent of Canada's oil exports to the U.S.

Additional rail capacity may be able to handle close to half of the lost pipeline capacity.

But there are no easy alternatives to transporting the 590,000 barrels a day that Keystone can accommodate. And each day that Keystone is out of service will commit additional stranded Canadian crude barrels to inventories.

Most pipeline ruptures are repaired and service resumed within a week or two. If that's the case this time around, the sector can probably manage the additional stockpiles.

But there is little room for error, Mr. Tran said.

Much longer than that and excess supply could overtake storage capacity, which in the past has put extreme downward pressure on prices for Alberta oil.

Last year, Western Canadian Select, or WCS, sank to as low as US$13.46 a barrel as excess supplies piled up.

The cause of the North Dakota leak and the duration of the outage, let alone the environmental toll, are not yet known.

And this is not Keystone's first major spill. In 2017, a rupture leaked 6,600 barrels in rural South Dakota.

"At some point, the regulators are going to get really annoyed, and they may want to take action," said Samir Kayande, a director at RS Energy Group.

If Keystone is offline for a sustained period for whatever reason, the capacity to move oil by rail will be put to the test, Mr.

Kayande added.

"The other option could be deeper curtailment, because there is now precedent for the government managing production and we know that works."

In 2018, mandatory production cuts were put in place in Alberta to help ease the pipeline bottleneck.

That move is widely credited with helping balance out the Canadian oil market and reduce the pricing differential to normal levels.

Last week, the Alberta government announced plans to ease those production restrictions. A measure set to take effect in December would allow producers to exceed their quotas if they can move those barrels by rail.

A prolonged Keystone outage could force a reconsideration of the curtailment guidelines, Mr.

Kayande said.

The spill is the latest setback for a sector under extraordinary pressure, as it contends with weak global pricing over growth concerns, environmental scrutiny related to climate change, the exodus of investment capital and the lack of takeaway capacity amid a factious national pipeline debate.

"This outage underscores the structural issue plaguing the Canadian oil industry, whose fortunes are consistently one pipeline leak away from a materially wider WCS differential," Mr. Tran said.

Alberta to remove production caps for newly drilled conventional wells
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By EMMA GRANEY
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


Alberta will allow operators to drill new conventional wells unrestricted by production limits as the government tiptoes toward easing oil curtailment.

Existing producing wells will remain under curtailment, but Energy Minister Sonya Savage said Friday the change would help drive investment and job creation in the oil patch, and economic growth in the province.

The move, effective immediately, targets Alberta's drilling industry, which has seen the province's rig count drop by 33 per cent year-over-year. Government officials expect the bulk of new wells to crop up in the foothills, east central and southeast regions of Alberta.

New wells drilled under the policy change won't come online until late 2020 or early 2021, by which time the government expects additional transport capacity thanks to pipeline optimization programs and additional crude-by-rail contracts.

"We're watching the differential. We wouldn't be doing this if we weren't confident" the differential can handle it, Ms. Savage said at a news conference in Edmonton, adding drilling jobs could essentially start right away under Friday's change.

The drilling sector had been facing its worst winter season in 25 years, said Bob Geddes, president and chief operating officer for Ensign Energy Services Inc.

He said he believes the announcement will help "to save this winter," which is typically the busiest period for Canadian drilling companies.

Mr. Geddes - who heads one of Canada's largest energy-sector service firms - said Friday he had worked with the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors, the industry group, and the Alberta government over the past month to push for the policy change.

Ms. Savage didn't know how many wells would be drilled under the eased curtailment policy, but said producers believe they could bring on hundreds of new wells if curtailment is relaxed.

"We'll hold them to their word to bring that activity on and create those wells, because we need them," she said.

Alberta producers have been under curtailment since January, when the former NDP government imposed production limits to drain the glut of oil in storage and help ease a crippling price differential on Canadian crude.

In August, the United Conservative Party government announced curtailment would be extended through 2020, citing swirling uncertainty around when expanded pipelines might come online.

Ms. Savage confessed she's the "the last person in the world" who wants to see Alberta's oil patch hamstrung by curtailment and said her government is doing all it can to prepare an "orderly exit" from production limits.

Those first tentative steps include Friday's change for new wells and the special production allowances announced last month, which will allow producers to increase their output as long as the extra oil is moved by rail.

"Companies are in the process of finalizing their budgets and their investment plans," Ms. Savage said. "What we don't want is the curtailment policy to impact those decisions. We want that investment and those dollars to stay in Alberta to create jobs here."

Canadian Natural Resources Ltd., one of Canada's largest producers, has started drilling in Saskatchewan to increase output, saying it makes economic sense to tap wells untouched by curtailment.

This past September, Alberta produced approximately 480,000 barrels a day of conventional oil, of which 90,000 b/d came from curtailed operators. Eligibility for unrestricted drilling under the new rule will be tracked by the date the main drill bit enters the ground.

With a report from Kelly Cryderman.

Aramco offering flags risks, gives few details on IPO size
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Prospectus doesn't divulge how much of the company would be floated in total or commitments from anchor investors
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By MAHER CHMAYTELLI
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REUTERS
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


DUBAI -- Saudi state oil giant Aramco will sell 0.5 per cent of its shares to individual retail investors and the government will have a lockup period of a year on further share sales after the initial public offering (IPO), its prospectus said on Saturday.

The more-than-600-page prospectus did not include details of how much of the company would be floated in total or of any commitments from anchor investors.

Sources have said the company could sell 1 per cent to 2 per cent on the Saudi stock market in what could be the world's largest listing.

Offering for the shares will begin on Nov. 17, the prospectus said.

Aramco fired the starting gun on the IPO on Nov. 3 after a series of false starts. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is seeking to raise billions of dollars to diversify the Saudi economy away from oil by investing in non-energy industries.

Among the risks highlighted in the prospectus were the potential for terrorist attacks and the potential for encountering antitrust legislation, as well as the right of the Saudi government to decide maximum crude output and direct Aramco to undertake projects outside its core business.

Aramco may also change its dividend policy without prior notice to its minority shareholders, it said.

Aramco's oil facilities were targeted on Sept. 14 in unprecedented attacks that temporarily shut down 5.7 million barrels a day (b/ d) of output - more than 5 per cent of global oil supply.

The prospectus said the government will have a "statutory lock-up period" for disposing of any shares after the listing for six months, and a contractual lockup period for 12 months.

Aramco cannot list additional shares for a period of six months after trading starts, and will also be restricted from issuing additional shares for 12 months.

The offering for institutional investors will begin on Nov. 17 and end on Dec. 4, while retail investors will be able to bid for the shares from Nov. 17 to Nov. 28, the prospectus said.

Aramco has been in talks with Gulf and Asian sovereign wealth funds and wealthy Saudi individuals to secure top investors of the IPO, but no anchor investor has yet to formally agree to a deal.

Bankers have told the Saudi government that investors will likely value the company at about US$1.5-trillion, below the US$2-trillion valuation touted by Prince Mohammed when he first floated the idea of an IPO nearly four years ago.

Initial hopes for a 5-per-cent IPO on domestic and international stock exchanges were dashed last year when the process was halted amid debate over where to list Aramco overseas.

Aramco said the timetable was delayed because it began a process to acquire a 70-per-cent stake in petrochemicals maker Saudi Basic Industries Corp.

The prospectus said Goldman Sachs was named as stabilizing agent for the deal.

Analysts from banks working on the Riyadh stock market have projected a wide valuation range between US$1.2-trillion and US$2.3-trillion.

At the top valuation of US$2tillion, Aramco could potentially raise US$40-billion, topping the record-breaking US$25-billion raised by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba in 2014.

Associated Graphic

Aramco's oil production and storage operation in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, was one of several facilities targeted in attacks on Sept. 14. Aramco's IPO prospectus says future attacks are possible.

MAXIM SHEMETOV/REUTERS

Browns hold off Bills to end four-game slump
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


CLEVELAND -- Baker Mayfield threw a seven-yard touchdown pass to Rashard Higgins with 1:44 left as the Cleveland Browns snapped a four-game losing streak - and took some pressure off first-year coach Freddie Kitchens - with a 19-16 win on Sunday over the Buffalo Bills.

The Browns (3-6) rallied for a win that kept their season from completely collapsing. Cleveland survived more problems in the red zone, but sealed the muchneeded win when Buffalo kicker Stephen Hauschka's 53-yard field-goal attempt was short with 22 seconds left. Earlier, Hauschka missed a 34-yarder. Quarterback Josh Allen had two touchdown runs for the Bills (6-3), who were off to their best start since 1993. Mayfield finally delivered a clutch drive after Allen's one-yard sneak put the Bills ahead 16-12. On second-andgoal, he threaded his TD pass to an open Higgins, who had been suspiciously missing from Cleveland's game plan this season after being one of Mayfield's favourite targets last season. It was Higgins's only catch. Mayfield had his second straight solid game, completing 26 of 38 passes for 238 yards and two TDs. He didn't throw an interception for the second week in a row.

However, Cleveland struggled again to complete drives as the Bills stopped them on 12 plays inside the three-yard line, holding Cleveland to three points. Browns running back Kareem Hunt made his debut for Cleveland and picked up 74 combined yards. The 24-year-old was eligible after completing an eight-game NFL suspension for two violent acts, including shoving and kicking a woman while he played for Kansas City.

TITANS 35, CHIEFS 32 NASHVILLE Ryan Tannehill threw a 23-yard touchdown to Adam Humphries with 23 seconds left, and Tennessee Titans blocked a last-second field goal attempt to beat Kansas City and spoil the return of NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes. The Titans (5-5) only had a chance to take the lead after a bad snap by the Chiefs on Harrison Butker's fifth field goal attempt of the day.

The snap caught holder Dustin Colquitt by surprise, and he threw the ball away in desperation for an intentional grounding call, setting the Titans up at their own 39.

Tannehill scrambled for 18, hit Anthony Firsker for 20 yards and then found Humphries who ran in for the TD. Tannehill also ran for the two-point conversion for a 35-32 lead. The Chiefs (6-4) had a final chance with Mahomes. He drove them down, setting up Butker for another field goal try from 52 yards. Joshua Kalu blocked the kick with his left hand, and the Titans poured onto the field to celebrate.

FALCONS 26, SAINTS 9 NEW ORLEANS Matt Ryan passed for two touchdowns and Atlanta ended its sixgame slide with a victory over the Saints that stopped New Orleans's six-game winning streak. Atlanta's defence stunningly dominated New Orleans' normally stout offensive line. Coming in with an NFL low seven sacks all season, the Falcons sacked Drew Brees six times, with Grady Jarrett, Vic Beasley Jr., Adrian Clayborn and De'Vondre Campbell all getting involved. Jarrett finished with a team-high 21/2 sacks. It was the second time this season the Saints were held without a touchdown at home, but the first time with Brees under centre.

New Orleans also failed to score a TD in a 12-10 victory over Dallas in Week 4 with Teddy Bridgewater filling in at quarterback. Ryan, returning from an ankle injury that sidelined him in the game before the Falcons' Week 9 bye, was 20 of 35 for 182 yards.

RAVENS 49, BENGALS 13 CINCINNATI Lamar Jackson threw for three touchdowns in a near-perfect passing performance and added a sensational 47-yard scoring run, Marcus Peters got his third pick-six of the season - this one off rookie Ryan Finley - and Baltimore won its fifth in a row, routing winless Cincinnati. The Ravens (7-2) followed their eye-opening victory over the previously unbeaten Patriots by quickly pulling away from the NFL's last winless team.

It was the Lamar Jackson show from the start - a 49-yard completion on his first throw. His only incompletion in the first half was on a spike. Jackson finished 15 of 17 - a club-record completion percentage - for 223 yards and a perfect passer rating of 158.3, his second of the season. Jackson threw five TD passes and had a perfect rating during a 59-10 opening win over the Dolphins. The AFC North leaders have won five in a row for the first time since 2013.

BEARS 20, LIONS 13 CHICAGO Mitchell Trubisky tied a season high with three touchdown passes, and Chicago withstood a late charge by Detroit with Jeff Driskel filling in for injured quarterback Matthew Stafford, beating the Lions to snap a four-game losing streak. Detroit ruled out the 31-year-old Stafford hours before kickoff because of hip and back injuries, ending his streak of 136 consecutive starts. It was the first time he missed a regular-season game since 2010. Chicago improved to 4-5. Detroit (3-5-1) lost for the fifth time in six games.

BUCCANEERS 30, CARDINALS 27 TAMPA Jameis Winston threw for 358 yards and one touchdown, helping Tampa Bay rally to snap a four-game losing streak with a victory over Arizona. Matt Gay kicked three field goals and Peyton Barber scored on a one-yard run to finish a 92-yard, game-winning drive by Winston.

Barber's TD with less than two minutes left was set up by a booth review that determined Cardinals safety Jalen Thompson committed pass interference against Mike Evans in the end zone, giving Tampa Bay a first down at the Arizona one.

JETS 34, GIANTS 27 EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. Le'Veon Bell scored a go-ahead one-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter after a 33-yard pass interference penalty on DeAndre Baker, and the Jets rallied and then held on to beat the Giants for Big Apple bragging rights. Sam Darnold threw a touchdown pass to Jamison Crowder and ran for another score, and Jamal Adams scored on a 25-yard fumble return on a strip-sack as the Jets (2-7) bounced back from an embarrassing 28-16 loss last week at previously winless Miami. Daniel Jones threw a career-high four touchdown passes, but couldn't prevent the Giants (2-8) from losing their sixth straight game. It's their first six-game skid since 2014.

DOLPHINS 16, COLTS 12 INDIANAPOLIS Ryan Fitzpatrick scored on an 11-yard run in the first half and the Miami defence made a late stop to preserve a victory over Indianapolis. The Dolphins (2-7) have won two straight after a miserable start and earned their first win at Lucas Oil Stadium since 2013. Indianapolis (5-4) has lost back-to-back regular-season games for the first time since October 2018. With starting quarterback Jacoby Brissett out because of an injured left knee, the Colts offence sputtered. Indy gained just 300 total yards and Brian Hoyer was picked off three times, with Miami scoring 13 points off those turnovers.

STEELERS 17, RAMS 12 PITTSBURGH The Steelers defence spoiled Aaron Donald's homecoming and derailed the Los Angeles Rams' momentum in the process. The Steelers forced four turnovers - including a 43-yard fumble return for a touchdown by safety Minkah Fitzpatrick - in an ugly victory that pushed their winning streak to four games and dealt the Rams' chances of chasing down Seattle and San Francisco in the NFC West a serious blow.

Associated Graphic

Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs looks to pass against the Tennessee Titans in the second quarter at Nissan Stadium on Sunday in Nashville.

BRETT CARLSEN/GETTY IMAGES

How the Wolfpack landed Williams, the biggest fish in the sea
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By RACHEL BRADY
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S3


TORONTO -- A ll Blacks superstar Sonny Bill Williams sat in a Tokyo restaurant in late October on a quiet night during the Rugby World Cup, launching questions across the table at Toronto Wolfpack coach Brian McDermott.

There was a fascinating multimillion-dollar deal taking shape.

Toronto's transatlantic rugby league club was on the brink of signing the world famous New Zealand player - a man who could help kick off its first season in England's top-tier Super League in February with a resounding bang. Those talking about the deal were already equating its magnitude to David Beckham joining Major League Soccer's L.A. Galaxy.

That two-man dinner meeting included zero talk about money.

The Wolfpack had been having conversations on and off with Williams's agent for two years, and now the deal was actually nearing a reality. The towering Kiwi requested Toronto's coach fly over to meet him in Japan so he could learn everything there was to know about the Wolfpack from the man who leads its players every day.

Williams's New Zealand team had lost a semi-final heartbreaker to England in the World Cup the night before in Yokohama, with McDermott in the crowd.

The 34-year-old Auckland native was mulling his next career move, and this would be an adventure - switching back from rugby union to rugby league, and taking his talents to the Northern Hemisphere.

Williams queried Toronto's veteran English coach on everything from the Wolfpack's defensive and offensive strategies, to their training regimens, philosophies and weekly schedules.

"He was very gracious and humble and apologized for machine-gunning me with questions," McDermott recalled with a laugh. "He wanted to make sure he could blend in with the Wolfpack as fast as possible. Never once did I get any sense that he had his collars up sayin,g 'Hey I'm a big deal here.' " The New Zealander, who measures 6 foot 3 and 238 pounds, has starred at the highest levels in both codes of rugby, professionally and internationally. He earned two rugby-league championships in Australia's National Rugby League. He won World Cups with the All Blacks in 2015 and 2011, along with the bronze medal he was about to earn in Japan. The athletic Williams even boxed professionally seven times, winning all of his heavyweight bouts. He's a devout Muslim, and his profile extends way beyond the sport, as evidenced by his 1.7 million followers across his Twitter and Instagram feeds.

The Wolfpack is an ambitious club born just three years ago. It made its debut in the bottom tier of English rugby league, winning promotion to the second-tier Betfred Championship in Year 1, before winning promotion to the Super League just last month. A talent with a monster brand such as Williams could help the Wolfpack muscle up for Super League competition, and stimulate its brand along with the sport within Toronto's cluttered sports market. Even around the world.

McDermott had just one question for Williams during that dinner.

"I said 'I've got to ask you this Sonny - and I don't intend to offend you - but are you coming for the sexy headlines, the big money and profile that come with this deal, or are you coming to go through those tough moments on the field with your teammates?' " McDermott recalled.

"His answer was outstanding, and I won't tell you exactly what he said, but I'll summarize. He's all about earning the right to play, the respect of his family and of our players. He knows to do that he has to work harder than anyone else."

McDermott, reached in England hours after the Wolfpack officially announced Williams's two-year deal, shared his recollections of that dinner in a phone interview on Thursday. The signing made news worldwide. The Wolfpack won't confirm the terms, but it is reported to be worth some $9-million Canadian in total, with some outlets calling it the richest deal in Super League history. It's a lot of money for a club that is also footing the bill for opposing teams' travel to Canada and is not - at least for its first Super League season - getting a share of broadcasting revenue.

Super League allows for each team to have two franchise players with all but a small chunk of their salaries counted outside the salary cap.

The Wolfpack will introduce Williams in England next week, at a news conference slated for Emirates Stadium, home of Arsenal FC. He will meet his new Wolfpack teammates as the English players start training camp in Manchester. For immigration reasons, most international players do their preseason training outside of Britain, so Williams will train in Australia and report to England in January before Super League matches begin in February.

The Wolfpack has even been approached about a reality series on Netflix, which could begin filming this season.

Williams is a fit and fierce ball carrier with a talent for dishing the ball off to teammates as multiple muscled tacklers hang off him. He began his career in rugby league, but has frequently moved between codes and played the past five seasons in rugby union. McDermott says rugby league is more aerobic and Williams could have 80-90 involvements a game for the Wolfpack, compared with his 20-30 each match in rugby union.

The outspoken coach has witnessed various efforts by Super League to grow its popularity, but he thinks examples of big investments - such as this from Wolfpack majority owner David Argyle - will move the needle more.

"It's going to prove to some other clubs that these big, big deals can be done if you have an owner who is innovative, resourceful and has [the determination] to go out and do it," McDermott said.

With the Wolfpack's first 10 matches scheduled abroad, because of the Canadian winter, Williams isn't likely to set foot in Toronto until the home opener at Lamport Stadium on April 18.

But news of his arrival is already among the biggest topics buzzing throughout Super League.

"It's the biggest news Super League has had in 20 years," said Wolfpack director of rugby Brian Noble. "We moved heaven and earth to get the biggest name in rugby and we've done it. It's really a major signing, and it's a reflection of how well we want to perform in the Super League and what we want to do for the game of rugby league in the Northern hemisphere. He's built like a mountain, and people are going to love watching him."

Bob Hunter, Wolfpack chairman and CEO, was at Super League team meetings in England this week and said the signing was a hot topic.

Many Super League clubs project spikes in ticket sales when Williams and the Wolfpack visit, and are also projecting a jump in the number of British fans who will fly to Toronto for a game.

Hunter said one team reportedly has 1,500 fans committed for an extended weekend trip to Canada.

"The combination of playing in the Super League, and having Sonny Bill Williams changes our sponsorship opportunities dramatically, and the interest in tickets," Hunter said.

Associated Graphic

New Zealand's Sonny Bill Williams, clashing with Welsh players during the Rugby World Cup on Nov. 1, has had huge success in the sport. Now, he's signed with the Wolfpack.

CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Leafs are set to welcome Hyman back, but lose Marner to sprained ankle
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Toronto swaps one winger for another while coach remains mum on lineup ahead of Wednesday's road game against the Islanders
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By JOSHUA CLIPPERTON
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16


N TORONTO -- As the Maple Leafs sluggishly went about the early part of the NHL schedule, head coach Mike Babcock would often point to the new faces in the lineup and the new systems being implemented as reasons for his team's uninspiring start.

Toronto's head coach also went out of his way to mention the absence of Zach Hyman - the gritty forward tasked with retrieving the puck and making space for star linemates John Tavares and Mitch Marner.

The good news is the Leafs are set to welcome Hyman back from a serious knee injury. The bad news is they're also dealing with the realization that Marner will be out at least four weeks, and quite possibly longer, with a high ankle sprain.

"It would be nice to come back and play with him again and to reunite on that front," Hyman said of Marner on Tuesday before adding with a smile: "He'll be back soon and I guess I'll be up to game speed by then." Marner hobbled off in Saturday's 3-2 shootout loss to the Philadelphia Flyers after stepping on an opponent's stick at the start of the second period. He made it to the bench and tried to take part in a power-play shift a few minutes later before heading to the locker room.

The 22-year-old, who said he felt "a snap" in his right ankle, tested the joint again during a television timeout, but was pulled out of the action by the Leafs' medical team. He was in a walking boot Tuesday and hopes to have it off by Friday.

"You're always [disappointed]," said Marner, who will go on long-term injury reserve. "But looking back at the video, seeing the photos, it could have been a lot worse. At that time I was ready to look back and see my ankle twisted the wrong way."

High ankle sprains can be tricky, with the timeline for a return often hard to predict. Marner, whose move to LTIR does help the Leafs' salary cap crunch, missed Sunday's 5-4 loss in Chicago against the Blackhawks and will sit out at least the next 12 games before being re-evaluated.

Marner, Tavares and Hyman combined for 223 points in 201819, and were on the ice for 53 of Toronto's 166 goals at 5 on 5, according to the website naturalstattrick.com. Marner is currently second in scoring on the Leafs with 18 points, seven back of Auston Matthews, but just 10 have come at even strength.

Toronto, which sits 9-6-4 heading into Wednesday's road game against the New York Islanders, went 3-2-2 with Tavares out of the lineup from Oct. 19 to Nov. 2 with a broken finger.

"It's unfortunate," Tavares said of Marner's absence. "We want him back as soon as possible, but the circumstances are what they are. That's why you need depth, and we certainly have that.

"It's a great opportunity for many guys."

Kasperi Kapanen should get the first crack alongside Tavares and Hyman, while winger Nic Petan was recalled from the American Hockey League and looks set to slot in on the fourth line.

Babcock, however, wasn't promising anything after Tuesday's practice.

"We've got to figure it out as a coaching staff, and them as players, and figure out who plays with who to help the group be the best it can be," he said. "We'll take a look and try and get the group to be set up the best way it can to have success."

Babcock added it's tough to know what Hyman, who underwent surgery to repair a torn ACL suffered in last spring's playoff loss to the Boston Bruins, will bring in his first game since April.

"He just works ... like a dog," the coach said. "Can he get on the fore-check and get us the puck back like he always does? I don't know the answer for that. How can [he] be on that right-hand faceoff circle on the penalty kill? I don't know that either."

Tavares said the juggling of linemates can be a challenge, especially when replacing a unique talent such as Marner.

"Guys play different ways, have different tendencies," said Toronto's captain, who's ready for another rough reception against his former team on Long Island. "It's trying to just have a feel for that and be predictable for one another, but be unpredictable for the opponent."

What's easy to predict, however, is the effort level Hyman's set to infuse in his return to the lineup.

"I've learned just to do what I do best and no worry about other things," Hyman said. "Hopefully I'll just pick up where I left off."

NOTES Leafs backup goalie Michael Hutchinson cleared waivers Tuesday and will report to the AHL Marlies after falling to 0-4-1 on the season in Sunday's loss to Chicago. Tavares said the players in front of Hutchinson didn't do him any favours. "We have to own that," he said. "We just did not play very well." Toronto recalled Kasimir Kaskisuo to serve as the No. 2 netminder behind Frederik Andersen. The Leafs play host to Boston on Friday before visiting Pittsburgh on Saturday. Kaskisuo, 26, could make his first NHL appearance against the Penguins.

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The Maple Leafs' Zach Hyman, seen fending off then-Bruin Marcus Johansson in Boston in April, is set to rejoin the team after a serious knee injury.

MADDIE MEYER/GETTY IMAGES

Women's hockey group shares rendition of Stompin' Tom Connors classic in campaign for pro league
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By DONNA SPENCER
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B17


W omen striving for the professional hockey league of their dreams want to stay visible during a gap in their Dream Gap Tour.

The Professional Women's Hockey Players' Association tugs on hockey heart strings with Thursday's release of a music video rendition of the Stompin' Tom Connors ballad The Hockey Song.

PWHPA president and Hockey Hall of Famer Jayna Hefford says the roughly 200 North American and international players in the union want to keep their drive for a sustainable league on the hockey world's radar.

"We want to find ways to keep the conversation going with a content piece like this," Hefford said.

The collapse of the Canadian Women's Hockey League this year after 12 seasons, and the players' refusal to join the U.S.based NWHL because they don't believe it's financially sustainable, gave rise to the PWHPA. Members of the U.S. and Canadian national teams are its public face.

After Dream Gap Tour showcase tournaments in Toronto, Hudson, N.H., and Chicago, and exhibition games in Boston and San Jose, Calif., in September and October, there's a lull in the PWHPA's schedule.

Hefford, from Kingston, said more Dream Gap Tour stops will be announced in the coming days, including Canadian dates.

In the meantime, the music video produced by Budweiser Canada for a socialmedia campaign is a teaser for that announcement.

"This is a big moment for us to be able to release a message like this," Hefford said. "We want that to live in its own space, but very shortly after we'll be announcing some future events."

The video's release also coincides with the Canadian and U.S. national teams squaring off in exhibition games Friday and Sunday at the Pittsburgh Penguins' training facility, as well as Hockey Hall of Fame induction festivities starting next Friday in Toronto.

The content features comedian Gerry Dee, Hockey Night in Canada hosts Ron MacLean, Don Cherry and Tara Slone, broadcaster Bob Cole and former NHL player Georges Laraque among those lending their voices to The Hockey Song, which starts out rollicking but takes a sombre turn.

Canadian players Natalie Spooner, Sarah Nurse, Renata Fast and Shannon Szabados dully recite the lyrics as the lights go out in a hockey arena and a statement is conveyed that "the good old hockey game is only that, when it's good to everyone."

"It's not like this has been an easy year for the majority of our group," Hefford said.

"It's been very difficult, but when you go to bed at night and you know you are living something you believe in and you're passionate about and you know you're going to make things better for someone else, that's a pretty good way to end a day."

In its few months of existence, the PWHPA has gathered economic clout with domestic and international brands such as Budweiser, Adidas, Bauer, Tim Hortons and as well as the support of the NHL Players' Association and Unifor Canada.

"For us, it's more than sponsors that want to put their logos somewhere," Hefford said. "It's who wants to be really engaged and be a part of the solution?" Dunkin' Donuts, interestingly, sponsors both the PWHPA and the NWHL, now in its fifth season.

Budweiser has produced content for the U.S. women's soccer team with similar messages about the value of female sports.

"We saw this opportunity to, beyond just our partnership with the Dream Gap Tour, to drive more awareness for the issue, to help support the women's game in Canada," said Todd Allen, vice-president of marketing for Labatt Breweries of Canada.

"We thought what better way than using the iconic hockey song of Stompin' Tom Connors, but delivered in a unique way leveraging iconic Canadian media personalities and hockey players to tell a story of what happened to the Canadian Women's Hockey League folding in 2019, to help shine a spotlight on what the PWHPA is trying to achieve and to bring more awareness to women's hockey in Canada."

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Professional Women's Hockey Players' Association president Jayna Hefford, seen in Toronto Oct. 23, says things haven't been easy for the majority of her group. 'It's been very difficult, but when you go to bed at night and ... you know you're going to make things better for someone else, that's a pretty good way to end a day.'

FRANK GUNN/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Niners look to stay undefeated vs. Hawks
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By TERESA M. WALKER
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


The San Francisco 49ers are the NFL's last undefeated team, while Russell Wilson is making a very strong case for MVP consideration in Seattle. Something in the NFC West is about to give.

The 49ers (8-0) have home-field advantage Monday night and have had 10 days to prepare for Seattle (7-2) in the first of two divisional showdowns between the teams this season. The Seahawks get to wrap up the season playing host to San Francisco on Dec. 29. They've already lost twice at home, making a road win now even more crucial in the NFC West.

The Niners will counter with Jimmy Garoppolo and a very stingy defence. They're favoured by six at home despite having lost nine of the past 10 in this series.

Upset special: Seahawks 31, 49ers 30.

NO. 19 LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (MINUS 1) AT NO. 16 OAKLAND The Chargers not only have won four straight in this series, they have found something since coach Anthony Lynn fired offensive co-ordinator Ken Whisenhunt.

Pick: Chargers, 24-21 NO. 6 KANSAS CITY (MINUS 3 1 / 2) AT NO. 20 TENNESSEE NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes is expected back. Tennessee has a habit of playing to the level of its competition, but that won't be enough.

Pick: Chiefs, 33-30 NO. 11 BUFFALO (PLUS 2 1 / 2) AT NO. 26 CLEVELAND The Bills play very stingy defence and get what they need from their second-year quarterback. Cleveland has so many pieces, but the Browns can't get enough from their second-year quarterback no matter what cleats his receivers are wearing.

Upset special: Bills, 21-17 NO. 22 ARIZONA (PLUS 4 1 / 2) AT NO. 25 TAMPA BAY QB Kyler Murray and coach Kliff Kingsbury have the Cardinals far more competitive than expected, but Jameis Winston looks like he's meshing with co-ordinator Byron Leftwich.

Pick: Buccaneers, 30-24 NO. 27 NEW YORK GIANTS (MINUS 2 1 / 2) AT NO. 31 NEW YORK JETS The black cat should be safely tucked away , and the Giants are being treated as the true home team as the favourite.

Pick: Giants, 28-24 NO. 28 ATLANTA (PLUS 13) AT NO. 2 NEW ORLEANS Falcons visiting makes Saints the easy choice, even with both coming off byes.

Pick: Saints, 34-20 NO. 4 BALTIMORE (MINUS 10) AT CINCINNATI The NFL's last winless team is starting rookie Ryan Finley, which is why Baltimore would have been the knockout pool pick.

Instead, this consolation prize.

Best bet: Ravens, 30-14 NO. 14 CAROLINA (PLUS 5) AT NO. 7 GREEN BAY How long will the Packers' L.A. hangover last? Aaron Rodgers is back home facing Kyle Allen.

Pick: Packers: 30-21 NO. 18 DETROIT (PLUS 2 1 / 2) AT NO. 23 CHICAGO The Lions have a much shorter trip than last week to the West Coast. The Bears have bigger issues on offence.

Pick: Lions, 20-18 NO. 29 MIAMI (PLUS 10 1 / 2) AT NO. 13 INDIANAPOLIS Getting one win this season was surprising enough out of the Dolphins.

Pick: Colts, 28-20 NO. 12 LOS ANGELES RAMS (MINUS 3 1 / 2) AT NO. 17 PITTSBURGH Pick:The Rams are off a bye and looking for a third consecutive win. The Steelers have won three straight and are at home.

Pick: Rams, 26-21 NO. 8 MINNESOTA (PLUS 3) AT NO. 10 DALLAS Kirk Cousins and Dalvin Cook taking on Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. The Cowboys are at home.

Pick: Cowboys, 30-24 2019 RECORD Last Week: 7-6 against spread, 9-5 straight up.

Season Totals: 73-60-1 against spread, 8548-1 straight up.

Best Bet: 7-2 against spread, 7-2 straight up.

Upset special: 5-4 against spread, 5-4 straight up.

Associated Graphic

Jimmy Garoppolo is set to start against Seattle Monday.

CHRISTIAN PETERSEN/GETTY IMAGES

Andreescu's coach hopeful that knee injury won't affect off-season training
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By GREGORY STRONG
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


Canadian tennis star Bianca Andreescu was already planning to take some time off after her recent appearance at the season-ending WTA Finals. A left-knee injury suffered in her second match at the tournament ended up forcing her hand.

Andreescu's coach, Sylvain Bruneau, is hopeful the injury will not delay their off-season training plans ahead of the 2020 campaign.

"We're seeing a few doctors now, and it looks like she's going to need some time off and she's going to need rehab," Bruneau said on Monday. "But it seems like it will hopefully be under control and it's not going to be something that's going to be too serious. So hopefully that's the case."

Andreescu opened the tournament in Shenzhen, China, with a loss to Simona Halep before injuring the knee early in her match against Karolina Pliskova on Wednesday. The 19-year-old from Mississauga was hurt when she stretched to return a serve.

She had the leg taped and went on to lose the first set before retiring from the match.

Andreescu told Bruneau during an on-court coaching session that she "heard a crack" and was unable to bend her knee.

Andreescu later said results from an MRI persuaded her to withdraw from the eight-player tournament on Thursday. She didn't provide specifics on what the exam discovered and Bruneau declined to go into further detail when reached in Montreal.

The injury was a tough way to end what has been a remarkable season for Andreescu, who won titles at Indian Wells, the Rogers Cup and the U.S. Open.

"It was enough that she had to stop and not play in the final match," Bruneau said. "She's going to take a couple weeks now of rest and rehab. It was a bit of a downer because she was superexcited to be at the tournament.

"She really wanted to be in the top four and do even better. It was kind of a cold shower, that knee injury." Andreescu is ranked fifth in the world and is fourth on the money list with earnings of more than US$6.5-million. However, injuries were a common theme throughout the year, with a shoulder issue scuttling four months of the season.

Bruneau said they have mapped out a plan for the offseason and the leadup to the Australian Open in January, but it will depend on how her knee rehab goes.

"Hopefully this injury is not going to delay things too much," he said. "We were going to take a rest anyway. She was going to enjoy two weeks off so timing-wise - it's not like there's a big tournament coming up - so timing-wise, I guess it's fine."

Andreescu's stunning ascension kicked off last January at the ASB Classic in Auckland, where she upset former world No. 1s Caroline Wozniacki and Venus Williams. She reached the final before falling to Julia Goerges.

Andreescu won the Oracle Challenger Series tournament later that month at Newport Beach, and her first career Premier Mandatory title came in March at the BNP Paribas Open.

She beat Serena Williams in the Rogers Cup final at Toronto when the American veteran retired from the match because of injury. They met again a month later in the U.S.

Open final, with Andreescu winning in straight sets.

Andreescu closes the season with a 48-7 won-loss record.

Sterling dropped from Euro 2020 qualifier with Montenegro after training ground 'disturbance'
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By SIMON EVANS
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REUTERS
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


England winger Raheem Sterling has been dropped from the squad to face Montenegro in their Euro 2020 qualifier at Wembley after a "disturbance" at the national team's training camp on Monday, the Football Association said.

"The FA can confirm Raheem Sterling will not be considered for Thursday's EURO 2020 qualifier against Montenegro as a result of a disturbance in a private team area at St. George's Park today," the FA said in a statement.

The Daily Mail reported that Manchester City winger Sterling had clashed with Liverpool defender Joe Gomez after the England team got together at their Burtonon-Trent training centre on Monday - less than 24 hours after City lost 3-1 at Liverpool.

The newspaper reported that "Sterling attempted to grab Gomez by the neck following his arrival in the players' canteen." The pair squared up in the latter stages of Sunday's Premier League clash after Gomez came on as a substitute.

The FA statement, which said Sterling will remain with the squad, did not address the specifics of the dispute or confirm if Gomez was the other party, but England boss Gareth Southgate linked the incident to Sunday's top-of-the-table clash.

"We have taken the decision to not consider Raheem for the match against Montenegro on Thursday," Southgate said.

"One of the great challenges and strengths for us is that we've been able to separate club rivalries from the national team. Unfortunately the emotions of yesterday's game were still raw," he added in the FA statement.

"My feeling is that the right thing for the team is the action we have taken. Now that the decision has been made with the agreement of the entire squad, it's important that we support the players and focus on Thursday night," he added.

Sterling has become a key player for England in the past year after being criticized for his displays at the 2018 World Cup.

Last season he was named Footballer of the Year by the Football Writers' Association after scoring 25 goals in all competitions, as City won a domestic treble of the Premier League title and the two Cup competitions. For England, Sterling has scored 12 goals in 55 games but has been a regular under Southgate and scored twice in the recent 6-0 win away to Bulgaria.

Associated Graphic

Manchester City's Raheem Sterling and Liverpool's Joe Gomez face off during their matchup on Sunday. A newspaper report says that Sterling clashed with Gomez at England's Burton-on-Trent training centre on Monday.

CARL RECINE/ACTION IMAGES VIA REUTERS

Digital Colony adds to Canadian telecom deals with purchase of Beanfield
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By CHRISTINE DOBBY
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


A U.S. investment firm that has been quietly amassing a trove of Canadian fibre and data-centre assets has acquired Toronto-based Beanfield Technologies Inc., a privately owned fibre-optic internet provider, with an investment of more than $130-million.

Colony Capital Inc., a real estate investment firm based in Los Angeles, branched into digital infrastructure over the past year, acquiring Digital Bridge Holdings LLC, with which it raised a US$4-billion fund, Digital Colony Partners. The fund has a mandate to invest in communications assets such as wireless towers, data centres, fibre lines and cellular technology that will be used in next-generation 5G networks.

In its early days, Florida-based Digital Colony has been on a Canadian shopping spree. It closed the deal to buy Beanfield last month, and Colony Capital disclosed it in a quarterly financial filing on Friday.

The transaction came just five months after Digital Colony paid $720-million to buy Cogeco Peer 1, the former enterprise-connectivity division of cable company Cogeco Communications Inc. Beanfield has been building fibre-optic infrastructure in Toronto since the 1990s and now has a total of about 350 kilometres of fibre lines in that city and Montreal, providing more than 700 commercial and residential buildings with telecom services.

In a joint deal with European fund EQT announced in May, Digital Colony also said it will acquire Zayo Group Holdings Inc., a U.S. company that bought Allstream Inc. in 2016 from what was then Manitoba Telecom Services Inc. Digital Colony and EQT plan to take Zayo private in a transaction valued at US$8.4-billion (not including the assumption of $5.9-billion in debt) and hope to close the deal in the first quarter of 2020.

"This is an extremely exciting time for digital infrastructure as technology drives unprecedented changes across the industry and creates attractive opportunities," Steven Sonnenstein, managing director of Digital Colony, said in an e-mail to The Globe and Mail on Tuesday. "As data traffic and storage needs continue to grow, Europe and the Americas are at an inflection point for digital infrastructure. New technologies will only accelerate the demand and costs to deploy."

Mr. Sonnenstein would not comment specifically on other potential Canadian deals, but said, "We remain bullish on the Canadian digital infrastructure market and will continue to seek opportunities to invest in telecommunications infrastructure in the region in a strategic and effective manner."

After inquiries from The Globe, Digital Colony issued a news release on the Beanfield acquisition on Tuesday afternoon.

It did not disclose the financial terms, but the earnings report Colony Capital published last week stated that Digital Colony invested US$100-million in Beanfield (or about $132-million Canadian).

Cogeco Peer 1 (which Digital Colony renamed Aptum Technologies in August) has 3,200 kilometres of fibre in Toronto and Montreal, plus 14 data centres in the United States and Canada.

When Zayo acquired Allstream (the former AT&T Canada), it had about 20,000 km of long-haul fibre connecting major Canadian centres and 10 U.S. network access points, plus about 9,000 km of fibre connecting individual customers in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa and Calgary.

Beanfield hired Bank Street Group, a Connecticut-based investment firm that advises companies in the communications and technology sector, and has been looking for a buyer since at least the beginning of 2019.

Dan Armstrong, who cofounded Beanfield with Chris Amendola, will remain with the company as chief executive.

In its early days, Beanfield offered fibre-based telecom services to businesses, but over the past decade or so has expanded into the residential market, offering apartment dwellers in new condo developments high-speed internet service. Digital Colony said on Tuesday that Beanfield will continue serving residential clients.

"It will continue to be business as usual at Beanfield," Mr. Sonnenstein said. "We believe the company has a great management team in place." He added that Aptum and Beanfield will operate independently.

Colony Capital is a giant in real estate investing, and made Canadian headlines in 2006, when it jointly paid $3.3-billion for the Fairmont Hotels & Resorts chain through a consortium of investors that included the Saudi billionaire Prince al-Waleed bin Talal.

Thomas Barrack Jr., who was chairman of U.S. President Donald Trump's inaugural committee, founded Colony in 1991. He is currently the CEO, but Colony has announced he plans to step down from that role in 2020, although he will remain executive chairman.

With a report from James Bradshaw.

Associated Graphic

Dan Armstrong, seen at Beanfield's Toronto offices in 2016, will remain CEO of the the fibre-optic internet provider in the wake of the company's acquisition by Digital Colony Partners.

FRED LUM/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Hootsuite founder to step down
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Move comes after social media management company fails to find a buyer, lays off employees
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By JOSH O'KANE, SEAN SILCOFF, TARA DESCHAMPS
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Hootsuite Media Inc.'s founding chief executive officer, Ryan Holmes, will step down in the wake of concerns raised by the company's board about his leadership after a failed attempt to sell the social media management company.

Mr. Holmes will leave the post when a successor is found but will become the company's executive chairman, he wrote in a note to shareholders on Tuesday. He started Hootsuite in 2008, and it quickly became a leading platform for managing social media accounts for corporate clients.

Research firm CB Insights pegged the company's valuation at US$1-billion earlier this decade. The Globe and Mail reported in January that Hootsuite had been seeking a buyer but struggled to find offers higher than US$700-million. The company laid off about a 10th of its approximately 1,000 employees this year.

The Vancouver-based company did not make Mr. Holmes available for an interview. Two sources familiar with the situation, who were granted confidentiality because they were not authorized to discuss the decision, said after the failed auction, the board began months of tense talks about whether Mr. Holmes was still the right leader for the company.

They received feedback that prospective buyers were concerned about Hootsuite's metrics, particularly its revenue growth and low profitability.

Sources said there was concern that much of Hootsuite's revenue growth came from price increases, and the company lost some of its big accounts. Meanwhile, dynamics in the industry have become tougher, particularly with Twitter extracting significant payments from social media management firms, including Hootsuite. The board was particularly concerned about customer and employee churn, especially after many senior executives left the business.

"At Hootsuite, we routinely look at our entire leadership team - which includes me - to determine the best path for our future stages of growth and continued success," Mr. Holmes wrote in an e-mailed statement to The Globe.

"I am fortunate that I have an excellent board that I can have positive and candid conversations with to this end. It was through personal reflection and these candid conversations with my trusted board that I decided it was time to start looking ahead at new leadership."

In his shareholder letter, Mr.

Holmes said he hoped to spend more time with his young daughter: "It feels like it is the right point to take some time and reassess priorities."

In the letter, Mr. Holmes said the company had surpassed US$200-million in annual recurring revenue. This, he wrote, "tells me we've built something at a breakneck speed that is highly valuable." He added that the company made changes to its sales and marketing teams this year that prompted 20-per-cent-higher contract values and better retention rates.

In the third quarter of this year, the company renewed more than 650 enterprise customers, he wrote, including long-standing clients Melia Hotels, Purdue University and the Vancouver Canucks. And over the past three quarters, the company signed more than 1,100 enterprise customers.

Hootsuite is a platform that, among other things, allows companies to write and schedule posts from multiple social media accounts.

Many senior leaders left the company around the time of the attempted sale. These included senior vice-president of sales Bob Elliott; sales vice-presidents Chris Saniga and Phil Edgell; Mik Lernout, vice-president of product, and André Viljoen, vice-president of technology.

Asked about these leaders leaving in an interview this fall, Mr. Holmes said "the tech industry as a whole has one of the highest churns of employees. ... Sometimes the company outgrows people and sometimes the people outgrow the company."

The layoffs, he said, were "not about [employee] performance.

It was about needing to make shifts." Those shifts, he continued, were "some tough decisions we needed to make in terms of where we wanted to invest in the business and some areas that we needed to deinvest in." He declined to name which areas those were.

Mr. Holmes's rating on the company review website Glassdoor has fallen to 54 per cent from nearly 80 per cent in the past several years, which he called a "lagging indicator" of his success. "We did a reorganization recently, and some people had hard feelings on that, and I think that shows up here," he said.

An initial public offering or sale could still be possible, said one source, who also said the company was profitable.

Associated Graphic

In a shareholder letter, Hootsuite CEO Ryan Holmes said he wanted to spend time with his daughter: 'It feels like it is the right point to take some time and reassess priorities.'

CHRISTOPHER KATSAROV/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Thursday, November 07, 2019

Bankers to see disappointing bonuses after slow year for deals
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By ANDREW WILLIS
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Canada's bank-owned investment dealers will cut bonus cheques to employees in the next few weeks.

It's going to be a disappointing experience at most brokerage houses and a wake-up call for Bank of Nova Scotia, where strong credit relationships failed to translate into more lucrative assignments in stock sales and merger advice in the recently concluded fiscal year.

Performance-based pay will take a hit at bank-owned dealers, which ended their fiscal year on Oct. 31, because of falling revenues from equity underwriting and corporate bond sales, two of any investment bank's most lucrative lines of business.

"Even if relative performance remains unchanged or even improves at some banks, slower earnings overall give the dealers the opportunity to cut performance pay," said Ian Russell, chief executive of the Investment Industry Association of Canada.

"There may be some exceptions for the few strong performers. On the other hand, some investment banking teams may be hit hard."

The value of stock sales by Canadian investment banks dropped 15 per cent to $27.8-billion in the 12 months ended Oct. 31, according to data compiled by Refinitiv.

The new year is off to an inauspicious start, with the cancellation of a much-anticipated IPO from waste disposal company GFL Environmental Inc. that could have raised as much as $2.4-billion. Equity underwriting is a significant source of revenue for dealers, which typically charge companies a 4-per-cent fee to sell stock.

Morgan Stanley sold the most stock for Canadian clients, raising $4.9-billion in just five transactions, including financings for Shopify Inc. and Tim Hortons parent Restaurant Brands International Inc.

Canaccord Genuity Group Inc.

was the busiest shop, leading 53 equity offerings that raised $1.3billion.

Corporate debt underwriting declined by 6 per cent to $57-billion, with RBC Dominion Securities topping The Street's league tables by selling $16-billion of bonds in 88 transactions.

One bright spot for bankers was merger and acquisition activity, where the value of transactions rose 17 per cent to $114-billion. TD Securities was the No. 1 deal maker, in part owing to a strong presence in energy-related M&A, advising on 24 transactions worth $40.1-billion. Private equity activity was also robust and revenue from these capital-hungry clients helps offset the dealer's declining profits from public markets.

"The financing trend had been down for the past couple of years," Mr. Russell said. Domestic investment banking revenue declined by 19 per cent to $1.98-billion through the first eight months of this year, according to IIAC's data. Mr. Russell said: "The dealers have been focused on paring back operating expenses in investment banking for some time, particularly as the nearterm outlook for the business is poor with continued slow economic growth, depressed capital spending and no signs of imminent change in spending in the energy sector."

Equity underwriting and M&A activity was dominated last year by five of the six Canadian bankowned dealers and a handful of independent and foreign firms.

Scotiabank was an outlier, as the one Canadian bank that finished well down the ranks in equity sales and M&A work. Scotiabank has long-established lending relationships across Corporate Canada and ranked fifth in both corporate loans, with roles in 144 issues, and in corporate bond underwriting, with 45 transactions. Credit market transactions typically come with lower profit margins than equity and M&A assignments, and banks attempt to cross-sell their services to maximize the fees they earn from corporate clients.

Scotiabank's debt-based relationships did not translate into more lucrative work on stock sales and takeovers last year. The bank was the No. 9 player in equity underwriting, raising $733-million in 15 deals. The firm ranked seventh in equity underwriting in the previous year. In M&A advisory work, Scotiabank ranked 16th, with a role in 18 transactions. The previous year, the bank ranked fourth in M&A. Scotiabank declined to comment on the results.

Scotiabank CEO Brian Porter is a former investment banker with close ties to corporate clients; he used to run the equity capital markets group that oversees stock sales. Mr. Porter put new executives in charge of Scotiabank's capital markets group this year, appointing Jake Lawrence and James Neate as co-CEOs. The pair spent the year rebuilding their teams, in part by recruiting senior bankers in a number of divisions from rival dealers. Scotiabank's former head of investment banking, Dieter Jentsch, had a background in corporate lending and retired last December.

CPPIB bets on renewable power with purchase of Pattern Energy
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Pension fund to pay $2.63-billion in deal that takes U.S. wind company private
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By DAVID MILSTEAD
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board is acquiring Canada's biggest producer of wind power for US$2.63-billion, in a major bet on the continued growth of low-carbon electricity.

The deal for San Francisco-based Pattern Energy Group Inc. is worth US$6.1-billion, including debt. CPPIB intends to team up with a U.S. investment firm to combine Pattern with a second, privately held energy partnership that is run by Pattern's executives.

CPPIB, the $400-billion pension fund that invests to pay the benefits owed to working Canadians in the Canada Pension Plan, created a standalone group to hold power and renewables assets in 2017. It has invested more than $2.1-billion in renewable energy projects since, but the fund believes a lack of interest by investors in certain publicly traded energy stocks has created opportunity for large institutions.

Pattern Energy, which is listed on both the Nasdaq and the Toronto Stock Exchange, is an example.

Its shares peaked on the Nasdaq at US$34.51 in June, 2014, not long after their public debut, but haven't traded above US$30 since early 2015.

That performance stands in contrast to some other companies in the sector, including Brookfield Renewable Partners LP, a Toronto-based renewable-energy investment partnership which has doubled in price over the same period.

CPPIB's offer of US$26.75 a share is a 15per-cent premium to the price the stock was trading at in August, before the company acknowledged it was talking to suitors. But it's below Friday's close of US$27.80 a share.

Bruce Hogg, a CPPIB managing director who heads its Power and Renewables group, said: "We view it as one of the best management teams in the renewables business, with a significant asset base in primarily North America, but also Japan, and an ability to develop further projects in those markets."

Pattern Energy owns six projects in Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Manitoba. The company produces more wind energy than any other company in Canada, said spokesman Matt Dallas, citing data from the Canadian Wind Energy Association.

On Monday, Pattern Energy shares closed at US$27.11 on the Nasdaq.

Pattern Energy said it chose the CPPIB offer after it "reviewed multiple bids as part of a thorough process that involved multiple parties."

In August, Bloomberg News reported the companies interested in Pattern Energy included Brookfield Asset Management Inc., which could have merged Pattern Energy with TerraForm Power Inc., a renewables company it has a majority interest in. Brookfield spokeswoman Claire Holland declined to comment on the transaction Monday.

Analysts at RBC Dominion Securities said Monday that their target price of US$28 was based on a buyer of Pattern Energy achieving cost savings and said "we would not rule out a higher competing bid."

"I can't comment on what others do," Mr. Hogg said of CPPIB. "We think what we're offering delivers fair value for shareholders and delivers certainty of proceeds, so we think it's an attractive offer."

Jeremy Rosenfield of Industrial Alliance Securities wrote that he believes CPPIB is "unlikely to be topped," as its offer is already higher, on a multiple of profits, than the average of five recent transactions for wind assets. "The offer would also provide immediate liquidity and value certainty for [Pattern Energy] shareholders, with minimal expected regulatory risk, and minimal expected regulatory lag."

CPPIB has allowed Pattern Energy until Dec. 8 to shop itself to other potential buyers, according to a securities filing detailing the transaction. Pattern Energy would owe CPPIB a break fee of between US$52-million and US$79million, depending on what happens next. CPPIB would owe Pattern Energy a break fee of US$204-million if it walks away.

The deal continues a series of renewable-energy investments by CPPIB. In May, 2018, CPPIB acquired 49 per cent of Enbridge Inc.'s interest in 14 Canadian, two U.S. and two German renewable power assets and two German offshore wind projects for $1.75-billion.

In June, 2018, CPPIB completed the purchase of four wind and two solar generation projects in Ontario from NextEra Energy Partners LP for US$582.3-million plus the assumption of US$689-million in debt and renamed the company Cordelio Power.

Associated Graphic

Pattern Energy windmills in Haldimand County, Ont., generate enough energy to power 50,000 homes as part of its Grand Renewable Wind operation, one of six projects the company owns in Ontario, B.C. and Manitoba.

TARA WALTON/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Quebec software titan Louis Têtu marks second $1-billion valuation
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Enterpreneur reaches milestone with latest firm Coveo, which sells AI-powered search tools
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By SEAN SILCOFF
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


Quebec City entrepreneur Louis Têtu has become one of the few Canadians to create two different billion-dollar technology companies after his latest firm, Coveo Solutions Inc., raised $227-million in an equity financing led by the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System.

The financing values the 550employee software company - which generates $100-million in annual revenue selling artificialintelligence-powered cloud search tools known as "insight engines" to corporate customers ranging from Cenovus Energy Inc. and American Express Co. to Salesforce.com Inc. - at more than $1.3-billion.

Past investors Evergreen Coast Capital of Silicon Valley, Quebec's FTQ Solidarity Fund and the Quebec government's Investissement Québec investing arm also participated in the financing. Mr. Têtu invested in Coveo in 2005, then became chief executive after his former company, Taleo Corp., was purchased by Oracle Corp. in 2012 for US$1.9-billion.

Mr. Têtu said Coveo, which still has money left over from its previous financing in early 2018, plans to use the cash for acquisitions, particularly if the economy sours. "Right now the play for us and one of the reasons we're raising money is we think the climate might get very favourable to people sitting on a pile of cash, from an acquisition perspective," he said. "This rally will end. I think the odds are that within 24 to 36 months, there will be a downturn."

The deal is the second time OMERS has led a large, late-stage financing of a Canadian software firm since the pension giant launched a growth equity unit last year. OMERS invested $90million in Coveo, slightly less than it deployed in a $158-million financing of Toronto restaurant software firm TouchBistro Inc. in September.

"Coveo is an exceptional opportunity," said Mark Shulgan, managing director and head of growth equity with OMERS, who added the pension fund "moved very quickly" to invest after meeting Coveo management in September. "We knew right away this was something we wanted to do" thanks to Coveo's accomplished management team, the quality of its products and the fact it competes in the surging data and analytics space, he said.

Coveo is a leader of an emerging category of enterprise software that builds on the limited capacity of past search tools used internally by corporations by offering enhanced AI-driven capabilities. "It's way more than search," Forrester Research Inc.

analyst Mike Gualtieri said.

The tools offered by Coveo and rivals such as Attivio, Sinequa and Lucidworks can extract more relevant, personalized and immediate data than past internal search engines, resulting in business operating improvements.

For example, business intelligence software provider Tableau Software saves US$18-million a year using Coveo by increasing client self-service on its website, which reduces the volume of calls to customer service representatives and increases customer satisfaction. Computer company Dell Technologies Inc. uses Coveo to provide better recommendations to customers on its e-commerce site.

Canadian recreational vehicle maker BRP Inc. uses Coveo for its dealer self-service portals. "It's like Google for me - I see no gaps," said Krystel Perreault, BRP's customer insights lead, who said visits by dealers to the portal increased by 45 per cent over two years as they were able to find answers to their questions online rather than calling in to the company. "It's a better user experience for the dealer - userfriendly, intuitive and easy to browse," she said.

Mr. Têtu said revenue has been increasing by more than 50 per cent a year and that the company has been able to expand revenues at existing clients every year while losing relatively few customers. "It's a strong company," said Mr. Shulgan of OMERS. "It's not very often we see the type of metrics Coveo is able to demonstrate."

The Coveo financing is the latest in a string of nine-figure, latestage financings of emerging Canadian companies led by domestic funders, including iNovia Capital and the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec.

"The headline here is that Canadian funds are now extremely competitive with the best and brightest in Silicon Valley," Mr. Têtu said. "For us Canadians, that is great news, that we can keep the wealth creation in this country as opposed to exporting it."

Associated Graphic

Coveo CEO Louis Têtu, seen in Quebec City, says the company plans to use the $227-million it recently raised in equity financing for acquisitions, especially if the economy sours.

RENAUD PHILIPPE/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Quebec floats $30-million into fledgling blimp maker
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By NICOLAS VAN PRAET
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


MONTREAL -- Quebec thinks there's money in blimps.

The province is spending $30-million to back fledgling French blimpmaker Flying Whales, gambling that the deal will give it a toehold in an industry finally poised for commercial acceptance.

Premier François Legault's government said Wednesday that it would make a 20-million ($29-million) equity investment in Suresnes, Francebased Flying Whales, joining an investor group that includes French public investment bank BPI and the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, or AVIC, the country's principal manufacturer of warplanes and transport aircraft. France's national forest agency and the Région Nouvelle-Aquitaine are also shareholders.

"There are always risks with any project, but I think this one can be pivotal for Quebec," Quebec Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon told reporters.

Mr. Legault's Coalition Avenir Québec government sees the Flying Whales partnership as a way to bolster the aerospace industry, one of the province's economic pillars, at a time that Bombardier Inc. is pulling back from its commercial aviation activities. French giant Airbus SE took over Bombardier's former C Series jet factory in Mirabel, Que., and Japan's Mitsubishi Aircraft announced plans in September for an engineering centre in Boisbriand as Quebec looks to new players to reinforce its status as a global aerospace hub.

But investing in an airship company is no sure bet. Flying Whales has no flying prototype built and no paying customers to speak of.

The company and its competitors also face the lingering skepticism that comes from years of repeated failures by defunct manufacturers such as Cargolifter AG - skepticism that was evident Wednesday as reporters put both the company and the government on the defensive.

"We're still in the midst of development," said Flying Whales managing director Sébastien Bougon. The first airship should be ready in 2022, he said.

"Quebec should invest in projects like this," Mr. Fitzgibbon said. "You've got to control them.

You can't have one a week, but we've concluded that this one [makes sense]. ... At this point, we have enough comfort that there is a potential market."

With the investment, Quebec wins the right to play host to a planned airship manufacturing facility supplying North America, as well as the creation of a Flying Whales local subsidiary that will undertake research and development as of next year, the government said. If all works out as planned, 400 new jobs will be created, Mr. Fitzgibbon said.

Some 82 years after the Hindenburg disaster, Flying Whales is counting on advances in technology and awareness of the need for more environmentally friendly transportation to finally prove that the blimp's revival is nigh.

The company is developing a 154-metre-long, low-emissions airship that will be capable of carrying as much as 60 tonnes of cargo, such as lumber, to and from remote spots such as treecutting operations and mines.

The rigid-structure ship, which has a cruise speed of 100 kilometres an hour and gains lift with pockets of helium, is being marketed as unique because it can hover and doesn't require any ground infrastructure for mooring.

It's not alone, however, in the race to bring a cargo blimp to market. U.S. defence giant Lockheed Martin Corp. and several other smaller players are also working on designs and trying to develop business models. Flying Whales has said that the forestry industry alone could justify its investment, but is also eyeing railways and energy companies as potential customers.

The French airship maker's decision to let AVIC in the door as an investor has also raised concerns. The plane maker has been linked in several media reports to China's industrial espionage effort and alleged theft of U.S. companies' intellectual property.

Mr. Bougon played down the worries, saying AVIC is involved only as a shareholder and is not involved in any operations. All the intellectual property being developed in Quebec would be protected because it is controlled by the local subsidiary, which sells to the parent company, he said.

Hydro One abandons plans to expand beyond Ontario
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Utility says it won't 'actively pursue' outside companies, as profit in third-quarter jumps over 2018 result
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By JEFF GRAY
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2


TORONTO -- Ontario's partly privatized power-transmission utility, Hydro One Ltd., has unveiled a new strategy that abandons plans to buy up other utilities across North America and pledges instead to focus on the company's own backyard.

Hydro One's new chief executive, Mark Poweska, outlined an Ontario-focused direction this week, saying the company will not "actively pursue" acquiring companies outside Ontario for the next five years and that its previous efforts had "distracted" Hydro One. "It's time for Hydro One to focus in on the things that matter," he told investment analysts on a conference call. "It's time for us to build on our strengths and seize opportunities right here in Ontario."

Hydro One, which is 49-percent owned by the Ontario government, also said this week that its net income for the third quarter of 2019 was $241-million, up from $194-million in the same quarter in 2018, working out to 40 cents in earnings per share.

The company says the boost comes from increased distribution rates, but also from $11-million in lower "corporate support costs." In an e-mail, a company spokesman credited those savings to "productivity initiatives."

The company says a small portion of the savings came from a reduction in executive pay.

Those salary changes were prompted by Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

In last year's election campaign, Mr. Ford labelled then-Hydro One CEO Mayo Schmidt the "$6-million man," and called for a new CEO with a reduced salary.

The push resulted in Mr.

Schmidt's departure last summer - with $9-million in incentives and stock options upon his retirement - along with the entire Hydro One board. The company was later forced to adopt the Premier's demands on executive pay, capping CEO wages at $1.5million and also reining in cheques for other senior brass.

Other executive departures came after.

Hydro One was partly privatized by the previous provincial Liberal government, with a strategy to grow by acquiring other energy companies. But in January, U.S. regulators rejected Hydro One's $6.7-billion bid to acquire Avista Corp., based in Spokane, Wash., citing Mr. Ford's political interference in the Ontario utility. The aborted deal cost Hydro One $185-million in break fees and commissions.

While Hydro One's stock price has since recovered its value and stabilized at a level well above its price tag at its 2015 initial public offering, financial analysts who follow the company says its shares trade at a discount owing to political risk.

Sydney Stonier, a spokeswoman for Ontario Energy Minister Greg Rickford, said the government had confidence in Hydro One's new CEO.

"We're confident that Hydro One's new leadership and direction will move Hydro One forward in a way that will help Ontario reduce system costs and bring trust back to our electricity system," she said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Ford has still failed to deliver on his promise to lower the province's hydro rates.

In its fall economic statement this week, Ontario said it remained committed to cutting bills, and listed its moves to cancel green-energy contracts, slash Hydro One's executive pay and centralize power-conservation efforts. The government said it will spend at least $4-billion this year subsidizing power bills, continuing the previous government's policy.

Energy consultant Tom Adams says Hydro One's new Fordfriendly, stay-at-home strategy makes more sense than trying to grow bigger through international acquisitions, given the company's ownership structure.

"Hydro One is trying to get to be boring again," Mr. Adams said.

"... Utilities are supposed to be boring."

Associated Graphic

In a conference call this week, Hydro One CEO Mark Poweska says that it's time for the utility to 'seize opportunities right here in Ontario.'

TIM FRASER/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Homes are getting more affordable, but it isn't likely to last
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Rising incomes, decline in mortgage rates ease the burden of ownership, report says
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By MATT LUNDY
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Canadian home affordability has steadily improved this year thanks in large part to a decline in mortgage rates and rising incomes, but conditions remain "difficult" in Toronto and Vancouver, National Bank Financial says.

A typical household would need to spend 43 per cent of its pretax income to meet the monthly mortgage payment of a median-priced home, down from nearly 50 per cent in the final quarter of 2018, according to the bank's affordability index. (The calculation assumes a 25-year amortization period and five-year term, and takes 10 major metropolitan areas into account.)

Over all, home affordability has improved for three consecutive quarters, and is now in line with historical averages, National Bank said. However, further improvements look uncertain - and affordability remains stretched in some major markets.

"Surging population growth in Canada's largest metro areas, coupled with levelling mortgage rates, should limit the scope for further improvement in home affordability," economists Matthieu Arseneau and Kyle Dahms said in the report.

Modest strides in affordability have coincided with a pullback in Canada's real estate market. After a variety of new regulations aimed at curbing risky borrowing, home-buying activity hit a rough patch, particularly in frothy markets such as Toronto and Vancouver.

In tandem, mortgage rates fell this year - in some cases, by a percentage point from recent highs. Lower rates have been the biggest contributor to improving affordability, National Bank said.

"Indeed, the free-fall in financing costs over the last nine months was the most substantial since 2012."

That said, the mortgage qualifying rate has hardly budged, said Robert McLister, founder of mortgage comparison site RateSpy.com. The mortgage qualifying rate - which is the most common five-year fixed posted rate at Canada's Big Six banks - is used in stress tests. Home buyers must prove they can afford mortgage payments with a 5.19-percent interest rate, despite some discount rates being half that much.

"What we're seeing now is the Big Six banks hold mortgage qualifying rates high mainly out of their own self-interest," Mr.

McLister said. "If you saw that stress test rate go from 5.19 per cent down to where it should be based on the current levels of bond yields, then you'd see a significant impact on home sales and demand."

Even with affordability improvements, "the situation remains difficult" in the Toronto and Vancouver areas, Mr. Arseneau and Mr. Dahms noted.

In Toronto, a typical monthly mortgage payment ($3,805) would eat up 56 per cent of median household income. In Vancouver, the mortgage payment ($4,491) is equal to 69 per cent of typical household income. Both markets have improved from last year, although affordability remains worse than the long-term average.

Down payments are a particular hurdle. If the typical Toronto household saved 10 per cent of its pretax income, it would take 89 months to save up for the minimum down payment for today's median home price, according to National Bank's calculations. (The median price accounts for all home types, such as detached houses and condos.)

In Vancouver, it would take 311 months. That's because, with the median home price just over $1million, a minimum 20-per-cent down payment is needed. Timelines are even lengthier for detached homes.

At the same time, both markets are gaining momentum, with sales bouncing from depressed levels. In Greater Toronto, the average sale price in October jumped 5.5 per cent from a year earlier to slightly more than $850,000. Although benchmark prices are well below record highs in Metro Vancouver, they remain the steepest in Canada.

Associated Graphic

In Toronto, a typical monthly mortgage payment would eat up 56 per cent of median household income.

AARON VINCENT ELKAIM/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Canadian Tire to cut costs as retail revenues go flat
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By SUSAN KRASHINSKY ROBERTSON
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Canadian Tire Corp. Ltd. is cutting costs with the goal of reaching more than $200-million in annualized savings by 2022.

The retailer will seek to trim expenses across its portfolio of stores, which include Canadian Tire, SportChek, Mark's and now Party City after the closing of that acquisition on Oct. 1.

Canadian Tire Corp. is hoping to eliminate duplicate operations by consolidating distribution centres to make them more efficient. It will also get rid of old infrastructure by updating its warehouse management system.

"We're going to push very hard," chief executive Stephen Wetmore said on a conference call Thursday morning to discuss his company's third-quarter results.

The company announced the plan as it reported a profit of $227.7-million or $3.20 a share, compared with $231.3-million or $3.15 in the same period last year.

Revenue from its retail segment fell by 0.4 per cent, while overall revenue was up slightly to $3.64billion in the three months ending Sept. 28. The company also announced on Thursday that it would raise its quarterly dividend, the eleventh time it has done so in 10 years.

"This is intended to be a transformative effort for CTC, which upon completion should see the company in its entirety run far more efficiently," Bank of Nova Scotia retail analyst Patricia Baker wrote in a research note. "The build of CTC into a one-company organization over the past several years has unearthed an opportunity to seriously eliminate duplicated efforts."

The 97-year-old retailer is working to compete with the growth of e-commerce giants such as Amazon.com Inc. and Walmart Inc. SportChek has led the way on e-commerce growth, executives said on the call.

Mark's also lends itself well to e-commerce sales, and online shopping varies for Canadian Tire depending on the product category. The company expects e-commerce growth to continue, but is looking at building scale in order to find opportunities to manage the cost of order fulfillment and shipping.

"Distribution in Canada is expensive," Allan MacDonald, executive vice-president of retail, said on the call. "It's a scale play."

Comparable sales at Canadian Tire stores, which represent the company's biggest store network, rose 2.4 per cent in the quarter.

This measure counts sales at stores open more than a year, removing the effect of store openings and closings on the financial numbers; it also excludes the company's petroleum business and Helly Hansen brand. Comparable sales were up 4.6 per cent at SportChek and 1.2 per cent at Mark's.

With the Party City acquisition now complete, Canadian Tire stores are planning to roll out broader offerings in party supplies, and the company expects a meaningful presence in its stores by this time next year, Canadian Tire Retail president Greg Hicks said on Thursday.

Mr. MacDonald also mentioned that the company is seeing more customers shopping across its different store banners, which he attributed to growing traction of the Triangle loyalty program launched last year.

CANADIAN TIRE (CTC.A) CLOSE: $150.71, UP $6.55

Bills keep up solid start with win over Washington
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


Rookie Devin Singletary had 95 yards rushing, including a two-yard touchdown, and the Buffalo Bills are off to their best start since 1993 after a 24-9 win over Washington. Josh Allen had a touchdown pass and scored on a one-yard plunge for the Bills, who improved to 6-2 - a record built on victories over some of the NFL's worst teams. The Bills' wins have come against teams that entered this weekend with a combined record of 7-31. And their latest came against a team that's already fired its coach and was down to its third quarterback, with rookie first-round pick Dwayne Haskins making his first career start. Washington (1-8) matched its worst start since 1998. Singletary took advantage of his most playing time this season, appearing to displace Frank Gore as Buffalo's featured running back. With three catches for 45 yards, Singletary had a team-leading 140 yards from scrimmage.

Allen went 14 of 20 for 160 yards, including a six-yard touchdown pass to Cole Beasley. Haskins finished 15 of 22 for 144 yards passing and no turnovers while starting in place of Case Keenum, who is in the NFL's concussion protocol.

STEELERS 26, COLTS 24 PITTSBURGH Adam Vinatieri missed a goahead 43-yard field goal with 1 minutes 14 seconds remaining, helping the Pittsburgh Steelers escape with a victory. Vinatieri, whose 55-yard kick last week against Denver gave the Colts their third straight victory, pulled his attempt left of the uprights as the Colts (5-3) fell out of first place in the AFC South. Mason Rudolph threw for 191 yards with a touchdown and an interception for Pittsburgh, and Minkah Fitzpatrick returned an interception 96 yards for a score as the Steelers (4-4) won their third consecutive game.

TEXANS 26, JAGUARS 3 LONDON Deshaun Watson's most impressive throw went backward - a flip under pressure to running back Carlos Hyde, whose seven-yard gain set up Houston's first TD in a 26-3 runaway over the Jacksonville Jaguars. Hyde finished with 19 carries for 160 yards for the Texans (6-3), including a 58-yard run that looked headed for a touchdown until Jags safety Jarrod Wilson stripped the ball at the two.

Watson, meanwhile, finished 22 for 28 for 201 yards and a pair of one-yard touchdown throws, along with 37 yards running. He did it all with his left eye still swollen and red, a week after getting kicked in the face just before throwing the winning touchdown pass against the Raiders.

PANTHERS 30, TITANS 20 CHARLOTTE Christian McCaffrey had 166 yards from scrimmage and scored three touchdowns, and Carolina bounced back from an embarrassing defeat with a victory over Tennessee. Kyle Allen, who threw three interceptions in last week's 51-13 loss to the San Francisco 49ers, threw TD passes of seven yards to McCaffrey and 12 yards to Curtis Samuel to improve to 5-1 this season as Carolina's starting QB. Carolina's defence forced three turnovers and sacked Ryan Tannehill four times one week after allowing the 49ers to run for 232 yards and four touchdowns.

DOLPHINS 26, JETS 18 MIAMI GARDENS, FLA. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw three touchdown passes, two of them to rookie Preston Williams, and Miami got its first win of the season by beating former coach Adam Gase and New York. Fitzpatrick completed 24 of 36 passes for 288 yards and led the Dolphins to their highest point total of the season.

It was also Miami's fourth straight win over the Jets - the first three of those coming with Gase being the coach on the winning side. Not this time. The Jets went 11 plays on the first drive of the game for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead, and their highlights were few and far between the rest of the day. The Jets (1-7) fell below Miami (1-7) in the AFC East standings based on the head-to-head tiebreaker.

EAGLES 22, BEARS 14 PHILADELPHIA Carson Wentz threw for 239 yards and one touchdown, Jordan Howard ran for 82 yards and a score and Philadelphia held on for a victory over Chicago. The Bears had just nine yards in the first half and trailed 19-0 before David Montgomery had a pair of one-yard TD runs to make it a one-possession game in the fourth quarter. But Philadelphia put it away with 16-play, 69-yard drive capped by Jake Elliott's 38-yard field goal. Wentz completed all four of his third-down passes on the drive for first downs. The Eagles (5-4) have won two in a row after a pair of lopsided losses. The Bears (3-5) have lost four straight.

RAIDERS 31, LIONS 24 OAKLAND Derek Carr threw a nine-yard touchdown pass to rookie Hunter Renfrow with 2:04 remaining and Karl Joseph broke up a fourth-down pass in the end zone with three seconds left to give the Raiders a win over the Lions in their first game back in Oakland in seven weeks.

After surviving an odyssey that forced them to travel about 32,000 kilometres for four road games and a neutral site game in London, the Raiders (4-4) came back home for the first time since losing to Kansas City on Sept. 15. They put on quite a show for the fans, who are hoping the Raiders can put together a successful season before their planned move to Las Vegas next year. Carr's clutch pass to Renfrow gave Oakland the win to start the crucial three-game homestand.

SEAHAWKS 40, BUCCANEERS 34 (OT) SEATTLE Russell Wilson hit Jacob Hollister on a 10-yard touchdown on the opening possession of overtime, and Seattle rallied for a win over Tampa Bay. Wilson continued his brilliant season, tying his career high with five touchdown passes as Seattle (7-2) overcame Jason Myers's missed 40-yard field-goal attempt on the final play of regulation and never gave Tampa Bay a chance in the extra session. Wilson was 5 of 8 for 70 yards in overtime, capping the winning drive by hitting the reserve tight end across the middle for his second touchdown of the game. Wilson finished 29 of 43 for 378 yards. It was his third career game with five TD passes and capped Seattle's wild second half after trailing 21-7 midway through the second quarter.

CHARGERS 26, PACKERS 11 CARSON, CALIF. Melvin Gordon scored two touchdowns, Michael Badgley kicked four field goals and Los Angeles dominated Green Bay. Los Angeles (4-5) snapped a three-game home losing streak in what was easily its best game of the year. The offence moved the ball consistently in Shane Steichen's first game as co-ordinator, and the defence kept Aaron Rodgers and the Packers out of the end zone until midway through the fourth quarter. The Chargers rushed for a season-high 159 yards and averaged 4.2 yards per carry.

Philip Rivers completed 21 of 28 passes for 294 yards and Mike Williams had his first 100-yard receiving day in his three-year career with three receptions for 111 yards.

Hunter Henry had 84 yards on seven catches. Rodgers was 23 of 35 for 161 yards as the Packers (7-2) had their four-game winning streak snapped.

BRONCOS 24, BROWNS 19 DENVER Fourth-year quarterback Brandon Allen sparked Denver's stagnant offence, throwing for two touchdowns in his first career NFL start and leading Denver past stumbling Cleveland. In his first start in 1,402 days, Allen threw a 21-yard pass to Courtland Sutton and a 75-yarder to rookie tight end Noah Fant, and Phillip Lindsay ran nine times for 92 yards and a touchdown. The Broncos (3-6) didn't truncate the playbook with Joe Flacco (neck) on injured reserve, and Allen threw for 193 yards on 12-of-20 passing.

Denver's defence stifled quarterback Baker Mayfield all afternoon as the Browns fell to 2-6.

Associated Graphic

The Houston Texans' Carlos Hyde charges ahead against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.

KIRBY LEE/USA TODAY SPORTS

Where have all the female golf pros gone?
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Canadians Henderson and Sharp will continue to star on the LPGA Tour in 2020, but the supporting cast around them is disappearing
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By JEFF BROOKE
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S3


TORONTO -- C anada will have just two women playing regularly on the LPGA Tour in 2020, down from five this year, as many of the country's other top pros have stalled or regressed, fallen victim to injury or, in one case, quit the game altogether in a pique of despair.

The smaller contingent for 2020 is not a good sign for Canadian women's golf at the highest level but people in the game are hoping it is more of an aberration than a trend that should be of concern.

"It looks overwhelming but it's just one of those things," said Brittany Marchand, whose sophomore slump this year on the LPGA Tour relegated her to the second-tier Symetra Tour for 2020. "I don't know what the reason really was for everyone to kind of go off the rails at the same time."

Superstar Brooke Henderson and resurgent veteran Alena Sharp have easily kept their fulltime playing cards for 2020. Henderson, 22, has won twice this season and posted 10 other top-10 results, while 38-year-old Sharp sat in a respectable 54th place on the tour's money list heading into this week's Toto Japan Classic, the penultimate event of the 2019 season.

That is Sharp's highest finish since the peak season of her 15year LPGA career, in 2016, when she ended the season in the 41st spot.

With the two of them playing so well and garnering so much attention, especially nine-time LPGA winner Henderson, the casual fan may not notice the struggles on Canada's second rung of talent.

Marchand, Anne-Catherine Tanguay and Jaclyn Lee are among those coming off disappointing seasons.

All LPGA regulars in 2019 and in the prime years of their 20s, they finished outside the top 100 on the money list and lost their full-time cards.

"I think this year was ... a little bit of an outlier," Marchand continued. "I feel like every year with Canadian golf, with women's golf, we've been slowly improving. We've [been] getting more people on tour. There's just been a lot of aspects that just kind of happened all in the same year."

Marchand made two cuts in 17 starts as her efforts to improve her swing and distance backfired.

She had to return to the LPGA's qualifying school last month but didn't advance far enough in the three-stage marathon to win back her card.

Meanwhile, Tanguay and Lee were set back by injuries.

Tanguay, who played regularly on the LPGA Tour in 2016 and 2018 as well, announced recently she's taking next year off to recover from back and other ailments, tend to personal matters and "re-evaluate my priorities."

Tanguay's sabbatical also brings an end to her dream of representing Canada at the 2020 Olympics in Japan. Henderson and Sharp, Canada's two highestranked players, now are locks for the two spots available. They also wore the Maple Leaf at the 2016 Games in Rio.

Lee has a shorter (and more certain) recovery target. She shut down her rookie season in the summer with a wrist injury, but has resumed practising lightly and is expected to play in 2020.

As with Marchand, she's destined next year for the Symetra Tour, although she will be able to make five LPGA starts on a medical exemption.

"There are things you can control and things you can't. From our perspective, to lose any player, never mind a bunch of them in one season, is not ideal," said Tristan Mullally, head coach of the Canadian women's national amateur team and the "young pro squad," which comprises a handful of nascent professionals who show the most potential to reach or stay at golf's highest levels.

He pointed out most of the players who've had setbacks grew up together as amateurs and moved into the pro ranks at roughly the same time. "When there's a natural fall-off, it tends to also happen together."

To boost the things it can control, Golf Canada is hiring two assistant coaches for the amateur and young pro squads to fortify player development and better support team members during the playing season, Mullally said.

Statistics provided by the LPGA Tour show there's been an average of about eight Canadians a year with tour "membership" this century, with a high of 13 in 2000 and a low of five in 2015.

While not all members get to play full-time on the tour because of their status (all tours have a pecking order of priority to get into events), the numbers still clearly show a weaker representation.

The ebb in the women's game coincides with a surge on the men's side. Nine Canadians teed it up on the PGA Tour in the 2019 season, believed to be a record for the country, and eight have status for 2020.

Marchand, Tanguay and Lee were among the six women on the young pro squad this year.

As the three dropped off the LPGA Tour, no replacements stepped forward.

Former LPGA player Rebecca Lee-Bentham made a return to competitive golf after a hiatus of more than two years but she didn't win her card at Q school.

She's Symetra bound.

Former amateur star Maddie Szeryk, a dual U.S.-Canadian citizen who plays under the Canadian flag, launched her pro career this year and was the country's top performer on the Symetra Tour, reeling off four top-10 finishes and placing 19th on the money list.

Her success earned her a spot in the third stage of Q school, which wrapped up last Saturday in Florida, but she failed to secure one of the 45 LPGA cards for 2020 that were available. She'll have to return to the Symetra next year.

Maude-Aimée LeBlanc was Canada's other Symetra standout in 2019, finishing the season at 30th on the money list. But the veteran, at 30, has decided to pack it in rather than chase the LPGA Tour, where she played for much of this decade before losing her full-time playing privileges in 2018.

"Over time, I realized it wasn't my dream and it didn't make me happy even after good performances," LeBlanc wrote on her Facebook page in announcing her retirement. "I didn't like the person I was on the golf course and I've always wanted to do something more rewarding than hitting a little white ball."

LeBlanc's cri de coeur might symbolize the gloomy mood in some parts of Canadian women's golf these days, but hope always springs eternal heading into an off-season, with a fresh new year ahead.

The upside of players dropping down is that the feeder Symetra Tour will be well stocked next year with pros who've tasted the LPGA (including Marchand, Lee and Lee-Bentham) as well as promising up-and-comers such as Szeryk and rookie pro Selena Costabile. Their goal will be to place in the top 10 on the money list and earn a promotion to the LPGA Tour for 2021.

"It's still right there," Szeryk said of Canada's standing among golf countries. "There's still a lot of Canadians on tour, quite a few on Symetra. So you never know how many will make it to LPGA [after] next year. I think we'll encourage each other."

Associated Graphic

Brooke Henderson hits a shot during the final round of the Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA tournament last Sunday. The 22-year-old has won twice this season and posted 10 other top-10 results. However, the number of her fellow Canadians on the LPGA Tour will shrink next year.

PAUL LAKATOS/IMG/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Osborne-Paradis ready for a comeback after gruesome injury
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By LORI EWING
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B14


TORONTO -- Between the titanium plates and the 13 screws assembled in a mishmash array of angles, his X-ray looks like a pile of pickup sticks.

It's almost a year ago to the day that Manuel Osborne-Paradis crashed at Lake Louise, Alta., in his first training run for his opening race of the World Cup ski season.

Emotions were already frayed that week in the sport's tight-knit community. Canadian teammate Broderick Thompson had suffered a season-ending knee injury days earlier at nearby Nakiska. It was the oneyear anniversary of the death of French skier David Poisson on the same Alberta hill.

"So it was kind of a tough time ... the thoughts were there," Osborne-Paradis said.

Physically, the 35-year-old from North Vancouver, B.C., was feeling great. His equipment was responding well. But halfway down his run, Osborne-Paradis made a "silly mistake, a lackadaisical turn where I wasn't over the outside ski like I should have been."

He hit some soft snow, and went sailing head over heels into the safety nets, shattering his tibia and fibula so thoroughly there was concern he might lose his leg.

Certainly few people thought he'd ever ski again.

"I hadn't even stopped falling and I was thinking, 'Uh-oh, this is broken,' " Osborne-Paradis said.

He hadn't talked publicly much about that horrible day. His future had been so uncertain. But he is mounting a return, hoping to cap his career at the 2022 Beijing Olympics in what would be a remarkable comeback story.

Recounting that day, the skier said medical personnel were quick to reach the mangled 11-time World Cup medalist. One of them popped a fentanyl lollipop in his mouth for the pain. They rolled him on his side - his leg too crushed to transport him on his back - and airlifted him off the mountain to a Calgary hospital.

Canadian veteran Erik Guay was at the top of the hill readying for his run, and heard his teammate's screams over the coaches' radios. Guay announced his retirement later that week.

"We were all under a lot of pressure at that time, and it would be tough when you have teammates falling every week and hurting themselves," Osborne-Paradis said. "As real as it is in our sport that injuries are bound to happen, and it's more of a when not if, when they start happening every week, it's too close to reality."

Sitting in a posh hotel Tuesday in downtown Toronto where Alpine Canada was celebrating its 100th anniversary the next day, Osborne-Paradis scrolled through his phone. There were photos from his hospital bed with his wife, Lana. There were photos of the deep gash in his leg that had to be reopened several times to relieve compartment syndrome. And there's the X-ray of his shattered tibia and fibula. (Google "gruesome broken leg X-rays" and the Canadian skier's would be among the worst).

His tibial fracture as a 5 out of 6 on the Schatzker scale of severity. A 6 usually occurs in a fatality, Osborne-Paradis said - such as when the engine block of a car is driven up through the leg.

He had two major surgeries and seven minor ones over 12 days. His bones are patched together by plates, 13 screws and bone cement. Doctors couldn't save the tibia, replacing it with a cadaver's hip bone.

His case has become well known among Calgary's medical community.

"I was walking around the golf course the other day and this woman was walking her dog, and said 'Are you Manny? I'm a doctor in Calgary, I've heard about your leg, and oh my God, it was nasty,' " he said.

It wasn't a stretch that Osborne-Paradis was told he'd never ski again.

"Yeah, with that attitude you're never going to ski again," he said. "But the only reason I've stood on the podium or won races is because you're defying odds. If you just looked at the odds, nobody would ever join sports, and so I feel like this is just another bump in the road.

"My team and my sponsors and myself, we all had a goal of making it to the next Olympics, and at this point, there's just no counting that out. There's a process in place to get back. It's possible. I was skiing at a high level, and if I can get back to 95 per cent or 100 per cent, there's no doubt in my mind and my team's mind that I can stand on the podium again."

There have certainly been setbacks in his recovery. He pushed it too hard in the gym during his rehabilitation, breaking all but four of the screws. Doctors opted against another surgery, so there those screws remain. It knocked him back in his recovery more than two months.

He still hasn't been cleared to ski, but predicts he'll be back on the snow sometime this winter. He plans to race again next season.

He knows there'll be fear when he's crouched in the start hut for that first run when he returns. But fear is a big part of any ski racer's career.

"You're always prepared to be injured with skiing," Osborne-Paradis said. "You learn to conquer those demons and every race there's something that scares you. That's what the training is for ... it's normalizing the extremes that we do."

Along with his rehab, the world championship bronze medalist is completing a sport management program at Harvard.

His daughter, Sloane, turns 3 later this month, and Lana, a personal trainer who has a women's health online group - http://www.blastfitness.ca - is pregnant with their second child.

If his comeback is derailed, OsborneParadis said he'll leave the sport fulfilled, all of his childhood dreams reached.

"I'm not out there to prove that I need to be better, I think that I've achieved this high level of skiing and this amazing career that I've been humbled to experience that's just through sheer hard work, determination and mental tenacity, and this is just another battle to deal with."

Associated Graphic

After suffering a severe leg injury last year, skier Manuel Osborne-Paradis, seen in Toronto on Tuesday, is hoping to cap his career at the 2022 Olympics. While he hasn't been cleared to ski, he predicts he'll be back on the snow this winter.

NATHAN DENETTE/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Texans-Ravens may be first of many Watson-Jackson duels
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QBs are set to face off in match of division leaders in Baltimore on Sunday
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By SCHUYLER DIXON
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16


This is the first of what could be many meetings between two dynamic young AFC quarterbacks when Deshaun Watson and the Houston Texans visit Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

It might not even be the only one this season.

Watson was the 12th overall pick of the 2017 draft after leading Clemson to a national championship, Jackson the disappointed final choice of the first round a year later out of Louisville.

It took the Texans one game to commit to Watson as the starter when he was a rookie. The Ravens needed a little longer last year to decide Jackson was more than just the heir apparent to Joe Flacco, the 11-year starter who was benched in Week 11.

Watson and Jackson go into their meeting at the helm of division leaders, the Texans (6-3) in front in the AFC South and the Ravens (7-2) atop the AFC North.

If the playoffs started this week, Houston would be a wildcard win away from another trip to Baltimore. The Ravens, who opened as 51/2-point favourites, are going to hang on to that firstround bye at least another week.

Pick: Baltimore, 31-30.

Knockout pool: The AP prognostication crew has been knocked out thanks to New Orleans' loss to Atlanta. If we were still in the game, our pick would be Carolina.

NO. 13 PITTSBURGH (PLUS 3) AT NO. 23 CLEVELAND The Steelers have forced 26 turnovers, second to New England.

The Browns are tied for fifth with the most turnovers. Look for the Pittsburgh defence to continue the team's recovery from a 1-4 start.

Upset special: Pittsburgh, 17-13 NO. 26 DENVER (PLUS 10 1 / 2) AT NO. 7 MINNESOTA The Vikings are coming off perhaps their best win of the season at the Cowboys. But Broncos coach Vic Fangio gave the Minnesota offence fits twice last season as Chicago's defensive co-ordinator. This game may be closer than people think.

Pick: Minnesota, 16-9 NO. 27 ATLANTA (PLUS 6) AT NO. 15 CAROLINA Knowing Cam Newton is now out for at least the rest of the regular season with a foot injury, Kyle Allen threw for a careerhigh 307 yards in the snow in a loss at Green Bay. Two straight division wins is a tall task after the Falcons' shocker over the Saints.

Pick: Carolina, 27-17 NO. 11 BUFFALO (MINUS 6) AT NO. 28 MIAMI Ryan Fitzpatrick is doing his best to keep the Dolphins competitive (two straight wins), and he gets to face one of his seven former teams. He played more games for the Bills than any team. Look for a bounce-back from Buffalo in its playoff pursuit.

Best bet: Buffalo, 28-7 NO. 21 JACKSONVILLE (PLUS 3 1 / 2) AT INDIANAPOLIS Nick Foles will be the starter now that rookie Gardner Minshew has come back to earth a bit. This game has implications in the jumbled AFC wild-card race. If Jacoby Brissett returns from a knee injury, that should be enough for the Colts in a low-scoring game.

Pick: Indianapolis, 14-12 NO. 6 NEW ORLEANS (MINUS 3 1 / 2) AT NO. 25 TAMPA BAY Expect a bounce-back from Drew Brees and the Saints after the loss to the Falcons. A Tampa Bay defence that struggles to defend the pass could be the perfect antidote.

Pick: New Orleans, 31-13 NO. 29 N.Y. JETS (PLUS 1) AT 31 WASHINGTON Will the Jets defence give up four touchdown passes to a rookie quarterback for the second week in a row? Probably not, since Washington didn't go with Dwayne Haskins as early as the Giants turned to Daniel Jones.

Which team will be thinking more about the draft? Let's go with the Jets on that.

Pick: Washington, 21-20 NO. 32 CINCINNATI (PLUS 10) AT NO. 16 OAKLAND The Raiders' last-place schedule delivers again with the winless Bengals. Expect the Raiders to take advantage again to continue an unexpected surge to playoff contention.

Pick: Oakland, 28-14 NO. 2 NEW ENGLAND (MINUS 3 1 / 2) AT NO. 12 PHILADELPHIA The first meeting of these teams since the Eagles won the 2018 Super Bowl is also the Patriots' return from their open week after their first loss, to Baltimore. Both teams had two weeks to prepare, just like the last time they played.

Pick: New England, 23-16 NO. 10 DALLAS (OFF) AT NO. 22 DETROIT Ezekiel Elliott faces one of the NFL's worst run defences a week after getting bottled up by the Vikings. The Cowboys need to bounce back against another NFC North opponent, otherwise the outlook gets pretty dim for a team that started the season with high expectations. The Lions might be without Matthew Stafford again.

Pick: Dallas, 30-18 NO. 24 ARIZONA (PLUS 13 1 / 2) AT SAN FRANCISCO This line must be based more on the first three quarters of the first meeting just two weeks ago. That was before Kyler Murray brought the Cardinals back in a 28-25 loss, keyed by an 88-yard touchdown pass. The 49ers should bounce back from their first loss, but not enough to satisfy the oddsmakers.

Pick: San Francisco, 23-19 NO. 19 CHICAGO (PLUS 8 1 / 2) AT NO. 14 L.A. RAMS The Bears beat the Rams when Sean McVay's team was healthy last year in Chicago. So it stands to reason that Chicago can do it again with L.A. lacking rhythm and fighting injuries offensively.

Upset special: Chicago, 20-17 NO. 9 KANSAS CITY (MINUS 4) VS. NO. 20 LA CHARGERS AT MEXICO CITY It's the second game back for Patrick Mahomes coming off his knee injury, and the Chiefs are suddenly threatened by Oakland in the AFC West. This could be the last chance for the Chargers to stay in the division race, but that desperation won't be enough.

Pick: Kansas City, 28-23 2019 RECORD Last Week: 5-8 against spread, 4-9 straight up.

Season Totals: 78-68-1 against spread, 89-57-1 straight up.

Best Bet: 8-2 against spread, 8-2 straight up.

Upset special: 6-4 against spread, 6-4 straight up.

Associated Graphic

Deshaun Watson of the Houston Texans jumps over Ronnie Harrison of the Jacksonville Jaguars in London on Nov. 3. Watson was the 12th overall pick of the 2017 draft.

JACK THOMAS/GETTY IMAGES

TFC seeks second scorer after MLS Cup loss
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Team president says coming transfer window is an opportunity to find a player that will complement Altidore
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By NEIL DAVIDSON
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


SEATTLE -- Toronto FC returned home to a snowstorm Monday, another unwelcome dose of reality after a painful 3-1 MLS Cup final defeat in Seattle.

The playing season is over. The planning begins.

Team president Bill Manning offered up one major target in a question-and-answer session with season ticket-holders on Oct. 19, the eve of Toronto's opening playoff win over D.C. United.

After reeling off the club's depth in midfield, Manning said there was more roster work to be done.

"We still do miss that second goal scorer. And that's something we're going to address in this winter [transfer] window," he said.

"That's why I say we're not complete yet. I do think we still need one more window to further strengthen the team."

Citing the "cruel" penalty shootout loss to the Montreal Impact in the Canadian Championship final in September, Manning then returned to the issue of finding another scoring option to complement striker Jozy Altidore.

"That's one of the things we're finding, is when the big guy [Altidore] doesn't score, we're in trouble, right," he said.

"We had that combination with Sebastian [Giovinco] and Jozy in the past, so that is something we're going to look at this off-season."

Altidore started the second leg of the Canadian Championship at BMO Field, a 1-0 win that led to a penalty shootout that did not go Toronto's way.

With Altidore sidelined by injury during the first three games of the playoffs, TFC survived by pushing Alejandro Pozuelo farther up front. The Spanish playmaker roved around the field, pulling defenders out of their comfort zone while creating space for others.

Pozuelo enjoys playing the position because of the freedom it affords him, as opposed to being stationed on the wing.

It worked for three games, but not in the final. Pozuelo cut a frustrated figure in Seattle, often dropping back deeper in a bid to get the ball. And he started taking on one, two, three defenders with success - until another stopped him.

Coach Greg Vanney pointed to his team trying to do too much after going behind 1-0 in the 57th minute.

"Too much spinning around in midfield on the ball and not enough ball circulation."

Altidore came on as a substitute Sunday, scoring a consolation goal in stoppage time.

Pozuelo is a special player, but playing him consistently up front is like asking Gordon Ramsay to cook and wait tables. It's too much.

TFC did not have the guns needed in waiting. Patrick Mullins proved to be a hard-nosed reserve forward, but not the alternative sniper needed.

With 57 goals during the regular season, Toronto ranked fifth in the league at 1.68 goals a game.

It had an impressive 16 players score in the league, but Pozuelo (12), Altidore (11), Nick DeLeon (6) and Jonathan Osorio (five) accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the offence.

Scoring by committee is asking a lot when it comes to big games. Witness Sunday.

"By and large, they executed many of their chances and that was the difference," Vanney said of Seattle.

Despite having just 35 per cent of the possession, Seattle managed six shots on target, one more than Toronto.

"It's soccer. You work with what you have and, unfortunately, Jozy got injured just before the playoffs," Vanney said.

"But I thought the rest of the group really stepped up. We looked at different ways to gameplan to try to be dangerous over the course of this playoffs. ... It just meant we evolved. We became something different."

General manager Ali Curtis has more on his to-do list as he looks to put his own stamp on a roster he inherited in January - "with the house on fire" in Vanney's words - given a spate of sudden roster changes.

With Pozuelo and Altidore locked up as designated players, the focus switches to captain Michael Bradley, who currently is the third DP on an expiring contract.

One option is use targeted allocation money (TAM) to re-sign Bradley, opening up a DP spot for a forward - preferably young, but not so young to be a project.

Teams can use TAM to convert a designated player to a non-DP.

The maximum current salary for a TAM player is US$1.5-million - a significant drop from Bradley's US$6.5-million this season (second highest in the league).

The 32-year-old Bradley has always been committed to Toronto, both the team and city. And having already earned US$39million here, he may well be willing to do what's needed to keep the train rolling.

There are other numbers to address.

Toronto spent more than US$2-million this season on five centre backs: Omar Gonzalez (US$1,193,935, although he arrived mid-season), Chris Mavinga (US$663,333), Laurent Ciman (US$435,624), Drew Moor (US$375,000) and Eriq Zavaleta (US$296,962).

And once again, the team finds itself paying its backup goalkeeper more than the starter, with former No. 1 Alex Bono earning US$382,000 to Quentin Westberg's US$115,254.

Fullback Richie Laryea has earned a raise from the league minimum of US$56,250.

Vanney probably merits a raise, too, given the roller-coaster year that started with the departure of GM Tim Bezbatchenko, Giovinco, Victor Vazquez and Gregory van der Wiel. Replacements took time.

"Our group has battled," he said.

"It's been a season, in some ways, that's felt like two or three seasons all in one."

Associated Graphic

Toronto FC players Chris Mavinga, left, and Tsubasa Endoh react to their loss to the Seattle Sounders in the MLS Cup final on Sunday. With 57 goals during the regular season, Toronto ranked fifth in the league at 1.68 goals a game.

JONATHAN HAYWARD/ THE CANADIAN PRESS

Struggling Redblacks part ways with Campbell
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Head coach denies his relationship with GM factored into the shocking decision
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By LISA WALLACE
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


OTTAWA -- Head coach Rick Campbell has parted ways with the Ottawa Redblacks amid the fallout of a dismal season, and what appears to be a deteriorating relationship with general manager Marcel Desjardins.

The Redblacks announced Monday morning that Campbell had decided to leave with CFL club with one year remaining on his contract.

Ottawa finished last in the CFL standings this season, with an overall 3-15 record after losing numerous players to free agency.

The team also dealt with a number of injuries, while other players didn't live up to the potential expected from management.

"My best way to phrase it is I didn't think the status quo was best for the Redblacks going forward, and decisions were made from there," Campbell said of his departure.

"I really didn't like it when people left here with a bad taste in their mouth," he added. "The list was getting a little long and ... I'll leave it at that."

Desjardins said he was caught off guard by Campbell's decision.

"[Campbell] did not think that our relationship was good enough for him to want to continue in this arrangement," Desjardins said Monday. "That's his opinion. The relationship has been the same since Day 1, but obviously the stress of this season must have played a factor in that.

"At the end of the day, I take complete responsibility for everything, but I also know that all of the success we've had in the past is a group effort, so as much as I am the person to answer for this at the end of the day, there are a lot of things that happened." Campbell denied that a personality conflict with Desjardins factored into his decision.

"I do not dislike Marcel," Campbell said. "It's not about that. Sometimes relationships have to jive and to be able to communicate well, and sometimes when you don't have that, it makes things tougher. I have to put it on me, too, because I have to be a better communicator."

Campbell, who was hired by the Redblacks on Dec. 6, 2013, leaves his first head coaching position with a 44-62-2. The only coach in club history led the Redblacks to the Grey Cup game in three of the past four seasons, winning the title in 2016.

Players had often expressed how much they liked playing for Campbell, and news of his departure came as a shock.

"I'm very, very surprised," said veteran receiver Brad Sinopoli, who recently signed a two-year contract extension. "I loved playing for Rick. Days like this are a tough part of the business. This was not what I wanted to wake up to."

The decision didn't come easily to Campbell, who embraced being part of the Redblacks community.

"I know it feels like the right thing," Campbell said. "I wanted to be really sure because it's been a long year with a lot of losing that I wasn't being rash or overly emotional making a poor decision. It wasn't like a power play or anything like that. It was just making sure I'm completely in and everybody pulling in the same direction and making it a fun, great place to work, and for me that was slipping, but that's on me."

The 48-year-old choked back tears as he spoke of the players and the special moments he enjoyed as head coach, most notably the Grey Cup parade in 2016.

"I'd say I'm sorry, but I'm not sorry, I'm sad."

Campbell will be paid the final year of his contract, but will also be free to pursue other opportunities.

Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group chief executive officer Mark Goudie says Campbell informed the team of his intentions Saturday, and Goudie asked his coach to take 24 hours to contemplate his decision, At no time did Campbell give Goudie the ultimatum that it was him or the GM.

"If you know Rick, he's not that dude," Goudie said. "We had a conversation that was more about Rick, and at the end of the day what he could and couldn't do."

Desjardins said the priority is to hire a new head coach before Christmas. He said he will be looking for someone with CFL experience, but not necessarily head coaching experience.

The remainder of the Redblacks coaching staff is under contract until December, but have been told future jobs will be contingent on the new head coach.

With Desjardins in the final year of his contract, it may be more difficult to attract a new head coach, who may feel job security could be threatened.

"I understand it's a little bit unorthodox, but that's just the road we're going to go right now," Goudie said. "I think as the blueprint starts emerging for next year, we'll figure out what that looks like. We have a stable organization so I can participate in the process from giving somebody comfort in what our organization is all about."

In addition to a new head coach, the Redblacks will look to add an offensive co-ordinator to its staff as they chose not to replace Jaime Elizondo after he left the team in April to pursue other opportunities.

Desjardins said the team will also look to bring in another quarterback and would likely be more active in the coming freeagent market.

A quarterback will not be signed until a new head coach is in place, as Desjardins wants the coach to have input on the signing.

Associated Graphic

Former Redblacks coach Rick Campbell, seen on the sidelines during a game with the BC Lions last month, was hired in 2013 and led the team to several Grey Cup games before quitting.

DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

NHL players pay tribute to Cherry, but stop short of defending his diatribe
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By MARTY KLINKENBERG
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


TORONTO -- Like many pro hockey players, Tyson Barrie grew up watching Don Cherry ruminate, sometimes on matters he should have left alone, on Hockey Night in Canada. As he sat at his dressing stall on Tuesday, the Maple Leafs defenceman mulled the long-time broadcaster's dismissal by Rogers Sportsnet.

"It is unfortunate to see him go out like this," Barrie said. "Don is a legend, and has been such a big part of hockey.

"In the age we are in, when you say something [publicly], it is out there for the world to see, and that generates a lot of opinions."

On Saturday night, the combative cohost of Coach's Corner singled out Toronto-area immigrants for not wearing poppies during a tribute to war veterans.

"You people that come here, you love our way of life, you love our milk and honey, at least you can pay a couple of bucks for poppies or something like that," the 85-year-old Cherry said while jabbing one finger at the camera.

"These guys pay for the way of life you enjoy. [They] paid the biggest price."

The furor triggered by his comments led Cherry to be fired on Remembrance Day. There is a terrible irony in that, because he has always fiercely supported the military. His eyes often teared up when he talked about his love for soldiers on the air.

Cherry has since described his words as not being racial or bigoted but patriotic and respectful.

His employer, Sportsnet, the NHL and the CBC, for whom he worked across four decades, disagreed.

When asked to apologize by Sportsnet president Bart Yabsley, as his partner on the program Ron MacLean had on Sunday, the pugnacious former National Hockey League coach refused.

That caused him to be dropped from a broadcast he first joined for the 1980 Stanley Cup playoffs.

On the day after, reverberations were felt around the league.

In Montreal, Max Domi expressed admiration for Cherry, who has always operated with controversy in his wake. Over the years, among other things, he sideswiped francophones and blasted European players, called Liberals pinkos and made fun of climate-change believers.

"I love Don Cherry," said Domi, who has known him all of his life.

His dad, Tie, was a bare-knuckles brawler, the hardscrabble type of tough guy Cherry held in the highest esteem. "What he's done for this sport is remarkable. I will always look up to him."

As of Tuesday, nearly 200,000 people had signed a handful of different petitions being circulated that demand Cherry be reinstated. Fans called him a symbol of the working class, and railed at Sportsnet for caving to the politically correct. Others lauded the network for making a decision they say was long overdue. The Canadian Broadcasting Standards Council was so overloaded with complaints about his diatribe that it exceeded the organization's capacity to keep track of them.

In a series of television interviews on Tuesday night, Cherry said he would not apologize for what he said, but would choose different words.

On a busy practice day for the Maple Leafs, Cherry's departure garnered as much attention as Mitch Marner's injured ankle, Zach Hyman's imminent return and the arrival of rookie goalie Kasimir Kaskisuo.

Hyman, who underwent knee surgery during the off-season, will rejoin the team when it plays the Islanders in New York on Wednesday night. Kaskisuo was called up from the American Hockey League's Toronto Marlies after Michael Hutchinson, the backup to Frederik Andersen, was waived on Monday.

Hyman, 27, recalled how excited he was the first time Cherry ever mentioned his name on television.

"It was awesome," Hyman said at the team's practice rink in the Toronto suburb of Etobicoke. "He has been around hockey forever, but you can't say stuff today like he did. You've got to be accepting of everyone.

"'Hockey Is For Everyone' is one of our slogans in the NHL, and it's really true. For him to say that sort of stuff is unacceptable."

John Tavares, the Maple Leafs captain, grew up in Toronto and recalls seeing Cherry stand behind the glass when he played in minor hockey tournaments.

"I think it is disappointing on many fronts, the comments, but certainly the way his tenure ended," Tavares said. "There was so many good things that he did through his commitment to the game. I think everybody would wish something like this never happened."

Jason Spezza, who at 36 is the oldest member of the team, finds it sad.

"I'm not one to weigh into it too much, but what makes Canada great is the equality we have and how diverse our culture is," Spezza said. "You don't like anything that is discriminatory and offends anyone, but Don is an icon. You don't like to see things end that way."

Head coach Mike Babcock said he understands why people were offended.

"I know when you are in a situation like I am you have to be mindful of how great the game is and what it is all about," he said. "I am sure it must be tough on him and his family, but having said that, certain things are right."

Back at his dressing stall, Barrie said he believes Cherry's comments may have been misunderstood.

"He is 85 years old," Barrie said.

"I don't think he meant it the way it has been taken. At the end of the day, though, we all are responsible for our actions."

Associated Graphic

Hockey commentator Don Cherry was dropped by Sportsnet on Monday after he refused to apologize for his comments about immigrants and poppies.

MARK BLINCH/REUTERS

Leafs get last laugh in tight match against Golden Knights
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Tavares scores overtime winner in a 2-1 victory for Toronto that was both exhilarating and frustrating
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By MARTY KLINKENBERG
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B17


TORONTO -- Winter's first blush arrived in Toronto on Thursday. Residents woke up to fresh snow. Coats came out of the closet.

Scarves, too. Real hockey weather. Finally.

Perhaps the nip in the air would prompt a spring in the step of the Maple Leafs. Not so much.

As games go, the skirmish at Scotiabank Arena was entertaining and tightly played. With the exception of one pummelling, Toronto has elevated its play against better opponents. But it still struggles to beat them. They won 2-1 in overtime on a goal by John Tavares in a victory that was both exhilarating and frustrating.

The Vegas Golden Knights are nettlesome to everyone. They are fast and relentless. They dig for pucks and rarely lose battles. With them, there is no room for a breather.

They are not an easy mark, but they were also not at their strongest last night.

They came to town bearing a gift. They left Marc-André Fleury, their spectacular goalie, on the bench. It is only the third time he has sat one out this season.

His backup, Malcolm Subban, started instead. He had yet to win a game this year. He is P.K.'s younger brother, and this is their hometown. It was the first time he had played an NHL game in Toronto.

Undoubtedly, he was inspired, but he should have been beatable. It should have been relatively easy. Instead, Malcolm, who entered the night with a 4.32 goalsagainst average, put on a show. He had 37 saves.

Max Pacioretty flipped a puck past Frederik Andersen to break a goalless tie with 15:52 left in the third period. Auston Matthews tied it with a wrist shot four minutes later. He scored on a power play, which has turned into an inexplicable struggle for a team that brims with so much talent.

Matthews's 13th goal of the season came on Toronto's sixth man-advantage of the evening. It was so lousy on the first five chances that boos swelled within the partisan faithful.

The power-play woes are moving into epic territory. The Maple Leafs entered the game 9 for 52. After going 0 for 3 in Tuesday's 3-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings, they were 2 for their last 26. They had scored only twice with one more man on the ice in nine games.

"Any way you look at it, they haven't been good enough," head coach Mike Babcock said Wednesday after practice.

After they flubbed their first two opportunities, their exasperated radio playby-play man Joe Bowen, told listeners: "That is nothing new."

The goalies, Subban especially, were the story of the night. Both were marvellous. Neither deserved to lose. Andersen finished with 37 saves, including three in the last five seconds of regulation. But he has been playing so well that is not a surprise. That Subban had 35 is.

He was up to the task right from the start. He was tested early when Nicolas Hague, the Golden Knights' 6-foot-6 defeceman, was flagged for interference 27 seconds into the game.

With the Maple Leafs on the power play, Subban gloved shots by Auston Matthews and Alexander Kerfoot in rapid succession, and deflected another by Tyson Barrie. A Paul Stastny hooking penalty gave Toronto another man advantage with 6:12 left before intermission. Subban continued to do what he had until that point, stopping two more shots by Matthews and batting away a wrist shot by Mitch Marner.

The Leafs peppered him with 13 shots in the first 20 minutes without success.

This is third season with Vegas after being claimed off waivers from the Boston Bruins. He likely turned in the best performance of his career in his family's back yard.

With the win, Babcock became the eighth coach in NHL history with 700 victories. He is 700-413-163 with 19 ties in 17 seasons for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, Detroit Red Wings and Maple Leafs.

We seem to be getting some traction, the guys seem to be getting to know each other better and there seems to be more juice in our room," he said Wednesday. "All of that is positive."

"What's not?

"We are still trying to figure out our group," he said.

"We are still a work in progress to say the least.

"The biggest thing is we have to play harder for longer every night."

They did it long enough to beat the Golden Knights. They are 9-5-3 heading into a game against Philadelphia on Saturday in Toronto. They need a lopsided win.

Associated Graphic

Dmytro Timashov of the Toronto Maple Leafs draws a penalty on Shea Theodore of the Vegas Golden Knights at Scotiabank Arena on Thursday.

CLAUS ANDERSEN/GETTY IMAGES

Siakam goes on tear as Raps rout Pistons
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Cameroonian star earns rest in fourth quarter after putting up 30 points in first three
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By RACHEL BRADY
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Thursday, October 31, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- Dwane Casey's Detroit Pistons beat the Raptors in all three of their meetings last season. The former Raptors coach did not leave Toronto with any such satisfaction on Wednesday night - not with Pascal Siakam playing like an all-star.

The Raps clobbered Casey's Pistons 125-113, led by 30 points from Siakam. It was the Cameroonian star's third time over the 30-point threshold in a Toronto season just five games old.

He was able to pull it off this time and rest the entire fourth quarter.

Kyle Lowry added 20, Serge Ibaka and Norman Powell had 19 as the reigning NBA champs improved to 4-1. Fred VanVleet had a 13-point, 11-assist double-double, while OG Anunoby had a 13point night with eight boards.

Back inside Toronto's Scotiabank Arena, where he had become the coach with the most wins in Raptors history during his seven seasons in charge, Casey wanted to set some things straight.

"I'll say this out front, I'm so proud of the team from last year, how they came out and won the championship. Seeing the banner up there is beautiful for the team, for the organization, for the country," Casey said after his Pistons held morning shootaround, glancing up at the rafters where the Raps new championship banner hangs.

Casey built the Raps into a perennial playoff team between 2011 and 2018, shaped its winning culture and had a hand in developing then-young but nowthriving Raptors such as Siakam - who started 38 games for him in his rookie year. That list also includes VanVleet, Anunoby and Powell. Casey took the Raps to a franchise-record 59 victories in the 2017-18 campaign, and was chosen the NBA's coach of the year. But he was fired after his Raps were once again ousted in the playoffs by the Cleveland Cavaliers. He insisted during this visit that he is not bitter.

"It irks me when I read the narrative that Dwane is salty," added the 62-year-old coach, holding court with the Toronto media he got to known well during his time in Canada. "I'm happy for everybody who's here, I'm happy for the organization. Masai and I talked this summer, Larry Tanenbaum and I, we text back and forth with each other after it was over with, George Cope. So there's no animosity in my heart whatsoever, I can sleep at night.

"There's no saltiness, no pepper, no hot sauce."

Casey said he texted Lowry right after the Raps finished off the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 - and the all-star point guard texted him right back. He said he congratulated Siakam and VanVleet in person when he saw them around at NBA summer workouts. As for the man who fired him - Raptors president Masai Ujiri - Casey said "we're good."

The former Raps coach got a standing ovation from the Toronto fans following a video tribute in the first quarter - one of the many the Raps are doing this season to recognize key figures in the franchise's 25 years.

Casey led last year's Pistons to a third-place finish in the Eastern Conference, and their first playoff appearance since the 2015-16 season. He's eager to prove he can strengthen the Pistons as he did for the Raptors.

"That's exactly why I've got a long-term contract, to do exactly what we were doing here," Casey said. "We're not there yet. Lots of work to do."

Casey's Pistons, 2-3, were without two of their starters on Wednesday - Reggie Jackson (lower back) and superstar Blake Griffin (hamstring).

Siakam was impressive throughout, but his 19-point third quarter was all-star-like.

Toronto's rising superstar from Cameroon exploded for a huge third quarter, scoring on everything from three-pointers to short jumpers and remarkably athletic driving layups, making 7-foot-1 Piston Thon Maker look a little lost.

With the game well in hand, the Raps were able to get some minutes for little-used Chris Boucher, Matt Thomas and Terence Davis in the fourth. Toronto coach Nick Nurse continues to experiment with ways to get work for the youngsters on his bench.

There was no postgame handshake for the two coaches, but Nurse and Casey waved at one another from their respective ends of the floor this time before leaving the floor.

The Raps' next game is Saturday in Milwaukee against the Bucks.

Associated Graphic

Raptors forward OG Anunoby scores over Detroit Pistons centre Andre Drummond and guard Tony Snell in Toronto on Wednesday. Anunoby had a 13-point night with eight boards.

FRANK GUNN/ THE CANADIAN PRESS

Bombers barrage Stamps to reach West final
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By DONNA SPENCER
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


CALGARY -- The Winnipeg Blue Bombers advanced to the CFL's West Division final with a 35-14 win over the Calgary Stampeders in Sunday's semi-final.

The Blue Bombers travel to Regina to face the Saskatchewan Roughriders in next Sunday's West final.

The victor there represents the West in the Grey Cup in Calgary on Nov. 24.

Nic Demski, Darvin Adams and Chris Streveler scored touchdowns, and Justin Medlock kicked four field goals for Winnipeg.

Reggie Begelton scored two touchdowns for the host Stampeders, who won last year's Grey Cup, but will not defend their title on home turf this year.

Winnipeg hasn't won the CFL's championship trophy since 1990.

The Blue Bombers (11-7) finished third in the West Division behind the Roughriders (13-5) and Stampeders (12-6).

The Esks take on the Hamilton TigerCats in next Sunday's East final.

Bombers starting quarterback Zach Collaros completed 11 of 21 pass attempts for 193 yards and one touchdown pass.

A Roughrider to start the season, Collaros was traded twice and arrived in Winnipeg on Oct. 9 through the Toronto Argonauts.

Streveler had taken over as Winnipeg's starter when Matt Nichols went down with a shoulder injury in August.

An ankle injury sidelined Streveler in the regular-season finale, but he returned Sunday to lead the Bombers in rushing yards with 82 yards.

Stampeder quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell was without his favourite target - injured receiver Eric Rogers - and struggled completing just 12 of 28 pass attempts for 116 yards. Mitchell was intercepted three times.

Winnipeg faced Calgary in a third straight game Sunday. The Bombers had a bye week after splitting 1-1 with the Stampeders to cap their regular season.

Trailing 14-8 at halftime, the Bombers scored 27 unanswered points in the second half in front of an announced 24,278 at a chilly McMahon Stadium.

Morning snowfall halted and gave way to partly cloudy skies at kickoff with a temperature of minus-14.

Mitchell was intercepted on consecutive drives in the fourth quarter by Nick Taylor and Mercy Maston, respectively.

Calgary turned the ball over on downs with just more than three minutes remaining in the game.

Streveler scored a 24-yard rushing touchdown at 8:35. Medlock's 42-yard field goal at 7:23 hit the right upright, but made it through for the three points.

Collaros and Adams combined on a 71yard touchdown catch and run at 3:18. Medlock booted a 42-yard field goal at 2:29.

Demski's 33-yard rushing touchdown at 10:35 of the third capped a seven-play, 82yard drive. Winnipeg led for the first time in the game - 15-14 - on Medlock's convert.

Jerome Lorenzo's 53-yard punt return had Calgary starting in Winnipeg territory late in the first half. Mitchell and Begelton's combined on a 19-yard catch and run for a 14-5 lead.

But the Bombers trailed by a touchdown at the half after Medlock's 52-yard field goal.

Under pressure in the end zone early in the second quarter, Mitchell was called for intentional grounding when he threw the ball away.

Calgary conceding the two-point safety preceded Medlock's 34-yard field goal for the Bombers to trail 7-5.

Winnipeg's 47-yard pass interference penalty gave the Stampeders the ball at the four-yard line on Calgary's opening drive of the game.

MCMASTER STUNS WESTERN TO WIN YATES CUP AS OUA CHAMPIONS

Matt Krason scored two touchdowns as the McMaster Marauders upset Western 29-15 in London on Saturday to win the Yates Cup and hand the Mustangs their first loss since the 2018 Vanier Cup championship.

Western, the top-seeded team that had gone 8-0 through the Ontario University Athletics regular season, led 10-0 after one quarter before McMaster stormed back.

Saturday's win was McMaster's eighth at the Yates Cup, but the first since 2014.

McMaster will play the Calgary Dinos in the Mitchell Bowl next week, with a chance to move on to the national championship.

The Dinos advanced with a 29-4 win over the Saskatchewan Huskies in the Hardy Cup in Calgary.

Out east, Dale Wright had three rushing touchdowns to lead the Acadia Axemen over the Bishop's Gaiters 31-1 in the Loney Bowl in Wolfville, N.S. Acadia will face the Montreal Carabins in next week's Uteck Bowl.

Associated Graphic

Winnipeg Blue Bomber Janarion Grant evades tackles by Calgary Stampeders during the CFL's West Division semi-final on Sunday. The Bombers won the game 35-14, and will head to Regina to face the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

JEFF MCINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS

NHLers bond over fantasy football fandom
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By JOSHUA CLIPPERTON
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- Morgan Rielly says the trade offers usually start flying as soon as the Maple Leafs board their bus or plane.

The proposals, however, have nothing to do with hockey.

Instead, the Toronto defenceman and his teammates will throw out potential swaps in their fantasy football league to see if there are any takers.

"It's almost automatic to talk trade to the guy in the seat in front of you," said Rielly, whose eyes lit up when a recent conversation turned to fantasy sports.

"Then they'll turn around and be like, 'Are you joking?' There's a lot of banter."

For the uninitiated, fantasy sports involves competitors drafting players from professional leagues - in this case, the NFL - to go up against friends, coworkers or even strangers.

And in the case of many NHLers, their teammates.

Leagues usually range anywhere from eight to 12 teams, with everyone paying an entry fee and the winner taking the majority of the pot at season's end.

"It's cool to make trades and try to fleece guys a little bit," said Rielly, the Leafs' most recent fantasy football champion. "It definitely gets competitive. In a weird way, it brings guys together."

Fantasy football is big across NHL locker rooms as players jockey for year-end bragging rights. It's also a way to bond and unplug from the pressures of their day jobs.

"A lot of fun," Ottawa Senators defenceman Thomas Chabot said. "We're always so focused on hockey that when the football games are on, it's nice to sit all together and watch a couple of games and chirp each other."

Minnesota Wild defenceman Matt Dumba described his team's fantasy league as "crazy" during the early months of the NHL schedule.

"That's all we talk about," he said. "Last year I remember guys taking each other out for dinner and trying to work trades. It's hilarious. Then football season is over and there's this week of, like, sombreness.

"Nobody knows how to talk to each other if it's not about football. It's a transition period."

Calgary forward Sam Bennett said the Flames had issues with trade offers involving bribes similar to the ones Dumba mentioned, but put a stop to the practice.

"You're not allowed to trade money or dinner," said Bennett, who was victorious two years ago. "There's lot of chirping about the teams and the picks."

"It gets really intense," Chabot added. "It gets a little greasy with trades at the end of the [fantasy] year when you're not going to make playoffs."

The Vancouver Canucks' success on the ice this season hasn't translated to captain Bo Horvat's fantasy roster.

"It's my first year," he said.

"You can tell, because I suck. My team's the worst." While fantasy sports get NHLers' competitive juices flowing, it can also help with the integration of new players.

The Leafs underwent a roster overhaul this summer that included the addition of forwards Alexander Kerfoot and Nick Shore, as well as defencemen Tyson Barrie and Cody Ceci.

All four are now members of the team's fantasy football setup.

"It's hard to be a sports fan and not be in a fantasy league," Kerfoot said. "I'm in two leagues - one with the guys here and one with some of my friends back home.

"It's fun to hang out with the guys on Sundays. We talk about it in the locker room all day long.

It makes guys feel comfortable," Rielly added. "Especially guys that might be new to a team and has played fantasy before, he's right in the mix."

But the blueliner does have one criticism of Toronto's league - that star forwards Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner share a team.

"They're such losers," Rielly said with a smile. "You shouldn't be able to do that."

Associated Graphic

Morgan Rielly, seen clashing with the Kings' Alex Iafallo in Toronto on Tuesday, says 'it's cool to make trades and try to fleece guys' in the players' fantasy football league.

JOHN E. SOKOLOWSKI/USA TODAY SPORTS

Saskatchewan's consumer debt crisis: As trade war stings, more homeowners fall behind on payments
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By MATT LUNDY
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


ECONOMICS REPORTER Saskatchewan households are showing signs of mounting financial distress as the province suffers from a prolonged bout of economic weakness, compounded by a global trade war that's taken direct aim at key exports.

People in Saskatchewan are falling behind on debt payments - both for mortgages and other loans - to a greater degree than the rest of the country.

Home foreclosures have roughly doubled over the past five years, and since the 2014 oil crash, consumer insolvencies have surged at a faster clip than in Alberta.

"When you compare the situation in Saskatchewan to other provinces, it really does stand out," said Robert Hogue, senior economist at Royal Bank of Canada.

"Clearly [the numbers] paint a fairly tough financial picture for many people in Saskatchewan."

Household debt troubles have been a national issue, but much of the focus has been on Ontario's suburbs or B.C.'s Lower Mainland, thanks in large part to staggering home prices.

But over five years, Saskatchewan has absorbed no shortage of economic hits - including drought, mine closures and subpar commodity prices - forcing some households into a more precarious position.

Since 2014, the percentage of residential mortgages that are delinquent has roughly tripled to 0.86 per cent, according to the Canadian Bankers Association. These are mortgages in arrears, or with payments late by three months or more, and is sourced from Canada's largest lenders.

The rate is near a 27-year high, and is easily the highest in the country.

Put another way, Saskatchewan has more delinquent mortgages than B.C. - but only one-fifth of B.C.'s total mortgages. In some cases, the outcome is grim.

The number of mortgage foreclosure notices and home-sale cancellations has nearly doubled over the past five fiscal years, to just over 1,400 in 2018-19, according to the Provincial Mediation Board.

Back when oil prices were lofty, "people got very comfortable [thinking] we're always going to make this amount of money," said Pamela Meger, a Reginabased licensed insolvency trustee with MNP Ltd.

For many, that's no longer the case, and the adjustment has been rough.

"When people panic, they look to higher-interest loans to try to avoid defaulting on the mortgage, and then that's when this little cycle of debt starts," Ms.

Meger said.

That's apparent in the numbers. The delinquency rate on non-mortgage debt - which includes credit cards and installment loans - was 6.8 per cent in the second quarter, according to credit-reporting agency TransUnion Canada. That is the highest outside of Atlantic Canada.

In dollar terms, the average non-mortgage debt owed for every borrower in Saskatchewan was $31,100, fourth in the country behind Alberta, B.C. and Ontario. But people in Saskatchewan appear to be struggling more with that debt load: The non-mortgage delinquency rate jumped 5.8 per cent from a year ago, compared with 0.7 per cent for Canada as a whole.

"I think there's a bit of a concern if you're a lender in Saskatchewan ... that it seems like [consumers are] having trouble pulling out" of their delinquencies, said Matthew Fabian, director of financial services research and consulting at TransUnion Canada.

On top of this, more and more are filing for insolvency. As of August, there were about 3,400 consumer insolvencies over the previous 12 months, federal data show. That's close to double the sum from five years earlier. (Insolvencies are comprise both bankruptcies and proposals, which are offers to pay back a portion of owed money, extend payment timelines, or both.)

Higher insolvency filings and foreclosures are "almost normal for me right now, which is very sad," Ms. Meger of MNP said. "I've been doing this for 17 years now, and this is probably the busiest I've ever seen it through all of the ups and downs of the economy."

Much like Alberta, Saskatchewan was sent reeling by the oil shock and the industry's investments remain subdued. But its economy has also taken a particularly hard hit from global trade tensions.

This year, China halted purchase of some Canadian agricultural products, notably canola seed. All told, the bans affect 6 per cent of Saskatchewan's exports, an outsized impact relative to other provinces, RBC data show. Canola exports have plummeted, stockpiles have surged and prices are languishing, delivering pain to local farmers.

"You go into rural Saskatchewan, it's pretty much the main topic of conversation," Mr.

Hogue of the province's trade woes said.

That's partly why RBC slashed Saskatchewan's growth forecast by nearly half, projecting the economy will grow by a tepid 0.6 per cent in 2019, tied with Alberta for worst in the country. One major drag is retail sales. RBC projects they will decline by a deeper 0.7 per cent this year.

If there's a glint of strength, it's the labour market. Hiring has been solid of late, and the unemployment rate (at 5.3 per cent) is actually a touch lower than the national average.

Broadly speaking, economists expect Saskatchewan's growth to pick up in 2020, with RBC calling for a 1.9-per-cent gain, putting it middle-of-the-pack among the provinces. Plus, if hiring strengthens, household balance sheets should improve, Mr. Hogue said.

And there's always the hope trade restrictions will be lifted.

"If that were to occur, then it would further improve the outlook for the province," he said.

Second Cup seeks second life after emerging from crisis
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Canadian coffee chain, which exchanged debt for equity to repair its balance sheet, to change corporate name and seek acquisitions
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By SUSAN KRASHINSKY ROBERTSON
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


MISSISSAUGA -- The Second Cup Ltd. is getting a corporate makeover.

The Canadian coffee chain will announce Friday that it is changing its parent company's name to Aegis Brands Inc. as it seeks a fresh start and hopes to make acquisitions to bolster its café business.

Second Cup was in crisis just a few years ago, with some franchisees criticizing management and declaring bankruptcy, a chief executive who characterized the business as "a ship that had lost its way" and a subsequent management shakeup as the chairman acknowledged the company had "not achieved its plans" for recovery.

In his first interview since becoming CEO in May, Steven Pelton enjoyed the luxury of talking about something else, largely owing to a deal that predates him. In August, 2017, the Serruya family of Yogen Fruz fame erased $8-million in Second Cup debt in exchange for a 29-per-cent equity stake in the company.

"The health of Second Cup is good," Mr.

Pelton said during a discussion at the company's offices in Mississauga. "It's got its own niche in the market. Of course, we want to be bigger and we always want to be better."

After the retirement of interim CEO Garry MacDonald, Mr. Pelton was brought on to lead an "ambitious new phase of growth," chairman Michael Bregman said at the time.

But the chain is tiny compared with competitors, with just 252 stores, down from almost 400 at its peak in the 1990s. Its stock trades at about $1.40 a share.

With barely a trickle of cash flow from operations and a market capitalization of less than $30-million, Second Cup is hardly in a position to make any big splashes on the acquisition front.

Although it was a pioneer in Canada's café industry, it has been eclipsed by food-service giants such as McDonald's and Tim Hortons, which combined have more than 20 times the number of locations. Mr. Pelton said the brand's strength is in "specialty coffee," but even in the niche of upscale brews and cozy cafés, it has less than a fifth of the footprint.

"Second Cup is still having some challenges with franchisees, and they just haven't evolved that brand," said Robert Carter, an industry adviser with consultancy Straton Hunter. Canadians consume roughly four billion cups of coffee a year, he said, up from three billion five years ago, and most of that growth is in specialty beverages such as espresso-based and iced drinks.

Second Cup is not attracting young people, who are the biggest consumers in that niche.

"They continue to flounder in a segment that is growing over all."

The company has been closing underperforming locations, which has contributed to continuing declines in systemwide sales.

Revenue in the most recent quarter was $6.5-million, with a net loss of $616,000, down from a net profit of $133,000 in the same period last year. The company had $13.8-million in cash and cash equivalents as of June 29. (It reports third-quarter earnings Friday.)

"We're not concerned with raising the money for the initial acquisitions," Mr. Pelton said. "If we ever have to take on debt, it's going to be at a very responsible rate, a very low multiple of our earnings. We're going to grow as we can. We're not going to get ambitious and get ourselves in trouble. ... We have cash in the bank, so the financing is down the road.

But yes, we have had the conversations."

He said the company will be looking for small businesses in the food-service and beverage sectors that have "grown to the end of their ability or geographic range." Mr. Pelton was formerly the CEO of casual restaurant chain the Landing Group, in which Recipe Unlimited Corp.

(then Cara Operations) acquired a 55-per-cent interest in late 2014, before buying the rest of the company the following June.

"Operators that have two to 20 units - that's where the growth in the market is," Mr. Carter said.

"Small to medium restaurant chains are driving growth. I hear more and more operators saying they are going to create an incubator style to bring in small emerging brands and create a platform for them to grow. ... The [price] of these smaller-unit-size restaurant chains is going to increase. Consolidation is growing dramatically in both the Canadian and U.S. markets."

The company's name change will take effect after the company's next annual general meeting, in May. Aegis Brands will own the Second Cup cafés and intends to add more to its portfolio. Mr.

Pelton will be CEO of Aegis and will remain president of Second Cup.

Second Cup has already looked at other business opportunities beyond coffee. Last year, it announced a joint venture with National Access Cannabis Corp. to open cannabis dispensaries and is in the process of converting two cafés in Alberta to this model.

Associated Graphic

Although it was a pioneer in Canada's café industry, The Second Cup has been fighting a losing war against food-service giants such as McDonald's and Tim Hortons.

FRED LUM/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Second Cup's recently installed CEO Steve Pelton, seen at his Mississauga office on Wednesday, says 'the health of Second Cup is good.'

GLENN LOWSON/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

McKinsey & Co. under investigation for work advising bankrupt companies, reports say
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By ROBERT FIFE, STEVEN CHASE
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


OTTAWA -- A global consulting company formerly headed by Canada's new ambassador to China is reportedly under criminal investigation into allegations that it concealed conflicts of interest while advising bankrupt companies.

The investigation by U.S. federal prosecutors and a separate one by the U.S. Trustee Program, a unit of the Justice Department that oversees the administration of bankruptcy cases, cover the period when Canada's Beijing envoy, Dominic Barton, was the global managing partner of McKinsey & Co. There is no indication that Mr. Barton himself is under investigation.

Mr. Barton served as CEO of the elite consulting giant for nine years and left the top job in July, 2018, but stayed on as global managing partner emeritus until Sept. 4 this year when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau named him as Canada's new ambassador to China.

The New York Times and Wall Street Journal cited unnamed U.S. prosecutors in New York and sources in the U.S. Justice Department, who said that McKinsey & Co. is the subject of a probe over whether it broke Chapter 11 bankruptcy rules. This includes, according to the New York Times, whether McKinsey "quietly steered valuable assets to itself or favoured its own clients over other creditors." U.S. Justice Department spokesperson Nichole Navas Oxman declined to comment on media reports about a criminal investigation into McKinsey and Co.

The office of Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland declined to say whether she is concerned about this probe.

Court battles over bankruptcy cases have cost McKinsey & Co.

millions of dollars in penalties imposed by the U.S. bankruptcy watchdog including a US$15-million settlement in February over "disclosure deficiencies." Late last year, McKinsey & Co. paid another US$17.5-million in a bankruptcy case involving renewable energy company SunEdison and promised to improve its disclosure protocols.

One of these U.S. court battles could see the Canadian ambassador to China called to testify about his former firm's work on bankruptcy cases.

Jay Alix, the wealthy founder of restructuring giant AlixPartners, has spent the past three years pursuing McKinsey & Co., including Mr. Barton, in courts throughout the United States.

He blames Mr. Barton for failing to take corrective action on bankruptcy files while he was running the company, and his court actions have personally embroiled the former McKinsey head in continuing legal matters.

On Oct. 29, a bankruptcy judge in a Texas coal bankruptcy case gave Mr. Alix the right to demand documents from McKinsey and question its executives under oath.

David Jones, a Houston judge, had told the court in January he "going to need to hear" from Mr. Barton personally rather than through a written deposition. "You get the truth by swearing people in, and put them on the stand, and you subject them to cross examination, and we figure what the truth is," the judge said.

Daniel Lemisch, a lawyer for Mr. Alix, said he believes it's likely the court will subpoena Mr. Barton. The case goes to trial in February, 2020.

"Dominic Barton was the head of McKinsey at the time that the alleged improprieties took place in their disclosures," Mr. Lemisch said.

McKinsey's head office in New York did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

Mr. Barton would not be covered by diplomatic immunity in this in case because the investigation covers events in the United States, before he became ambassador to China.

Mr. Alix has provided the courts and media, including The Globe and Mail and New York Times, with transcripts of conversations he had with Mr. Barton over a 14-month period beginning in September, 2014. He alleges that Mr. Barton admitted to breaking bankruptcy laws, promised to get out of the bankruptcy business and later reneged and offered to steer consulting business to AlixPartners - a statement Mr.

Alix saw as an attempted bribe.

Mr. Barton told The New York Times in March that Mr.

Alix misconstrued what he actually meant.

"I was getting so fed up with his repetitive complaints that I said something like, 'Jay, there are plenty of opportunities in the transformation service sector - apart from bankruptcy companies - that AlixPartners should see,' " Mr.

Barton told the Times.

In January of this year, a federal judge in Virginia reopened a bankruptcy case involving coal producer Alpha Natural Resources after learning that McKinsey & Co. had not disclosed, as required by law, that it was among the company's secured creditors through MIO Partners, a US$25-billion investment fund for current and former McKinsey partners. The court heard that the head of McKinsey's bankruptcy practice was also a member of MIO's board.

The Wall Street Journal also reported Tuesday that prosecutors are examining McKinsey's investment unit, MIO Partners. MIO held undisclosed stakes in hedge funds in roughly half of the bankruptcy cases it worked on between 2002 until the end of 2016.

Close offices, cut jobs, Barrick CEO says as he calls for consolidation
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By NIALL MCGEE
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Barrick Gold Corp.'s chief executive officer says the gold-mining sector needs more merger activity to capitalize on the cost savings that come from closing head offices and cutting staff.

Mark Bristow helped kick-start a wave of deal making in the industry last year when his Africa-focused Randgold Resources Ltd. agreed to be sold to Barrick for US$6-billion. A few months later, Newmont Mining Corp. announced it would acquire Goldcorp Inc. for US$10-billion, creating the world's largest gold mining company. Barrick and Newmont also agreed this year to combine some operations in Nevada in order to reduce costs.

Now, he says, the time has come for more deals and more job cuts at gold companies.

Under Mr. Bristow, Randgold was known for employing a skeleton crew at its head office. Barrick, now the world's second-biggest gold miner, is following the same model. One of his first orders of business was to issue layoff notices to about 95 people at the Toronto head office, bringing the head count down to about 65, and consolidating the entire staff on just one floor.

"In this modern world, there's no logic to having big corporate offices. We've proved that's possible at Randgold, and very quickly in just nine months at Barrick," Mr. Bristow said after the release of the company's third-quarter results.

During a conference call with analysts, Mr. Bristow hinted that Barrick is itching to do another acquisition and said that West Africa is "a good place to start."

In a interview with The Globe and Mail, Mr. Bristow expressed his admiration for Canadian miner B2Gold Corp., saying he'd buy the company if the opportunity arose.

Vancouver-based B2Gold has been one of Canada's bestperforming gold stocks over the past five years, thanks to the rapid growth of its Fekola mine in Mali. Over the past three years, its shares have risen 22.5 per cent, versus an 8.9-per-cent decline for Barrick. B2Gold also has operating mines in Namibia and the Philippines.

Barrick, however, is unlikely to buy B2Gold at the moment, as Mr. Bristow deems it too expensive. He also pointed out that B2Gold's CEO, Clive Johnson, has indicated the company isn't likely to sell itself without a significant premium to the current share price. Randgold and Barrick did their merger as a "no-premium" deal.

In the near term, Barrick is perhaps more likely to be a seller rather than a buyer of assets. The company has committed to selling US$1.5-billion in non-core assets by the end of next year. One of the mines it hopes to unload soon is its 50-per-cent share in the Kalgoorlie mine in Australia, which it co-owns with Newmont.

Mr. Bristow said a sale of its share of Kalgoorlie could be announced by the end of this year, or early next year.

One asset that Barrick had previously mulled selling but now says it is planning to keep is its Hemlo mine in Northern Ontario, which has been in operation since the mid-1980s. Last week, Barrick announced layoffs at Hemlo as it transitions to using contract miners. On Wednesday, Mr. Bristow said 61 people would be laid off, but added that most were stepping up to take voluntary severance packages, with the average age of the work force being 57. A further 150 miners will lose their jobs next year at Hemlo, he said, when the open pit closes to make way for underground mining, something that should add about 10 years to the life of the mine.

After Barrick's third-quarter results were released, its stock rose 2.4 per cent to close at $22.31 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The miner reported adjusted earnings per share of 15 US cents, 4 US cents better than analysts expected.

Barrick said it expects to produce between 5.15 million and 5.6 million ounces of gold a year between 2020 and 2024 - in line with its forecast for 2019 production.

"The guidance was generally weaker than expected in 2020 and better in the remaining years," Scotia Capital Inc.

analyst Tanya Jakusconek wrote in a note to clients.

"At a high level, the plan appears to show more investment in the existing portfolio which will benefit the longerterm production profile."

The comments from Mr. Bristow about slashing headoffice expenses came one day after Newmont Goldcorp said it was on track to save US$100-million a year in general and administrative expenses, such as staff and corporate offices, as a result of its merger.

Associated Graphic

Barrick Gold Corp. helped kick off a wave of deal making in the gold-mining sector last year by buying Randgold Resources Ltd., whose former Kibali mine is seen above in 2014.

REUTERS

Continuum pulls IPO, opts for richer, private bid
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After receiving offers for $1-billion worth of shares, the apartment REIT will sell to Starlight for $1.7-billion
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By TIM KILADZE
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The latest Canadian rental apartment owner to try going public has scrapped its deal despite heavy investor demand, deciding instead to sell to a private buyer at a premium price.

Toronto-based Continuum Residential Real Estate Investment Trust filed the paperwork for an initial public offering in early October, and the deal was set to price this week. However, the company quietly ran a dual-track process for a potential sale while marketing the IPO and ultimately decided to sell to Canada's Starlight Investments.

Continuum hoped to raise around $300-million by selling a roughly 40-per-cent stake and pricing its shares between $15.50 and $16.50. After wrapping up its marketing roadshow, the company received orders for roughly $1-billion worth of shares.

While the demand gave Continuum the potential to price above its marketing range - the hallmark of a highly successful IPO - Starlight Investments offered a price too good to turn down: $20.10 a share, valuing the REIT at $1.7-billion, including debt.

Starlight "gave us an offer that was so superior that we had to say yes," Continuum chief executive Dan Argiros said.

The offer price translates to a 3.5-per-cent capitalization rate for Continuum's portfolio. Cap rates have an inverse relationship to total values - the lower the cap rate, the more expensive the portfolio. Rival publicly traded companies Canadian Apartment Properties REIT and Minto Apartment REIT trade at implied cap rates of 4 per cent and 3.8 per cent, respectively.

The rich purchase price is more proof that investors are clamouring for rental apartment properties. Historically, REITs were known for paying annual yields around 5 per cent, yet Continuum was set to pay roughly 2 per cent - and the purchase price translates to an even lower rate.

Despite the steep cost, Starlight still sees value. "Portfolios of this nature and composition are few and far between in the Canadian multiresidential sector," CEO Daniel Drimmer said in a statement. Multiresidential is the real estate sector's term for apartments.

Continuum owns 44 apartment buildings, the majority of which are in Toronto and neighbouring Mississauga. Canadian housing developers spent years focused on building single-family homes and condominiums, leading to a shortage of rental apartment buildings.

While more rental buildings are now being constructed, population growth is outstripping the new supply, and Continuum has a 99.7-per-cent occupancy rate across its portfolio.

Because of the tight supply, apartment-building owners have seen rents jump as high as 25 per cent when a tenant turns over.

Although the sale is a win for Continuum and its current private backers, which include CI Investments and 1832 Asset Management LP, Canada's public markets are losing out on another new listing.

Earlier this week, GFL Environmental Inc. scrapped its billiondollar IPO, but for a different reason - weak investor demand. It is a common theme: Public markets around the world have been losing companies to private firms that are flush with cash.

Continuum's CEO said the company was serious about an IPO, but once the deal's early paperwork was filed, he received unsolicited interest from multiple buyers in Canada and abroad.

The IPO's order books were closed Thursday afternoon and the deal was expected to price shortly after. "The Starlight offer came in last minute," Mr. Argiros said.

While he appreciates that an IPO would have been nice for Canadian public investors, it helped that the private buyer is a domestic organization.

"What's exciting is that another Canadian bought this portfolio," he said.

Canadian REITs have been the hottest sector on Bay Street of late, with a rush of financings raising more than $1-billion since the start of September.

REITs have benefited from falling interest rates, which sent bond yields tumbling - making the trusts' distributions that much more compelling. The S&P/TSX Capped REIT Index currently pays an average yield of 4.5 per cent.

Apartment REITs in particular have shined. Minto went public in 2018 in a $200-million deal, and the shares have jumped 57 per cent since, before distributions.

However, it is possible that the sector's heavy investor demand will start to wane.

The prospect of a trade war truce between the United States and China has sent long-term bond yields higher in recent weeks, with the 10-year Government of Canada bond yield jumping to 1.58 per cent from a low of 1.09 per cent in August.

While many of the banks in Continuum's underwriting syndicate did not advise on the sale to Starlight, Continuum said they will all still be paid as if the IPO had been successful. They were set to earn $16.5-million collectively on a $300-million offering.

With a report from Sean Silcoff

Investors sue Ontario over risky syndicated mortgages
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Class-action lawsuit alleges negligence in allowing the products to be sold by Tier 1 companies
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By GREG MCARTHUR
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


A group of investors has launched a classaction lawsuit against the Ontario government, alleging that the provincial regulator responsible for licensing mortgage brokers was negligent in allowing the sale of risky syndicated mortgage investment products marketed by the Tier 1 group of companies.

Two investors in products offered by Tier 1, which raised funds for proposed Ontario real estate developments that have since collapsed or been placed in receivership, are acting as the representative plaintiffs in the proposed class action.

Syndicated mortgages are provided by a group of investors, typically to finance early-stage costs for new development projects. Financing raised by Tier 1, which is under the control of a court-appointed trustee, was expected to fund a development group planning to build condominiums, multiunit homes for Alzheimer's patients and student residences.

The popularity of syndicated mortgages surged over the past decade as retail investors hunted for alternatives to low-rate, fixed-income products. But some syndicated mortgages pose risks that many don't understand, and position the investors behind other creditors if the developments fail.

The lawsuit alleges that the Financial Services Commission of Ontario - which was renamed the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario in June - and a number of its senior officials "carried out their duties on behalf of FSCO in a negligent manner."

A spokesman for the Ministry of the Attorney-General said that the government had not yet been served with the statement of claim. "As this matter is subject to litigation, it would be inappropriate to comment," Brian Gray said.

The lawsuit, which was filed in Ontario Superior Court in Brampton on Nov. 1, will be a test of Ontario's Crown Liability and Proceedings Act. The new law placed a higher burden on those seeking to sue the government, forcing them to persuade a judge at the outset that the claim has a reasonable chance of success before they are permitted to proceed with the litigation.

Mitchell Wine, one of the lawyers behind the proposed class action, acknowledged in a statement that his clients face obstacles. But he said that his firm, which has acted for many aggrieved investors in an earlier class-action case against Tier 1, as well as claims against Canada's most prolific distributor of syndicated mortgage investment products, Fortress Real Developments Inc., has amassed "sufficient evidence" to pursue the government for damages.

The "regulation was so poorly carried out that the Crown should be held liable for investor losses," Mr. Wine said. "It is difficult to succeed in litigation against the Crown, but we believe there is sufficient evidence against FSCO and its employees to justify the commencement of this action."

The claim states that in 2016, FSCO took action against Tier 1, obtaining a court order that placed a trustee, Grant Thornton Ltd., in control of many its assets.

Since then, Grant Thornton recovered $23.4-million of the $131million raised. However, the claim alleges that before that time, many warnings to FSCO about syndicated mortgages went unheeded, which allowed the products to continue to be sold by both Tier 1 and Fortress.

The claim alleges these warnings came from a wide range of concerned individuals: a government employee in Prince Edward Island, an official with the Canada Revenue Agency, as well as many mortgage brokers.

The claim also alleges Royal Bank of Canada conducted an investigation of Tier 1 in 2014, which prompted the bank to stop doing business with the company. An RBC banker, the claim alleges, brought its concerns to the attention of FSCO in a meeting. The claim does not include any supporting evidence for its assertions about RBC or the other whistleblowers.

The representative plaintiffs, Betty Wei, a 64-year-old humanresources staffer, and her husband, Lawrence Vanderklei, a 61year-old engineer, also allege the Tier 1 marketing information they received listed FSCO licence numbers. The couple "relied upon the fact that the mortgage industry was regulated by the province of Ontario," the lawsuit says.

Bhaktraj Singh, the Tier 1 official alleged in the claim to have "controlled" the company has, in the meantime, struck a settlement as part of a lawsuit initiated against him, documents show.

Mr. Singh was a shareholder in a number of the development companies that relied on Tier 1 mortgages, and which have been placed in receivership. On Nov. 1, the receiver, which launched a claim against Mr. Singh, disclosed in court filings that, after "lengthy investigations and due diligence," it agreed to settle with him for $2.1-million.

A previous report by the receiver stated Mr. Singh, and companies under his control, received $9.4-million in fees and other payments from the corporations. "The receiver is reasonably satisfied that the Singh defendants have disclosed all their assets," the Nov. 1 court filings state.

Home Capital rebounds from financial crisis with big profits
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By DAVID BERMAN
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Home Capital Group Inc.'s comeback went into high gear as a rebounding housing market and lower funding costs sent its earnings soaring just two years after the company plunged into financial crisis.

The mortgage lender's shares surged more than 14 per cent on Wednesday, their biggest rally in about a year, after quarterly financial results came in well above expectations, leaving analysts wondering whether the Toronto-based company will resume paying a dividend.

The company, which specializes in underwriting mortgages for self-employed business owners and new Canadians who lack a credit history, said profits on a pershare basis surged 63.4 per cent in the third quarter.

So far this year, the stock has rallied 136 per cent. The remarkable gains reflect that the market has become much more comfortable with the company after it flirted with insolvency in 2017, and briefly became a red flag for Canada's housing market among some short sellers.

"Today, we have all the elements in place for sustainable value creation," Yousry Bissada, Home Capital's chief executive, said in a call with analysts, pointing to upbeat economic conditions including low interest rates and strong employment figures.

The company's financial results showed growth in the most important part of its business: Single-family mortgage originations increased 16.8 per cent, year-overyear, reflecting a pick-up in sales in its core Greater Toronto Area market.

At the same time, credit quality was stable and quarterly profit easily surpassed analysts' expectations. Net income for the third quarter ended Sept. 30 was $39million, or 67 cents a share, up from $32.6-million, or 41 cents, in the same period last year.

Ignoring a one-time technology investment, adjusted earnings were 72 cents a share. That was well above the 58 cents that analysts had been expecting, on average.

Demand for non-prime mortgages remains strong, even after regulators recently tightened lending rules to cool overheated housing markets in Vancouver and Toronto.

But Home Capital is also benefiting from lower funding costs.

With bond yields well below their recent multiyear highs in 2018, the company can offer lower yields on its guaranteed investment certificates (GICs) offered at its Oaken Financial channel, boosting its margins on loans.

"We were paying more than 3.3 per cent for new money in December. And we're seeing it around 2.5 per cent now," Brad Kotush, Home Capital's chief financial officer, said in a call with analysts.

The shares closed in Toronto at $33.15, up $4.15 or 14.3 per cent - a near sixfold increase over the stock's low in 2017, just before the company was saved by the deep pockets and wily instincts of Warren Buffett, who bought a significant stake in the company and offered a financial lifeline.

Mr. Buffett sold most of his stake in Home Capital in December, 2018.

The missing element from Home Capital's return to form: a dividend. The company cut its quarterly payout from 26 cents a share to zero in 2017, and hasn't reinstated any payout since then.

Instead, Home Capital has been rewarding investors with aggressive share buybacks, which reduces the number of outstanding shares and raises earnings on a per-share basis.

Over the past 12 months, the company has bought back $394million worth of shares at a weighted average price of $17.19.

That's a 40-per-cent discount to book value per share in the third quarter, and suggests that the company is buying its shares at a bargain price. On Wednesday, it announced its intention to buy back another $150-million worth of shares in the first quarter of 2020.

But after Wednesday's rally, the stock is now trading above book value for the first time in about three years, which suggests that the stock isn't the bargain it once was. It also raises the question of whether the company will turn to dividends as an alternative way to return capital to shareholders.

"We continually review that with our board every quarter," Mr. Kotush responded when asked about the dividend by an analyst from RBC Dominion Securities.

Mr. Kotush added that the next update on its dividend policy would follow the company's fourth-quarter results, which are expected in February.

Despite the vague response from the CFO, some analysts expect that a dividend is coming: "While we are surprised that Home Capital did not reinstate its dividend, we continue to believe that it will do so in 2020," Andrew Hood, an analyst at M Partners, said in a note.

HOME CAPITAL GROUP (HCG) CLOSE: $33.15, UP $4.15

Trade rep in China for WTO talks as pork, beef ban tops four months
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By STEVEN CHASE
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


OTTAWA -- One of Canada's top trade officials is attending meetings in Shanghai this week as the hardship continues to mount for farmers caught in a diplomatic dispute between Beijing and Ottawa.

It's been more than four months since China barred Canadian pork and beef in what is widely seen as retaliation for Ottawa's arrest of a Chinese hightech executive after an extradition request by the United States.

Purchases of canola seed and soybeans also dried up even earlier this year and have not rebounded.

Steve Verheul, who was Canada's lead negotiator in the recent free-trade renegotiation with the United States and Mexico, is in Shanghai this week for continuing talks on reforming the World Trade Organization, the Department of Global Affairs said on Monday. The WTO-themed meeting is Tuesday.

The department was tightlipped on the rest of Mr. Verheul's schedule in China. He is the assistant deputy minister of trade policy and negotiations, he led Canada's trade negotiations with the European Union and has a deep background in agricultural trade.

Prior to joining Global Affairs, Mr.

Verheul was a top trade negotiator with the federal Department of Agriculture and Agri-food.

While Mr. Verheul is in China, newly appointed Canadian ambassador to China Dominic Barton is visiting Ottawa.

Canadian agricultural producers are planning their own trip to China in the coming days to try to address the stalled trade.

Canadian business leaders and politicians are also heading to China shortly to try to flag opportunities for expanding trade.

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil, Goldy Hyder, president of the Business Council of Canada, and Ailish Campbell, Canada's Chief Trade Commissioner, are among speakers at a Nov. 11 forum in Shanghai.

Peter Clark, a trade consultant, said he can't see Mr. Verheul passing up this week's opportunity to press his Chinese counterparts on stalled farm trade between Canada and China. "If you have somebody with his firepower and his knowledge, if the issues came up, I am sure he could sit down and engage."

He said it's understandable Ottawa won't discuss whether Mr.

Verheul will also talk pork, beef, canola and soybeans with the Chinese. "If they raise expectations, and we get rejected, that doesn't do us any good," he said.

Brian Innes, vice-president of public affairs at the Canola Council of Canada, which represents 43,000 producers, said he hopes Mr. Verheul will speak up for Canadian canola during the Shanghai talks.

"We hope our government uses every opportunity to encourage China to support rules-based trade in canola - including [at] meetings aimed at strengthening the WTO hosted by China," Mr. Innes said.

"The troubles that our canola sector is facing is because of Chinese government action."

Sylvain Leclerc, a spokesman at Global Affairs, said: "At these meetings, Canadian officials engage with their interlocutors on a wide array of issues. Mr. Verheul will take the opportunities available to him to discuss key Canada-China trade issues, including pork, beef, canola seed and soybeans."

There has been a slight improvement in canola seed sales to China, Mr. Innes said. He said shipments to China however are still currently "less than onequarter" of normal sales.

"There is still a lot of uncertainty facing the canola industry," he said.

"The level is far below normal and two of our largest exporters remain blocked from the [Chinese] market."

Mr. Innes said seed prices have fallen 10 per cent, which is a significant change for farmers. Over a year, a 10-per-cent decline in prices means a loss of $1-billion in revenue, he said.

Canada's 7,000 pork producers are still struggling to deal with the shuttering of the Chinese market.

Relations between Beijing and Ottawa turned sour late last year at a time when Canadian farmers were already struggling with the turmoil in agricultural markets caused by the mid-2018 trade war between the United States and China. The China-U.S. trade war had already diverted U.S. pork into Canadian and European markets, and the Chinese ban on Canadian pork only worsened things for producers in Canada.

Pork producers sold more than $500-million of product to China in 2018 and had expected to record more than $1-billion in sales in 2019 before the June ban.

Associated Graphic

Pigs are seen at a farm in Quebec in June. Prior to China imposing a ban on Canadian pork in June, producers had expected to sell more than $1-billion worth of product to the country this year.

SEBASTIEN ST-JEAN/AFP/GETTY IMAGES

Open Text makes $800-million deal to boost software growth
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Canadian tech giant buys U.S. cloud company Carbonite to expand cybersecurity footprint
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By JOSH O'KANE
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Open Text Corp. plans to buy U.S. security software company Carbonite Inc.for US$800-million, boosting the services it can sell to larger companies while gaining a greater foothold among smaller businesses.

Open Text has beco me one of Canada's largest software companies with a market cap of $15.2-billion through frequent acquisitions, focusing largely on business-to-business software that can be offered through the cloud.

Its suite of services for enterprises includes customer-management software, process automation and cybersecurity.

The latter is Carbonite's focus. The company, named after the fictional impenetrable substance used to trap the character Han Solo in the Star Wars film The Empire Strikes Back, purports to make its clients' data similarly impenetrable with secure backups. By acquiring it, Open Text, based in Waterloo, Ont., gains access to Carbonite's 300,000 small and medium-sized business (SMB) clients and eight million professional users.

"It opens up the potential for Open Text to build a meaningful SMB revenue stream," Richard Tse of National Bank Financial said in a research note.

The deal will see Open Text buy Bostonbased Carbonite for US$23 a share, a 25-per-cent premium over Friday's closing price on the Nasdaq. But that price is more than 20 per cent lower than Carbonite was trading for last February before it purchased Colorado cybersecurity company Webroot Inc., a US$619-million deal that caused analysts to raise concerns about Carbonite's debt load.

Including the debt and other items, Open Text's offer values Carbonite at more than US$1.4-billion. It said it would make the purchase with cash and its line of credit and expects the deal to close in 90 days.

"We think that is a great route to market," Open Text chief executive officer Mark Barrenechea said in an interview. Buying Carbonite would also further bolster its security offerings for businesses' "endpoints" - connected devices ranging from mobile devices to connected sensors in industrial machines, he said.

Open Text announced the purchase before markets opened Monday. Its Toronto-listed shares closed up 2.4 per cent, at $56.27. Carbonite's Nasdaq-listed shares shot up 24.6 per cent and closed just below the takeover price of $22.96.

Analyst Gabriel Leung of Beacon Securities Ltd. said it is a good acquisition for Open Text, highlighting the recurring revenues it would bring.

Scotia Capital analyst Paul Steep, meanwhile, raised his target price for Open Text's Nasdaq-listed shares to US$46, from US$43. Carbonite could push Open Text's cloud-service gross margins higher, Mr. Steep said. And while this marks Open Text's largest cloud-focused acquisition to date, he believes more could come soon, seeing "a growing universe of potential acquisitions to help accelerate cloud growth."

Despite its continued growth by acquisition, some investors have become frustrated in recent months with Open Text's slower organic growth. When the company reported negligible organic revenue in the quarter ending in June of this year and said its fourth-quarter 2019 organic revenue would be in the low single digits, its shares fell 9 per cent.

Mr. Barrenechea said the Carbonite purchase fits into Open Text's "total growth strategy," which includes boosting revenues not just through acquisitions but organically. Within Open Text, he estimated Carbonite's potential organic revenue growth would be in the low single digits.

Open Text's largest acquisition came in 2016, when it bought Dell Technologies Inc.'s enterprise content division for US$1.62-billion. The company has since kept up its M&A strategy with smaller buys. In October, 2018, it announced it would buy the Atlanta-area datamanagement company Liaison Technologies Inc. for US$310-million. And in February, it revealed that it would spend US$75-million on the Colorado legal-tech company Catalyst Repository Systems Inc.

Open Text said in its most recent quarterly report that it had US$1-billion cash and a US$750million line of credit for acquisitions. Mr. Barrenechea said that despite the US$1.42-billion value of the Carbonite purchase, he would not rule out further near-term acquisitions.

OPEN TEXT (OTEX) CLOSE: $56.27, UP $1.30

Associated Graphic

Buses that were attacked near Fada N'gourma, Burkina Faso, are seen in this still from a Nov. 8 video. Montreal-based miner Semafo has lost about one-third of its market capitalization since an attack on its Boungou mine in the country on Nov. 6.

REUTERS

GFL to scrap IPO plans after investors balk at price
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Waste-management firm sought share-range of $20 to $24 but debt concerned investors
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By TIM KILADZE
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


GFL Environmental Inc. is pulling its initial public offering after institutional investors pressed the Canadian wastemanagement giant to price its shares below the deal's marketing range.

The IPO, which launched in mid-October, was expected to raise as much as US$2.4-billion, with GFL marketing as many as 100.7 million shares to potential buyers at US$20 to US$24 each.

However, institutional investors balked at this range over the past two weeks and pushed GFL to price its deal at US$18 a share, partly because of concerns about the company's debt load.

Instead, GFL says it will scrap the deal altogether and revisit an IPO in the future.

"The [existing] shareholders have determined that, at US$18, we don't believe that represents fair value for the company, so the shareholders have decided to inject more equity into the business to fund the future growth of the company and revisit the public markets at a later date," chief executive officer Patrick Dovigi said in a statement to The Globe and Mail. GFL's existing private equity backers include BC Partners and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan.

Cancelling the deal will be a major blow for Canada's capital markets.

Financing activity has been soft in 2019, and there are some fears that public investors are losing the ability to own stakes in large, quality companies because private buyers keep acquiring them at a rapid pace.

GFL's IPO would have added a fast-growing company to the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The deal was also set to be one of the largest in Canadian history. There are few comparable IPOs, but previous billion-dollar deals include Ottawa's sale of Canadian National Railway in 1995, which netted $2.2-billion, and Manulife Financial Corp.'s first public offering in 1999, which raised $2.5-billion.

GFL, which stands for Green for Life, was founded by Mr. Dovigi, who is known for his acquisitive mindset. The North American waste management industry has been highly fragmented, and GFL has sought to consolidate the market.

The company floated the idea of an IPO as far back as 2017, but its plans seemed to change after BC and Teachers bought the company in 2018 from its previous private equity backers. A few months later, GFL announced its largest acquisition to date, buying North Carolina-based Waste Industries for $3.65-billion, including debt. The purchase of Waste Industries last year made GFL the fourth-largest waste management company in North America.

The company's balance sheet is now loaded with debt - both from the 2018 deals, and from borrowing to help fund acquisitions over the years.

In April, the company issued US$500-million worth of unsecured notes, and the securities were rated Caa2 by Moody's Investors Service and CCC+ by Standard & Poor's - deep in junk rating territory.

GFL also had yet to demonstrate its profit potential. Over its past three fiscal years GFL lost a cumulative $737-million, and in the first six months of fiscal 2019, the company lost $161-million, according to a regulatory filing for its IPO.

Acknowledging the debt burden, GFL made it clear to investors that it planned to use some IPO proceeds to repay some debt.

The company's interest and other financing costs amounted to $251-million in the first half of fiscal 2019.

GFL also hoped it would benefit from selling into a hot market for waste companies. Major rivals Republic Services Inc., Waste Management Inc. and Waste Connections Inc. traded at an average of 33 times their earnings per share for the past 12 months when GFL launched its IPO, and anything over 15 to 20 times earnings is considered unusual.

Stock markets broadly have also been frothy, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index setting a record high in September. In the U.S., where GFL was set to be dual-listed, the S&P 500 closed at a record high on Monday.

Leonard's 'load management' a hard sell in L.A.
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S2


TORONTO -- A fter his year-long sabbatical in foreign parts, America has noticed that Kawhi Leonard has changed. And America doesn't like it.

Leonard ditched Canada for his hometown, Los Angeles, over the summer. The separation was about as amicable as these things get.

There was no public cursing as he went out the door. No one in the Raptors organization is slagging him behind his back, but there is some ruefulness about the process. Though Leonard went through the proper motions, Toronto never had a shot. The organization didn't see that until it was already over.

No one wants to see Leonard fail, exactly. But it would be nice if it were proved he'd have been better off here.

On that score - and it is still very early days - things are looking good (i.e. bad).

Leonard returned to the United States newly minted as the NBA's ideal winner.

He'd taken a team from Canada, for God's sake, and turned it into a champion. He'd done it largely by himself.

What people hadn't taken into consideration was how he'd done it.

Leonard was a part-time employee during the 2018-19 regular season. He took a quarter of his games off, most with no explanation.

The Raptors created the term "load management" to excuse these vacation days. The NBA responded with a "Yeah, yeah, whatever. We told you only to use this number if it's an emergency."

Leonard's absence was permitted because no one in the NBA knows or cares what is happening up here. For years, the Raptors might as well have been playing on the moon.

They had next-to-no national TV commitments in the United States. No Christmas Day games. No prime-time tipoffs in the postseason. They were functionally invisible back at NBA HQ.

If Leonard wanted to spend the whole season poolside in Boca Raton, the only people who would notice were Raptors fans. And Raptors fans weren't bothered.

They wanted Leonard fit for the playoffs.

How he managed it was his business.

Even the media refused to pick up the story.

That situation has changed. Somewhere between his "fun guy" intro and his T-1000 routine in the playoffs, Leonard has become the most fascinating man in the league. He was always good, but is now recognized as basketball's most reliable closer. He's leap-frogged the Jameses, Currys and Durants in the U.S. imagination.

In an age of carefully curated public personalities, Leonard's lack of one seems revolutionary. He's become the Thomas Pynchon of pro sports. Completely inscrutable, but everyone wants to pretend they understand him.

Leonard presumed he could move to the U.S.'s second-biggest media market, take a wing-dinger of a contract, create an outrageous amount of tumult around the manner of his arrival (Batman with his hand-picked Robin, Paul George) and then just continue on as he had. Apparently not.

Acquiring Leonard turned the L.A. Clippers into must-see TV. The team will appear in two, and sometimes three, nationally televised games each week. The next one happens Monday, against the visiting Raptors. Leonard gets the main Christmas Day time slot - 8 p.m. ET against the Lakers.

In moving to L.A., Leonard took a squadron of camp aides with him. They oversee his physical well-being. He is more of a subcontractor of the Clippers than an employee. As such, he sets his own hours.

He has continued his Toronto practice of skipping a game when the team plays on consecutive nights. On Wednesday, he took a pass on a fairly big occasion - Clippers versus Bucks (i.e. Kawhi versus Giannis).

Everyone freaked out. The U.S. press piled in as though he'd missed work because he was hungover. It became a great big story.

Even the most pragmatic members of the broadcast media were outraged. No wonder. If the stars don't care about the regular season, then why should the fans?

That is not a good precedent for the TV business.

The Clippers tried the same load-management line the Raptors had sneaked by easily. It no longer works. The league fined the team US$50,000 for sitting a healthy star.

The money doesn't matter. Leonard makes nearly 10 times that amount per outing, whether he plays. But the signal it sends does. Load management is no longer kosher.

By that point, the Clippers had figured out an important life lesson - that it isn't what you tell people, it's how you tell them. "Load management" became "managing a knee injury." The two things are the same (if there's no injury load to manage, there'd be no need to manage it). But one sounds better. The NBA agreed.

It's working for now. It may not work for long.

You can see other teams and coaches losing their patience. The Clippers play a back-to-back next week - at Houston and New Orleans. The Houston game is nationally televised. It would be very like Leonard to skip that one, just to make a point. We'll see how that goes over.

After the New York Knicks' R.J. Barrett played 41 minutes the other night, his coach was asked to justify the expenditure of energy. He was not best pleased.

"We gotta get off this load-management crap," David Fizdale said. "The kid's 19 years old. Drop it."

Which guarantees no one will drop it.

You can see the NBA's double-bind here. The league is paid a lot of money by broadcasters. Broadcasters who expect to be broadcasting the biggest stars from the biggest teams on a nightly basis. Leonard is now the biggest in both regards. What if the rest of the talent starts getting notions?

Teams expect the rules will be enforced evenly. No one cared what Leonard did in Toronto. But now that everyone's attention has been focused on him, it looks as though he's getting special treatment.

Thus far, Leonard's said nothing and felt no need to do so. The man is a stump - immovable. The last time a team tried to force him to do something, he essentially quit. If the NBA gets on top of him here, things could get unpredictable in a hurry.

One thing we do know about Leonard is that he doesn't like fuss. He wants to be left alone to do his work. He had that freedom in Toronto. Now, in L.A., not so much.

You can never know what's going through Leonard's mind. But one does wonder if he's beginning to consider whether getting exactly what you want is all it's cracked up to be.

Associated Graphic

The Clippers' Kawhi Leonard reaches for the ball during a game against Portland on Thursday in

MARCIO JOSE SANCHEZ/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ujiri is the most indispensable Raptor, and MLSE should pony up to keep him
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


TORONTO -- Masai Ujiri's name has become a kind of magic spell in the NBA.

Is your team terrible and terribly run? Have you stitched yourself up for years by trading away all your picks?

Are you lost and alone in the standings?

Then ... Masai Ujiri.

Certain owners think that if they say it loudly enough to the right people, Ujiri will appear in their midst and solve all their problems.

The latest has him (once again) taking a boatload of money from Knicks owner James Dolan and moving to New York.

Dolan has had a thing for the Toronto Raptors president ever since he called off the Kyle Lowry trade (helping Ujiri) and called on the Andrea Bargnani trade (really helping Ujiri).

Dolan thinks Ujiri tricked him. He didn't. Dolan tricked Dolan. Dolan chooses not to see it that way. Which is part of the reason his team is such a mess.

During this first bout of media footsie, Ujiri never got an actual offer. He had no interest in the job and told people that. Dolan didn't want to be embarrassed with a "No," so he called off his bird dogs.

This year, the Knicks are horrendous again. They have nothing good to tell their customers. So what do they tell them? Masai Ujiri.

The usual practice when these rumours kick up is to text Ujiri and get his pro forma denial.

"You going to the Knicks?" "I'm going to [the Raptors' farm team] 905," Ujiri replied on Monday night.

You could practically hear him sighing through the phone.

Ujiri is going to the New York Knicks like I am going to the Pyongyang Gazette. Because there are some people no one wants to work for, regardless of how good the pay is.

There is a world in which this would be flattering and fun. That the guy running your team is considered so brilliant that just saying his name aloud conjures up visions of a winner.

Except that these phoney flirtations can have irritating consequences.

The last big rumour of this sort landed at almost the very minute the Raptors won the NBA championship back in June. The speculative deal was unique - the Washington Wizards were apparently prepared to give Ujiri huge money, full control and an ownership stake in the team.

That last bit is the one that caused problems.

Though the report was refuted almost immediately, it had already caught hold of the NBA's imagination. Ujiri was so good, Washington owner Ted Leonsis was prepared to make him a partner. No amount of saying it wasn't so would stop people from talking about it.

It caused problems with Kawhi Leonard's camp just as Ujiri was about to begin negotiating with them. Was Ujiri coming or going? Was he getting a piece of the Wizards? Was that a thing now?

It caused problems with the NBA, which was alarmed to hear its franchises might be carved up like Christmas hams in order to lure talent. A move in that direction would render the salary cap meaningless, and encourage the worst instincts of very rich people with very poor impulse control.

Ujiri didn't want to go to Washington. He didn't get an offer from Washington. But because Washington planted a rumour, Ujiri had to deal with the fallout from it.

There is one way to put a pin in these stories. Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment should make Ujiri the Raptors president for life.

It's not often done in modern sport, but there have been seminal figures at ambitious clubs who transcend board interviews and end-of-season appraisals.

Sir Alex Ferguson had that sort of job when he managed Manchester United. The Scottish manager agreed to a deal whereby he would always be the highest-paid employee of the club. If a player got a raise above that amount, Ferguson's salary automatically increased.

"It was simple. We just agreed that no player should be paid more money than me," Ferguson wrote in his autobiography. "We agreed in less time than it takes to read the previous sentence."

Ferguson was that extreme rarity - a non-player more important than the people who played. He was a winner. He just had that magic. He made the people around him winners, too.

When he retired from United, the team fell apart. He'd been holding it together by force of personality.

I would suggest that in Toronto, Ujiri has cast that same sort of spell. He is the most indispensable Raptor.

Ujiri is nearing the end of his second contract in Toronto, signed shortly after his initial burst of success.

In the normal run of things, this would involve a bit of haggling. There's no question MLSE wants to keep him, but there are targets to set and comparisons to make before paperwork can be shuffled.

I would suggest it not make them.

It is an easy thing for MLSE to make Ujiri the highest paid executive in the NBA. The Wizards were apparently willing to give him US$10-million a year. That's a decent starting point.

Ten million may sound like a lot to you, and it is. It's a ridiculous amount of money. But the Raptors are already paying US$10-million to Norman Powell.

And that is a lot more ridiculous.

Tell Ujiri that he has the job for as long as he wants it. No contract years or set amounts. No paper. Just a handshake on a forever job in which he is perpetually guaranteed to be the highest-paid executive in the NBA.

If New York blows someone's doors off with a US$15-million offer, the Toronto boss gets a dollar more.

Ujiri has proven he's worth it.

MLSE can afford it. The coaches, players and fans would be unanimously for it. And it puts to bed this carousel of 'Desperate Owner Invokes Ujiri's Name' bulletins.

All it will cost is money. And money is the one thing every NBA team has in abundance.

What every team is constantly searching for is magic. Imagine securing some of that commodity forever?

Associated Graphic

Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri speaks to the media during a news conference in Toronto in June.

NATHAN DENETTE/THE CANADIAN PRESS

How far is too far for Don Cherry?
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By SIMON HOUPT
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- On Sunday morning, as his network reeled from the latest ugly comments made by his marquee star Don Cherry, Bart Yabsley, the president of Sportsnet, scrambled onto Twitter to deliver his very best impersonation of the British actor Claude Rains.

In the classic Second World War drama Casablanca, of course, Rains plays Louis Renault, a Vichy police captain who, under pressure from his Nazi overlords, shuts down the nightclub belonging to Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart). "I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on here!" Renault tells Rick. A café employee runs up and hands him a wad of cash.

"Your winnings, sir," the employee says. "Oh, thank you very much!" Renault replies.

On Saturday night, as part of his annual Remembrance Day tribute to Canada's veterans on Hockey Night in Canada, Cherry ranted angrily that, in Mississauga, where he lives, and downtown Toronto "nobody wears the poppy." Jabbing his index finger repeatedly toward the camera, he said: "You people love - they come here, whatever it is, you love our way of life, you love our milk and honey, at least you could pay a couple of bucks for a poppy or something like that.

These guys pay for your way of life that you enjoy in Canada, these guys paid the biggest price."

In his statement posted on Sunday to the Twitter account of Sportsnet PR, Yabsley seemed as stunned as Capt. Renault: "Don's discriminatory comments are offensive and they do not represent our values and what we stand for as a network. We have spoken with Don about the severity of this issue and we sincerely apologize for these divisive remarks."

Is it possible that Yabsley, who was appointed Sportsnet president only last March, hadn't been read in on the Cherry file? Or that he'd always found something else to do on Saturday nights during the past 39 years, and somehow had just never caught Cherry on Coach's Corner?

Because how else could he be shocked! shocked! to find that Cherry might say something hateful? Cherry's offensiveness - and not just in his wardrobe choices - is the primary pillar of his brand.

In 1998, during CBC's coverage of the men's Olympic goldmedal hockey game in Nagano, Japan, Cherry referred to Quebec nationalists as "a bunch of whiners," and complained that the freestyle skier Jean-Luc Brassard, of GrandÎle, Que., who had said he regretted carrying the Canadian flag in the opening ceremonies because it had affected his performance in the moguls competition, was "a French guy, some skier nobody knows about." (Brassard had won the Olympic gold medal in the previous Winter Olympics.) Jim Byrd, who was then CBC's vice-president of English television, told the media that Cherry was a commentator, "hired to express his opinions, which are invariably strong ones and not necessarily those of the CBC."

Five years later, as the U.S.-led Iraq War broke out, Cherry castigated the Canadian government for refusing to send troops to the region. CBC executives reportedly gave him a mild warning to avoid talk of politics. For decades, he has railed against Europeans supposedly displacing Canadian hockey players in North American leagues: the sports equivalent of the xenophobic "white replacement" paranoia now sweeping across Europe and the United States.

Cherry's apologies have been rare and usually made only under extreme pressure - sometimes of the legal variety. On the opening night of the 2011-12 season, Cherry laced into three former NHL enforcers, calling them "pukes" and "hypocrites" for suggesting the league's fighting culture - of which Cherry is the greatest cheerleader - had caused the substance-abuse problems of fellow tough guys. It took more than a week, and the threat of a lawsuit from the three former players, before Cherry apologized.

On Sunday night, almost 24 hours after his "you people" comments, nobody had yet heard from Cherry. But his sidekick, Ron MacLean, who had sat in silence during Cherry's rant and then concluded the segment with an oddly robotic thumbs-up, offered an earnest apology that included references to Canada's Indigenous peoples.

Opening the broadcast of Rogers Hometown Hockey, of which he is the host, MacLean told viewers that Cherry's remarks "were hurtful, discriminatory [and] flat-out wrong."

"We know diversity is the strength of the country. We see it in the travels with our show, and with Hockey Night in Canada.

So - I owe you an apology, too," he said. "I sat there, did not catch it, did not respond. Kathryn Teneese of Ktunaxa First Nation once said, in any wrongdoing, the real key is recognition and acknowledgment. I wanted to let you know that first - and then you work on the relationship, so that it isn't divisive, so that something can be a unifying event. Idle No More was a great lesson to all of us. Last night was a really great lesson to Don and me. We were wrong, and I sincerely apologize, and I wanted to thank you for calling me and Don on that last night."

The air is thick these days with angst over what's known as cancel culture: the fear that someone might say one errant thing and be sentenced by social media to permanent exile.

But Cherry's comments about immigrants on Saturday night are just the latest and most nakedly xenophobic incident in a long career of bigotry.

For Rogers, which owns Sportsnet, the decision on what to do with him will likely come down to a matrix of ratings versus outrage: As long as the former stays above the latter, he's safe. And here in Canada, we don't have a history of boycotting advertisers, so Labatt, whose Budweiser brand is the name sponsor of Coach's Corner, may not say anything publicly. (Mind you, I tried getting hold of a Labatt spokesperson on Sunday and was met with radio silence, so the brewer is probably at least weighing its options.)

Still, you have to wonder: If these latest comments by Cherry aren't going to prompt his bosses to cut him loose, what would?

Associated Graphic

Over his career, Don Cherry has rarely apologized for his comments, and has usually only done so under extreme pressure.

DARREN CALABRESE/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Equestrian team could lose millions in funding if Olympic invite rescinded
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By ANDREW WILLIS
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


TORONTO -- Canada's equestrian team stands to lose millions of dollars in financing if a failed drug test from show jumper Nicole Walker costs her four-member squad its spot at this summer's Tokyo Olympics.

Canada's jumping team, past winners of five Olympic medals, qualified for the 2020 Games by finishing fourth at last summer's Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. The team is expected to lose that invitation if Panam Sports, organizer of the Lima Games, upholds the 26year-old Walker's positive test for a banned substance, cocaine. Pan Am rules state that a doping violation by any member of a group such as Canada's equestrians leads to a disqualification of the results obtained by the entire team.

The governing bodies for equestrian sports released the test result on Tuesday and said they were provisionally suspending Walker from all competitions. Walker is appealing the test results. The leader of Canada's jumping team in Lima, Mark Laskin, said Walker's positive test may have come from drinking coca tea, a legal and widely available pick-me-up beverage in Peru. In a news release on Tuesday, Walker said: "I was shocked and devastated to hear about these results. I do not use illicit drugs, ever."

Walker, 26, is the daughter of Belinda Stronach and her former husband, Don Walker, the chief executive of auto-parts maker Magna International Inc.

Stronach runs a global horse-racing business. Walker's grandfather, Frank Stronach, is a prominent racehorse owner and Magna's billionaire founder.

Missing out on a trip to the Tokyo Games would eliminate support for the jumping team from government-backed groups that support Olympic contenders, including Own The Podium, the organization that delivers federal government money to athletes, and the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC).

Over the past three years, Own The Podium gave $985,000 to Canada's equestrian team to help it prepare for Tokyo. Decisions on financing are made annually, and meant to sustain the team over the four-year cycle of the Games.

In the past, Own The Podium varied the amount of money it put into the equestrian program, reflecting its expectations of the team's potential. The crew that competed in the London Games in 2008 received $4.3-million, while the equestrian team that went to Rio de Janeiro four years later got $1.2-million. Every four years, Own The Podium gives a total of approximately $120-million to all Summer Olympic contenders, and another $25-million to participants in the Winter Games.

"Own the Podium's Summer technical team, along with our partners, are currently in the midst of our annual reviews with all Summer Olympic and Paralympic sports," spokesperson Chris Dornan said in an e-mail.

"During these reviews we will evaluate the sports' high-performance programs and the status of their athletes with evidence of medal potential for Tokyo 2020 and Paris 2024."

The COC supports riders by giving money to Equestrian Canada, the sport's national governing body. COC spokesperson Photi Sotiropoulos said on Wednesday that the group will take guidance from Own The Podium on future financing for the jumping team.

"Direct funding to Equestrian Canada is based on performance and potential podium success recommendations we receive from Own The Podium. At this time it is premature to be re-evaluating those funds," Sotiropoulos said in an e-mail.

He said: "We respect Equestrian Canada's and the athlete's rights to pursue any steps in defence of this matter and the outcome of any due process, and we will continue to monitor this case as it develops."

There were three other athletes on the Canadian Pan Am jumping team: Erynn Ballard from Ontario, Alberta-based Lisa Carlsen and Mario Deslauriers from Quebec.

Regulators at the international governing body of equestrian sports (known by its French acronym FEI) in Switzerland and Ottawa-based Equestrian Canada said on Tuesday that Walker turned in a positive result for Benzoylecgonine, a chemical that remains after the body metabolizes cocaine, in a test administered at the Pan Am Games on Aug. 7, after the final of the team-jumping competition.

Equestrian Canada said Tuesday in a news release that it is "firmly committed to clean sport.

We also believe in standing behind our athletes, and fully support Nicole during this challenging situation. Equestrian Canada will be working closely with Nicole and her legal team as appropriate next steps are determined."

Walker has already requested a hearing on her drug test before the Panam Sports Disciplinary Commission and hired Torontobased lawyer Tim Danson, who previously represented rider Eric Lamaze, a three-time Olympic medalist. Lamaze was unable to participate in the Atlanta and Sydney Olympics after testing positive for cocaine.

"It is too premature to comment on the merits of Nikki's case at this time," Danson said in a news release. "What I am confident in saying at this early stage is that Nikki does not use substances prohibited by WADA [the World Anti-Doping Agency]. She is incredibly careful and vigilant in this regard."

Positive drug tests from coca tea are a well-documented issue for athletes. In 2005, the Jockey Club in Britain commissioned a study of the beverage after several jockeys tested positive for cocaine and claimed it was a result of drinking coca tea. The British racing group found a single cup of coca tea can translate into a positive test for cocaine for 24 hours or more. In writing up the Jockey Club's study, the British Journal of Sport Medicine said: "Although the teabag packaging reports benefits such as increased energy and improved digestion, most people who sample the product report little subjective effect at all."

In the United States, a number of government employees, including police officers, blamed coca tea consumption during vacations in South America for subsequent positive drug tests at work. Some were fired, while others had the explanation accepted by employers and kept their jobs.

Associated Graphic

Nicole Walker, seen at an event in Calgary in June, has requested a hearing on her failed drug test before the Panam Sports Disciplinary Commission and has hired a lawyer.

JEFF MCINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Spezza knows his place on the Leafs - and he's honoured to have it
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By MARTY KLINKENBERG
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


TORONTO -- Scoring goals is nothing new for Jason Spezza. He has more than 350 of them over his appreciable career. The one he netted on Saturday was so special, however, that he snatched the puck as a keepsake.

"It was a bit of a childhood dream to score a goal for the Maple Leafs," the 36-year-old says Monday. "It definitely meant more to me than a lot of others. I saved it and will throw it in my collection."

It is Spezza's 17th year in the National Hockey League, but his first in Toronto and the first where he has watched more than he has played. He knew his would be a supporting role when he joined the team last summer, but it has taken time for him to adjust. A month into the season, it is easy to see he is growing more comfortable.

No matter the circumstances, his face is always the brightest in the locker room. He is fast with advice to younger players - in this case, all of them - and quick with a smile. He punctuates conversation with laughter.

He carries with him the selfawareness and wisdom that comes with longevity in professional sports. Not everyone has it. Those that do are special.

"This is a different challenge for me, but nobody is bigger than the game," Spezza says as he sits in front of his dressing stall at the practice rink in Etobicoke. "I think I am fortunate to still be playing."

He could have signed as a free agent elsewhere, but chose Toronto. He grew up in the city's suburbs and cheered for the Maple Leafs. His uncle George, who played against former Detroit Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman in his youth, brought him to his first game at the team's old arena, Maple Leaf Gardens. He worshipped one-time Leaf stars Doug Gilmour and Félix Potvin.

He listened to and watched every game he could.

"Not every one of them was on [television] when I was a kid," Spezza said. Across from him in the locker room, Gilmour's stall is preserved for posterity.

He has earned almost US$90million playing hockey, but accepted a league minimum US$700,000 this season. It was more than about coming home again.

"If the team wasn't as good as it is, I wouldn't have pursued it," Spezza says. "I think this team is really good."

Toronto has won just seven of its first 15 games and is eighth in the Eastern Conference. It has mostly struggled against better opponents and fattened up on also-rans. The Los Angeles Kings (5-9) are next up at Scotiabank Arena on Tuesday night.

Spezza played a significant role in the weekend's 4-3 victory at Philadelphia. He had an assist on the Maple Leafs' first goal, tied the game at 2-2 in the second period and scored during a 22-player shootout. It was easily his best performance thus far and came with John Tavares, who is expected to return on Tuesday, sidelined with a broken finger.

"I am proud to be here and am fighting to stay in the lineup," Spezza says. "It is nice to contribute, and I am hoping to build off of that. It is a different kind of challenge for me, but I think I can add a lot. I feel I am getting better each night."

He has 358 goals and is only 11 points shy of 1,000 over 1,154 games - in the regular season and playoffs combined - dating back to 2002.

His ascension to NHL stardom was determined from the time he began to play in the Ontario Hockey League as an underage 15-year-old. That was in 1998. His two youngest teammates on Toronto's roster, Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner, were oneyear-olds then.

Spezza was chosen second over all by Ottawa in the 2001 NHL entry draft and played for the Senators for 11 seasons. He has spent the past five years in Dallas, has been a captain and has been on teams that reached the postseason 10 times. It bothered him when he was benched for the season opener, but he has shrugged it off nicely.

He has yet to win a Stanley Cup and knows the clock is continuing to click away.

In 2007, the Senators lost to the Anaheim Ducks in a fivegame Stanley Cup final. Last year, the Stars were beaten by the St. Louis Blues in double overtime in Game 7 of the second round.

"After we lost and I saw St.

Louis win the Cup, I felt farther away from it than I ever have," Spezza says. "It really stung.

Then I signed with Toronto and now I have hope again.

"When you are young, you think you are going to get a shot at it in the playoffs every year. I am more desperate now."

The Leafs have lost in the first round in each of the past three years but more is expected now.

They have struggled, but are only 15 games into an 82-game season.

"Some teams click from the first day and some teams take longer," Spezza says. "There is no timeline. You know when you are a well-oiled machine. We have had tastes of it, but haven't done it consistently enough.

"We don't know yet what a good game feels like."

As he nears the end of his career, Spezza works hard to keep a spot on the team. On nights when he hasn't dressed, he has worked out beneath the arena until minutes before the game.

"It has become a necessity for me," he says. "It is a separating factor and keeps you around the league a lot longer. I'm trying to slow down the curve."

He knows his place on the Maple Leafs, and he is fine with it.

Stampeders must clear an extra hurdle in push to defend their Grey Cup title
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By DAN RALPH
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B10


The road to a fourth straight Grey Cup title will be a little longer than usual for Bo Levi Mitchell and the Calgary Stampeders.

Calgary (12-6) plays host to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers (11-7) in the West Division semi-final Sunday at McMahon Stadium. The Stampeders reached the previous three Grey Cup finals - winning last year - with a victory in the conference final after finishing first in the standings. But Calgary was second this year behind the Saskatchewan Roughriders (13-5), who clinched the top spot for the first time since 2009 with a 23-13 home win over the Edmonton Eskimos on Saturday. Now, the Stampeders will have to win an extra playoff game to make a fourth consecutive Grey Cup appearance.

"We're a team that fights," Calgary head coach Dave Dickenson said. "We can't blow anybody out, we're not good enough, but I just feel like our team wins.

"Let's be honest here ... at the beginning of the year, I don't think anyone would suggest the Calgary Stampeders, with all the changes we had, would have 12 wins. I'm proud of that."

However, Winnipeg won the season series 2-1. The Bombers captured the past meeting 29-28 on Oct. 25 in dramatic fashion, outscoring the Stampeders 10-0 in the fourth quarter to erase a 28-19 deficit.

And Winnipeg did it with welltravelled veteran Zach Collaros under centre. Collaros began the season with Saskatchewan, but gave way to backup Cody Fajardo after suffering a concussion early in the Riders' season-opening loss in Hamilton.

Saskatchewan lost that game 23-17, but caught fire under Fajardo, who recently signed a contract extension with the Riders.

Last week, he was named their outstanding player award nominee.

In July, Saskatchewan dealt Collaros to Toronto, which sent the veteran to Winnipeg on Oct.

9. Collaros started the Bombers' regular-season finale with Chris Streveler (ankle) ailing.

Collaros's numbers weren't spectacular - 22-of-28 for 221 yards with two TDs and an interception - but the eight-year veteran showed glimpses of his 2015 form with Hamilton, when he was regarded as the favourite for the CFL's outstanding player award before suffering a seasonending knee surgery.

Winnipeg head coach Mike O'Shea hasn't formally announced his playoff starter, but the expectation is Collaros will get the nod.

Home field is definitely a big deal in this game, considering the Stampeders were 7-2 at McMahon, including a 37-33 home win over the Bombers on Oct. 19. Winnipeg was a stellar 8-1 at IG Field - and 2-0 there against the Stamps - but 3-6 on the road.

Mitchell has a career 11-3 regular-season record against Winnipeg, and the Stampeders boast a 68-34 mark against the Bombers at McMahon. He's also 5-1 as a playoff starter.

Winnipeg's strength is its CFLbest ground attack (147.9 yards a game), which was anchored by league rushing leader Andrew Harris (1,380 yards, 6.1-yard average, four TDs). Streveler certainly added to that (726 yards, 5.7-yard average, 12 TDs).

But in Collaros, the Bombers have a veteran quarterback who has not only won in the CFL - 35-32 career record as a starter - but can make the big throw downfield. The biggest concern with the 31-year-old American is his health, as since 2015, he's battled numerous injuries, including concussions.

Meanwhile in the East Division, both the Montreal Alouettes (10-8) and Edmonton (8-10) have known for some time they'd meet in the conference semi-final. They split their season series 1-1, each winning at home.

It was a resounding regular season for Montreal under interim first-year head coach Khari Jones. He assumed the head job just before the start of the 2019 campaign after Mike Sherman was fired and handled headcoaching and offensive co-ordinator duties.

Montreal will play host to its first home playoff game since 2014 and has a record 26-9 postseason mark in La Belle Province.

This will be the fourth time Edmonton has crossed over into the East Division playoffs, but the first since 2016.

The Eskimos have a 20-30 record as a road playoff team. They played Montreal once before in the postseason, with the Alouettes winning 36-26 in the 2008 East final.

West Division teams are 4-7 as the East crossover squad.

Edmonton opened the season with a 32-25 victory against Montreal on June 14. Starter Trevor Harris had a stellar Eskimos debut, completing 32-of-41 passes for 447 yards with three TDs, with Ricky Collins registering nine catches for 175 yards.

Running back C.J. Gable ran for 154 yards on 20 carries.

Quarterback Vernon Adams Jr.

has been instrumental in Montreal reaching the CFL playoffs after a four-year drought. The 26year-old native of Pasadena, Calif., opened the season as Antonio Pipkin's backup and was pressed into duty after Pipkin was injured.

Adams Jr. will be making his first playoff start Sunday.

On July 20, Adams Jr. threw for 191 yards and a TD while rushing for 44 yards on seven carries in leading Montreal to a 20-10 home victory over Edmonton.

That time around, Montreal's defence held Harris to 271 passing yards (29-of-43 attempts) and intercepted him twice. Gable ran for just 33 yards on eight carries.

More than a goalie, Andersen is Leafs' rock
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A shaky team leaves the Dane under constant fire, but you won't hear him complaining
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By MARTY KLINKENBERG
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- A s teammates watched anxiously on Saturday night, Frederik Andersen remained calm in the longest shootout in Toronto history. The Maple Leafs goalie stopped all but one point-blank shot in 11 rounds in a much-needed victory.

"I have had more success not thinking about what guys would do, so I tried to just stay in the moment," Andersen said Wednesday at the team's practice rink in suburban Etobicoke. "I am at my best when I keep things really simple.

"Less is more with me."

The 30-year-old Dane is 6-0-2 over his past eight games and Toronto seems to be righting itself after a shaky start to the season.

The team is 8-5-3 as it heads into Thursday night's meeting with the Vegas Golden Knights (9-5-2) at Scotiabank Arena.

"The better he plays, the more confidence he gives us," said Mike Babcock, the Maple Leafs coach. "He is a leader for us. The guys like him and play hard for him.

"It is nice when you make a mistake and it doesn't end up in the net."

A pleasant low talker, Andersen is like Muzak in the dressing room.

He has a calming influence, which is a great quality for someone who faces a constant barrage of shots. An NHL's goalie's job is to manage mayhem as it swirls around him, and at that he is splendid.

He has 61 saves in the past two games, both narrow victories. Toronto trailed in both, before Andersen locked things down.

When the Leafs fell behind the Flyers 3-2 on Saturday, Andersen told his teammates, "Enough is enough. We are going to win this one."

"His demeanour in the net calms everyone down," veteran defenceman Jake Muzzin said.

"That is who he is. He has a calming effect on the team."

Andersen played three seasons in Anaheim before he was traded to the Maple Leafs in June of 2016 for a first-round pick in that summer's draft and a second-round choice the next year. The deal was a steal. In two of his first three seasons in Toronto, he faced more shots and made more saves than any other goalie in the NHL.

He went 107-54-26 over that span and largely because of him the team reached the playoffs each year. It is the first time that has happened in three successive seasons since 2003-04. And with all respect to Auston Matthews and his 12 goals, Andersen has been the Maple Leafs' best player over all this season. The fellow fans call Freddie has been steady, if not spectacular, in all but two starts.

"We have so much trust in him," John Tavares said. "We know that if something happens, he will make a big save."

The captain looked rusty on Tuesday night when he returned to the lineup after missing seven games with a broken finger. History suggests that should not be much of a concern. There have been a few pleasant surprises on an already talent-laden roster - namely that of Alexander Kerfoot and Russian rookie Ilya Mikheyev. Tyson Barrie has started slowly but is showing signs of life.

The defenceman acquired from Colorado in the offseason drew some ahhs from fans on Tuesday as he skated rings around the Los Angeles Kings.

Andersen is under contract through the 2021 season at a very reasonable US$5-million a year.

He carries the expectations of a team and city on his broad shoulders. He appears to be built for it; at 6 foot 4 and nearly 240 pounds, he is the size of an NFL linebacker.

It is his mental makeup that allows him to flourish when things appear to be deteriorating around him. And he is the same off the ice as on.

He is surrounded by the media in the dressing room almost every day. He is accommodating and patient and never rattled by inquisitors. He talks up a blue streak, but afterward you look at your notebook and scratch your head while trying to find a quote.

He is not terribly colourful, but that is not a crime.

"He shows a little more emotion and fire on the golf course," Muzzin said. "That is something for you."

When asked about it, Andersen thinks for a bit.

"I just like being out there," Andersen says. "I like being active and to stay outside."

Da-dum.

He is the guy who settles everyone down in the middle of the maelstrom.

"You have to be who you are," Andersen says. "It works for me.

There are 23 guys in the room. Everybody can't be the same."

Associated Graphic

Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen makes a save against the Flyers on Saturday in Philadelphia. Andersen is 6-0-2 over his past eight games as Toronto corrects its course after a lacklustre start to the season.

ERIC HARTLINE/USA TODAY SPORTS

Wolfpack lands big star in Williams
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Toronto signs star to two-year deal worth $9-million as it prepares to enter Super League
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By NEIL DAVIDSON
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16


The Toronto Wolfpack proved doubters wrong by managing to establish a toehold for a littleknown sport in North America.

Now the transatlantic rugby league team is opening the vault in the hope that All Blacks star Sonny Bill Williams will put it on the worldwide map as the Wolfpack prepare for their step up into England's top-tier Super League come February.

The Wolfpack confirmed Thursday that the 34-year-old Williams, a star in both of rugby's codes, has signed a two-year contract.

The deal is worth a total of $9million, with Williams getting an ownership stake, according to a source granted confidentiality because they were not in a position to publicly divulge the information.

"Having someone of his talent join the Wolfpack will greatly raise the profile of the club, and also help move the game forward globally," Bob Hunter, the Wolfpack chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

"Sonny is a phenomenal athlete and we believe he is rugby's LeBron James and his addition to our league is comparable to when David Beckham joined L.A. Galaxy."

The Wolfpack may not be finished yet.

England's Daily Telegraph reports Toronto is also interested in Manu Tuilagi, a Mack Truck of a centre who currently plays for Leicester and England.

Williams has won championships in both rugby union and league and has real star power in the sport around the globe.

Williams has competed at three Rugby World Cups - winning two - and was part of the New Zealand rugby sevens team at the 2016 Rio Olympics, partly rupturing an Achilles tendon in the All Blacks' first match.

"Toronto Wolfpack is a club that represents Toronto which is a very multicultural city," Williams said in a club statement.

"The club has big ambitions and big goals.

"I want to be part of all this and do all I can to help reach those lofty goals.

"On the field I'd like to bring high-quality play and do all I can for the betterment of the team.

Off the field I'd like to use my experience to mentor the young players and be helpful where I am needed. Super League will be a new challenge and one I'm looking forward to. It will be a new experience and one I'm ready to embrace."

Williams, whose résumé also includes an unbeaten stint as a heavyweight pro boxer, is fresh off the All Blacks' third-place finish at the World Cup in Japan.

He has won two rugby-league championships in Australia's NRL.

At 6 foot 3 and some 238 pounds, Williams is a powerful runner who has an uncanny ability to offload the ball to a teammate even when getting gangtackled. He can also be a bruising defender.

"We have signed one of the highest-profile rugby players, if not sports stars in the world and he will enhance the world of rugby in Toronto and certainly push the brand of the Wolfpack onto another level," Wolfpack coach Brian McDermott said.

"The main point of excitement for our club is that we are signing a great rugby league player who has the hunger to be successful in Super League much as he was in the [Australia's] NRL and rugby union."

Like Major League Soccer, English rugby league has a salary cap with a partial exemption for marquee players.

In rugby league, the salary cap was £2-million ($3.38-million) in 2019.

Teams can have two marquee players with each of their salary cap hits restricted to £150,000.

Toronto's marquee players in 2019 were Australian forward Darcy Lussick and Samoan international back Ricky Leutele.

Williams made his All Blacks debut in November 2010 against England and has won 58 caps (including 16 off the bench).

His record in the famed black jersey is 52-5-1 with the only losses coming against South Africa (in 2011), Australia (2015 and '17), the British and Irish Lions (2017) and England (at the recent World Cup).

Ten of his 65 career points came at the World Cup against Canada. with a try in New Zealand's 79-15 win in 2011 and another in the 63-0 victory in Oita on Oct. 2 The Wolfpack started life in the third tier of English rugby league in 2017, winning promotion to the second-tier Betfred Championship in its first season. It won promotion to the Super League in October with a 24-6 win over Featherstone Rovers in the Million Pound Game.

Associated Graphic

New Zealand's Sonny Bill Williams makes a break during a World Cup match against Wales at Tokyo Stadium on Nov. 1. Williams has won championships in both rugby union and league.

DAN MULLAN/GETTY IMAGES

Nurse calls out Siakam for fouls: 'He hasn't been really smart'
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By RACHEL BRADY
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


TORONTO -- T oronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse made it crystal clear on Tuesday that he is displeased with Pascal Siakam's recent pattern of getting into foul trouble, and he wants it to stop.

The Raptors star power forward, who just inked a four-year, US$130-million max contract extension, is leading the Raps in average points (26) and rebounds (8.5). Yet he has also been fouling too early and too often.

With Toronto's season just six games old, Siakam has already fouled out twice, and tallied at least five fouls four times.

"He hasn't been really smart, if you want me to be honest," Nurse told reporters after Tuesday's practice.

Siakam fouled out of Saturday's loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. It also happened in the season opener against the New Orleans Pelicans, and he had to miss the overtime period of a game his team eventually found a way to win without him (although it may have been overshadowed that night by his 34 points). His tendency to pick up two fouls early in the first quarter has forced Nurse to sit him down for a breather earlier than desired in a few cases, throwing off the team's player rotation.

"He just needs to knock it off," Nurse said. "I don't remember him being a foul-prone guy at all. For some reason, all of a sudden, he's picking up two early in games and most of them are silly."

"It's not like he's being put in difficult situations. A lot of them are 30 feet from the basket and he's just got his hands on him.

He's got to adjust."

Siakam owned up to it on Tuesday, and said he needs to be better.

"Obviously there's some fouls that I can avoid and not take because it's definitely important for me to be in the game," said the 25-year-old from Cameroon. "It's a part of growing and if you guys know me - I'm always about improving and evolving. And I'm excited about it. I'm excited about the opportunity to learn and by the end of the season I can look at these games and say they prepared me for something bigger."

Nurse said the coaching staff has been doing some extensive film study with Siakam on this trend, stressing that he needs to be very aware of what he's doing with his hands.

Siakam said he needs to improve his defensive readiness. He must move his feet more efficiently so he's not caught off guard when an offensive player nears him, then he will be less likely to put his hands on the guy he's guarding.

Siakam also acknowledged that he is not yet seasoned - like many veteran players are - in how to effectively talk to officials on the court.

"I'm learning, just knowing how to talk to the refs. Even if you want to say something find a good way to say it," Siakam said.

"Know their names, or little things I'm learning now that I didn't have to worry about before.

"Like I said, all part of the game and part of growing as a player. And I think it's important that I take that seriously."

To make up for the lost minutes he has sacrificed in some instances of foul trouble, Siakam has found ways to go on lategame scoring bursts at times this season. But that's not a sustainable way forward.

Studying game film, and gaining a better understanding of what the refs are and are not calling - then making adjustments - is a top priority right now. He must limit his fouls and be able to stay on the floor. His first chance to show his improvement in that area for the Raptors (4-2) will be Wednesday night against the visiting Sacramento Kings (2-5).

"It's something that's going on right now and I have to find a way to be better at it. It's on me," Siakam said.

"It doesn't matter what the ref does or what happens. It's gotta be on me to make sure that I adjust properly to what's being called out there and that I'm ready to help my team win, and that's by being on the floor and not fouling out."

Chiefs clinch 11th-hour win over Vikings
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Kansas City comes out on top against Minnesota thanks to late-game field goals
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By DAVE SKRETTA
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


KANSAS CITY -- Harrison Butker watched his 44yard field goal split the uprights, the clocks inside Arrowhead Stadium reading zero, and the Chiefs kicker turned and sprinted the other way in celebration.

The first person to join him?

Patrick Mahomes.

The reigning league MVP, who missed his second straight game while recovering from a dislocated kneecap, looked just fine as he joined Butker and the rest of his Kansas City teammates in a midfield mob after their heart-stopping 26-23 victory over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

"I was sprinting down, maybe just from my soccer background growing up - that's what you do when you score," said Butker, who thought the winner may have been tipped. "When I was going I saw Patrick, and I wanted to embrace him and I'm like, 'Nah, he can't get hurt.' " Matt Moore started in Mahomes's place and threw for 275 yards and a touchdown, and he made the crucial plays when they mattered. He hit favourite target Tyreek Hill to convert a key third down and set up Butker's career best-tying 54-yard field goal to knot the game, then found Hill again a couple minutes later to make the winner a little more manageable.

"I thought, Matt, that was a gutsy performance by him," said Chiefs coach Andy Reid, whose team snapped a three-game skid at Arrowhead Stadium. "He took a couple of licks there, and he got back up and finished. But just him calming the storm I thought was good."

Hill finished with six catches for 140 yards for the Chiefs (6-3), including a spectacular TD grab, while Damien Williams ran for 125 yards - most of it on a 91-yard touchdown run.

Kirk Cousins threw for 220 yards and three touchdowns for the Vikings (6-3), although he struggled to deal with the Chiefs' blitzes late in the game. Dalvin Cook was held to 71 yards rushing while top wide receiver Stefon Diggs had a single catch for four yards.

The Chiefs largely controlled the first half, building a 10-7 lead with the ball in the closing minutes. But they proceeded to go three-and-out, the Vikings marched downfield for a tying field goal, then got the ball back when Mecole Hardman fumbled the opening kickoff of the second half.

Suddenly, it was the Vikings who had taken control. They needed just five plays to punch it into the end zone, despite a holding penalty setting them back.

Amir Abdullah finished it with a 17-yard catch in which nobody was within 10 yards of him.

Hardman hurt the Chiefs again by failing to call a fair catch on a punt downed at their three. But that flub was rendered irrelevant when Williams took a handoff, found a gaping hole on the left side of the line and made the only safety in front of him miss on a 91yard touchdown run.

"We misfitted a little bit," Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said. "We had a pressure coming off the outside, we got a little wide and then we missed tackles."

Minnesota answered in the seesaw affair.

Leaning heavily on Cook, the league's leading rusher, the Vikings marched 75 yards without facing third down until the final play. That's when Cousins hit Kyle Rudolph from three yards out for the score, taking advantage of a Kansas City defence with just 10 players on the field.

After trading punts, the Chiefs put together another drive. Moore hit Hill to convert a key third down, and Butker matched his career long with a 54-yard field goal with 2 minutes 30 seconds to go.

It was a monumental kick - and he had another coming a couple minutes later.

Associated Graphic

Chiefs quarterback Matt Moore throws a pass against the Minnesota Vikings in Kansas City on Sunday. Moore threw for 275 yards and landed a touchdown in the game.

JAMIE SQUIRE/ GETTY IMAGES

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Alberta exit from CPP could cost more than Kenney says, experts warn
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By PATRICK BRETHOUR, DAVID PARKINSON
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Alberta Premier Jason Kenney contends that withdrawing from the Canada Pension Plan would return billions of dollars a year to the province, but experts question how large the savings would be from going it alone.

They warn that exiting the national plan could be complicated and costly, and that having a separate provincial plan could discourage workers in other parts of Canada from coming to Alberta, threatening the labour mobility that has helped fuel the energy sector's growth.

Mr. Kenney is pushing the idea of an Alberta pension plan as part of his United Conservative Party government's strategy of seeking more autonomy in light of what it views as hostility from Ottawa and the rest of the country toward the energy industry. The Premier says that with its own pension plan, Alberta could dramatically slash premiums, returning billions to the province's workers and businesses while maintaining national-level benefits.

The core of what Mr. Kenney calls a "compelling case" for an independent Alberta pension plan is the fact that the province's work force is younger than those of other provinces, which means Albertans currently pay more into the CPP and draw fewer benefits compared with the national average. According to Statistics Canada, the median age of Alberta's population is 37.1 years, nearly four years below the national median. Its population aged 65 and older represents 13 per cent of the total population, compared with 18 per cent for the rest of the country.

"Because we are by far the youngest population in the country, we make a net contribution of approximately $3-billion [annually] to the CPP, meaning we are paying higher premiums than we otherwise would," Mr. Kenney said in a speech on Saturday.

Alberta's younger population means a provincial plan would require lower contributions from workers and employers, said Fred Vettese, former chief actuary for pensions company Morneau Shepell.

"They do benefit from exiting the [Canada Pension] Plan," he said. "It actually makes some sense."

Fraser Institute economist Jason Clemens - co-author of a study earlier this year laying out the case for an Alberta pension plan - said in an interview that a worker and their employer could see their combined annual contributions fall by as much as $2,183. But in the rest of Canada (excluding Quebec, which has had its own pension plan for more than five decades), combined contributions could rise by as much $367 a year to make up for the loss of Alberta's relatively young contributor base. The Fraser Institute's calculations assume that obligations to pay existing pensions would offset any CPP assets Alberta would take when it departed.

Mr. Kenney has asserted that Alberta would exit the CPP with $40-billion. That represents the value of Albertans' share of assets inside the CPP as of a 2015 actuarial valuation, according to Harrison Fleming, Mr. Kenney's deputy press secretary. That leaves open the question of whether Alberta and Ottawa would split the financial obligation to pay the existing pensions and what share each would have. Mr. Fleming said that would be determined through negotiations.

The path to an Alberta pension plan may not be easy.

Experts say Alberta's share of the existing CPP could be calculated any number of ways, and would be subject to negotiations with Ottawa and the other provinces.

"All of that's left to be determined," said Wilfrid Laurier University professor Tammy Schirle, who says Alberta may be overestimating the benefits of setting up its own plan.

She said individuals' contributions are aligned with the payments they will receive. So, equating what retirees receive today with contributions from those currently in the work force is an apples-to-oranges comparison.

She added that the volatility of the energy sector would tend to reduce any projected savings in contributions.

Alex Laurin, director of research at the C.D. Howe Institute in Toronto, agreed that contribution rates could be lower under an Alberta pension plan, but the rest of Canada would not likely face significant increases in CPP contributions.

Under the Canada Pension Plan Act, any province needs to give three years' notice before leaving, and prove that its pension plan would provide comparable benefits.

The process has never been tested; Quebec is the only province outside the CPP, but it opted out at the plan's inception in 1965.

Alberta would need to negotiate the terms of the exit, a process that would be fraught with uncertainties.

"There would be a number of details that would need to be sorted through, including the calculation and transfer of existing pension liabilities and the calculation and transfer of any pension assets relating to those liabilities," the federal Department of Finance said in a statement to The Globe and Mail. The department said any agreement would also need to ensure the portability of benefits to and from other parts of the country, to encourage labour mobility.

Experts expressed concern that a separate Alberta pension may complicate and potentially discourage the movement of workers - a key element of the province's boom years. Alberta would need to negotiate with Ottawa and with Quebec to ensure that an Alberta pension could move with a worker to other parts of the country, and vice versa.

Mr. Kenney said the Alberta Investment Management Corp., which manages $110billion in public sector pension funds, would be in charge of an Alberta pension plan's portfolio. But the province would still need to set up infrastructure to administer it.

When Ontario proposed launching its own plan in 2014, the province spent about $70-million just to develop it and set up an administrative structure. It abandoned the plan in 2016, after the federal government announced an expansion of the CPP.

Alex Mazer of retirement plan provider Common Wealth, who advised the Ontario government on its plan, said the cost would have been much higher had the government proceeded. He noted that Ontario set aside $400-million in credit for the project. He said Alberta would face "hundreds of millions of dollars" in additional costs to set up a plan.

Fifteen years ago, Alberta rejected a proposal to have its own pension plan. But the political climate has shifted to the province's disadvantage, according to the Premier's Office, making it necessary for the government to appoint a panel to conduct a new examination. Mr. Kenney has promised that any move to leave the CPP would have to be approved in a referendum.

On Tuesday, the Premier noted that a provincial pension plan and other proposals the panel will examine are powers that Quebec has "enjoyed for decades."

"I think Albertans deserve at least a good a deal as Quebec has," Mr. Kenney said. "We'll see what Albertans think about that."

Semafo suspends operations at Burkina Faso mine after deadly attack
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By NICOLAS VAN PRAET, GEOFFREY YORK, NIALL MCGEE
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


MONTREAL, JOHANNESBURG, TORONTO -- Montreal-based gold miner Semafo Inc.

has halted operations at its Boungou gold mine in eastern Burkina Faso as the fallout widens from one of the worst-ever terrorist attacks on employees of a Canadian company.

Semafo said on Thursday it was suspending work at its flagship mine in the West African country, a day after insurgents ambushed a convoy carrying its employees to the mine site.

Burkina Faso's President, Roch Marc Kaboré, said 38 people were killed, increasing the previous day's tally.

More than 60 others were injured, and dozens are still believed to be unaccounted for after the raid, which occurred on a road 40 kilometres from the mine site.

"This is the deadliest incident targeting the mining industry, or any private businesses, in the Sahel since the 2013 In Amenas hostage crisis," Vincent Rouget, an analyst at Control Risks Group, told Reuters.

Sahel is the name for a region of western and north-central Africa extending from Senegal eastward to Sudan that has a large concentration of mining operations.

Extremist groups, mostly Islamist insurgents, also proliferate in the area.

Even in a country gripped by escalating violence, the attack has provoked deep shock and anger.

The strike highlights the increasing security threat for citizens and companies in Burkina Faso, which has been plunged into crisis amid an escalating wave of violent attacks by militants in recent months.

It is also raising new security concerns at Canadian mines and other mining operations across West Africa.

In a televised speech to the country on Thursday, Mr. Kaboré declared three days of official mourning for Semafo workers killed in the ambush. The President called on the country to provide "defence volunteers" to help battle the terrorists.

"These despicable acts, from another age, are aimed at sowing psychosis in our people and destabilizing our democracy," Mr.

Kaboré said in his speech. The country's ruling party, the People's Movement for Progress, called on the government to declare a state of emergency.

Semafo said it is suspending operations at its Boungou gold mine out of respect for the victims and "to ensure the highest levels of operational safety." It employs about 1,200 people at the mine, according to its website. About 100 of those are expatriates, including Quebeckers.

"We are devastated by this unprecedented attack. Our sincerest sympathies go out to the families and colleagues of the victims," Semafo chief executive officer Benoit Desormeaux said in a statement.

"Our priority is their safety, security and well-being. Given the scale of the attack, it will take some time to properly deal with it and we will do our utmost to support all those affected."

Security experts and people familiar with the company said the move to suspend work amounted to an admission that Semafo can't operate the mine securely.

Employees travelling to the mine site in the future will question whether they are also in danger, and many supplies to Boungou also have to come in over the road where the attack occurred, they said.

"You never want to halt a project if you can," said Charles Dumbrille, chief risk officer at consultancy IN-D-TEL International Inc. "But your main priority is to protect your people and assets."

Semafo shares fell 5 per cent in Toronto trading after an 11per-cent decline on Wednesday.

Many other Canadian gold producers active in the country also declined, although a sell-off in bullion for the day was also a factor. Prices for Iamgold Corp. fell nearly 7 per cent, Teranga Gold Corp. fell 5 per cent and B2Gold Corp. fell 5 per cent.

Vancouver-based B2Gold Corp. employs 75 local people at two exploration projects in Burkina Faso, about 200 kilometres away from where the Semafo incident occurred.

"We haven't had any problems. None of the mines in that region have. That doesn't mean you don't prepare for any eventuality," said Clive Johnson, B2Gold's chief executive.

B2 also operates a large mine in neighbouring Mali, which employs 2,000 people.

"We will be discussing our security practices in Mali and Burkina Faso," Mr. Johnson said, adding the company feels its people are secure.

Toronto-based Iamgold operates the Essakane mine in northeastern Burkina Faso, some 300 kilometres away from where Wednesday's attack occurred, according to the company.

In a regulatory disclosure earlier this year, Iamgold noted that terrorist activity has increased worldwide.

Essakane is a "visible and valuable target to a terrorist organization due to the presence of a high number of expatriates," the company wrote in the document.

The five-bus convoy was under military escort, Semafo said, and was carrying company employees, contractors and suppliers. Local media reports, citing security sources, said the military vehicle leading the convoy was struck by an improvised explosive device.

After the explosion, gunmen opened fire, targeting not only the military escort but also people in the buses, the reports said.

There had been at least two previous attacks on the road where Wednesday's ambush occurred, including one last December in which four police officers and another person were killed.

After separate attacks in August, 2018, Semafo said it would take additional steps to ensure the security of its staff. It said all expatriate employees travelling between Burkina Faso's capital of Ouagadougou and Boungou mine would be transported by helicopter while a military force on the ground would protect its local employees on roads.

"It's disconcerting to see that the company sent hundreds of local workers on buses with an escort that seems fairly limited," said Louis Audet Gosselin, a specialist on Burkino Faso with Montreal's CÉGEP ÉdouardMontpetit.

"The optics are catastrophic."

Semafo, a mid-sized gold producer with a market capitalization of about $1.1-billion, operates two gold mines in Burkina Faso: Boungou and Mana.

The company did not make anyone available on Thursday to answer questions.

Ontario renewed funding push for Ring of Fire roads as viability of venture questioned
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By NIALL MCGEE, JEFF GRAY
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The Ontario government appealed to Ottawa this summer to split a $1.6-billion construction bill for roads into the Ring of Fire region, despite mounting evidence the minerals project in the province's North isn't economically viable.

Documents reviewed by The Globe and Mail show that Greg Rickford, Ontario's Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, sent an e-mail in July to a number of federal ministers asking for Ottawa to kick in as much as $779-million to roughly match Ontario's contribution.

As part of his business case for investing in the Ring of Fire, Mr. Rickford referenced a number of often-cited huge financial projections about the project that have no supporting evidence.

Last month, a Globe investigation uncovered serious cracks in the investment case for any branch of the government to invest in the Ring of Fire, an area that contains an undeveloped nickel and chromite discovery in a giant swamp in Northern Ontario about 550 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay.

"The combined gross value of known nickel and chromite deposits has been estimated at over $60-billion," wrote Mr.

Rickford in the e-mail that went to federal ministers responsible for infrastructure, environment and Indigenous services.

James Franklin, a well-known geologist who came up with the $60-billion estimate in 2013 in reference to the value of minerals in the ground at the site, has backed away from the figure. He told The Globe it was no more than an educated guess, didn't account for mineral extraction costs and should not be used by Ontario to pitch the project.

In a September interview, Mr.

Rickford said some of the estimates around the Ring of Fire's potential "have been too big for anybody to believe." But his recent correspondence with Ottawa also contains statements that appear to hype the project.

The Ring of Fire, he wrote, has the potential to be "one of the most significant mineral developments in Ontario in over a century," represents "an unparalleled opportunity" for Canada's mining sector, and is a project that could support mining in the region "for upward of 200 years."

When asked both about the $60-billion valuation and the pronouncements about the Ring's prospects, Sydney Stonier, a spokesperson for Mr. Rickford, wrote in an e-mail that "mining opportunities in the Ring of Fire region represent unprecedented opportunities of national significance."

Discovered in 2007 and 2008, the Ring of Fire contains mostly early-stage deposits of chromite - a mineral used in the production of stainless steel. The area also contains small amounts of nickel, platinum and palladium. While it was once the epicentre of a prospecting rush, the Ring's fortunes have faded in the past five years.

The investment case has become increasingly shaky in the face of multibillion-dollar cost hurdles, a worldwide supply glut in the chromite market and environmental concerns from First Nations in Ontario.

The engineering challenge alone to build access roads and bridges connecting the swampy, boggy region of Ontario to the provincial highway network, some 300 kilometres south, is considered immense.

In his e-mail to federal ministers, Mr. Rickford said the latest cost projections on roads are based on a "preliminary estimate," prepared by engineering consultants Hatch Ltd. and Morrison Hershfield. Their work builds on a previous early-stage study done by Cleveland-Cliffs Inc., formerly Cliffs Natural Resources, a senior mining company that gave up on the Ring about five years ago.

While Ontario has been a longterm champion of the Ring of Fire, the federal government has so far refused to kick in major funds.

After winning election in 2015, Justin Trudeau's Liberal government slashed its internal valuation on the project to as little as $31-billion, documents obtained by The Globe under a Freedom of Information request showed in 2016. The Trudeau government eventually scratched out that revised estimate, but the new figure was redacted in the documents.

Mr. Franklin, former chief scientist for the Geological Survey of Canada, recently told The Globe that the investment case around the Ring is unknown.

He was so annoyed that the Ontario government was endlessly recycling his back-of-the-envelope $60-billion figure that he contacted the government a few years ago and pleaded with it to stop using the calculation, "because we all know the unreliability of my number."

But politicians of all stripes have repeatedly noted the $60billion estimate to push the investment case for investing taxpayer money into infrastructure for the project. Former Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne used it in a letter in 2013 to then-prime minister Stephen Harper, asking the federal government to split the $2.25-billion cost of roads and industrial infrastructure. When she renewed her plea in 2016 to Mr. Trudeau's government, she repeated the figure once more.

U.S.-based Cleveland-Cliffs invested more than $500-million between 2009 and 2014 into the region and made a big push to build a giant chromite mine.

But facing escalating costs, crumbling commodity prices and environmental opposition from First Nations, Cliffs walked away.

When it exited in 2014, the company sold its assets to a tiny junior exploration company, Noront Resources Ltd., at a 95-percent discount. Five years on, Noront's own future appears bleak.

While it has four chromite projects in various stages of early development, it isn't in a position to move forward on any of them.

Even Noront's most promising asset, a small nickel project called Eagle's Nest, is at least five years away from being a mine. As of the end of June, Toronto-based Noront was holding $4.1-million in cash compared with US$47.8-million in debt.

Government, not BoC, needs to step up when recession hits
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By DAVID PARKINSON
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


The last time Canada slipped into a recession, we leaned heavily on the Bank of Canada to lift us out of it. The next time, we shouldn't count on the central bank to carry the load. Current circumstances and the lessons of history suggest that government spending will have to lead the way.

Who says so? The Bank of Canada.

Last week, in their first public comments since the Oct. 21 federal election, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz and his top deputy, Carolyn Wilkins, took a rare foray into the thorny issue of fiscal policy. Our central bankers generally steer clear of anything that hints at telling the government how it should spend its money.

But with a new government taking the reins at a time when the Canadian economy is slowing, foreign central banks are cutting and the risks of a global downturn are elevated, Mr. Poloz and Ms. Wilkins seized on the opportunity to send a message.

They implied - about as strongly as we can ever expect them to - that they'd like the government to keep its foot on the spending pedal to take some pressure off the central bank to cut interest rates to the bone like it did in the 2008-09 recession.

Because, frankly, the central bank doesn't have much room to manoeuvre - and some pretty unpalatable potential consequences if it tried. As much as it might chagrin fiscal conservatives, the federal government is in a much better position to spend our way through the next downturn and recovery, than the Bank of Canada is to cut our way there.

"Based on our [Group of 20] meetings in Washington [in midOctober], that's almost a global statement - there's a growing concern that monetary policy has done most of what it's able to do," Mr. Poloz said in a press conference last week.

Consider that in the 2008-09 recession, the Bank of Canada cut its key rate by more than 400 basis points in a little over a year.

With its rate currently at 1.75 per cent, anyone capable of doing simple arithmetic can see that the bank doesn't have anywhere near the same ammunition available to it.

What's more, at 1.75 per cent, the Bank of Canada's key rate is already below its so-called "neutral" level - which means it is already doing its part to stimulate economic growth. (The bank estimates that the current neutral level for its interest rate - where it neither stimulates growth nor constrains it - is in the range of 2.25 per cent to 3.25 per cent.)

Indeed, the Bank of Canada has been providing stimulus to the economy for more than a decade now, even since the financial crisis and recession hit in 2008. It did so even as Stephen Harper's Conservative government unwound its own crisis-period stimulus package and spent several years reducing its budget deficits - effectively working against the central bank's loose monetary policy. The bank maintained rates lower for longer to compensate.

The result was that much of the road to recovery got paved not with government debt, but with consumer debt. Ultralow interest rates encouraged consumer borrowing and put Canadian household debts at record highs - leaving consumers overexposed in the event of a downturn. The Bank of Canada has long considered this one of the biggest potential risks to Canada's economy.

"When you stimulate the economy from the monetary policy side, what you're doing is you're stimulating credit growth, and often household credit growth. Whereas when you're using government expenditures, it's on the government side," Ms.

Wilkins said. "There's a choice to be made about which pile of debt you want to increase. And that's dependent on where you are in the economy."

Where we are is with a relatively healthy government balance sheet - with a debt-to-GDP ratio considered modest and stable - but with household balance sheets that look decidedly green around the gills. Further rate cuts, from already very attractive borrowing levels, would likely have only limited effects on the economy - but would risk exacerbating the already worrisome consumer debt.

On the other hand, the loosening of the government purse strings under the Liberal government of the past four years allowed the Bank of Canada to stabilize interest rates and even lift them off their floor - even as the economy continued to expand to near full capacity.

"That support ... saved us around a hundred basis points of further monetary easing," Mr. Poloz said in a television interview with BNN Bloomberg last week.

"That's pretty significant, because you would've been doing that in the middle of a hot housing market, bidding wars and all those kinds of things."

Mr. Poloz figures that in terms of stimulative powers, every additional $5-billion of additional federal spending is equivalent to a 25-basis-point (one-quarter percentage point) interest-rate cut. If the Liberals follow through on their campaign platform, which calls for deficits of about $4-billion more than previously planned next year and $8-billion more the year after, the new government will help the central bank stave off at least some rate cuts that it has little room to make, and clearly would rather avoid.

Balanced-budget purists won't like it. But it's a pretty small price to pay for the better path to economic stability.

Sabia's critics wanted him to fail. He did the opposite
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By KONRAD YAKABUSKI
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Michael Sabia could hardly pick a better moment to step down as head of Caisse de dépot et placement du Québec, having guided the giant provincial pension-fund manager out of the mess it was in when he arrived nearly 11 years ago and leaving before the next recession plunges it back into the dumps.

Yet, this is not how he wanted his tenure to end. His departure a year before his current four-year term was to expire in early 2021 will mean Mr. Sabia will not be around to oversee the completion of the project he has relished most as the Caisse's chief executive: the $6.3-billion Réseau express métropolitain light-rail transit network that has come to symbolize Montreal's economic rebirth.

Quebec Premier François Legault, however, has never been a big fan of Mr. Sabia. If Mr. Sabia is leaving early, it is because the Premier has decided he should. Mr.

Legault favours a more interventionist Caisse, one that sees its role as a backer of Québécois entrepreneurs and a rampart against foreign takeovers.

"I think Michael would have liked to cut the ribbon on the REM," said former Caisse executive Michel Nadeau, now executive manager of the Montrealbased Institute for Governance of Private and Public Organizations.

"But I think Mr. Legault and [Quebec Finance Minister] Éric Girard decided to cut his mandate short because they have a candidate in mind and the candidate does not want to wait."

As leader of then-opposition Coalition Avenir Québec in 2016, Mr. Legault was highly critical of the sale of Quebec-based Rona Inc. to U.S.-based Lowe's Cos.

Inc., a transaction only made possible by the Caisse's decision to tender its 17-per-cent stake in the homegrown home-improvement chain.

"What we want [for Quebec] is an economy of owners, not an economy of branches," Mr. Legault said at the time. "Do you think the new shareholders, the new managers, who are Americans, are going to use Quebec lawyers and accountants?" As the Parti Québécois finance critic in 2009, Mr. Legault opposed Mr. Sabia's nomination, accusing then-premier Jean Charest of interfering in the selection process the Caisse's board had set up to select a permanent successor to Henri-Paul Rousseau, who had left under a cloud in 2008. As Premier, however, Mr.

Legault appears to be preparing to impose his own preference on the Caisse board.

That might not be a problem if the Premier's preferred candidate is Sophie Brochu, considered a star in Quebec business circles, who recently stepped down as CEO of the province's main natural-gas distributor Énergir Inc. Ms. Brochu was groomed to take the helm at Énergir's predecessor company, Gaz Métro Inc., by none other than Robert Tessier, who now chairs the Caisse's board. Ms.

Brochu, who would be the first woman to lead the Caisse, has been rumoured to have an inside track on the job.

Whoever succeeds Mr. Sabia, she or he will be expected by Mr.

Legault to take a more visible role in establishing the Caisse as a strategic tool of economic development in the province.

While the Caisse has been active under Mr. Sabia in promoting emerging technology companies in Quebec, and went out on a limb in backing a controversial cement factory on the Gaspé Peninsula favoured by politicians, it has not been seen as the champion of a homegrown business class that it once was.

Mr. Legault, who was an executive at Air Transat during the old-style Caisse's heydays in the early 1980s, is nostalgic for that era. At the end of 2018, only 14 per cent of the Caisse's $309-billion in assets under management were invested in private-sector businesses in Quebec.

The Caisse's recent moves with respect to SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., in which the pensionfund manager holds a 20-percent stake, has also left its political overlords questioning Mr. Sabia's strategy with regards to the troubled engineering giant.

While Caisse insiders insist Mr.

Sabia has not explicitly endorsed SNC-Lavalin's decision to stop bidding on lump-sum turnkey infrastructure projects, the pension-fund manager has appeared to back moves by SNC-Lavalin's management to reduce the company's risk profile. That could imply shrinking the company substantially.

Still, despite the less-than-ideal circumstances of his departure, Mr. Sabia can leave the Caisse with a sense of mission accomplished. He showed serious guts in taking the job in 2009, overcoming opposition led by nationalist politicians and commentators upset that an anglophone who had overseen a shift in BCE Inc.'s de facto head office operations to Toronto from Montreal had been chosen to take the reins at an institution created in the 1960s in part to enable francophone Quebeckers to wrest control of their economy from an English-speaking elite.

Mr. Sabia's detractors were gunning for him to fail. Not only did he disappoint them, he took the Caisse to new heights unimaginable in 2009. And he leaves the Caisse in arguably the best shape it has ever been in. That has to feel good.

Brookfield turns focus to Canada, plans acquisitions in major cities
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By RACHELLE YOUNGLAI
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Brookfield Property Partners LP is putting renewed focus on its roots in Canada after spending years building a huge portfolio of foreign real estate holdings, saying it is now seeking investments in Canadian hotels, apartments, offices and large-scale development projects.

The Toronto-based company has appointed Ashley Lawrence to lead that effort, which will see Brookfield join a crowded field of deep-pocketed investors all chasing similar assets in the country's booming regions of Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and Ottawa.

"My mandate was to grow and to expand, especially in sectors that we are not in," said Mr. Lawrence, a 43-year-old Canadian who returned to Toronto in June, 2018, to fill a new position as regional head of Canada after managing Brookfield's retail property division in New York for two years. "We have certain things we are looking for. Not every deal has them. In order to find them, you have to evaluate a lot of deals in the market," he said.

Brookfield has about US$194billion in assets under management around the world. Its Canadian assets total US$9-billion - 4.6 per cent of its portfolio - consisting mostly of two dozen offices in Ottawa, Calgary and Toronto.

They include First Canadian Place, a 72-storey tower in Toronto's financial district and the tallest office building in the country. Mr. Lawrence wants to add to that, and the company is currently constructing a third tower to its Bay-Adelaide office complex in downtown Toronto.

In comparison, Brookfield has US$137-billion in assets under management in the United States, US$31-billion in Europe and the Middle East, US$14-billion in the Asia-Pacific region and US$3-billion in Brazil, according to its most recent investor presentation. That includes a significant collection of malls and rental apartments throughout the U.S., part of the Canary Wharf business hub in London and a sizable office and residential development in Dubai.

"As we have grown globally, we have gone into a lot of sectors that we are not in in Canada," Mr. Lawrence said.

Brookfield had always planned to increase its Canadian footprint, according to the company, but did not find the right openings. Since he has taken the new job, Mr. Lawrence has doubled the size of the Canadian investment team to cover more ground and find exclusive deals. "In order to do that you have to spend a lot of time out in the market, talking to people, making relationships," he said. "It takes time and effort."

But as Brookfield seeks to move into other property types, especially in rental housing, it will be competing with pension funds, real estate investment trusts, as well as local and global developers for a piece of the action. A flurry of multiresidential development is taking place in Toronto and Vancouver and their nearby suburbs, owing to a housing shortage and soaring home prices. However, Mr. Lawrence believes Brookfield will make a big mark in the country's urban centres.

"It takes a long time to get these developments out. These are not coming in the next 24 months. This is 10 [to] 15-year horizons," he said. "We are relatively patient in terms of finding the right opportunity."

With corporate headquarters moving to downtown Toronto along with the growth of tech companies, the city's commercial property market has been on fire for nearly a decade.

That has driven up land prices and spurred interest in large patches of land such as Bombardier's airport property, which was sold to a Canadian pension fund in 2018 for just over $800-million.

Recently, Brookfield was a contender for East Harbour, 38 acres of mostly vacant land east of Toronto's financial core, according to a source, who was granted anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly. But it lost to Cadillac Fairview, which plans to build 10 million square feet of office space.

Mr. Lawrence would not comment directly on Brookfield's interest in East Harbour but said: "Any large parcel of land that comes up, we would be interested. We are a long-term believer in the city of Toronto and its growth."

Mr. Lawrence said there there isn't a specific amount of capital dedicated to Canadian acquisitions. But given Canada's smaller commercial property market, he said Brookfield is willing to do deals in the US$30-million to US$40-million range. On the flip side, Mr. Lawrence suggested there are no limits.

Brookfield Property can use its own capital, as well as financing from parent company Brookfield Asset Management's third global real estate fund, which raised US$15-billion earlier this year. "We like to put out larger amounts of capital," he said. "That being said, we do like building businesses where the initial amount of capital may not be as sizable. But over time, as you build out that business, as you add assets, they get to that scale that makes sense to us or strategically."

Raptors president urges investment in sport to boost African economies
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By GEOFFREY YORK
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


JOHANNESBURG -- Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri has some blunt messages for African leaders: build more arenas, stop shuffling their agriculture ministers into the sports minister's job and fight harder against corruption.

If they take those steps, he says, Africa could experience a sports boom that would galvanize its economies. A new African basketball league, scheduled to begin in March with the NBA's support, is just the latest in a renaissance that he envisions as someday including new soccer leagues, too.

"Sports is the next big thing in Africa, and I think investors here need to pay close attention to sports," Mr. Ujiri told an African investment conference in Johannesburg in Monday.

"The talent is like gold and diamonds on the continent," said Mr. Ujiri, who grew up in Nigeria and returns to Africa every summer to train young basketball players.

"We need to invest in sports. This should be the biggest ecosystem, creating jobs and helping our youth."

Mr. Ujiri brought the NBA championship Larry O'Brien Trophy onto the stage at the Africa Investment Forum for hundreds of business leaders to admire - and urged them to invest in the new 12-team Basketball Africa League, whose teams are now being chosen in qualifying tournaments.

The league will be "spectacular," he said.

"With all the talent we have on this continent, we should have everything they have in the NBA and [English soccer's] Premiership," the Raptors president said.

He is aiming for 10 new basketball arenas to be built across Africa over the next year. A new 10,000-seat arena in Rwanda and a 15,000-seat arena in Senegal were both completed within the past year.

But for this expansion to work, African politicians must take sports seriously, he said.

"I challenge the presidents to build arenas, support sports and please: no cabinet reshuffles where you take the agriculture minister and put him in sports when he doesn't know anything about sports," Mr. Ujiri said, provoking laughter from the audience.

"If you bring in somebody who doesn't know anything about sports, it's hurting the youth of Africa. Bring in a sports expert to be the sports minister. Please, please, I'm begging all the presidents, please put experts in sports."

In an interview later, he also insisted that Africans need to stop "dancing around" the subject of official corruption.

"We have to call it out, exactly how it is, and the good people have to come to the front," he said.

"We have to face it fair and square. If not, those few people will continue to dominate us, and we don't want that."

In a 2016 documentary film about his Giants of Africa training camps for young basketball players, Mr. Ujiri is shown in a profanity-laced outburst about "ego and bribery" in Nigeria. He was angered by local officials who had locked the doors and refused to allow his young players into a gym that had already been rented for them.

"Change this country," he tells the young Nigerian players in the documentary. "You have to grow up and be better. Make a difference in this country. You have to be honest, and you have to do good to people."

It's a message that he believes he can bring to young Africans through his long-running Giants of Africa program, which ran training camps in six African countries last summer - including Somalia and South Sudan for the first time, in defiance of armed conflicts in both countries.

"In Giants of Africa, we teach them about honesty, we teach them about respect, about respect for women, about being on time," Mr. Ujiri told The Globe and Mail.

"Otherwise, they'll see all the little bad things that happen around them and they'll develop those stupid habits."

Over the past decade, the NBA has invested heavily in Africa, with a full-time headquarters in Johannesburg, a training academy in Senegal, an NBA Africa account on Twitter, and a new YouTube channel that highlights the performances of African players in the NBA. It has won strong support from former U.S. president Barack Obama, who will have a "big part" in the new African basketball league, Mr. Ujiri said.

All of this could be a major benefit for African economies as new arenas are built, he said. "Retail, restaurants, playgrounds - there are so many different things you can put around these spaces. It creates jobs and an atmosphere.

And huge branding opportunities."

He noted that Africa has the youngest population in the world, with a median age of barely 19. Its youthfulness can create a greater potential market for sports than other regions of the world might have, he said.

"I want to have Raptors fans here, I want to build a fan base here for our club, but for the future here you want to build a fan base for [African] club sides too. There is a young population and a love for sports."

Dear Western Canada, the rest of the country knows economic pain
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By DAVID PARKINSON
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


B rad Wall thinks people in the rest of Canada are having a hard time understanding the anger building in the Prairies. He wants to explain it in terms that they can understand.

"Some of our fellow citizens seem surprised and even critical of Westerners who are expressing frustration," the former Saskatchewan premier said on Twitter. "Imagine if an industry key to central Canada lost 100,000 jobs with more under threat - and federal policies actually made it worse."

I guess Mr. Wall - along with Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and other outspoken Prairie leaders - were too busy feeling indignant to notice.

It already happened.

In 2006, Ontario had more than one million manufacturing jobs. By the middle of 2009, it had about 750,000. Those jobs never came back; employment in the sector has hovered around that level ever since. One-quarter of the province's long-standing economic lifeblood looks to be permanently gone.

And, yes, one could argue that government policy consciously allowed it to leave. The North American free-trade agreement, and the country's embracing of global trade liberalization generally, opened the door to the migration of manufacturing jobs away from relatively high-cost Canada to lower-cost markets such as Mexico and China. The hardships of the Great Recession cemented that migration.

Whether you support the benefits of free trade, it has been an undeniable consequence.

This happened at a time when Alberta, because of sustained strong oil prices, escaped the recession with barely a scratch and flat-out boomed thereafter. Its economy grew by more than 30 per cent from 2009 to 2014, its employment by 13 per cent, its per capita provincial government-program spending by more than 20 per cent.

And that's not the only tale of a region's main industry being gutted - sometimes abetted, if not outright triggered, by government policy - while the country's Western oil and gas regions basked in prosperity.

In 1992, Ottawa imposed a moratorium on cod fishing off the Atlantic coast, citing the near-extinction of several species owing to overfishing. That ban, which continues to this day, effectively permanently shut down Newfoundland and Labrador's cod fishery, the mainstay of the provincial economy for nearly 500 years. Overnight, the moratorium wiped out more than 35,000 jobs - roughly 15 per cent of the province's labour force - most of them in hundreds of small fishing communities where there was essentially no other industry.

In the six years after the imposition of the cod moratorium, the Newfoundland and Labrador economy grew by a total of 2.8 per cent; it was in recession in two of those years. In the same period, Alberta's booming economy grew nearly 30 per cent; it added 200,000 jobs.

In 1995, British Columbia (that other part of Western Canada that Alberta and Saskatchewan seem to have forgotten about in all their alienation talk) had more than 100,000 people directly employed by its forest-products industry, the historic bedrock of the provincial economy.

Two decades later, employment had shrunk to half that. Towns all over the tree-rich province, from Port Alberni to Chetwynd, endured the devastation of mill closings. This long, painful downturn came during the same 20 years that employment in Alberta's oil-and-gas-extraction industry more than doubled, to 110,000.

Perhaps the people in all these other parts of Canada don't understand the hostility that some of the loudest voices coming from the Prairies are directing at the rest of the country - the angry accusations of ungratefulness, greed and betrayal. Maybe they are perplexed by the paranoia that has some Albertans accusing the federal government of actively seeking to destroy Canada's richest province and the Prime Minister of harbouring a hatred inherited from his father that has put "Ruin Alberta" at the top of his secret to-do list. Maybe they can't comprehend how so many people can talk openly about dismantling 152 years of common nationhood over a pipeline.

Those things you can try to explain. I'm really struggling with them, and I was raised in Alberta during Pierre Trudeau's despised National Energy Program.

But don't tell the rest of Canada that it doesn't understand the pain of seeing an industry that was its economic bedrock crumble beneath it. Don't try to explain to people in places such as Oshawa, Ont., where the auto assembly plant is closing, or Shawinigan, Que., where the paper mill was shuttered, or Bonavista, N.L., where the cod disappeared and took a quarter of the town with it, what it's like to have your livelihood threatened by the unstoppable march of change. They know.

You didn't invent hardship.

Your preaching is a slap in the face to all your fellow Canadians who suffered while you thrived.

It's that slap that they're really having trouble understanding.

Goldcorp mines weigh on Newmont output as it cuts forecast
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By NIALL MCGEE
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


A little more than six months after buying Goldcorp Inc., Newmont Goldcorp Corp. is struggling to make the acquisition work.

On Tuesday, Denver-based Newmont missed analyst estimates for the third quarter and cut its production forecast for the year, as the world's biggest gold company contends with operational problems at mines formerly owned by Vancouverbased Goldcorp.

During the quarter ended Sept. 30, Newmont dealt with the aftermath of a serious fire at its Musselwhite mine in Northern Ontario, and a blockade at its Penasquito mine in Mexico. Grades at Éléonore, a mine in Quebec, also disappointed in the quarter. Goldcorp's Penasquito gold-silver mine has been the site of multiple blockades this year. Most recently, trucking contractors blocked the site from mid-September to late October after a dispute with the company. The action during the third quarter led to a production shortfall at the mine of 11,000 ounces of gold and 1.7 million ounces of silver.

Newmont reported adjusted share earnings of 36 US cents for the third quarter, 3 US cents lower than analysts expected.

Cash flow per share was US$1.03 compared with US$1.19 that analysts expected. The miner also cut its production forecast for the year to 6.3 million ounces of gold versus 6.5 million ounces previously.

John Tumazos, independent analyst with Very Independent Research, said in an interview that despite early bumps with the acquisition, there are signs it could pay off over the longer term.

"The setbacks at Musselwhite and Penasquito are not permanent. They're just embarrassing," he said. "The cost savings appear to be permanent."

In a statement on Tuesday, Newmont ratcheted up the cost savings it expects to wring from buying Goldcorp to US$240million a year from a previous target of US$145-million.

The company expects to save US$100-million alone in general and administrative expenses, such as staff and head-office costs.

Newmont bought Goldcorp earlier in the year in an all-stock deal worth US$10-billion. At the time the agreement was announced in January, Goldcorp was trading near a historic low after years of mismanagement and a slew of technical problems at mines.

Even before the acquisition closed, new problems started to creep up at some of the Goldcorp mines. In April, a fire broke out at its Musselwhite mine. Nobody was hurt in the incident, but the mine's conveyor system was destroyed. Newmont said on Tuesday that it will take until October of next year before the mine is operational.

Shares in Newmont fell 3.5 per cent on Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange to close at US$37.55 apiece.

Greg Barnes, analyst with TD Securities Inc., was somewhat mystified by the negative stock reaction. "[The earnings] looked ok to me and Q4 is looking very good," he wrote in an e-mail. "I think investors are still nervous about the guidance update coming in early December."

One mine that may not feature in Newmont's 2020 guidance is Red Lake, yet another legacy Goldcorp asset.

Newmont's chief executive, Tom Palmer, said in a conference call with analysts on Tuesday that a process to sell the mine is going well, and he indicated that a deal could be announced soon.

At one point, Red Lake mine, smack in the middle of the town of Red Lake, Ont., was the bedrock of Goldcorp's portfolio. The mine, which originally started production in 1948, was known for its extremely high grades. But in recent years as its reserves have been depleted, its expenses have climbed and it is now among the highest-cost properties in Newmont's portfolio.

NEWMONT GOLDCORP (NEM) CLOSE: US$37.55, DOWN US$1.31

Associated Graphic

Newmont Goldcorp's Penasquito gold-silver mine, seen in 2012, has been the site of multiple blockades this year, including a protest from mid-September to late October over a labour dispute between trucking contractors and the miner.

JEAN LUIS ARCE/REUTERS

The rise and fall of Alberto Salazar and the 'power' of his Nike Oregon Project
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By PAUL WALDIE
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S1


W hen Alberto Salazar launched the Nike Oregon Project in 2001 he had one simple goal: to do whatever it took to break the African stranglehold on distance running.

"It's like in war," Salazar once said of his approach to coaching.

"The soldier has to learn how to fight and do everything - be physically fit, be a one-man army. But then you try and equip him with every bit of top science - everything you can - to keep him alive. That's what we do."

Salazar had spent a lifetime trying to beat the Africans - through punishing workouts as a top American marathoner in the 1980s and bizarre experiments later as a coach of some of the world's best runners. His will to win was so strong that he once collapsed at the end of a race and was given last rites.

His big breakthrough came at the 2012 Olympics in London when two Nike Oregon Project runners, Mo Farah of Britain and Galen Rupp of the United States, took gold and silver, respectively, in the 10,000 metres. That ended years of dominance by Africans who had won all but one medal in the event since 1988. Soon athletes from all over, including Canada's Cam Levins, were flocking to the NOP's complex in Portland, Ore., to learn Salazar's secrets.

The glory didn't last long. Salazar's unorthodox training methods eventually caught up with him and on Sept. 30 the U.S.

Anti-Doping Agency slapped him and the NOP's medical adviser, Houston endocrinologist Jeffrey Brown, with a four-year ban after an arbitration panel found they had committed several doping violations. The USADA investigation had taken six years and it uncovered a host of dubious activities at the NOP, including widespread misuse of prescription drugs, a strange experiment involving testosterone and improper injections of a substance that eased muscle fatigue.

Salazar and Brown had "demonstrated that winning was more important than the health and well-being of the athletes they were sworn to protect," USADA chief executive Travis Tygart said.

The sanctions have rippled across the sports world. Nike closed the NOP last month and the company's chief executive, Mark Parker, stepped down to become executive chairman. The head of UK Athletics has been fired and the organization is probing its ties to Salazar.

This week, the World Anti-Doping Agency confirmed that it has launched an inquiry into the NOP and it's considering retesting some of the stored blood and urine samples of the club's runners.

The case has cast a dark shadow over the Oregon Project's athletes, even though none has tested positive for banned drugs or been accused of wrongdoing by the USADA. "There is no allegation against me. I've not done anything wrong," Farah told reporters last month. Levins, who spent three years at the NOP and left in 2017, was unavailable for comment but he has said that he was injured for most of his time with Salazar. "I have the utmost faith in Alberto and my former teammates that they're clean and have high morals," he told reporters in 2017.

Salazar said he was shocked by USADA's findings and plans to file an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. "I have always ensured the [world anti-doping code] is strictly followed. The Oregon Project has never and will never permit doping," he said in a statement. His supporters note that the sanctions pertain to relatively minor violations of procedure and don't involve any direct doping of athletes. Nike, too, is standing by Salazar and has insisted that Parker's resignation as CEO had nothing to do with the NOP case. The company added that it will "continue to support Alberto in his appeal, as a four-year suspension for someone who acted in good faith is wrong."

Salazar has been a divisive figure in track circles for years and the sanctions have been largely welcomed as a longoverdue punishment for someone who constantly bent the rules. "Salazar had become the apotheosis of a certain approach to sport, which is that what you should be doing is right up to the edge of the rules," said Alex Hutchinson, a Canadian journalist and former athlete who writes about the science of endurance and fitness, including for The Globe and Mail. "And that led him to do a lot of grey-area stuff, which is the kind of stuff that makes me and many, many other people uncomfortable."

He added that Salazar had also become a target for many people because of his association with Nike. "Salazar has come to stand in for a company that a lot of people feel is a bully and a force not necessarily for good," Hutchinson said.

Documents filed as part of the USADA action paint a picture of a driven coach whose win-at-all-costs mentality led him astray. The three-member panel of arbitrators said Salazar was not motivated by bad intentions and they marvelled at how meticulous he was at checking the rules with anti-doping officials, although he often looked for a way around them. They concluded that his desire to provide the best training possible "clouded his judgment in some instances, when his usual focus on the rules appears to have lapsed."

Salazar had always been someone who sought every possible advantage. He was among the first American athletes to train at high altitude in the 1970s and he later built a contraption he could use at home in Massachusetts to mimic the same scarcity of oxygen. He tried lotions used for racehorses to reduce muscle inflammation and he has acknowledged using testosterone briefly in 1991 when he was trying to revive his running career.

His innovations proved successful up to a point. He won the New York City Marathon three times in the 1980s. But he also suffered years of injuries, illness and a deep depression that led him to contemplate suicide. "I pushed myself as far as my body could go," he said in a lengthy article in 2015 when some allegations about the NOP first surfaced. "In fact, I trained and ran so hard it nearly killed me and I still suffer today the negative physical effects of my excessive training."

Through it all, Salazar has enjoyed the unwavering backing of Nike. The shoe giant sponsored him as an athlete and gave him a marketing job when his career finally ended in 1996. The company even put his name on a building at the company's headquarters in Eugene, Ore., in-between one named after golfer Tiger Woods and another one for basketball great Michael Jordan. When Salazar hatched the plan for the Oregon Project in 2001, after lamenting about the sorry state of U.S. distance running to a Nike executive, the company jumped in with millions of dollars. It also hired Salazar's two sons, Alex and Tony, to work at the NOP.

With Nike's deep pockets at the ready, Salazar was free to pursue his wildest ideas. He built an altitude house at the Nike complex in Portland and installed underwater treadmills, laser-therapy machines and supercold cryosaunas to help runners recover faster. With the help of the doctor, Brown, he put several athletes on massive doses of vitamin D, Testo Boost and thyroid medication in a vain attempt to increase their testosterone levels.

For many athletes, life at the NOP was a dream. They had access to Nike's vast resources, including research labs, state-ofthe-art equipment, a team of masseurs and financing for trips around the world to compete and train. Brown flew on the company's jet to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and several athletes were paid US$200,000 a year or more by Nike plus bonuses. Many excelled, especially Farah, who went from a decent runner to a fourtime Olympic and six-time world champion. Levins, too, set the Canadian record for 10,000 metres in 2015 while training under Salazar.

The NOP quickly became known in track circles for its vast resources and stunning workload. It wasn't uncommon for NOP runners to do a workout after races while rivals looked on in amazement. "We thought, on the one side maybe these guys are getting those results because they're working really hard," recalled Canadian distance runner Reid Coolsaet. "And on the other hand, maybe they were able to work that hard because they were able to recover better than a normal human being."

The NOP group largely kept to themselves, following strict orders from Salazar not to discuss their training regime. Salazar worried constantly about competitors spiking water bottles or rubbing testosterone gel on the back of an NOP athlete so they would test positive. He ordered NOP runners to lock up their bottles and never high-five or touch anyone after a race. Salazar's fear was so strong that when Rupp mentioned that someone had slapped him on the back after a race, the coach immediately organized an experiment with his sons to see if a casual slap of testosterone gel could lead to a positive test.

It took several applications before Salazar was finally convinced that it couldn't.

Not everyone inside the NOP felt comfortable with Salazar's methods. Panic spread among some members of the group in 2012 after health officials issued a warning that the overuse of a nasal spray containing calcitonin, which is used to strengthen bones, could increase the risk of cancer. Many NOP athletes, including U.S. marathoner Dathan Ritzenhein, had been using the spray regularly on Salazar's advice that it would fend off stress fractures. "Is this some kind of joke?" Ritzenhein said in an e-mail to an NOP assistant coach after he ordered the runners to stop using the spray because of the cancer risk.

"I have been taking this for the last four years!" Another NOP runner, American Olympian Kara Goucher, became so concerned about the overuse of prescription drugs she reported it to the USADA and testified against Salazar during the arbitration hearing. "I was a part of a culture that was so manipulative and so controlling and so wrong," she told reporters last month. "Your entire life is dependent on the power of this brand."

For other NOP athletes the limit had come in 2011 when Salazar became obsessed with an energy drink from Britain called NutraMet, which claimed it could boost performance by 10 per cent. The key ingredient was L-carnitine, a natural substance found in many foods that can slow the depletion of glycogen in muscles, a key energy source, by increasing the amount of fat that's burned. Salazar called it the "greatest legal sports supplement ever" and he t bought up the company's initial supply. He also lobbied Nike executives to acquire NutraMet so that no other athletes could have access to it.

When he discovered that it would take six months of drinking NutraMet to show results, Salazar arranged for assistant coach Steve Magness to take the supplement intravenously to see if there would be an immediate impact. Magness agreed and his running improved instantly. Salazar was so excited he e-mailed the results to Parker and Lance Armstrong, the Nikesponsored cyclist who would later be banned for life for doping. "Lance, call me asap! We have tested it and it's amazing! You are the only athlete I'm going to tell the actual numbers to other than Galen Rupp. It's too incredible. All completely legal and natural," Salazar wrote. He soon had six NOP athletes, including Rupp, taking NutraMet intravenously. Later he would say the drink provided little benefit.

Magness and others worried about the legality of what they were doing. While Lcarnitine isn't banned by the USADA, it can only be administered in maximum doses of 50 millilitres every six hours. Magness had received one litre and he told the USADA that he believed the athletes had also received doses above the threshold.

During the arbitration hearing Salazar insisted that he followed the doping rules when giving the supplement to the athletes. But the panel found that Salazar and Brown had tampered with records and disguised how much the runners had received.

It's unclear when Salazar's appeal will be heard or if there will be any further fallout from the USADA's revelations or the WADA investigation. But some athletes, such as Coolsaet, aren't sure that this will be the end of the 61-year-old Salazar.

"I really don't know," Coolsaet said. He paused and added: "I hope it would be the end of his coaching career but I wouldn't be surprised if he came back."

Associated Graphic

Nike Oregon Project runners Mo Farah of Britain and Galen Rupp of the U.S. win gold and silver, respectively, in the 10,000 metres at the 2012 Olympics in London. It marked a breakthrough for coach Alberto Salazar, as African athletes had won all but one medal in the event since 1988. 'I've not done anything wrong,' Farah told reporters last month, as Nike closed the NOP.

OLIVIER MORIN/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Babcock keeps asking Leafs fans for time to build, but the buzzer will soon go off
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By CATHAL KELLY
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CATHAL KELLY
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B10


TORONTO -- November seems like an odd month to begin lowering expectations, but that's where the Toronto Maple Leafs are at now.

The most optimistic season in recent history is quickly being recast in another rebuilding year. The catalyst for this change was Alex Ovechkin.

Ovechkin rolled through town last week and laid two beatings on Toronto.

The first was a tongue lashing: "It's up to them how they want to do it. If they want to play for themselves or if they want to win the Stanley Cup, they have to play differently."

The second was an on-ice demonstration of what "differently" looks like.

Ovechkin had four points in one of those turning-a-good-win-into-a-silly-loss games the Leafs are specializing in this season. But where you could really see this idea take off was once Mike Babcock got hold of it. Most coaches would have brushed Ovechkin back. Instead, the Leafs' coach endorsed Ovechkin's criticisms: "Things like that always sting way more when it's right."

After the loss, Babcock had developed his talking points. He said a bunch of things about growing up and figuring out what you want.

But the core takeaway was this bit: "Everybody in Toronto is in a rush all the time. I get it. But that's not pro sport. You gotta keep building and building and steady on the rudder, keep going through things."

In other words, slow your roll, dummies. Nobody said this was going to happen this year. Or next year. Or 10 years from now. The important thing is keeping that rudder steady and sailing smoothly into the Sea of Mediocrity the Leafs have been trawling for decades now.

You have to hand it to pro sports teams.

They have revolutionized their tactics over the past generation. And we're not talking about the odd-man rush.

This used to be a zero-sum endeavour and a total free-for-all. The only correct answer to "How's this year going to go?" was "We think we can win it all." Since people are writing these things down and keeping track of them, that can be deleterious to your career once you have not, in fact, won it all. It prompts uncomfortable questions about your professional competence.

But gradually, gradually, team executives and coaches realized there are other ways to answer that question.

"It might be all right" won't get you anywhere. It makes you look like a waffler.

But "We're not winning this year" is reassuringly certain. It fends off "Gotcha!"

stories at season's end. And if you do by some miracle win, you look like you've underpromised and overdelivered.

So you're getting a feeling about where Babcock is headed here.

The Leafs are staffed like a winner. They had better be. There's no easy way to change the team for the foreseeable future.

Babcock is paid like a winner. He is still the top earner in his position by a wide margin.

The town is primed for a winner. A couple of 100-point finishes over the past two years created that not-exactly delusional expectation.

But the team would like to continue talking like a loser. Whenever things go wrong, Babcock points over at the locker room and seems to say, "Well, what do you expect?" A fifth of the way into the campaign, the Leafs sit eighth in the Eastern Conference.

The power play is a rolling series of brownouts. Their defence acts like a charity that's giving away goals for the holidays.

On Saturday night, they should have pounded the Flyers flat. Instead, they let it get to an endless shootout. Toronto won, but not easily. That's become the theme of the season - nothing is easy.

It's early, but it's not that early. The most serious problems are foundational rather than cosmetic. And now the coach is off in the corner sighing about Toronto's unreasonable expectations.

Unreasonable expectations are why Babcock came to Toronto. He could've made just as much money in Buffalo or Carolina and been able to relax. But if he wants to work his way into a Hockey Night in Canada montage 20 years from now, the Leafs are his best chance to do it. That means accepting the expectations.

The Oilers have accepted them this year.

Because there's no next year for that team.

If an Edmonton executive came out now and tried a line about "building and building," the fanbase would burn the building to the ground.

The Oilers have a generational player in his prime. Their mulligans are up. Accepting that fact has, thus far, had a salutary effect on Edmonton's results.

The Leafs should be acting as though they are in the same boat. This is Auston Matthews's fourth year in the league. John Tavares is 29. Tyson Barrie is a rental. Frederik Andersen will soon be in line for a raise the Leafs can't afford to pay. The team hasn't won a playoff round in 15 years.

The Leafs' window isn't opening. They have one leg through it. Taking a step back now won't work.

They still have months to work out the kinks. Whatever their problems, the Leafs aren't a bad team. They're an underperforming one.

Underperforming teams don't need less pressure. They need more. They need their minds concentrated. That's hard to do when the coach is providing them with excuses. It's also hard not to notice that all of Babcock's wisdom tends to service his (and every other coach's) main goal - staying employed.

You know, he'd really love to win now, but, hey, kids these days. What are you gonna do? You have to hope for the best.

Adversity is a wonderful teacher. Yadda yadda yadda.

Most of this slipped by in Toronto this week. Babcock's comments were reported without a sneer. No one is coming for him yet. Give it a bit.

Ovechkin was right. The Leafs need to play differently. And while they're on the topic of change, they might want to start talking differently as well. Toronto doesn't have the luxury of building any more. It's time to start moving in, or some people will soon be moving out.

FLAMES' LUCIC GETS TWO-GAME SUSPENSION FOR ROUGHING NEW YORK Calgary Flames forward Milan Lucic has been suspended for two games without pay for roughing Columbus Blue Jackets forward Kole Sherwood during a game Saturday. The league announced Lucic's punishment Sunday. The incident happened in the second period of Calgary's eventual 3-0 win. Lucic punched Sherwood behind the Flames net, knocking him to the ice, after Sherwood had poked at Calgary goaltender David Rittich's pads and received a slashing minor.

Lucic was assessed two minor penalties for roughing. Sherwood left the game after the incident, but later returned.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Tuesday, November 05, 2019

Don Cherry fired from Hockey Night in Canada for poppy rant
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By MARTY KLINKENBERG
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MARTY KLINKENBERG
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


TORONTO -- Don Cherry has been dismissed from his long-time position on Hockey Night in Canada as a result of contentious remarks he made last Saturday during his Coach's Corner segment.

The opinionated 85-year-old former National Hockey League coach, who has been part of the Hockey Night broadcast team since the Stanley Cup playoffs of 1980, singled out Toronto-area immigrants for not wearing poppies during a tribute to Canada's war veterans.

"You people love ... our way of life, you love our milk and honey, at least you could pay a couple of bucks for a poppy or something like that," Cherry said. "These guys pay for your way of life that you enjoy in Canada, these guys paid the biggest price."

Around 3 p.m. ET, Rogers Sportsnet president Bart Yabsley issued a statement via Twitter, announcing the broadcaster had cut its ties with Cherry.

"Sports brings people together - it unites us, not divides us," the statement said.

"Following further discussions with Don Cherry after Saturday night's broadcast, it has been decided it is the right time for him to immediately step down. During the broadcast, he made divisive remarks that do not represent our values or what we stand for.

"Don is synonymous with hockey and has played an integral role in growing the game over the past 40 years. We would like to thank [him] for his contributions to hockey and sports broadcasting in Canada."

The NHL, which on Sunday labelled his comments as "offensive and contrary to the values we believe in," said Cherry's ouster from Sportsnet was well deserved.

"While we recognize Don Cherry's four decades of service broadcasting NHL games, today's decision was a justifiable response to his comments on Saturday night," the league said in a statement.

"The opinions he expressed are in direct conflict with the values of diversity and inclusion that we embrace as pillars of our sport."

Late Monday, Cherry refused to apologize for what he said, saying he could have kept his job as co-host of Coach's Corner if he'd agreed to become "a tame robot who nobody would recognize."

He added that he wasn't directing his comments to minorities, and that what he said applies to English, Scottish or Irish immigrants or any newcomer.

In recent years, Canadian NHL teams have hosted swearing-in ceremonies for new citizens. Games are broadcast all over the world through international partners. In Canada, they are telecast in Punjabi and Spanish.

Cherry's comments rankled at least one of Hockey Night In Canada's major sponsors.

Todd Allen, the vice-president of marketing for Labatt Breweries, issued a statement on Monday.

Labatt's Budweiser brand is the name sponsor of Coach's Corner.

"The comments made Saturday on Coach's Corner were clearly inappropriate and divisive, and in no way reflect Budweiser's views," Allen said in a statement. "As a sponsor of the broadcast, we immediately expressed our concerns and respect the decision which was made by Sportsnet today."

An attempt to reach Cherry by phone failed.

The native of Kingston played hockey as a defenceman in the minor leagues for nearly two decades, but is better known for serving as the head coach of the Boston Bruins. He took them to the playoffs in each of the five seasons from 1974 to 1979 before serving as head coach for one year with the Colorado Rockies.

His notoriety and popularity took off as a commentator for the Canadian Broadcasting Company on Hockey Night in Canada. He was especially famous for wearing flamboyant suits, supporting the military and speaking so bluntly that it would cause him to become ensnared in controversy.

In 1998, during CBC's coverage of the men's Olympic gold-medal hockey game in Nagano, Japan, Cherry referred to Quebec nationalists as "a bunch of whiners." Five years later, as the U.S.-led Iraq War broke out, Cherry lashed out at the Canadian government for not sending troops to the region. In recent years, he argued that female reporters should not be given access to the locker rooms of professional male athletes, criticized NFL players for kneeling before games to protest civil-rights violations and ridiculed those who believe in climate change.

Network bosses stood by him on each of those occasions, but apparently decided they could not this time.

The Canadian Broadcasting Standards Council was so inundated with complaints from viewers on Monday that it posted a message on its website saying it could not accept any more. Even the Royal Canadian Legion bashed him on Twitter.

Cherry's forced departure is a headache for Rogers, which assumed control of Hockey Night in Canada from the CBC in 2014. Rogers is paying the NHL $5.2-billion for rights to its games through 2026 in an agreement that also allows Hockey Night in Canada to be shown every Saturday on Sportsnet and CBC.

Ron MacLean, his co-host on Coach's Corner, offered an apology on Sunday night at the beginning of his Rogers Hometown Hockey broadcast. MacLean acknowledged he should have intervened when Cherry made the remarks.

"Don Cherry made remarks which were hurtful, discriminatory, which were flat out wrong," MacLean said. "We know diversity is the strength of the country. We see it in the travels with our show, and with Hockey Night in Canada.

"So, I owe you an apology, too. I sat there, did not catch it, did not respond. [It] was a really great lesson to Don and me. We were wrong, and I sincerely apologize. I wanted to thank you for calling me and Don on that last night."

Bo Horvat, the Vancouver Canucks captain, said that he agreed with the decision to fire Cherry.

"He's been in the game for a long time but at the same time, hockey is supposed to bring people together and there's no place for stuff like that," Horvat told Postmedia on Monday.

"I think it's the right decision. It's upsetting hearing things like that being said."

Before Cherry's dismissal on Monday, as people across Canada attended ceremonies commemorating Remembrance Day, a debate raged over Cherry's diatribe.

Many found his rant to be cringeworthy and xenophobic. But some defended Cherry.

Still more simply dismissed him as no longer being relevant.Still more simply dismissed him as no longer being relevant.

#FireDonCherry, #DonCherryIsRight and #BoycottSportsnet all trended on social media.

Rogers has not said if Cherry will be replaced or if its long-standing format will remain unchanged on Saturday nights.

With reports from Simon Houpt and The Canadian Press

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Anthopoulos comments reveal the house of cards that is MLB free agency
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


TORONTO -- In the mid-1980s, the people who controlled Major League Baseball decided to blow it up and start over.

Fresh off his success staging the Los Angeles Olympics, Peter Ueberroth had taken over as commissioner. Ueberroth, a committed frugalitarian, thought the economics of baseball were broken. He urged team owners to spend less and to do so in concert. Which they did, so enthusiastically that the freeagent market collapsed for several years.

Former Blue Jay Jack Morris, one of the great pitchers of his era, had the misfortune to be looking for work during that period. Only his own team made him an offer. Montreal Expos legend Andre Dawson found himself in the same bind. In order to get a job, he had to take a pay cut.

This is the dictionary definition of collusion. The courts agreed, eventually awarding the players and their union US$280million in damages.

Ueberroth walked the plank, but the distrust between employers and employees festered.

That led directly to the lost season of 1994. It took the sport most of a decade to get back on its feet.

Memories are short, but not in baseball. Baseball people still talk about Babe Ruth like they saw him play.

That is the background against which we might view an innocuous recent statement by Atlanta Braves general manager Alex Anthopoulos.

The former Blue Jays boss was always a muser - every one of his comments went on at some length, without ever saying much. It's one of his skills. But this week, speaking about Atlanta's plans for the off-season, he wandered too far afield.

"We've had time to connect with 27 of the clubs - obviously the Astros and the [Nationals] being in the World Series, they were tied up - but we had a chance to get a sense of what the other clubs are going to look to do in free agency, who might be available in trades."

That whole thing is commonplace except for two words - "free agency."

The MLB Players Association flipped its lid. Anthopoulos's comments "call into question the integrity of the entire freeagent system," it said in a statement.

MLB is mounting an investigation. In an attempt to defuse that before it gets a head of steam, Anthopoulos walked the whole thing back.

"I misspoke and apologize for any confusion," he said in another statement.

Misspeaking is a real problem these days, mostly because people don't understand how it works. It's actually simple.

For example, if I tell you I haven't paid my taxes in 10 years, that is speaking.

But if it turns out you are working undercover for the Canada Revenue Agency and taping our conversation, that is misspeaking.

Back when MLB's Collusion Wars were going on, then-Houston Astros owner John McMullen shrugged off the accusations thusly: "Macy's doesn't tell Gimbels what they're doing."

That's a half-clever dodge.

Macy's and Gimbels are department stores. Department stores don't engage in revenue sharing. They don't do TV deals together. They don't have a monopoly on the department-store business.

And they don't have a work force whose only option is working for Macy's or Gimbels.

If Gimbels has a few bad years, it can expect to go bankrupt (which it did). The last time the Miami Marlins had a good year, Facebook didn't exist. And the Marlins' value rose this year.

Baseball clubs only appear to be in competition. That is the great illusion of the sport. It is cloaked in the ethos of the playground - that you will try your best, I will do likewise and the best kid will win.

Except there are no shareholders on the playground. Nobody on the playground is thinking about how you beating me affects next year's dividend.

Macy's and Gimbels were competitors. MLB clubs are partners.

One team might win this year, or next year, or never. That doesn't really matter. But in order to thrive long term, all must prosper. That's an absolute.

People choose to pretend this isn't the case.

That the Yankees and Red Sox will do anything to kill each other, despite the fact their financial interests are intertwined.

The NBA, NHL and NFL combat this problem of optics with a salary cap. Everyone has a certain amount of money to spend, so they spend it.

In this environment, widespread collusion doesn't work.

Theoretically.

This doesn't stop teams from monkeying with the free-agent process, or submarining each other when it comes to acquiring this or that player. But that's fun stuff. Fans love the intrigue, and players like that it tends to drive salaries up (if only for a few).

Baseball doesn't have this advantage. That's its own fault - owners and players alike. The failure to adopt a salary cap creates a boom-bust cycle.

For a few years, teams spend like drunken sailors in order to win. In the last boom, teams gambled huge sums on players in their early-to-mid-30s. Unsurprisingly, the majority of those bets did not pay off.

Eventually, everyone re-realizes that baseball doesn't work like other businesses - there is no need to spend money in order to make it. Then the market collapses.

That's how you arrive at the current lack of demand for free agents. I wouldn't call it collusion, exactly. I'd call it faddism. Once someone stumbles on a "new" way of doing things, everyone else rushes to copy them.

Today's fad is the tank. The resultant cost savings are a side effect. Things will turn the other way eventually. The only consistent thing is the wrangling over the spoils.

Everyone involved in MLB ought to think hard about how deeply they want their customers considering this. Yes, the players are getting jobbed right now. Ten years ago, it was owners. That wheel keeps turning.

But all these parties are in collusion. Owners prop up other owners. Executives hire one another back and forth. Players exert enormous pressure on each other to continue inflating salaries.

Greed is stacked upon greed, everyone assuming the pie they're fighting over will expand endlessly.

On the one hand, that's how a modern sports league operates.

On the other, it's the same principle for a house of cards.

Associated Graphic

Montreal Expos legend Andre Dawson found himself forced to take a pay cut in order to get a job after former MLB commissioner Peter Ueberroth urged team owners to spend less.

RICK STEWART/GETTY IMAGES

With Cherry's Fox News appearance, a national reckoning descends into farce
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15


It's difficult to say who was more confused by Don Cherry's Tuesday appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight - Don Cherry or Tucker Carlson.

The Fox News host didn't seem to know who Cherry was (or that Canada had fought in both World Wars). Cherry seemed to have little understanding of why he was there.

Carlson wanted to talk about "fascists" and dog charities. Cherry wanted to talk about Bobby Orr and someone named Liz.

About a minute into the interview, Carlson started to get a look. This was not turning into the U.S.-style screed he'd hoped for. In his crotchety way, Cherry was almost apologizing.

With the crutch of hockey talk taken away, Cherry made even less sense than usual.

"We're all immigrants and the whole deal and but I knew and nothing happened that night and nobody said anything that night and they ran it that night and they ran it later and the whole deal.

And the funny thing is I never heard a thing that night. I heard it the next day at the, uh, the silent majority, as you know, is always silent."

Carlson tried to goad Cherry into some fresh outrage. Cherry was either disinclined or couldn't pick up his drift.

The segment would have gone smoother if Carlson had interviewed Ron MacLean, who in turn could have translated the questions into Ontarian and put them to Cherry.

Instead, the two men talked by, over and around each other. It was a nice metaphor for current crossborder understanding.

By the end, Cherry's routine had so flustered Carlson that he signed off with this incongruous sentence pairing: "Google Don Cherry. He's a famous man."

So now we know: 72 hours or so - that's how long it takes a national reckoning to descend into farce.

Three days is also enough time to sort the winners from the losers in this thing. There are no winners.

Rogers Sportsnet loses. They're now stuck with a $5-billion hockey package they can't afford and no one to provide the face of it.

Cherry didn't just take himself down. He turned Hockey Night in Canada into the newest salient of the culture wars. Good luck to whomever has to replace him. It won't save them. They are doomed. But good luck anyway.

MacLean loses. It's possible he wasn't even listening to Cherry as he wandered into a field of rhetorical bear traps. I mean, after 30odd years of that blather, would you? But that thumbs-up at the end has brought MacLean low.

He'll spend the rest of his career being asked about it.

Hockey loses. The one thing the NHL would like to avoid in this country is a deep consideration of what hockey means.

Hockey would like to mean Jean Béliveau, frozen ponds on a Saturday afternoon and Paul Henderson's goal. But all those things are from a long time ago. What does present-day hockey mean in modern Canada? That discussion starts by asking everyone in the room to stand up and split off into their tribes.

If America has blue states and red states, Canada has hockey communities and non-hockey communities. Hockey has very little to do with it, but it's a convenient conceptual divider.

The communities were in a state of détente until Cherry's forced ouster. That acted like a rocket launched over the border from downtown Toronto into Anywheresville, Alta.

If I roll up to you in an airport departure lounge this morning and say, "Don Cherry, eh?", within 30 seconds I will be able to take a good guess at who you vote for, what kind of work you do and whether you live in a hockey or non-hockey region.

Dignity loses. There were a halfdozen turnings in this story that might have made it a hopeful, redemptive or maybe just useful one.

If MacLean had confronted Cherry in the moment; if all the organs of hockey, instead of rushing to cover their own hindquarters with vague statements about diversity, had brought the weight of the game down on their errant bannerman; if Cherry had said on Canadian TV what he seemed to be trying to say on the U.S. version of Soviet Central Television.

For a few moments, it seemed as though this could lead to a productive discussion about what it means to be Canadian. How ought we define that? Ought we define it at all? Given recent events, the question feels urgent. Four stray words from Cherry - "you people ... come here" - had given it focus.

What do you feel about that and why? How does it inform your relationship with your neighbours? Do you wish you knew your neighbours better? Not the ones who live directly beside you or think exactly like you, but all of them.

You probably do - and just as probably don't know how to do it.

Whether we like it (and I believe the overwhelming majority of Canadians do), we're all in this together. Cherry had given us a reason to talk about what that looks like, what it means and how we might make it better.

But that opportunity burned off quickly. Everyone ran to line up with their side and start chucking rocks. A little scroll through any random Facebook comments section on the matter is a vertical toboggan ride into intellectual hell.

My two key takeaways: The allcaps button ought to be banned from future keyboards, and if you are going to e-mail people and profanely berate them, you probably ought not do it from your work account.

Then Cherry pops up on Fox, making us all look like idiots, and you think: This cannot possibly get any stupider.

But it can. It always can.

Most of all, Canada loses. This country will be fine one way or the other. It's too big an endeavour and too good an idea to fail.

But every once in a while, it's useful to step back and really think about the big, fundamental questions. Without meaning to do so, Cherry gave us that chance.

We were too busy yelling at each other to take it.

Associated Graphic

People rally in support of Don Cherry near Rogers' head office in Toronto on Wednesday. Stuck with a $5-billion hockey package it can't afford and no one to provide the face of it, Rogers is one of the many losers in the Cherry debacle, Cathal Kelly writes.

FRANK GUNN/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Losing with valour
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Despite a crushing loss to the Seattle Sounders and an embarrassing flub by Justin Morrow, Toronto FC is leaving the MLS Cup final with its head held high and a stellar playoff run under its belt
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B12


TORONTO -- However bad you feel right now, take comfort in this: You are not Justin Morrow.

Morrow has been a low-profile constant for Toronto FC during the Major League Soccer team's renaissance. There was a moment in the city when this team was, like Obi-Wan Kenobi, its only hope. Morrow wasn't a bold-face part of that, but he is important. An under-the-radar guy. A critical piece. He's had two really big individual moments with the team, which on Sunday lost the MLS Cup final 3-1 to the Seattle Sounders.

Morrow's first big moment cost Toronto FC a championship in 2016. After a grinding final against Seattle, one in which Toronto had been far the better team, he hoofed a penalty kick against the underside of the crossbar.

And that was it.

Toronto won the title the next year. Indirectly, that victory presaged the Raptors NBA championship run and the Maple Leafs' return to relevance. It proved Toronto could win things, that that was allowed. It was a seminal moment.

On Sunday, after a few years of keeping his head down and plugging away, Morrow resurfaced in the national highlight reels.

This final was much like the one three years ago. Toronto was by far the better side. Seattle wasn't just ineffective, it was disengaged. It was as though the players had pooled their money on a prop bet that the game would end without a goal after regulation.

In the 57th minute, against the run of play, Seattle accidentally found itself in the Toronto end.

Kelvin Leerdam took a speculative shot that was going well wide. Morrow had already made one mistake - failing to move up with his line of defenders and thereby playing Leerdam onside.

Then he made a far worse one - extending his front leg as the ball approached him. The shot caromed off his knee and into the Toronto goal.

And that was it again.

The game didn't flip, so much as somersault. For the remaining half-hour, Seattle battered Toronto. The Sounders scored two more goals. The game ended 3-1.

Thirty minutes. That's how long you can leave a dream postseason run on the counter before it goes bad.

It is hard to remember now, but there was a time when this city could claim to be the only one that cared about Major League Soccer.

Not care as in "know a soccer team exists somewhere in this municipality". But care care.

Show up win or lose. Force people who do not like soccer to reckon with soccer.

Toronto created the blueprint - build a stadium downtown, make the game an outsider obsession, treat the team seriously.

That blueprint has been replicated in Seattle, Portland, Atlanta and other places. Even ones that didn't care until quite recently.

It will be replicated again in the five new franchises that join the league in the next few years.

MLS cities that put soccer at the centre of their sports culture are now the rule rather than the exception.

If MLS can be considered a success, two things made that possible - David Beckham and Toronto FC.

They had deservedly been to the top and, as always happens, gravity was carrying them back to the middle.

Two unremarkable regular seasons followed the championship one. The fervency of the climb was wearing off. People still cared, but a bit less. The other teams in Toronto had got better. The team's pillar, captain Michael Bradley, was nearing the end of his road.

Toronto FC was returning to its natural place - fourth or fifth in the civic pecking order. A good team, but not a great team. Just barely a postseason team.

Then, out of the nowhere, this month-long gallop through the playoffs. It would have been unlikely under any circumstances, but it was close to miraculous considering that the only guy on the team who can make his own luck near goal, Jozy Altidore, was out injured. Every one of the three wins en route to the final was a scrambling, last-minute affair.

Toronto FC was notching another first in recent Toronto sports history - a team that really shouldn't win, but does so anyway. But that's the thing about luck - it turns on you.

The first 60 minutes of Sunday's final may have been Toronto's best combined effort of the year. Until they weren't.

Morrow just happened to be the guy in luck's way when it swung. Let's hope fate is done with him now. Nobody deserves this much attention.

At the end, as Seattle celebrated, the camera cruelly focused in on Morrow. He looked beyond despair.

It's been reported that Bradley has a clause in his contract that would have re-upped him for another year at US$6.5-million had Toronto won this game. He wouldn't talk about it, but he certainly played like it.

In the aftermath, he looked the least disconsolate of all. Instead, he seemed defiantly upbeat. He made a great point of saluting Toronto's travelling support in the audience.

If this was it for Bradley in Toronto, it's a good way to go out - refusing to be bowed. There may never have been a pro athlete in Toronto who so embodied the value of treating every game as though it were his last. He was the heart of it all.

So it's hard to feel bad about the way it turned out. Toronto FC was born in disappointment. For a long time, losing was the team's identity. Now the team has learned to lose with something like valour. There's no shame in that. Quite the opposite.

After a defeat like Sunday's, you begin your Intro to Philosophy 101 section of the sports curriculum.

Is it better to lose when you are expected to do so, or do so right at the end after you've raised expectations?

It's always the latter. Because the goal of sports may be winning, but the point of it is in creating expectations.

Associated Graphic

Kelvin Leerdam of the Sounders celebrates after scoring a goal during the MLS Cup final on Sunday, while TFC's Chris Mavinga shows dismay.

ABBIE PARR/GETTY IMAGES

The Seattle Sounders celebrate their 3-1 victory over Toronto FC at the MLS Cup final at CenturyLink Field on Sunday. TFC's month-long gallop through the playoffs ground to a halt a half-hour from the end of the game.

ABBIE PARR/GETTY IMAGES

A growing force in Canadian basketball
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Toby Fournier, who just turned 14, only picked up the sport two years ago, but that hasn't stopped her from becoming an overnight sensation
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By SHAWNA RICHER
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11


TORONTO -- The most exciting young basketball player in the country just might be an eighth-grade girl who can dunk.

Toby Fournier, who recently turned 14, is 6 foot 2 and still growing. She wears size 12½ custom Nikes. She has a wingspan of 6 feet 4 inches. She first picked up a basketball only two years ago.

This summer, the Toronto teenager posted a wildly received video on Instagram of herself dunking a basketball. She kept working on her dunks, and a few weeks ago posted another, even cleaner dunk on Instagram that went viral. Letters from top U.S. colleges are landing in the mailbox and sports agencies are taking notice. Her Instagram following has exploded, from a thousand followers to more than 12,000.

"It's been really sudden and a little crazy," Toby says.

She was only a few weeks off from winning the Canadian Youth Basketball League championship with the Brampton Warriors when she and her parents relaxed in their backyard in downtown Toronto this summer to talk about her sudden fame. She's grown an inch and a shoe size since.

Toby attends private Greenwood College in Toronto. She trains with the provincial U14 team, and plays rep basketball with Sisters Keeper, an elite girls' travelling team out of Falstaff Community Centre, a heavy hitter on the Toronto youth basketball scene.

She has found herself in the country's targeted athlete-strategy program, the stepping stone to Canada's national team. Impressive for a latecomer to the game.

Her older sister Zadie played at school and elite summer camps. Her father, Craig Fournier, and her mother, Anais Granofsky, thought maybe Toby and her younger brother Walker would like basketball, too. After four or five months of camps, they realized Toby had serious game, and the physique to excel.

She is a three-time city long-jump champion, winning the first in jean shorts and sandals. She tried ballet, soccer, gymnastics, and quit them all.

But basketball stuck.

"I tried and quit so many sports it got to a point where I wasn't allowed to sign up any more," she says.

She was always tall for her age, but during an aggressive growth spurt between Grades 4 and 6, she shot up to 5 foot 11.

Fournier noticed Toby was also unusually co-ordinated.

"She had these long limbs but she knew what to do with them," he says.

"That was different from most kids."

Rangy and strong with long toes and fingers - "people wanted me to play piano," she says.

Summer-camp basketball led to rep-team tryouts with 15-year-olds when she was just 12. Ro Russell, the NBA talent-spotter from Crestwood Preparatory, spotted Toby and word spread.

That growth spurt in elementary school - so rapid that her body sometimes hurt and kids wouldn't stop talking about her height - wasn't so great at the time.

"People didn't tease me exactly, but it would get mentioned all the time," she says. "I was at a point where I was like, 'Please let me stop growing.' " Basketball runs in the family.

Granofsky, a former star on Degrassi Junior High (she played Lucy Fernandez) remembers when her grandfather, the industrialist Phil Granovsky, helped bring the Raptors to Toronto in 1995 as one of the original members of the ownership group.

"It's kind of a neat thing about our family," Toby says. "A cool add-on to everything else that is happening."

Granofsky loves what athletics does for a girl, at an age when standing out physically can feel uncomfortable.

"We wanted to give her a place for that to shine because she didn't really want to be separated by two feet from her friends," she says. "At the time, it didn't feel like a positive thing. It's harder for girls. Friends would say things to her face. So we found a place that celebrates that. On the court, people love it. You can put your shoulders back and stand tall."

Nothing in basketball shouts power like the dunk.

First, Toby figured out she could touch the backboard.

"And I thought, 'Well, it's just a backboard,' " she says. "I have really long arms. So it wasn't the hardest thing. Then I started jumping, every time. I kept getting better. I started jumping higher. Then people started staying I could dunk, and that got me excited. It became another thing I could work on. I don't know how it happened exactly, but it just started to happen."

She covers half court in a few strides and plays with uncanny grace. She can slow the game down, then suddenly punch through a hole in the defence that wasn't open a second before.

"She is a relentless rebounder.

She will track that ball down and go get it," Sisters Keeper coach Cachet Johnson says. "Constant effort. She doesn't quit. That's not teachable."

At first Toby was unnerved by the attention, but now she's leaning into it.

"I backed away from it a little bit," she says. "But now it gives me kind of a boost. It challenges me. When you walk into the gym, you've got to think you're the best one there."

Later this month, Toby travels with Sisters Keeper to a Pennsylvania tournament, to play tougher U.S. teams in front of college coaches and scouts.

"It's shocking how good she is given she hasn't been playing long," says Keith Johnson, an assistant coach with Sisters Keeper.

"She's willing to learn. She takes constructive criticism, she asks a ton of questions."

A U.S. college scholarship is almost a given. Not bad for a kid who says she didn't always want the ball.

"But I do now," she says. "Even when I'm playing with boys, you have to be able to demand the ball. Because if you don't do that, they're not going to pass to you.

"I love beating boys. It's one of my favourite things."

Associated Graphic

One of Toby Fournier's coaches says the 6-foot-2 teen gives constant effort. 'She doesn't quit. That's not teachable.'

CHRIS DONOVAN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Toby Fournier, centre, was nervous about the attention she was getting, but is now leaning into it.

CHRIS DONOVAN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

All Sonny Bill Williams has to do for the Wolfpack is arrive
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By CATHAL KELLY
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Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13


TORONTO -- The difference between great athletes and iconic ones is in being able to create signature moments.

Sonny Bill Williams's moment came after the final of the 2015 Rugby World Cup. Williams's All Blacks had just won and were slowly circling the field. A teenage fan tried to run out to the celebrating team. He was tackled by security and landed at Williams's feet.

Rather than walk on, Williams picked the boy up, dusted him off and said, "I'll take you back to your parents."

Once he reached the stands, Williams took off his winners' medal and hung it around the kid's neck. It was a Mean Joe Greene Coke commercial come to life.

Williams, then 30, was already an electrifying and often polarizing star in rugby. But that gesture made him an international sensation.

"I seen a child that was a little bit hurt and it kinda touched me on my inside," Williams said later. "I just done what I thought was right. I guess it blew a bit out of proportion."

In part because of that blowing out of proportion, Williams is on the verge of becoming the richest player in rugby, and in just about the most unlikely place to do that - Canada.

The Toronto Wolfpack, rugby's only transatlantic team, will soon begin its first season in the British-based Super League.

Created from whole cloth three years ago, the Wolfpack has a negligible fanbase, little infrastructure and zero history. The ownership is a murky affair fronted by an Australian mining investor, but someone in that group clearly has money to burn.

Because this franchise isn't a business yet. It isn't even a charity. From the accounting perspective, it's more like an incinerator.

In its first season, the Wolfpack assembled a group of adventurous, money-motivated pros to play in a third-division league populated largely by part-timers. It routinely annihilated the competition.

After promotion, the club required two runs at the second division before getting it right. Now in the top tier, it had talked about doing something splashier. Not just a top signing, but a rock-star signing.

"Our club would want to have a name that's absolutely international," Wolfpack coach Brian McDermott said a few weeks ago. "Very much [what] David Beckham did for Major League Soccer."

In order to get their rock star, they are willing to wildly overpay.

The Super League's (plainly malleable) salary cap is a little more than $3-million. According to reports, Toronto is offering Williams a two-year deal in the neighbourhood of $9-million total. Should he accept, Williams would become the highest-earning rugby player on the planet.

This isn't franchise building. It isn't about creating something sustainable. The goal is making as much noise as possible and hoping for a years-long echo.

Williams's role in this is hitman-for-hire. Since he holds all the power in this negotiation, he has to decide if that suits him.

It's not exactly a stretch. He's bounced around for the entirety of his career, often burning bridges in the process. He's excelled at both versions of the sport - rugby union and rugby league - but has not played the 13a-side version in several years.

Williams is 34 - old by rugby standards. He's been a heavyweight boxer. He has a reputation as an immense talent who likes to pick his spots. He has always showed up for New Zealand, but somewhat less so for his pro clubs. Injuries have been a pernicious problem. Now he's considering a bit of lucrative slumming before he wraps things up.

The Beckham analogy fits almost perfectly here. Beckham was not quite over the hill when he arrived in America, but was definitely cresting it.

Beckham spent most of the first year in the trainer's room.

Once returned to full fitness, he began working part-time in Italy. Though his team eventually became a winner, he was not the engine of that success. He never really amounted to much in L.A. as a player.

Looking back on it, Beckham accomplished one important thing in North America - he arrived.

His MLS legacy rests entirely on his decision to bless a backwater with his presence. From MLS's perspective, it was money well spent.

It isn't the league it thought it might become when Beckham showed up more than a decade ago. But had he not done so, there might not be a league at all.

Should a deal be agreed, that's what Williams can do in Toronto. He gives rugby a face and a chance to leapfrog the wretched Argos of the CFL as the city's No. 5 team.

Williams doesn't have to be any good. The Wolfpack doesn't have to win. That's not how this works for an outsider team playing a sport few locals know anything about, never mind follow.

Williams will be paid millions to create buzz. If you aren't a rugby fan and have gotten this far in the column, he's already doing his job.

Will it work? That depends on Williams's personality. He is unlike Beckham in that his brand would not arrive in North America fully articulated. All people know about him now is that he is famous and that he probably shouldn't be ending up here.

But they will respond to the superlatives - two-time world champion, All Black, highest paid. The punters love a big boxoffice number.

That earns him a few shots at turning curiosity into interest. It's more important that Williams shine in front of a microphone than on a field.

He seems to have that part down. In interviews, he comes off as a charming knucklehead who speaks the international language of uplift. "I try to be where my feet are," and suchlike. He is an enormous man with a gentle physical presence. Even his name sticks in your head.

That's why the Toronto Wolfpack is willing to pay him so much for the simple act of arrival.

If he decides to come, Sonny Bill Williams wouldn't just be the best rugby player in North American pro history. He'd be the very first who mattered.

Oil drillers sound alarm as demand hits 'all-time lows'
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Association predicts number of working rigs will drop in 2020 as companies look to U.S.
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By EMMA GRANEY, KELLY CRYDERMAN
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Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


CALGARY -- Canada's oil drillers say demand for their services is at historic lows as companies send equipment and people abroad, mainly to the U.S.

Pointing to the foreign capital flight from Canada over the past several years, the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors says while the number of new wells drilled in 2020 will remain flat, the number of rigs in Western Canada will drop to 497 from 545.

"The exodus is happening, and it's happening at an alarming rate," the industry group's president Mark Scholz said Wednesday in Calgary after releasing the CAODC forecast.

Investment brokerage Peters & Co.

Ltd. says Western Canada's rig count is touching on 30-year lows. Drilling work is seasonal, but the CAODC said the total number of jobs will be down almost 40 per cent between 2018 and next year. Precision Drilling Corp.'s Kevin Neveu, who heads the country's largest contract drilling company, said the oil field-service sector in Canada is facing "all-time lows in demand for our services."

Energy-service companies are the workhorses of the energy industry: They are the contractors who do the actual drilling, fracking and other jobs for the oil companies that call the shots. They are the first to feel the pinch when capital is cut. The health of oil field-service companies is an indicator of the overall state of the energy sector, and in the past year, Canadian oil field-services stocks have plummeted an average of 28 per cent, according to RBC Dominion Securities.

After an oil-price drop that hit in 2014, the past five years have been bleak for the country's energy sector.

Canadian companies have also long said they are facing a host of special challenges, including a lack of pipeline capacity to ship to global markets beyond the United States. The drillers' industry association on Wednesday pointed to political decisions as playing a key role in the industry's decline.

The CAODC wants the federal government to accept Alberta's rejigged carbon tax on large emitters as robust enough to meet national standards, and to guarantee the completion of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. It has called on Ottawa to repeal laws it labels "punitive" - including one that bans oil tankers from docking, loading or unloading oil on British Columbia's northern coast.

It is also asking for Ottawa to drop or amend its Bill C-69 legislation, which overhauled environmental evaluations for energy projects, and which both friends and foes of the oil and gas industry say is likely to stop the construction of any new oil pipelines in the years ahead.

Finally, it wants Ottawa to prioritize the responsible development and export of Canadian oil and gas as an effective means of reducing global greenhouse gas emissions.

Bob Geddes, president and chief operating officer for Ensign Energy Services Inc., said his company runs 300 rigs globally, but only does 17 per cent of its business in Canada. He said each rig is like a mini-manufacturing plant and is responsible for about 150 direct and non-direct jobs. When the rigs move to other countries, so do the jobs.

"We've got a federal government in Ottawa that wants to marginalize the oil and gas business for political gains," Mr. Geddes said. If Ottawa was really serious about the issue of climate change, it would be shipping liquefied natural gas to Asia to displace coal-fired power plants, he added.

Drillers are seizing on small pieces of good news for their sector, such as the Alberta government's announcement earlier this month that new conventional oil wells won't be hamstrung by the production limits - or curtailments - put in place in January due to a lack of pipeline capacity out of the province.

The CAODC 2020 forecast didn't include potential gains from the policy change, but Mr. Scholz called it a positive step toward growth.

Premier Jason Kenney told CAODC members Wednesday he wants to see the end of curtailment over the next year. Until then, the industry will likely retain uncertainties about the impact of the program and the lack of pipeline access.

Companies have had to adjust to a new reality quickly. Two years ago, half of Precision's work was still in Canada, Mr. Neveu said. Now, 70 per cent of its business is outside Canada and all of the company's officers are based in Houston to be close to capital and customers.

Its headquarters will remain in Calgary, Mr. Neveu added, but that could change if there is another meaningful shift in the company's fortunes - such as Canadian investors deciding to pull out of the service sector.

"You know, it's really hard to operate a business from the location where there are no customers and where there is no business. While Calgary isn't zero on that front, it's much lower than the U.S."

AKITA Drilling Ltd. chief executive Karl Ruud said the Calgary-based company didn't do any business in the U.S. three years ago. Now, the 40-rig operation does 80 per cent of its work in the U.S. "Everyone that is in the industry has had to lay off multitudes of people" in Canada, Mr. Ruud said.

If there is a faint silver lining to the slowdown of activity in the Western provinces, it's that Canadian companies have seized a much larger U.S. market share in recent years. Precision, Mr. Neveu said, has more than 8 per cent of the total American drilling market - an all-time high for the company. Canadian drillers as a whole now make up 15 per cent to 20 per cent of the U.S.

market, he said.

Mr. Neveu says this could be owing in part to operating efficiencies Canadian companies have mastered by having to operate in short windows due to Canada's cold climate.

"There aren't many industries where Canadian companies have a meaningful position in the U.S." he added.

But the American revenues do not make up for the downward trend in Canadian activity, Mr. Ruud said. And U.S. activity is looking more sluggish, with industry forecasts predicting the shale-oil sector is set for slower growth in 2020.

Mr. Ruud said the rise of environmental activism and concern about climate change has resulted in industry disruption, and some investors are avoiding oil and gas-related stocks. But he believes that, sooner or later, if there is not enough oil activity, gasoline prices will go up.

"When you have to pay $5 a litre for fuel, you might think twice."

Associated Graphic

A drilling rig is packed up after the contractor, Horizon Drilling, completed its work on an oil well near Calgary on Wednesday.

TODD KOROL/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, seen at a Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors event in Calgary on Wednesday, told members of the group that he wants to see an end to provincial oil-production curtailments over the next year.

JEFF MCINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Sabia to step down as CEO of Caisse
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After nearly 11 years, pension fund boss to leave in February to head Munk School
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By NICOLAS VAN PRAET, SEAN SILCOFF
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


MONTREAL OTTAWA -- Michael Sabia is stepping down from his post as chief executive officer of Canadian pension fund giant Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec after a decade at the helm, leaving an institution once marred by crisis on stable footing but with several looming challenges.

The former BCE Inc. head said Tuesday he will be the longestserving Caisse CEO when he leaves the job in February to lead the University of Toronto's Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy.

Mr. Sabia said the time is right to depart because the Caisse's portfolios are proving resilient amid global market swings while the pension fund's global footprint is well-advanced. Two thirds of its assets are invested outside Canada.

He denied he was at odds with Premier François Legault's government and said he is leaving on his own terms. The Munk opportunity was some time in the making, he said, adding the university was willing to wait until he felt comfortable leaving the Caisse.

"This is a team sport, this isn't about me. [We've] built an organization that is positioned well in the world, that is performing on a very solid basis," Mr. Sabia said.

"There's always things to do but generally I think things are in very good shape here. And so it's time to get on with [this new opportunity]. ... At some point you say to yourself, you've got to be disciplined, time to move on." Mr. Sabia, 66, has led the Caisse through four changes in Quebec government, navigating the politically sensitive waters by defending the Caisse's decision-making independence while boosting investments in local companies and real estate. He has always insisted that the best way to stoke Quebec's corporate champions is by making them world beaters.

He will leave the job roughly a year ahead of the formal expiry of his mandate in March, 2021. He had said in recent months that he would not remain as Caisse CEO past that time, even if asked to stay.

"In doing this, he stays master of his own destiny," said Louis Hébert, a management specialist at business school HEC Montréal.

"He came in when there was lots of turbulence and questions being asked of the Caisse. He's stabilized the situation and put in place processes" to withstand downturns, he said.

Mr. Sabia joined the Caisse at a low point in its history in March, 2009, and his appointment was not without controversy at the time. He was an outsider - a St.

Catharines, Ont.-born anglophone and a former senior federal civil servant who had previously served as CEO of BCE Inc., the parent of Bell Canada.

His predecessor Henri-Paul Rousseau, a banker, had been recruited to clean up the institution, which manages money on behalf of Quebec public pension and insurance funds, after it posted poor results coming out of the dot-com meltdown. Mr. Rousseau departed in May, 2008, and replacement Richard Guay lasted just a few months.

That year, the Caisse booked a $40-billion loss as it sustained heavy losses in the value of its investments in stocks, real estate and private equity after markets crashed globally that fall.

Once in the door, Mr. Sabia moved swiftly to restructure the management team, book heavy writedowns in the company's real estate business and reorient its investment strategy by focusing on assets anchored in the real economy. By the end of 2011, the Caisse's assets under management were finally back to where they'd been four years earlier, at $159-billion.

He has since delivered steady if unexceptional returns, averaging 9.9 per cent annually in the past decade and more than doubling the Caisse's asset base to $326.7billion as of June 30.

While the Caisse under Mr. Sabia has become a far more global investor - just 36 per cent of its assets are now in Canada, from more than 50 per cent - it has also worked to live up to part of its founding mandate to support the Quebec economy.

The Caisse led efforts to build and operate a new light rail system in Montreal and has made high-profile investments in the province's technology sector, including leading a $200-million financing of artificial intelligence startup Element AI. It has also financed expansion efforts of local champions including CGI Group and Laurentian Bank.

There are several unresolved challenges for the pension fund, including what to do about its sizable investment in beaten-down engineering firm SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. But progress on those challenges is being made, Mr. Sabia said. "I don't see in any of those files flashing red lights or solid red lights."

Quebec's political leaders were effusive in their praise for Mr. Sabia and what he's been able to accomplish at the Caisse. Mr. Legault singled out his "exceptional track record." Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon said his rigorous management pushed the pension fund manager "to another level."

The Caisse's board has begun the selection process for the next CEO and has hired an international consultancy to help in the search. The Caisse board recommends a candidate to the government for approval.

Speculation about who would take over from Mr. Sabia is already well under way in Quebec's corporate and political corridors of power. External candidates whose names have been linked to the job include National Bank of Canada CEO Louis Vachon and Sophie Brochu, who is leaving her job as CEO of energy firm Energir at the end of the year. She would be the first female CEO to lead the Caisse were she to be selected.

"The government is always in a hurry to name people. They undoubtedly have a candidate in mind," said Michel Nadeau of Montreal's Institute for Governance of Private and Public Organizations, himself a former Caisse senior executive.

Influential in government and business, Mr. Sabia, although not an academic, is a respected leader and an ideal candidate for a school that seeks to make an impact beyond academia. University of Toronto president Meric Gertler said one of the tasks entrusted to Mr. Sabia will be to look into whether the Munk School should become a separate faculty unto itself.

"We were looking for somebody who could act as a bridge between the great academic work being done inside the university and the school of global affairs and public policy and the realm of application," Mr. Gertler said. "Michael brings tremendous credibility in both of those worlds."

With a report from Joe Friesen.

Associated Graphic

Michael Sabia's departure as chief executive of Quebec's pension fund comes a year before his four-year term was to expire in early 2021.

GRAHAM HUGHES/THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES

When a small business gets taxed like a condo tower
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By PATRICK BRETHOUR
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


A ftershocks from the housing boom are sweeping over small businesses in the urban cores of Vancouver and Toronto as soaring land values drive up assessments and, in turn, trigger annual increases in property taxes running into tens of thousands of dollars.

Those higher taxes are a significant hit on the bottom line of retail businesses operating on slender profit margins. For some, it means the prospect of closing. The years-long rise in prices for residential real estate is at the heart of the problem.

Land values soared, not just for housing, but for commercial properties as well. Higher home prices also led municipalities to take steps to expand the supply of housing, including changes to zoning that allow residential uses in formerly commercial areas.

Together, those two factors set the stage for steep and sudden increases in official estimates of the "highest and best use" of a property, and in tax bills.

Assessors use the principle of highest and best use - the building and improvements of a property that create the highest value - based on a number of considerations, including market demand and legally permitted uses.

The key point is this: The highest and best use may not be the building that currently exists.

In areas with rapid growth, such as the urban cores of Toronto and Vancouver, the highest and best use could be a condo tower or townhouse development, which means the owners of such properties face much higher assessments and a much higher tax bill.

Vancouver's Kitsilano neighbourhood is full of one- and twostorey retail storefronts that give the neighbourhood a throwback appeal, making it home to precisely the sort of businesses that are most vulnerable. Sabrina Faas, owner of Bayswater Tea Co.

in Kitsilano, says the annual tax bill for her three-person business has climbed by nearly $10,000 since 2016, one more financial burden to shoulder. In essence, her 1,265-square-foot shop is being taxed as if it had a residential building atop it. Or as, Ms. Fass puts it: "I'm paying for air."

Ms. Faas estimates she would need to increase her revenue by more than $25,000 to cover that additional cost. But she has limited room to raise prices, so most of the higher tax bill will come out of her bottom line.

Five kilometres to the east, The Beaumont Studios faces even starker consequences.

Founder and executive director Jude Kusnierz says her not-forprofit business renting space to artists may have to start winding down. The tax bill skyrocketed to $110,000 in 2019 from $46,000 four years ago; the studio's financial plan forecasts another $18,000 increase in 2020. Ms.

Kusnierz says she hopes Vancouver city council will deliver some tax relief, but without it, the business that expanded over 15 years and grew into a second building will have to close.

The softening of the B.C. real estate market in the past two years temporarily reduced the upward movement of assessments in Vancouver, says Paul Sullivan, senior partner at the real estate consulting firm Burgess, Cawley, Sullivan and Associates Ltd. But he says land values would have to plummet drastically for the tax increases to roll back.

And now, the real estate markets in Toronto and Vancouver have rebounded, meaning the upward pressure on assessments will resume.

In Toronto, veteran restaurateur Frédéric Geisweiller has run headlong into the tax distortions the highest and best use principle can wreak. Mr. Geisweiller, one of three owners of Le Sélect Bistro in the city's downtown, has watched condos sprout up near the restaurant and its property tax bills skyrocket.

When the bistro moved to Wellington Street 12 years ago, the property taxes were just $31,276.

By 2016, that had risen to $60,131. But over the next three years, the bill nearly doubled to $116,000 - and that was after City of Toronto put a cap in place in 2018. Without it, the bistro would have had to pay $150,028 in 2019.

Mr. Geisweiller says he welcomes the city's efforts at tax relief, but they aren't nearly enough. In the low-margin restaurant business, Le Sélect Bistro would need $1.1-million in additional sales to offset even its reduced tax bill.

Toronto's 10-per-cent cap on yearly increases just delays the day of reckoning, he says. The bistro's property-tax bills, already unaffordable, will continue to rise.

"There is no end in sight," Mr.

Geisweiller says.

Without tax relief, he says, Le Sélect Bistro will have to close after more than four decades in business, putting its 80 employees out of work.

Brian Kelcey, vice-president of policy and public affairs for the Toronto Regional Board of Trade, says he believes hundreds of Toronto businesses face the same magnitude of tax increases as Le Sélect Bistro. Lawvin Hadisi, press secretary for Toronto Mayor John Tory, said the surge in property taxes is "solely and directly" attributable to increases in assessments by Ontario's Municipal Property Assessment Corporation. MPAC says it calculates assessments based on permitted uses and on land-use policy set by the province and municipalities.

The problem is even more widespread in Vancouver, with more than 4,000 commercial properties facing tax increases of at least 10 per cent in 2019, with some seeing bills triple, says Aaron Aerts of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

In British Columbia and Ontario, business groups are pressing their provincial governments to give municipalities the fiscal flexibility to deliver long-lasting tax relief. In Toronto, Mr. Kelcey, councillor Joe Cressy and others are asking the Progressive Conservative government to allow the city to exempt properties from a highest-and-best-use assessment unless the owner has an approved development permit - a clear indication a new structure is planned.

In B.C., a coalition that includes the CFIB, Vancouver and other municipalities is pushing the New Democratic government to pass legislation that would allow local governments to establish a new class of property taxes to shield small businesses from the impact of rising land values.

Both provincial governments have promised to study the issue. In its economic update this week, Ontario said it will seek input on measures to "enhance the accuracy and stability of property assessments."

In the meantime, small businesses across Toronto and Vancouver will have another year of punishingly big tax bills.

Associated Graphic

Sabrina Faas, owner of Bayswater Tea Co. in Vancouver's Kitsilano neighbourhood, is seen in front of her store on Friday. Ms. Faas says the annual tax bill for her three-person business has climbed by nearly $10,000 since 2016.

RAFAL GERSZAK/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Semafo criticized over lax security as mine shuts indefinitely
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By NICOLAS VAN PRAET, GEOFFREY YORK
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Tuesday, November 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


MONTREAL, JOHANNESBURG -- Montreal gold miner Semafo Inc. is coming under criticism for ineffective security measures in Burkina Faso after one of the worst terrorist attacks on employees of a Canadian company.

"We have concerns about just how safe" the situation was for Semafo's workers and business partners, said Odette Napina, project leader at Organisation pour le Renforcement des Capacités de Développement, an independent group that monitors the social and economic impact of the mining industry in Burkina Faso.

Assailants ambushed a convoy of five buses carrying Semafo employees, contractors and suppliers under military escort last Wednesday in one of the deadliest insurgent attacks in the West African country in recent years. No one has claimed responsibility for the incident.

The company on Monday finally provided a clearer picture of the human toll from the raid.

A total of 241 people were attacked and current estimates peg the number of people dead at 39, Semafo said in a statement.

Another 60 are injured, 141 people are accounted for but unharmed and one person remains missing, the company said.

"Myself and most of our senior management team are in-country ensuring all those affected are getting the support they require," Semafo chief executive Benoit Desormeaux said in the statement. "Our priority continues to be their safety, security and well being."

In addition to the impact on people, the "unprecedented scale and nature of the attack" has made basic administration and logistics for the company very difficult, Semafo said. The company said operations at the Boungou mine will remain suspended while it tries to analyze how will be able to operate in a safe manner in the country.

Semafo shares plunged nearly 17 per cent Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange, closing at $2.63. The company has lost roughly onethird of its market capitalization since the Nov.

6 attack.

The mining company faces crucial questions in the days ahead, chiefly how much is it willing to spend to increase security beyond what it has already done? And can the government of Burkina Faso, which owns 10 per cent of the Boungou project, do any more? After two separate attacks in August, 2018, Semafo announced new security protocols to ensure the safety of its staff. It said all expatriate employees travelling between Burkina Faso's capital of Ouagadougou and the Boungou mine would henceforth be transported by helicopter. It also said a ground military force had been deployed on the route.

"These measures, combined with a heightened escort presence, will ensure transportation of national employees to and from the mine to their villages," Semafo said at the time.

The risk of travel on the road appears to have been underestimated. Local media reports, citing security sources, said the military vehicle leading the convoy last week was struck by an improvised explosive device. After the explosion, gunmen opened fire, targeting not only the military escort but also people in the buses, the reports said.

The attack occurred on a dirt road about 40 kilometres from Semafo's Boungou mine site in Burkina Faso's Est region. That section of road lies in a forested area that extends more than 50 kilometres and has no phone service, Ms. Napina said. There had been at least two previous attacks on the same road, including one last December in which four police officers and another person were killed.

"I think Semafo was aware" of the risk, Ms.

Napina said via e-mail. "Why, despite the danger, were these buses put in a convoy with weak security? I'm telling myself it was for reasons of economy. An escort costs money and they were looking to minimize costs."

Ryan Cummings, director of the Africa-focused political and security risk management consultancy Signal Risk, said the decision by Semafo last year to begin transporting its expatriate workers by helicopters was a sign that the company was aware of the threat to its bus convoys.

"Using a military convoy to transport the local staffers placed these personnel under a disproportionate threat of being targeted by extremists who perceive military personnel as their primary target," Mr. Cummings told The Globe and Mail on Monday. "This is not the first time that mining personnel have been targeted by armed violence while commuting to and from mining facilities in the region."

A Canadian delegation, including Ambassador Carol McQueen and Mr. Desormeaux, met with Burkina Faso Prime Minister Christophe Dabiré on Monday to express their condolences to the people of that country. Relatives of those who were killed and those who survived expressed anger over the weekend at what they said was a lack of support from Semafo.

The mining firm has declined to answer questions submitted by The Globe and Mail, including why it believed it could safeguard its road convoys despite evidence to the contrary. "Please give us time to grieve," Ruth Hanna, Semafo's investor relations analyst, responded when contacted Friday.

"We're very careful in what we say," Semafo chairman John LeBoutillier said in a brief exchange Monday. "We don't have all the information. This isn't like we're in Sept-Iles or Abitibi ... We're proceeding with the utmost prudence."

Burkina Faso has been plunged into crisis by an escalating wave of attacks that have killed more than 500 people and displaced nearly 500,000 since 2016. Dozens of attacks have occurred on industrial targets, including mining operations.

A homegrown insurgency has spread over parts of the country, amplified by violence perpetrated by Islamist militants crossing porous borders from neighbouring Mali and Niger.

Nearly a third of the country has become too dangerous for aid workers to enter because of frequent fighting and attacks.

France last week announced the launch of a new military operation in Burkina Faso, to be undertaken jointly with local soldiers in the border zone between Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. It wasn't immediately clear whether France was offering additional troops or if its existing troops already present in Western Africa would be moved.

"If the situation continues, it will be very hard for us," Benjamin Compaore, a relative of an injured miner, told the Al Jazeera network.

"We really live in fear."

SEMAFO (SMF) CLOSE: $2.63, DOWN 53¢

Supreme Court to hear Uber worker's challenge on arbitration
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By CHRISTINE DOBBY
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Monday, November 4, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


CORPORATE LAW REPORTER The Supreme Court of Canada is set to hear a case that will shape whether workers and customers of Uber Technologies Inc. and other large technology companies can file class-action lawsuits or must take disputes to private arbitrators.

Uber includes clauses in its standard driver agreement that require workers to use private arbitration rather than the public court system, which means the cases remain confidential and can only be pursued individually. It's a risk-management tactic to give the multinational company predictability in the management of its contracts with millions of drivers.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear the case of David Heller, an UberEats driver from Ontario, in an appeal that has broad implications for Canada's arbitration community as well as the treatment of workers in the gig economy. There are major legal issues at play, including the circumstances under which a court should rule on the validity of an arbitration agreement as well as the test for determining whether a contract is so unfair that it should be set aside.

Mr. Heller filed a proposed class action against Uber in 2017, seeking a declaration from the courts that Ontario drivers who have used the Uber app to deliver food or provide transportation to customers are employees of Uber, not independent contractors.

Uber asked a judge to stop the case based on the arbitration clause and won a stay of proceedings. But the Ontario Court of Appeal reversed that decision, stating that it is up to a court, not an arbitrator, to determine the validity of an arbitration agreement and then ruling the clause is so unfair (or unconscionable) that it should be set aside. The Supreme Court granted Uber leave to appeal in May.

The case has attracted 17 interveners - a large number for a case that does not involve constitutional issues - with a range of arbitration organizations and business groups lining up on the side of Uber. Consumer-protection, social-justice and workers' rights groups have aligned with Mr.

Heller, and the ministry of the attorney-general for Ontario also made submissions on points in support of the driver's position.

"There is a policy tension between freedom of contract and the company's need for certainty, predictability and reasonable risk management on one hand, and on the other hand, consumer protection, true consent to the agreement, and customers' or users' access to justice in the courts," says Andrew Little, a partner at Bennett Jones LLP. He represents ADR Chambers, which is intervening only on the issue of the test for when a court should rule on the validity of an arbitration clause.

He said standard-form contracts are common, and often necessary, for companies managing mass-customer relationships or online sales and services, because the contract terms cannot realistically be negotiated individually.

"These [arbitration] clauses have been used in the past as a shield," said Marina Pavlovic, a law professor at the University of Ottawa who is representing the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic in the appeal.

"It really amplifies that David versus Goliath dynamic, because in a lot of these cases the power is in numbers and the only meaningful way to pursue a challenge is through class action."

In Mr. Heller's contract with Uber, an arbitration clause requires drivers to take unresolved complaints about the company to an arbitrator in Amsterdam.

The up-front costs of filing an arbitration claim are US$14,500 and an earlier court ruling states Mr. Heller earns between $20,800 and $31,200 a year driving for Uber.

"The unconscionability test is a stringent one. It's an exceptional remedy, but I would say this is one of the cases where it applies," said Michael Wright, a lawyer representing Mr. Heller.

He says he believes the agreement is unfair and that the Supreme Court should uphold the Court of Appeal decision to set it aside.

Lawyers representing Uber declined to comment in advance of the Supreme Court hearing this week.

Even among proponents of arbitration, there is debate over the practice of forcing workers into private dispute resolution in cases such as this.

"This type of arbitration clause gives arbitration a bad name with the general public. It makes it look like arbitration is some kind of gimmick that large companies can use to deprive individuals and small businesses of access to justice. That is not what arbitration is about," says William Horton, a Toronto-based arbitrator of domestic and international business disputes.

Meanwhile, the Montreal Economic Institute, a free-market think tank, states in a court filing that "much of the sharing economy depends on standardized terms and conditions," and it could be "stifled" if the Supreme Court lowers the threshold for finding that a contract term is unconscionable. If those agreements are undermined, the MEI says, it could put Canadian companies at a competitive disadvantage and limit opportunities for under- or unemployed Canadians to earn income.

If the Supreme Court rules against Uber on the arbitration issue and sends the issue back to the lower court, Mr. Heller and the rest of the proposed class of claimants would still have to persuade a trial judge to certify their class action. Only then would the focus turn to the employment status of the drivers.

"The big lingering question that will not be answered [by the Supreme Court] is whether Uber drivers are 'employees' under the Ontario Employment Standards Act," said David Doorey, professor of work law at York University. If the drivers are deemed to be employees, they can seek wage and other protections under the legislation.

"Uber could lose at the Supreme Court and still ultimately win if the drivers are later found to be independent contractors."

Prof. Doorey said the current case is "part one of a potentially revolutionary development in how Canadian law deals with gig workers."

Why GFL's IPO failed: Debt concern, and private backers playing hardball
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Waste-management company unwilling to accept amended terms to get deal done
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By TIM KILADZE
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


After marketing its initial public offering to potential investors for two weeks, GFL Environmental Inc. had heard the same feedback over and over: it needed to slash its heavy debt load.

As a company that has made a number of acquisitions and completed a $5billion leveraged buyout in 2018, GFL's balance sheet is full of borrowed money. Some investors who looked at the IPO wanted to see the debt burden lowered to less than four times GFL's adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), down from its current level of about seven times.

Anticipating this concern, GFL and its lead private-equity backers, BC Partners and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, devised a deal they hoped would price the shares between US$20 and US$24 and also satisfy the debt demands. The deal was set to raise as much as US$2.4-billion.

But by the time markets closed on Tuesday, it was clear to GFL it would have to lower the price to get the offering done.

This posed a major problem because GFL was planning on selling a fixed number of shares. At a lower price, the IPO wouldn't raise enough money to repay the debt necessary to appease more conservative investors.

At that point, the company's only other option was to increase the number of shares it issued, to make up the shortfall. However, doing so would dilute the stakes of its existing owners - and the largest of these backers, BC Partners, refused.

Rather than take amended terms, BC, Teachers and GFL walked away - catching Bay Street by surprise. When the decision to scrap the deal was published by The Globe and Mail Tuesday evening, multiple underwriters had not yet been told by the company.

This account of events comes from conversations with seven people who have intimate knowledge of the offering. The Globe and Mail is keeping the sources confidential because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

"As a disciplined investor with a high quality asset such as GFL, we believe there is no reason to compromise on valuation," Paolo Notarnicola, BC's lead partner on GFL and a director on the company's board, wrote in a statement to The Globe on Wednesday.

"GFL has been a standout investment for BC Partners since our initial investment 18 months ago, delivering strong free cash flow coupled with significant near-and-long-term growth prospects and led by an entrepreneurial management team. As such, GFL is in no rush or in any need to access the public markets."

Teachers echoed this sentiment, noting in its own statement that the pension fund "did not believe that the proposed IPO pricing adequately reflected GFL's current and expected prospects." GFL declined to comment.

In the aftermath, there is a mixture of confusion, frustration and, ultimately, disappointment on Bay Street.

When the IPO launched in October, markets were hot and U.S.

waste-management companies were trading at extremely lofty valuations. The hope was that this would be an easy sell.

This was also set to be one of Canada's largest-ever IPOs, and the deal would have delivered as much as US$90-million in fees to underwriters, many of whom have been starved of financings this year.

But in the end, GFL scrapped the deal and few people knew why.

The seeds of Bay Street's confusion were first laid early Tuesday, when the deal's lead underwriters quietly sent a message that there would likely be a deal around US$18 a share. By the time markets closed, something had changed.

Some people believe there never really was a deal at this price and that GFL had simply bluffed to see how much demand it could drum up at this level.

Others say there was a deal, but after some reflection, the current owners - and chiefly, BC Partners - decided the math didn't satisfy them.

What is certain is that quality investors had balked at the original marketing range.

GFL was aiming to dual list on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange, and when building an order book in the United States, it is common for hedge funds with short-term investment horizons to put their orders in first. These buyers tend to be more flexible about valuations and debt levels, because they are not buy-andhold types.

Value investors, however, tend to have different mindsets - and their opinions matter because these buyers are likely to be long-term owners who develop deep relationships with the company's management team. This group was adamant that GFL's debt-to-adjusted EBITDA multiple should be between 3.5 and 4 times as a publicly traded company.

These investors also haven't had much time to assess GFL's growth potential in its current form.

The company is well-known for being a serial acquirer, but a year ago, it struck its largest deal ever, buying North Carolinabased Waste Industries for $3.65billion, including debt. While GFL is now the fourth-largest waste-management company in North America, the company lost $161-million in the first six months of fiscal 2019.

Ultimately GFL wasn't satisfied with the order book. However, the company has yet to say if its existing owners will now inject more equity into the business. The debt is currently eating into cash flow, with interest and other financing costs amounting to $251-million in the first half of fiscal 2019, larger than its total loss.

Associated Graphic

GFL Environmental Inc. is the fourth-largest waste-management company in North America, but lost $161-million in the first six months of fiscal 2019.

CARLOS OSORIO/REUTERS

Workers dump yard waste into a GFL Environmental truck in Toronto on Tuesday. The waste-management company is well-known for being a serial acquirer.

CARLOS OSORIO/REUTERS

Veterans need more than two minutes of silence from Corporate Canada
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By RITA TRICHUR
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Monday, November 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


D avid MacLeod joined the military at age 17 to provide for his mother and younger brother following his father's death in 1982. He served 27 years, including deployments to Cyprus, Bosnia, Kosovo and Afghanistan, before being medically discharged in 2010.

These days, he runs his own consulting firm in Antigonish, N.S., a business that leverages his military intelligence background.

Mr. MacLeod, who is also a veterans advocate and author, credits his successful transition to civilian life to a three-point plan he devised later in his military career with his wife, Katarin. Every time he went on tour, the money he sent home was earmarked for his wife's education (she has a PhD), his own education (his bachelor's and master's) and for their financial nest egg.

"I had done a pretty hard tour in Bosnia," Mr. MacLeod said. "When you see your friends and the people you care about get hurt, and they don't have anything to fall back on, that was a pretty solid lesson for me."

But not all veterans make such a seamless transition.

The federal government spends a pittance on veterans education, training and career-transition services, leaving most former military personnel to plan their postservice careers on their own.

It's a daunting challenge; some military skills and training are difficult to articulate on résumés. Additionally, upgrading one's education can also be tricky without knowing which credentials are being sought by prospective employers.

It's a disgrace that Ottawa leaves veterans in the lurch when other countries, such as Australia, assist defence personnel in planning their postmilitary lives as soon as they enlist. Here in Canada, charities and non-profit organizations try to pick up the slack. But what's really needed is a call to action in Corporate Canada that goes far beyond wearing poppies and marking two minutes of silence on Remembrance Day.

There were 649,300 Canadian veterans as of March 31, 2018, but there's only a small pot of government money available for career-transition services, rehabilitation and New Veterans Charter support services - an estimated $62-million in 2018-19 for all those services combined.

That's grossly inadequate because 32 per cent of veterans reported "difficulty" adjusting to civilian life, according to a 2016 federal government survey. And while that same survey found that the unemployment rate for veterans was 8 per cent and comparable to the general public, those figures may not be reliable. Statistics Canada doesn't regularly track veteran unemployment rates. Veterans, meanwhile, are likely suffering from "underemployment," according to a 2017 study by the Veteran Transition Advisory Council (VTAC).

"Based on the findings, which showed a decline in income of 10 per cent and a decline in earnings of 42 per cent postrelease (three-year average), VTAC inferred a significant decline in earning power for veterans post-release," the study reads. That same VTAC study also concluded that "most private-sector companies are not motivated to hire veterans."

Most have no veteran hiring policies. Part of the problem is that companies have little insight into the transferability of veterans' skills.

The other big obstacle is social bias. Veterans face stereotypes about being difficult to manage, while the general public tends to "overestimate the percentage of post-9/11 veterans who suffer from mental-health issues such as depression, anxiety and PTSD," according a 2016 study by the George W. Bush Institute, which looked at the United States, Canada and Britain.

So what are the solutions? For starters, veterans say HR specialists need to understand military culture. Companies also need to recruit in advance by travelling to the bases because leaving the armed forces takes months.

"It's not like a two-weeks' notice kind of thing," said Kyle Dowd, a veteran and branch manager with Bank of Montreal in Ottawa. Mr. Dowd, who left the military in 2009, says he believes that financial services is an ideal fit for a lot of veterans.

"Banks, much like the military, are very large structures.

They are policy- and process-driven."

BMO has long been the official bank of the Canadian defence community, but other financial services companies, including Bank of Nova Scotia and Manulife Financial, also have programs to hire and support veterans.

Toronto-Dominion Bank, meanwhile, hired retired general Rick Hillier in 2008 to assist with its leadership development and training. TD also has a program to recruit veterans in the U.S.

Cybersecurity is also a potential career option for those with an intelligence background. Professional-services firm KPMG supports Coding for Veterans, a program designed to fine-tune digital skills. Recruitment, however, is just Step 1.

Companies also need to do a better job retaining veterans by ensuring they are not underemployed and overlooked.

Most veterans will change employers within the first three years after their release, according to Statistics Canada.

Michael Mitchell, a partner at KPMG Canada who leads the company's management-consulting practices for the federal government in Ottawa, left the military in 2013.

His advice to companies is to be mindful that many veterans enlist right out of high school. Some may never have had a civilian job and may not be familiar with the unwritten rules of corporate culture.

"The biggest challenge for me in transitioning [to civilian life] was moving away from that command-and-control environment, where you wait to be told in many ways what to do, into [an] industry where you have to take the initiative and make things happen," he said.

RBC part of Aramco IPO despite Saudi diplomatic, trade rifts with Canada
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By JEFFREY JONES, TIM KILADZE
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1


Royal Bank of Canada has won a role in Saudi Aramco's massive initial public offering, providing another signal that oil is largely unaffected by the breakdown in diplomatic relations between Canada and Saudi Arabia.

After years of anticipation, Saudi Aramco, the energy giant owned by the Saudi government, has revealed details of an IPO that is expected to value the company between US$1.2-trillion and US$2.3-trillion. RBC is the only Canadian bank listed as an underwriter on the deal, which is expected to raise between US$20-billion to US$40-billion. If successful, the IPO could be the largest ever.

RBC is not listed as one of the nine banks leading the offering, but rather on a second tier of banks as a "foreign joint bookrunner." That means it will help sell shares to institutional investors, but will have a less important role than the top banks on the deal, which include Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and HSBC Holdings PLC.

However small, RBC's inclusion is "a reminder that oil policy has long been shielded from the kingdom's other political and economic whims," said Andrew Bishop, head of research at Signum Global, which advises financial investors on geopolitical issues.

At the same time, "it's a sign that the Aramco IPO in particular is simply too important to politicize with petty squabbles," he added.

In 2018, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland angered the kingdom's royal family when she criticized Saudi Arabia's jailing of women's rights activists. The Saudi government responded by expelling Canada's ambassador to the country, suspending new trade deals, barring the import of Canadian wheat and cancelling scholarships for thousands of Saudi students in Canada.

A few months later, the Canadian government imposed sanctions on 17 Saudis after the slaying of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Dennis Horak, the former Canadian ambassador to Saudi Arabia who was expelled during the battle, said that even at the height of the tension, Saudi Arabia determined that oil exports to Canada would not be affected. "When it comes to oil and Aramco, politics often takes a back seat if it benefits the kingdom," he wrote in an e-mail.

Although Saudi Arabia has given its blessing for RBC to participate, the bank's involvement is not without risk. Notably, the lender could face reputational damage if the Saudi government infringes on human rights, fails to deliver strong returns for IPO investors or does not modernize its economy as promised.

RBC also risks inflaming tensions at home. Canadian prooil pundits, as well as Alberta Premier Jason Kenney's United Conservative Party government, have lamented that oil from undemocratic jurisdictions such as Saudi Arabia is flowing through Eastern Canadian refineries.

Asked about RBC's participation in the Aramco IPO, Kavi Bal, a spokesman for Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage, said the bank continues to conduct business in Alberta, but added that "our obvious preference is for Canadian banks to further invest in Alberta and our energy sector." "In comparison to other countries, Alberta has the strongest environmental, social and governance policies in the world.

We'd also remind investors that Alberta does not face the same geopolitical instability as the Middle East," he said.

For RBC, though, there is a trade-off, and if all goes well there is significant upside to playing a role in the Aramco IPO - chiefly, the potential to participate in future Saudi deals. Involvement is "largely about access for the future, proximity to the kingdom," said Phillip Cornell, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council Global Energy Center in Washington.

"There's going to be, in principle, a lot of banking work and a lot of privatizations that are going on in lots of other parts of the economy ... eliciting great fees for a lot of banks."

Aramco's IPO is led by global heavyweights such as Citigroup, Credit Suisse and Goldman. RBC did not disclose what percentage of the deal it has been given to underwrite, and spokesman Andrew Block said he could not offer details.

More information about the syndicate could be made public when Saudi Aramco files its prospectus in the coming days. Total fees for the dealers could top US$400-million.

Saudi Aramco has yet to say how many shares of Aramco will be sold to investors, but the stock will be listed on the Riyadh stock exchange.

With a report from James Bradshaw ROYAL BANK OF CANADA (RY) CLOSE: $107.38, UP 73¢

Associated Graphic

People are seen before the start of a news conference by Saudi Aramco in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday. The energy giant's highly anticipated initial public offering is expected to value the company between US$1.2-trillion and US$2.3-trillion.

HAMAD I. MOHAMMED/REUTERS

BIRTH AND DEATH NOTICES
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B18


WILLIAM ANDERSON It is with great sadness that the family of William (Bill) Anderson shares the news of his passing on Saturday November 2, 2019 at Oakville Trafalgar Hospital at the age of 71.

Bill will be lovingly remembered by his children Erin Anderson (Michael), Kathryn Anderson (Chris), his partner Carole Betzold and his lifelong friends Nigel and Anne Fuller. Bill will also be missed by his granddaughter Eliza. Bill had a long and rewarding career in urban planning and economic development with the City of Toronto, Province of Ontario and latterly the municipality of Halton Hill, but he very much enjoyed golf and travels with Carole post retirement.

A Celebration of Bill's Life will take place at Kopriva Funeral Home, Lakeshore Rd., Oakville on Sunday, November 17th. Visitation will be at 11:00, with service at noon and reception to follow. A private interment will take place at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations to Odette Cancer Centre Sunnybrook Hospital would be appreciated.

JOHN EDWARD BAXTER (Ted) Died peacefully in Stratford, Ontario on November 4, 2019. He was born in Summerside, PEI, on December 9, 1927, the son of the Rev. Harry and Vida (MacCullum) Baxter. He moved frequently with his family from place to place during his early years, and attended high school in Grand Falls, NB, where he was valedictorian of his graduating class in 1944.

He was a graduate of Mount Allison University (BA mcl) and the University of Toronto (MA). He taught French at secondary schools in Port Perry and in North York, at Victoria Park S.S. and Don Mills Collegiate, where he served as head of the modern languages department until his retirement in 1986. In 1980 he was appointed to a oneyear term as the first poet laureate of the City of North York. After retiring, he began working as a free-lance translator. His translations include several novels and short stories by Jules Verne (some previously untranslated into English), a short biography of Canadian poet A.M. Klein, a history of the FLQ, and more than 400 short biographical articles for the Dictionary of Canadian Biography.

Predeceased by his parents and his elder brother Robert, he is survived by his wife Barbara, his sister Dorothy MacLeod (Ian) of Charlottetown, PEI, his son David (Hope) and grandson Cody of Pickering, ON, his son Peter of Stratford, On and granddaughter Ji Won, and his daughter Michelle of Ajax, ON, and grandsons Luca and Liam.

MARY LOUISA BEATTIE, CAIB Peacefully, on Monday November 4 2019, age 65, in Markham, ON, after a brief but courageous battle with cancer. Predeceased by parents, Elizabeth (Beth) Agnes Mary (nee Tremayne) and Allan Leslie Beattie.

Greatly mourned by husband, Tony D'Ambrosio; children, Heather and Mark Plath; and sisters, Elizabeth (James Greenshields), Barbara (Frank Aiello) and Leslie (David Prescott). Ex-wife of Harold Plath. Beloved aunt to Daniel (Emily), Victoria (Mario LaValle) and William Aiello, and Ian and Eric Prescott. Devoted stepmother to Daniel D'Ambrosio (Kimberly), Sarah D'Ambrosio (Christopher Bekiaris), and Nicole Beverley (Kyle), and proud Nana to Lukas, Owen, Charlotte, and Leo. Fondly remembered by many cousins and other members of her extended family.

Mary graduated in 1973 from Brock High School in Cannington, ON, and went on to have a successful career in the insurance business. She retired in 2014 after 28 years with Thomas I Hull Insurance Ltd., having risen to the position of Vice President.

Mary enjoyed nothing better than being at the cottage with family and friends. Fond memories of campfires under the stars will always be treasured.

Heartfelt thanks to all the dedicated and compassionate staff who cared for both Mary and her family caregivers in the Southlake Regional Health Centre and Markham Stouffville Hospital, especially Doctors Trinkaus and Dai, and the nurses in the Palliative Care Units of both hospitals.

Celebration of life on Sunday, November 10, 4:30 p.m., at Chapel Ridge Funeral Home, 8911 Woodbine Ave., Markham, ON. Private burial to take place at a future date.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Canadian Cancer Society, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), or another charity of your choice.

WENDY GALE BOARDMAN (nee Burden) The family is very sad to announce the passing of Gale Boardman on October 31, 2019, at the age of 76 in Sarnia, Ontario. Gale, daughter of Isabel and Eaton Burden, is survived by her husband, Wayne and her sister, Jill Mingay and families.

Sadly, Gale suffered from declining health over the past few years. Her delightful sense of humour will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

LOUISE DUPUIS 1929 - 2019 It gives us great sadness to announce that Louise Dupuis passed with peace and grace at the Bradford Valley Community, Bradford Ontario, on Friday, October 25, 2019, at the age of 90, surrounded by her loving family.

Louise was the daughter of Anthime Paulette and Jeanne Meloche.

Louise was predeceased by her loving husband, Hector Dupuis, Sisters, Pauline and Suzanne Paulette, brother, Claude Paulette and her son, Alain Dupuis.

She is survived by her children, Patrice Dupuis (Helen), Sophie Dupuis(Guy), Frederic Dupuis (Pamela) as well as her sisters Denise and Helene Paulette. She was the proud grandmother of Olivier (Malinda), Stephane (Fiona), Veronique, Christian, Daniel, Felix & Jeremy and Great-grandmother of Lincoln and Paxton.

Louise lived a beautiful life with Hector, the love of her life.

She was a devoted and loving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

A celebration of her life will take place on Friday November 15, 2019 at 4 p.m. in the Chapel of the: Mont-Royal Funeral Complex, 1297 chemin de la Foret, Outremont, H2V 1P9 (514) 279-6540 http://www.mountroyalcem.com The doors will open at 3 p.m.

to allow friends to offer their condolences to the family prior to the celebration.

In lieu of flowers, if friends so desire, donations can be made in Louise's name to the Alzheimer's & Dementia Society of Canada.

The Family would like to thank the staff at Bradford Valley Community for the wonderful care they provided to Louise.

PAUL ANTHONY FLAHERTY On November 6, 2019, Paul Anthony Flaherty, in his 63rd year, peacefully passed away at his home in Whitehorse, Yukon.

Paul was a loving husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, friend and mentor to many.

Paul was born in Toronto on January 12, 1957, the eldest of 6, to Christine and Bernard Flaherty, and is survived by his wife Helen of 41 years, children: Michael, Ryan, Courtney and granddaughter Lily, Jaclyn and Jessen, and Craig.

After graduating from the University of Western Ontario in London, Paul's career with Bell Canada carried him across Ontario and Quebec and ultimately to Whitehorse as the President and CEO of Northwestel for the last 18 years.

Paul always encouraged the pursuit of education at all levels and the healthy competition found in sport. These interests culminated into his roles as the Chair of the Board of Governors at Yukon College for six years and the Canada Games Board of Directors for eleven years.

Paul also had an extreme love for the north and discovered it thoroughly by foot, raft, canoe, snowmobile, air and dogsled.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Paul Flaherty Bursary at Yukon College, Maryhouse or the Whitehorse Food Bank.

Visitation will be held at Heritage North Funeral Home, 412 Cook St., Whitehorse, YT, on Friday, November 8th at 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m.

Funeral services will be held at Sacred Heart Cathedral, 406 Steele St., Whitehorse, YT, on Saturday, November 9th that 1 p.m. Reception to follow in the CYO Hall.

Interment will be held in Caledon, Ontario at St. Cornelius Church at a later date.

SHARON ANN FRANCIS (née MacIntyre) On Monday, October 21, 2019, surrounded by the love of her family and caregivers, Sharon Ann Francis passed away peacefully at her residence in Toronto, ON after a long journey with Alzheimer's disease.

Sharon brought light and laughter to the world. She was ever optimistic and a true force of energy. Known for her bright smile and warmth, she had tremendous empathy for others and a unique ability to personally connect with people she met. Sharon lived an adventurous and joyful life with her soulmate and husband of 53 years, Dr. Robert (Bob) Francis.

Sharon was born and raised in Sydney, NS with her large, very close-knit family and met Bob at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, NS while she was training to be a nurse. Sharon had a passion for helping others which she had the opportunity to do through a lifetime in the medical profession, as a nurse and partner to Bob as they founded Medcan together in 1987.

Medcan focuses on preventative and exceptional patient care, and today, employs over 500 people and is one of the largest medical clinics in North America.

Sharon's family was always at the heart of her universe.

She was a loving daughter and sister, devoted mother of her two children, and adoring and proud grandmother to her six grandchildren. Coming together for frequent large family gatherings with her siblings, Sharon always brought fun and dance.

Sharon is lovingly remembered and survived by her husband, Dr. Robert Francis, her children and their spouses Shaun (Stacy) and Ashli Paige (David Flueck), and grandchildren, R.J., William, Christopher, Elle, Brooke and John. She will be dearly missed by her siblings, Marcella MacPhail (Walter), Mary Cheryl Berry (Roderick), Angus MacIntyre (Mary Evelyn), her large extended family of in-laws, nieces and nephews, and her ever-loyal canine companion, MacDuff. Sharon is predeceased by her parents, John and Chris MacIntyre, and her infant sister, Maureen Dolores.

A private service to honor Sharon was held in Toronto, ON last week. A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held in the near future.

Sharon suffered from Alzheimer's disease; in 2017 Bob founded the Sharon Francis Institute for Regenerative Medicine (SFIRM), a charity that funds innovative research studies in regenerative medicine. Advances in science funded through SFIRM will be an enduring piece of Sharon's legacy.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Sharon's memory can be made at http://www.sfirm.ca.

MARGARET ELEANOR GIBSON (nee Mackay) May 26, 1924 November 3, 2019 BA Hons (Queens University, Arts 47), Wren (WWII Royal Canadian Navy, Halifax) Margaret Gibson died peacefully at Fairmont Home in Kingston, surrounded by her family, in her 96th year. Loving wife of 40 years to the late Dr. Frederick W.

Gibson, beloved mother of John Gibson (Kimberly Gibson), Sarah Gibson-Bray (Carl Bray) and the late Matthew Gibson. Much loved grandmother to Lauren and Grant Gibson and Emma and James Gibson-Bray.

Margaret had a smile that lit up any room. Raised in Brockville, Kingston and Ottawa, Margaret interrupted her studies at Queen's to serve as a Canadian Wren in the RCN Gunnery Training School in Halifax, during the Battle of the Atlantic. Pursuing a varied career in journalism, Margaret worked latterly as a reporter for the Globe and Mail, before joining her true love Frederick in Kingston, where he was to teach History at Queen's for over 30 years. A devoted daughter, wife, mother, grandma, and loyal friend, Margaret was deeply involved at Queen's, serving on Boards for Faculty Women, Ban Righ and Alumnae/ Alumni, as well as for St. Mary's of the Lake Hospital, Kingston Wrens, and Sydenham Street Church. Gifted with a curious and intelligent mind, Margaret loved children, books, the arts, nature, history, skiing, tennis, dancing, swimming, soft pussycats and a really good cup of tea.

Family and friends will be received at Robert J. Reid & Sons "The Chapel on the Corner", 309 Johnson Street (at Barrie St.)

on Friday, November 15 from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. Please join us in a celebration of Margaret's life at Sydenham Street United Church, 82 Sydenham Street in Kingston, on Saturday, November 16 at 12 noon.

Memorial donations in Margaret's name may be made to the Frederick W. Gibson Prize in History (Queen's), the Ban Righ Foundation, Sydenham Street United Church or Friends of the Spire Inc.

A special thanks to the staff of St. Lawrence Place and Arbour Heights, Cheryl Foster and Heart to Heart Senior Services, and Dr. Kathie Kilpatrick and the staff of Fairmont Home, for their wonderful loving care and support. Online condolences may be made at http://www.reidfuneralhome.com

KATHARINE GRASS (nee Cochran) On November 5, 2019, just 2 months to the day before her 94th birthday, Katy left us to join our Dad, her husband Ruly (March 11, 2006). As well as her adult children, David (Deb Stephens), Bob and Sarah (Jim Kissick), she leaves six grandchildren, Virginia, Jeff and Will, Patrick and Diane, Doreyjean; and greatgrandchild Honor.

Katy assumed the role of family matriarch, in a long line of Grannie Grasses better known as GG. Daughter of Shrimp, Honor, sister of David Cochran, Katy enjoyed world travel especially to New York to watch her Uncle Hume Cronyn perform on stage and cherished her summers at Camp Tanamakoon. Her time at camp fostered her love of the outdoors. Her school years included Havergal College, Compton in the Eastern Townships of Quebec and Shaw Business College.

She enjoyed athletics including field hockey, basketball and skiing.

Following her father's extraordinary military career, during WWII Katy joined the Women's Royal Naval Service stationed on the east coast of Canada working in aerial photo reconnaissance. During this time, she developed lifelong friends who joined together for world trips and the infamous annual "Claude Balls" Golf Tournament.

Following her marriage to Ruliff, aka Toot, in 1949, she settled in to raise a household and pursue her passions through her volunteer leadership for the Toronto Garden Club Society and the National Ballet School Scholarship Fund. Her plate was full and didn't lessen when they moved to Calgary in 1981 where she created a flower design unit for the Four Seasons Hotel. GG and Toot then moved to Canmore and volunteered for the 1988 Winter Olympics as delegate hosts. GG loved hosting, welcoming with great warmth anyone who needed a place to "crash," loved the mountains of Canmore, skiing, hiking and golfing, never deterred by the bears or cougars. GG and Toot returned to Ontario in 2002, settling in Barrie to be close to friends and family.

Donations to a charity of choice or The Sunnybrook Foundation - Janet Grass Fund would be appreciated.

JASON BRIAN HOWE It is with profound sadness that we announce that Jason Brian Howe passed away in Scottsdale Arizona on July 1, 2019, at 47 years of age. Jason was the dear husband of Kimberly and proud father of Spencer and Madison. He is also survived by his grandmother, Alice Howe, Tillsonburg, ON; parents, Brian and Pat Howe, Lake Wales, FL; Dinah and Don Smart, Blenheim, ON; brother, James and Katherine Howe and daughter, Ella, Oakville, ON; mother-in-law, Jo-Anne Ainsworth Welsh, Toronto, ON; father-in-law, Bill Welsh, Ottawa, ON; and sisters-in-law, Kathryn Welsh, Oakville, ON and Kristine Welsh, Unionville, ON.

Jason was born in London, Ontario where he resided through his graduation from Western University before moving to Toronto, Calgary and Scottsdale.

He lived life to the fullest, filled every room with his enthusiasm and was passionate about his family, health and fitness, music and giving back to his community.

Jason will be forever remembered by his aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. May he rest in peace.

JULIA ANN KEELING (née Woodrow) Julia died peacefully on Sunday, October 20, 2019, after a long struggle with cancer. She was born on November 20, 1949, to the late Barbara and Donald Woodrow. She will be greatly missed by many people including her husband, David; her children and their families - Simon, Miche, Nyah and Cora; Jeremy, Willow and Archer; Nicholas and Tracey; Rachel, Steve and Rosalyn - the extended family, and numerous friends and colleagues.

A Service of Thanksgiving for Julia's life will take place on Saturday, November 9 at 1 p.m.

at Grace Church on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Road, Toronto, with a reception following. There will be a Visitation on Friday, November 8 between 7 and 9 p.m. at Humphrey Funeral Home, 1403 Bayview Avenue, Toronto.

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation either to La Leche League Canada, PO Box 147, Pickering, ON L1V 2R2 or to The Kensington Hospice, 38 Major Street, Toronto M5S 2L1.

CO NSTANCE MARY LANGSTAFF (nee Holland) 97 years young, Connie died peacefully on Sunday, November 3, 2019, at Belmont House.

She was the widow of the late T.

James Barr, W. Douglas Terry and Dr. James R. Langstaff. Mother of Margie Barr (Paul Fisher), Jennifer Barr (Phillip Saunders) and the late Hugh Barr. Nannie of James and Christopher Fisher, Alexandra Wharin and Tessa and Mark Saunders. Sister of the late Hugh Peter Holland.

Connie's children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren were her absolute joy.

Connie was born in Winnipeg and moved to Toronto in 1937. She attended St. Clements School and then graduated from Toronto General Hospital as a Registered Nurse, making lifelong friends along the way. Connie was a born nurse and loved taking care of others.

In 1948, she married Jim Barr and later settled in Thornhill, a community she loved and lived in until 2010. Connie was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, friend and neighbour. She loved entertaining family and friends and her Sunday dinners were legendary. Many turned to her for her wise counsel. When asked, she offered sound advice, but always with love and compassion.

In Thornhill, Connie and Jim raised their children and had a close circle of friends. Their backyard pool was a focal point for informal entertaining, family celebrations - always with several black labradors in attendance and surrounded by Connie's beautiful gardens.

She never forgot a birthday, anniversary, graduation or other individual accomplishment and her small acts of kindness (and delivery of cookies) were appreciated by all.

After being widowed twice, Connie found love again, much to her delight, when she married Dr.

Jim Langstaff. His family was also very special to her.

For the last ten years, Connie lived very happily at Belmont House.

The family would like to thank the outstanding staff at Belmont, her devoted caregivers and her lifelong friend David who visited her every week.

A service for Connie will be held at Christ Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge Street, Toronto on Thursday, November 21st at 2:00 p.m., followed by a reception at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Connie's memory to Belmont House Foundation or The Nature Conservancy of Canada. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

JANE MERILYN LITT (née Hildebrand) December 22, 1927 November 2, 2019 Jane was raised in Toronto and Montreal, the daughter of Dorothea Roper and Edward Hildebrand, along with her brother Bruce. She attended Forest Hill and Bedford Park public schools in Toronto, Trafalgar School for Girls in Montreal (Head Girl, General Proficiency Prize and Latin Prize, 1944), McGill and McMaster universities, then the Ontario College of Education (OCE) in Toronto. At the start of her career she taught English literature at collegiate institutes in Clinton and Picton, Ontario. At OCE she had met Raymond Litt, a former RCAF pilot.

After marrying in 1953, they moved to Vankleek Hill, Ontario, where Ray was a high school science teacher.

They started a family, beginning with David and Andy, then, after they moved to Port Perry in 1957, Paul and Margaret. Their household at 324 Queen Street always included a Labrador retriever of notable personality. Jane taught English in Blackstock, Ontario (which boasted Ontario's smallest high school), then later became the assistant librarian at Port Perry High School. She was active behind the scenes in local causes, including the United Church Women, the campaign to save the old town hall, and the building of the new Port Perry library.

Her home was a welcoming sanctuary where a changing ensemble of neighbours, friends, kids' friends, and assorted others dropped in to visit. Jane's genius was empathy. She instinctively tended to the emotional wellbeing of everyone she knew. She appreciated and celebrated the good things life offered, and, when challenges emerged, was always ready to draw from personal experience or her wide reading a precedent for dealing with them, frequently supplementing it with an apt quotation from a poem. When family or friends were far away, she corresponded prodigiously. In retirement her many grandchildren became the beneficiaries of her emotional and cultural stewardship, learning lessons from Milton without recognizing their provenance. Jane contended with health challenges in her last three years. Prior to that she lived a rich, humane life.

And now the sun had stretch'd out all the hills, And now was dropp'd into the western bay; At last he rose, and twitch'd his mantle blue: To-morrow to fresh woods, and pastures new.

JOSEPH LOBO "Joe" March 12, 1925 August 7, 2019 Passed away peacefully at the age of 94, surrounded by his family in Porvorim, Goa, India. Beloved husband of and survived by his wife of 67 years, Bertha Lobo (nee Remedios, of Saligao, Goa).

Loving and caring father of his children Raymond (Maureen), Edmund (Lydia), Rosalind (Euclid) and Osmond (Sucheta). Loving and delightful grandfather to Christopher, Colin, and CarolAnne, Christabelle, Andrew and Annabelle, Charissa and Chayne.

He lived a long and fulfilled life.

He was born in Mombasa,Kenya and worked in Lira,Kampala and Entebbee in Uganda.

In 1970 he happily retired to his beloved Goa (Saligao and then to Alto Betim). He loved his long, winding strolls, worshipped his wife's cooking and was happiest in the company of family, meals and celebrations.

His life's creed was always, down to earth simplicity and heartfelt conscientiousness in word and in deed. This is his legacy and spirit.

ARTHUR FINLAY MACKENZIE December 6, 1919 November 2, 2019 A loving son, father, husband, brother, uncle and gifted teacher.

Fin was the fifth of seven children born into a missionary family stationed at the British concession in Tientsin, China. He attended the Canadian Academy in Kobe, Japan (1932-1937). As a Flight Officer in the RCAF during WWII Fin served as a navigator stationed in Cumbria, England.

Fin met his beloved wife June at the University of Alberta before continuing his graduate studies at the University of Toronto, Yale and the University of London.

In the 1950's Finlay managed Collette's Chinese Art Gallery in London, England before writing internationally renowned book about Chinese art.

Following June's death in 1960, he returned to Canada with his infant son, where Fin flourished as a muchloved art teacher at Aldershot Secondary School in Burlington, Ontario. In his retirement Finlay was an active member of the University of Toronto's Academy for Life-Long Learning.

A gentleman and a scholar, Fin was unwaveringly passionate about ideas, current events and thoughtful conversation. A talented and creative soul, Fin expressed his ideas by exploring a variety of forms of visual art including landscape painting, pen and ink sketching and pottery.

Finlay was preceded in death by his wife June Mackenzie (née Wiseman) (1924-1960) He is survived by his sister Louise McLean, his son Bill, and numerous nieces and nephews.

MURIEL PATRICIA MACNAUGHTON Our dearest Mom Pat, passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, at the age of 98, in Toronto, ON. Predeceased by her loving husband of 49 years, Martin Paul Macnaughton (Mac), she was a loving mother of her children: Jennifer (Bill Stensson), Nancy (Rick Hilborn), Heather (Dave Dunphy), Carol (Russ Martin) and James. Proud grandmother (Grammy) to, Erik (Alexis Shand), Anna, Jane, Brita (Jordy Lacko), Ian (Nathalie Newby), Mackie (Shannon Blackman), Lisa (Tyler Laycock), Cameron, Ashleigh, Nicole, and great-grandmother of Mitchell, and Finley. Predeceased by her close siblings, Florence, Roderick, Phyllis and James, and her British born parents, Tracy Deavin LeMay and Florence Muriel Fereday Paget Mayne.

Pat was an accomplished duplicate bridge player, and did crosswords, suduko, and jumble every day. She loved all animals very much. Growing up, there was always a family dog and she cherished the many years she spent as a volunteer for the Toronto Humane Society. She was also an active member and sadly the last member of the Gordon Road Ladies Group, a ladies social group that was active for over 50 years. Pat was fortunate to spend every summer of her married life at our beloved cottage on Lake Simcoe. Her last visit was for our annual Thanksgiving feast 2019, where she was surrounded by her entire family right down to her great grandkids. She was funny, quirky and smart, embraced life to the very end and will be deeply missed by family and friends. The whole family loved her very much.

Services will be held on Wednesday, November 13th at 11:00 a.m. at St. John's York Mills Anglican Church, 19 Don Ridge Drive, North York, ON M2P 1H3 with lunch following the service. Donations may be made to the Toronto Humane Society at 11 River Street, Toronto, ON M5A 4C2. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

WILLIAM FLEMING MCCORMICK "Bill" Dad lived an extraordinary life that ended on Saturday, October 5, 2019 at the age of 99. He grew up in Galt, and attended The University of Toronto, (Trinity College). WWII interrupted his studies when he enlisted with the 1st Hussars. Upon completing two years of training in England Bill, as Commander of C Squadron, landed on Juno Beach on D-Day.

Although Bill's time in the war was brief, it was historic when he reached the furthest point into enemy territory during the D-Day invasion. Bill was injured less than a week later, but his courage and resilience through the war served him well in life. He was a recipient of the French Legion of Honor for his contribution in the war. He was forever mindful of the many soldiers who did not return home, and he strove to live his life in a way that honoured their great sacrifice.

Returning to Galt, Bill took over the family business from his father and uncle and built Galtex into a thriving textile company. Giving to the community was important to Bill, who became actively involved in the expansion of the Cambridge Memorial Hospital as Chair of the Building Committee.

He served as the Honourary Colonel of the Highland Fusiliers, was a supporter of Central Presbyterian Church and served on numerous boards.

Together with his wife, Marion, they travelled the world, visiting over 60 countries, but the spot he enjoyed most was their family cottage on Little Lake Joseph.

Family was central to Dad, as evidenced at the cottage where all were welcomed including their many friends. Dad enjoyed the outdoors, whether fishing in the North West Territories, hunting at the Griffith Island Club or playing a game of golf at the Muskoka Lakes Golf and Country Club.

Everywhere he went, Bill made friends through his genuine interest in others, his charm and his great wit.

Left to celebrate his life and to take enduring pride and inspiration from his legacy are his children, Elizabeth (David Edmison), Walter (Barbara); his grandchildren, Geoffrey Cardy, Baye Mahoney (Justin), Alexander Edmison (Dana), Jocelyn Edmison, Stephanie Edmison (Eden), William McCormick (Melanie), Maggie and Connor McCormick; and his great-grandchildren, Sophie and Maxwell Edmison and Grayson and Oliver Mahoney.

Remembered also by Cam Joyner.

Predeceased by his beloved wife, Marion (nee Dietrich), and his daughter, Margaret.

The family would like to express their appreciation to the marvelous caregivers who took such wonderful care of Bill; Regie and Joy, Zeny, Glenda and Maricel, Dr. Russell Goldman and Dr.

Jennifer Shapiro and The Temmy Latner Palliative Care Centre.

A celebration of Bill's life will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 13th in Timothy Eaton Memorial Church, 230 St. Clair Avenue West, Toronto, ON M4V 1R5.

In lieu of flowers, the family would ask that friends consider contributions in memory of Bill to the Juno Beach Centre, McDermott House Canada, or Vets Canada. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

BRUCE SCOTT MCCUBBIN February 22, 1941 - O ctober 29, 2019 Bruce was a force of strength, intelligence and kindness. His wife, Elizabeth will love and miss him always as will his sister, Heather; his children, Jill (George), Beth (Martin), Colin (Katie) and Sally (Clayton); and his grandchildren, Calvin, Pippa, Finn, Alice and Charlie. Bruce will also be missed by brothers-in-law, Bob (Brenda) and David, as well as all his nieces and nephews.

Bruce lead an active childhood in which sports, scouting and academics were significant. At Montreal High, by way of both luck and merit, Bruce was a member of a very special, multi-ethnic group of bright young men, the self-proclaimed 'inner circle', the class of 11B, 1958. Sixty years later, these friends still reunite. They continue to offer companionship, inspiration and care for each other.

An early memorable event in Bruce's life was hitchhiking with his friend Emmett from Montreal to Vancouver, seventeen year olds in their scout uniforms. It took them 4 days.

Bruce ran track, swam, and played basketball and football in high school.

At Mount Allison University in Sackville, NB, he played on the varsity teams.

Bruce met his wife Betty at Mount A. and also made the closest friendships of his life.

Bruce graduated from Mount Allison and Nova Scotia Tech with a degree in Electrical engineering in 1965. The same year, he headed back to Montreal, where Betty was employed at Air Canada, and they were married.

Bruce's professional life was very meaningful to him. He started his career as a Design Engineer at Imperial Tobacco, then held various senior positions with Imasco in both the US and Canada. A highlight was his term as President of Collegiate Sports and during this period he travelled extensively.

Time with his family was equally important. March break holidays, and New Year's skating parties with the old Mount A friends were annual family traditions. While living in Montreal, they summered at Lac Castor in the Laurentian Mountains with Bruce's parents and sister. More recently, he enjoyed curling with family and friends at the much-anticipated annual Christmas event.

In 1984, life at the Stony Lake cottage began, and many new and dear friends were made. Bruce was a warden at St Peter's on the Rock church, where his son Colin later married Katie, the daughter of another family on Stony.

In 1997, Bruce joined Moosehead Breweries in Saint John NB as President and COO and later became CEO. Working closely with the Oland family was one of the high points of Bruce's career.

Bruce served as Chairman of Mount Allison's Board of Regents. He truly enjoyed participating on the Boards of family-owned Maritime companies: Oxford Frozen Foods, Acadian Seaplants, Coast Tire and Ganong Bros.

Reluctant to leave, his last board meeting with Acadian Seaplants was in August 2019.

As Megan Grant wrote, in an article on the Olympics: "Good Sportsmanship is about winning with integrity and losing with grace. It's about respecting someone who beats you. It's about giving your all, playing fair, and walking away from the game with your head held high - regardless of whether you won or lost." The principles of sportsmanship informed Bruce's life and he passed down this philosophy to his children.

Bruce and Betty cherish their grandchildren, who arrived in 'two waves' Calvin, Pippa and Finn over 20 years before now three- and four-year-olds, Charlie and Alice. For the past 7 years Bruce has persevered, living with Parkinson's, never complaining. His spirit and influence never diminished.

He will be dearly missed by his wife and family. He was a hard-working and enthusiastic husband, brother, father, friend and colleague. A celebration of his life will be held in the New Year at Stony Lake.

GEORGE S.B. MOAD June 3, 1946 - October 31, 2019 George finished his earth walk when his big heart stopped beating.

George was a large man with a kind and generous heart, who lived his adventuresome life with gusto. A great friend to many, he was always 100% on duty, available 24/7, if they needed him.

Born in a now historically designated log cabin in Bourlamaque, Quebec, he and his older brother, Arthur (who survives him), lived in Mexico and Washington State before the family settled in Thetford Mines, Quebec.

George played drums in a rock band in Montreal and raced cars, which undoubtedly lead to his early and profound hearing loss. George moved to Ontario at the time of the FLQ Crisis.

Throughout most of his working life he was an entrepreneur. He travelled across Canada pioneering the then new media of "mall posters" in shopping centres. His survival after being speared and impaled in his car while driving along the west bound 401 early one rush hour morning was amazing - he then restarted his business against all odds. George was very determined, persistent and focused.

George believed that service to others was the best gift one could have in life. George was the driving force behind the 10th Toronto Cub Pack (at Christ Church Deer Park) in the late 70s/early 80s. As the Akela, his larger than life personality brought an immense sense of energy and excitement to the boys and leadership team, attracting them from throughout the neighbourhood. The pack was one of the strongest in the entire region. Monday night meetings, special outings and weekend camping trips were infused with his combination of fun-loving joie-de-vivre, no-nonsense drive to do things well, and great humour. He helped shape the lives of hundreds of boys and many still talk fondly about this big figure from these seminal growing-up years.

He was active in the Toronto Junior Board of Trade and the Toronto Jaycees. For the 1970 Grey Cup George arranged for Anne Murray to be its Honorary Chief Parade Marshall. He was involved in many projects such as the Santa Claus Parade and Policeman of the Month. With his insight and innovative thinking he could get anything done. The typing school he initiated for unemployed women in Regent Park was a huge success. Being named worldwide Jaycee Senator # 20451 was a shining moment in all his long list of accomplishments.

He was an expert networker. Armed with a rolodex of business cards from everyone he ever met, he thought nothing of approaching people who might normally have never given him the time of day. He had a real knack of connecting people in need with the right people to help. In retirement he continued his volunteer work - Meals on Wheels, Bob Rumble Centre for the Deaf - always wanting to make a difference and do things for others less fortunate. He had a special fondness for vets, the elderly and the personal success and growth of many young people. He was active in the Kerry Blue Terrier Club of Canada, serving on the Board, assisting with Rescue, doing hospitality and motoring to dog shows in Canada and the US.

He had a true love for politics both in Canada and the U.S. Although never shy about sharing his opinions, he was always open to well thought-out opposing views. He was a tireless supporter of local politicians whom he thought deserved his time, energy and good will. He was a great storyteller - people loved to listen to his tales - an engaging conversationalist and an attentive host who enjoyed parties, celebrations and having fun.

He was laid to rest in a private burial, wearing his Patton t-shirt with the theme from the movie "Patton" playing. A pair of doves circled the grave as his wife, Louise Lang, and their Kerry Blue, Betty Boop, looked on.

Donations to Speaking of Dogs Rescue, P.O. Box 8058, RPO Hurontario, Collingwood, ON L9Y 0H1 https://www.speakingofdogs.com/ or an animal charity of your choice would be appreciated. Please say a little prayer for George so that his soul can safely journey back to the light. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

THEHONOURABLE J. EDGAR SEXTON P. Eng . , LLB, QC .

Peacefully at his Brockville home on November 1, 2019, at the age of 83 with his family by his side. Beloved and devoted husband of Rosemary for 40 years. Cherished father and stepfather to Chris Sexton (Wendy Daniels), Jennifer Sexton (Pierre Binette), Stephanie Black (Mark Youngman) and Robin Black. Predeceased by his son, Tim. Loving grandfather to Jack, Gillian, Lindsay, Laila and Chloe.

Born in 1936 to George Beaumont Sexton MD and his wife, Irene (Griffith) of London, ON. Brother of Peggy MacKay and Barbara (Patrick) Munroe. Brother-in-law of Judy (Paul) Rivard, John (Deborah) Robinson and Minette Ross (Peter). Fond uncle of many nephews and nieces.

Edgar Sexton was one of Canada's foremost litigators. After obtaining an Engineering Degree at Queen's in 1958, he graduated in 1963 from the University of Western Ontario Faculty of Law founded several years earlier by Dean Ivan Rand whom he regarded as his first mentor. He articled at McCarthy's under renowned counsel John J. Robinette but chose to return to London, ON, his hometown, with his then young family to practise with a two-man firm. He returned to Toronto within a few years to join the McKinnon McTaggart law firm led by Bert McKinnon. When Justice McKinnon was appointed to the Ontario Court of Appeal, Edgar Sexton left the firm to become counsel for Holden Murdoch. Several years later he was offered the job of head of litigation for Osler Hoskin where he worked for over two decades, becoming Chairman and Senior Partner of the firm. His clients included the Irving family of New Brunswick, the Federal Government and many large international corporations. While he was at Osler, the firm expanded to open offices in Calgary, New York, London, Paris, and Hong Kong. He was appointed to the Federal Court of Appeal in 1998 and served on the bench until 2011 when he turned 75. For the next few years he did mediation and arbitration work for JAMS and also consulted with the Canadian government.

Justice Sexton was a kind, thoughtful and measured man. He treated everyone he met with the same courtesy and respect, no matter who they were or where they came from. In his personal interactions, he had a calm, unruffled demeanour and a lovely amiable nature. Yet in the courtroom he could be a fierce and unyielding opponent. Once he took on a legal brief, he pursued it meticulously, fearlessly and relentlessly. With his strategic focus and logical, practical brain, he had an uncanny ability to distill vastly complicated cases into a few simple basic principles. He loved to work with his juniors and help them learn and he, in turn, learned a great deal from them. He had a self-deprecating sense of humour and loved to tell stories, sometimes the same ones more than once.

For many years he and Rosemary travelled the world, latterly on cruise ships. Golf was a favourite pastime and they were members of the Brockville Country Club, the Mid Ocean Club in Bermuda and the Longboat Key Club in Florida where he recorded his only hole-in-one. He also belonged to the Toronto Club and the Caledonian Club in London, England. Antique mahogany boats were another hobby and he spent many happy hours roaring around Charleston Lake in his 1941 Chris Craft named After Taxes. He also owned a dippy (disappearing propeller boat) called Empty Pockets but sold it after more than a few engine malfunctions left him stranded at the mercy of the elements.

Historic houses were another interest of his. He took great pleasure in his Rosedale residence (the Laura Secord house) on Castle Frank Road, and in Thornton Cliff, his thirty-room stone house, circa 1855,complete with slate roof and turret, located on the St. Lawrence River in Brockville. He and Rosemary also lived in scenic Rockcliffe Park, Ottawa during his time as a judge and spent six months a year at their house on Longboat Key, an island off Sarasota, FL.

One of his favourite places to be was Fisher Island on Charleston Lake, a 55-acre island acquired at the turn of the century by his grandfather, who did so by paying off the $100 tax bill of an indigent friend. Watching sunsets from the cedar deck of his cottage, a Scotch in hand, brought him much inner peace and contentment up to his last summer. In his final years, he suffered from advancing dementia. However, even as his memory declined, he never lost his sweet personality which, if anything, became more flexible and docile as he aged. As his mind weakened and his body failed and was racked with pain, he chose assisted dying before he could deteriorate any further and become a burden to his family. Words cannot describe the hole in our hearts that remains without his calm, steadying and blessed presence to guide us.

Arrangements are entrusted to the Irvine Funeral Home, 4 James Street East, Brockville. Messages of condolence may be sent online to www. irvinememorial.com. A gathering to honour Justice Sexton's memory will be held in Toronto at University of Toronto's Faculty Club, 41 Wilcocks Street, on May 7, 2020 from 1:30 to 5 p.m.

WAYNE LEO NARD LAING SIMMONS M a rc h 1 7, 1 92 0 N ove m b e r 7, 2 01 9

With infinite sadness, the family of Wayne Leonard Laing Simmons announce his passing on November 7, 2019, in his 100th year.

Cherished husband of the late Harriet Cronk Simmons. Dearly beloved father of Jane Calder (Dr. Iain Calder), Ottawa, Kathryn Burns (Dr. Robert Burns), Belleville and Dr. Maureen Simmons, Belleville. Adored grandfather of Bruce Calder (Patricia Calder), Andrew Calder (Christy Doucet) and James Calder (Jessica Fontaine), Ottawa; Robert Burns (Casey Sharp) Ottawa; Dr. Kathryn Burns (Robert Hellyer), Calgary and Christopher Johnson, Toronto. Proud greatgrandfather of Logan and Claire Calder; Ethan and Alex Calder; Sam and Asher Calder; and Blaire, Hugh and William Burns.

Trenton, Ontario was his home for his entire life. He graduated from Albert College in 1939. During World War II, he served in the Royal Canadian Navy in the North Atlantic. In February 1947, he was a member of the first Veterans' class to graduate from the University of Toronto with a BPharm. At the time of his father's death in 1954, he took over the family business, Simmons Pharmacy. After the store was tragically destroyed in a 1978 fire, he became a pharmacist owner for Shoppers Drug Mart, making its Trenton pharmacy one of the most successful in Canada.

He loved to travel but most of all he loved his cottage property on Lake Ontario where he enjoyed his time with family and friends.

There will be a private graveyard service. Visitation will be held at the Trent Port Marina on Saturday, November 16th from 1 to 4 p.m. Donations to his favourite charity, The Salvation Army, or to the Trenton Memorial Hospital Foundation would be appreciated.

The family gratefully acknowledges the exceptional and devoted care of his many caregivers in his later years, including Dr. Andrew Forbes and Dr. Joseph Campbell; Mary Jane Cunningham and Lisa Johnson. The family deeply appreciates the care given by Dr. Nadia Knarr, Dr. David de Grace and the wonderful staff at Trenton Memorial Hospital.

He was a kind, thoughtful and generous man who always made one smile. We are blessed to have had him in our lives.

For online condolences, please visit http://www.quintecremationservices.com

ANNE NOREEN SIMPON (nee Lelliott)

Peacefully on Monday, October 28, 2019 at St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, in her 88th year. Beloved wife of "Jack", Walter John. Daughter of the late Doris and William Lelliott. Loving mother of Maureen (Almos Tassonyi), Richard (Karen), Nancy (the late Douglas Austin), Jacqueline (Douglas Whitten) and the late Christopher (Kimberly Cail). Cherished grandmother of Craig (Kim), Bryan (Jenny), Lindsay (Mike), Michelle, Meghan (Jason), Marin (Joshua), Carleigh, Nicole (Ryan), Rory and Stephen. Devoted greatgrandmother of Matthew, Nora, Jordan, Xander, Liam and Harper. Sister of John (Vivian) Lelliott and the late William (the late Ada) Lelliott. Sister-in-law of Shirley (the late Paul) Simpson, the late Eilean (the late Harold) Carlaw, the late Shirley Seguire, and Bill Sequire. Anne will be sadly missed by her many nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family and friends.

Alongside Jack, she not only raised a family but built a very successful telecommunications business throughout their 68 years of marriage. She loved to travel and did so extensively with family, business and later accompanying Jack around the world for international and commonwealth fly fishing competitions. Together they made many friends across Canada and around the globe. Anne was an avid gardener, and took pride in her many plants, flowers and deck tomatoes.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, November 9, 2019 at 1 pm at MacCoubrey Funeral Home, 30 King St. E. in Cobourg followed by a reception in the Funeral Home Reception Centre. With heartfelt thanks to Dr. Steven McLellan, Dr. Naresh Kumar, Dr. R. Chisholm, the many staff at St. Michael's Hospital who cared for Anne, and especially to Dr. Akshay Bagai, for his attentive and compassionate care for the past two years. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Heart and Stroke Foundation or to the charity of your choice would be appreciated. Condolences received at http://www.MacCoubrey.com

ROBERT PAUL SINGER April 26, 1926 November 2, 2019 Bob passed away peacefully with his wife of 72 years and family by his side. He was predeceased by his parents, Hazel and Joseph and brothers, Marshall (Betty) and Stuart (Rosalie). He will be dearly missed by his wife, Dickey (Mary- Susanne); sons, Tom (Joanne) and Peter (Cathie); and grandchildren, Carolyn (Brian), David (Karrie), Scott (Mia), Jennifer (Philip), and Jeffrey (Michelle). He was the proud Great-Grandfather of ten - William, Caleb, Liam, Teddy, Ana, Charlotte, Madeline, Leo, Olivia, and George.

Bob lived a full life in his 93 years. He was a graduate of Upper Canada College (1943) and the University of Toronto, Engineering (4T7) where he enjoyed membership of the Sigma Chi Fraternity. He built up a remarkable business and was proud to see his two sons and grandsons continue the 107 year-old family business legacy with Reinhart Foods and Thomas, Large and Singer. In his spare time he enjoyed curling (their team was a member of the exclusive 8-ender club!), golf, volunteering, and travel.

Bob was a gregarious man, building a wide circle of friends whether that was in Toronto, Lake Simcoe, Naples, Florida, or during his and Dickey's many international trips. Bob often jokingly referred to his love for dogs over people and had many dogs and granddogs over the years. He was very close to all of his Grandchildren - he took each on their first big trip, sparking their love of travel; never missed an important milestone event; or any opportunity to spend time with family.

Granddad, you will be deeply missed but we treasure the amount of time that we had with you. We hope you are with your beloved dogs and have finally found the "price of coal in Kukaramunga."

A private family service has been held. The family would like to thank the Integracare Team, Doctor Victor Cellarius and Doctor Russell Goldman from the Temmy Latner Centre and so many others who lovingly assisted in his care. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation, the Temmy Latner Centre for Palliative Care or a charity of your choice.

BERNARD STAIMAN (Bernie) Passed away peacefully on Friday, November 8, 2019 at Bridgepoint Health. Beloved husband of the late Shirley Staiman. Loving father of Deborah, and Scott Staiman. Dear brother of the late Saul, and Sam Staiman, and Rose Gold. Loving Poppa of Eli (Lauren), Yael (Rob), A.J., and R e b e c c a . D e a r g r e a t - grandfather of Brooks. A graveside service will be held on Sunday, November 10th at 2:00 p.m. at Beth Tzedec Memorial Park, 5822 Bathurst Street. Shiva at 112 Hillsdale A v e n u e W . , T o r o n t o . Memorial donations may be made to Mt. Sinai Hospital Foundation 416-586-8203 or Bridgepoint Palliative Care 416-461-8252 ext 2771.

ESTHER MARGARET STEKETEE (nee Scott) Passed away peacefully at her place of residence on Wednesday, November 6, 2019.

She leaves her stepson, Jim (Jo). Lovingly remembered by her step grandchildren Devin (Leanne), Garrett (Lisa) Sabrina (Johnny), Jackson, Jade, Justin and Vanessa. She is the great-grandmother of Tayler, Jaxon, Aiden, Jacob, Noah, Freya and Amelia. She was preceded by her beloved husband Richard, P. Eng and her stepdaughter Kathey loved and remembered by her daughter-in-law, Patricia Steketee, as well as Janice Kantor, Ann and Dave Parker, Sue and Jack Ward, Tennis Reynolds, her relatives and many friends.

Esther was a graduate of Victoria University and received her Master's Degree at the University of Niagara. After graduation she was employed by the T. Eaton Company; worked in the executives offices add-on various merchandising areas. As a result of this experience, Esther later owned and operated a boutique in Niagara on the Lake. In 1961 she entered the teaching profession and spent 13 years as an instructor and Director o f B u s i n e s s E d u c a t i o n Departments in a variety of locations surrounding the city of Toronto, the Niagara P e n i n s u l a , i n c l u d i n g secondment to the University of Toronto.

Esther was co-author and author of business textbooks, education consultant for a television program on business procedures, served on curriculum committees and conducted workshops on teaching methodology. As the result of Esther's contribution to business education, in 1979 she received the Robert Hillmer Award, an award given each year for an outstanding contribution to business education in the province of Ontario.

Esther was known for her sincere, caring personality, and throughout her career assisted physically and emotionally handicapped children and their pursuit of meaningful and independent lives.

Esther was a member of the Boulevard Club, Burlington and Thornhill Golf and Country. Although time and opportunities were limited, Esther's leisure time included piloting an airplane and skydiving.

Private cremations and burial have taken place. Donations to a charity of your choice would be appreciated.

DR. HELLE TUPHOLME (nee Solu) B.Sc., DDS 1944 - 21019

Beloved wife, cherished mother and grandmother, Helle passed away peacefully at her home in Niagara-on-the-Lake on October 30, 2019. Helle will forever be remembered by her devoted husband, Brian; her son, Michael and his wife, Meghan; her daughter, Kristi Ellenzweig and her husband, Jonathan Ellenzweig; as well as by her adored grandchildren, Paige and Brooke Tupholme and Heidi and Leo Ellenzweig. Helle also leaves her brothers, Peter Solu of Toronto and Mart Solu of Sarasota, Florida. Helle was born in Helsinki, Finland to parents Paul and Agnes Solu, who had fled from Estonia to Finland during the late stages of World War II, and who moved shortly thereafter to Sweden. In the early-1950s, Helle and her parents moved to Canada, settling in Toronto. There, Helle attended Swansea Public School and Humberside Collegiate Institute. She then obtained a B.Sc. degree at the University of Toronto before enrolling in the Faculty of Dentistry, also at the University of Toronto, receiving her DDS degree in 1971. Over the following thirty-seven years, Helle practiced dentistry in Toronto, opening and running several offices where she cared for a large and devoted following of patients. In addition to her practice, Helle was a part-time faculty member at the University of Toronto's Dental School and served on several committees at the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario. In Toronto, Helle and Brian were long-time residents of the Baby Point area where they enjoyed an active social life and where they raised their children, Michael and Kristi. Helle was actively involved in the Estonian Community in Toronto. Notably, in the early- 1990s, Helle, along with other members of the Estonian-

Canadian dental community of Toronto, made multiple trips to Estonia, taking with them dental supplies and leading instructional seminars while there, with the aim of helping to modernize the Estonian dental profession. Helle had many interests; she was an avid skier, loved travel, became an expert knitter in her later years, and she particularly loved spending summers with her family at their Georgian Bay island cottage. She loved to entertain and her culinary skills were legendary amongst her friends. Helle retired from dentistry in 2008, following which she and Brian moved to Niagaraon- the-Lake, where they made many new friends and enjoyed the community. In the last several years, Helle's health deteriorated somewhat, limiting her mobility, but being as determined as she was, she faced these challenges head-on.

A celebration of Helle's life will take place for family and friends prior to the end of the year - date and details to be announced. In lieu of flowers, donations in Helle's name may be made to The Estonian Foundation of Canada, The Kidney Foundation of Canada and The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

Arrangements entrusted to Morgan Funeral Home, 415 Regent St., Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON. Memories, photos and condolences may be shared at http://www.morganfuneral.com

DR. CICELY WILSON April 3, 1926 November 3, 2019

In her 94th year passed away peacefully. Predeceased by Art Wilson, and her sister, Myra. Loving mother of Janet, Helen and David, cherished mother-inlaw to Fernand, Michie, Paul, and Joanna, and proud grandmother of Amanda, Lucas, Marlow, Martine, Hilarie, Jesse, Amanda, Kathleen and Kayla. Great grandmother to Henry, Evan, James and Shea.

A strong, determined, yet elegant woman, Cicely was a pioneer. Born in London, England, she received her veterinary training at the Royal Veterinary College as the Second World War raged. After leaving war-torn England, she became the first woman veterinarian in western Canada. She quietly faced any barriers by proving she could do the job better than any man. Her plans to return to England changed when she met the debonair and charming Arthur. She was finally swept off her feet when Art proposed at the farm and confirmed his belief in the family. She opened her own clinic in Richmond Hill beside the church where she married Art, followed by three decades of practice at the renowned Secord Animal Hospital and at St. Clair Animal Hospital in Toronto.

Cicely's dedication, discipline and patience inspired her family to be creative and hard working. Cicely was so very proud that her daughter Helen and her granddaughter Kathleen both followed in her footsteps - three generations of female veterinarians.

Cicely and Art enjoyed an active 54 year marriage with a rich network of friends, and dancing, music, laughter and always a 5 o'clock vodka and scotch. They were never far from a tennis court and a golf course. Tennis for Cicely was a passion. She was on many inter-county teams, and played into her 80s. Her drop shot was wicked. She always said that her lifelong friends were made through tennis. She golfed to be with Art, but was talented enough to become the Senior Ladies Champion at Donalda Golf Club.

Like her golf shot, Cicely was straight as an arrow. She was ever fair, direct, independent, and intelligent. Yet she was curious with a broad world view and a good sense of humour. The family skied enthusiastically during the winter and treasured the annual family reunion each summer in Muskoka. She became our family matriarch after Art passed away.

In her later years, she enjoyed the warmth of the Arizona sun during winters and her passion became bridge. She proudly played five days a week in her Dunfield home with her bridge friends.

Mum always said getting old is not for sissies. Too true. The Dunfield residents and staff always treated Dr. Wilson with kindness, patience and respect. Florie Coish welcomed her to the Dunfield and Lawrence was a true friend to the end. A huge thank you to Jean, Yvonne, Malou, Gladys, Lemelyn, Grace, Luci, Clara and Eden for their loving care of Mum in her last days. The responsiveness of Dr. Amos and the Temmy Latner palliative team made it possible for mum to stay in her home for this last journey. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts.

In celebration of Cicely's life, please join us on Saturday, November 16, 2019, 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the Dunfield Retirement Residence, second floor, 77 Dunfield Ave., Toronto. In lieu of flowers, a contribution to the Ontario or Toronto Humane Society would be gratefully appreciated.

TONY YUKSEEN YAU March 13 1938 November 1, 2019

Our heavy hearts announce his sudden death. Brilliant PhD chemical engineer and the innovator of the deinking process for recycled paper. Loving husband of Cecilia (Heung) for 53 years, adoring and proud father of Deirdre and her husband Richard, and special playmate and cuddler to grandchildren Evan and Camilla. Forever loved and missed.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. Visitation: Saturday November 16, 2019 from 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home. Funeral service: Saturday November 16, 2019 at 10:45 a.m. Chapel of St. Joseph - Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home.

ERIC BLITSTEIN Februrary 21, 1952 November 12, 2009 210th Yahrzeit

Forever in our hearts, Mom, Paula, Chana, Nina and your 13 grandchildren. Jonathan, Adam, cousins, friends, Future Electronic colleagues & LCC classmates.

JOHN SELTZER Born London, England March 17, 1927 - Died Toronto, Ontario November 10, 1993 Freeman of the city of London Sadly missed, lovingly remembered

BIRTH AND DEATH NOTICES
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Friday, November 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B21


DEATHS MARY LOUISA BEATTIE, CAIB Peacefully, on Monday November 4 2019, age 65, in Markham, ON, after a brief but courageous battle with cancer. Predeceased by parents, Elizabeth (Beth) Agnes Mary (nee Tremayne) and Allan Leslie Beattie.

Greatly mourned by husband, Tony D'Ambrosio; children, Heather and Mark Plath; and sisters, Elizabeth (James Greenshields), Barbara (Frank Aiello) and Leslie (David Prescott). Ex-wife of Harold Plath. Beloved aunt to Daniel (Emily), Victoria (Mario LaValle) and William Aiello, and Ian and Eric Prescott. Devoted stepmother to Daniel D'Ambrosio (Kimberly), Sarah D'Ambrosio (Christopher Bekiaris), and Nicole Beverley (Kyle), and proud Nana to Lukas, Owen, Charlotte, and Leo. Fondly remembered by many cousins and other members of her extended family.

Mary graduated in 1973 from Brock High School in Cannington, ON, and went on to have a successful career in the insurance business. She retired in 2014 after 28 years with Thomas I Hull Insurance Ltd., having risen to the position of Vice President.

Mary enjoyed nothing better than being at the cottage with family and friends. Fond memories of campfires under the stars will always be treasured.

Heartfelt thanks to all the dedicated and compassionate staff who cared for both Mary and her family caregivers in the Southlake Regional Health Centre and Markham Stouffville Hospital, especially Doctors Trinkaus and Dai, and the nurses in the Palliative Care Units of both hospitals.

Celebration of life on Sunday, November 10, 4:30 p.m., at Chapel Ridge Funeral Home, 8911 Woodbine Ave., Markham, ON. Private burial to take place at a future date.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Canadian Cancer Society, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), or another charity of your choice.

PAUL ANTHONY FLAHERTY On November 6, 2019, Paul Anthony Flaherty, in his 63rd year, peacefully passed away at his home in Whitehorse, Yukon.

Paul was a loving husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, friend and mentor to many.

Paul was born in Toronto on January 12, 1957, the eldest of 6, to Christine and Bernard Flaherty, and is survived by his wife Helen of 41 years, children: Michael, Ryan, Courtney and granddaughter Lily, Jaclyn and Jessen, and Craig.

After graduating from the University of Western Ontario in London, Paul's career with Bell Canada carried him across Ontario and Quebec and ultimately to Whitehorse as the President and CEO of Northwestel for the last 18 years.

Paul always encouraged the pursuit of education at all levels and the healthy competition found in sport. These interests culminated into his roles as the Chair of the Board of Governors at Yukon College for six years and the Canada Games Board of Directors for eleven years.

Paul also had an extreme love for the north and discovered it thoroughly by foot, raft, canoe, snowmobile, air and dogsled.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Paul Flaherty Bursary at Yukon College, Maryhouse or the Whitehorse Food Bank.

Visitation will be held at Heritage North Funeral Home, 412 Cook St., Whitehorse, YT, on Friday, November 8th at 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m.

Funeral services will be held at Sacred Heart Cathedral, 406 Steele St., Whitehorse, YT, on Saturday, November 9th that 1 p.m. Reception to follow in the CYO Hall.

Interment will be held in Caledon, Ontario at St. Cornelius Church at a later date.

SHARON ANN FRANCIS (née MacIntyre) On Monday, October 21, 2019, surrounded by the love of her family and caregivers, Sharon Ann Francis passed away peacefully at her residence in Toronto, ON after a long journey with Alzheimer's disease.

Sharon brought light and laughter to the world. She was ever optimistic and a true force of energy. Known for her bright smile and warmth, she had tremendous empathy for others and a unique ability to personally connect with people she met. Sharon lived an adventurous and joyful life with her soulmate and husband of 53 years, Dr. Robert (Bob) Francis.

Sharon was born and raised in Sydney, NS with her large, very close-knit family and met Bob at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, NS while she was training to be a nurse. Sharon had a passion for helping others which she had the opportunity to do through a lifetime in the medical profession, as a nurse and partner to Bob as they founded Medcan together in 1987.

Medcan focuses on preventative and exceptional patient care, and today, employs over 500 people and is one of the largest medical clinics in North America.

Sharon's family was always at the heart of her universe.

She was a loving daughter and sister, devoted mother of her two children, and adoring and proud grandmother to her six grandchildren. Coming together for frequent large family gatherings with her siblings, Sharon always brought fun and dance.

Sharon is lovingly remembered and survived by her husband, Dr. Robert Francis, her children and their spouses Shaun (Stacy) and Ashli Paige (David Flueck), and grandchildren, R.J., William, Christopher, Elle, Brooke and John. She will be dearly missed by her siblings, Marcella MacPhail (Walter), Mary Cheryl Berry (Roderick), Angus MacIntyre (Mary Evelyn), her large extended family of in-laws, nieces and nephews, and her ever-loyal canine companion, MacDuff. Sharon is predeceased by her parents, John and Chris MacIntyre, and her infant sister, Maureen Dolores.

A private service to honor Sharon was held in Toronto, ON last week. A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held in the near future.

Sharon suffered from Alzheimer's disease; in 2017 Bob founded the Sharon Francis Institute for Regenerative Medicine (SFIRM), a charity that funds innovative research studies in regenerative medicine. Advances in science funded through SFIRM will be an enduring piece of Sharon's legacy.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Sharon's memory can be made at http://www.sfirm.ca.

ROBB WARREN HINDSON C.A.

FEBRUARY 5, 1960 NOVEMBER 2, 2019 Much beloved and admired son of Mary Christine Hindson and Donald C. Hindson, survived by his sister, Donna Leslie and brother in-law Mark Opzoomer, aunts, uncles and many cousins.

Robb was a graduate of Markham District High School, obtained his HBA from the University of Western Ontario and received his C.A. designation under the tutelage of Clarkson Gordon.

Shortly thereafter, he joined the firm of Jones Gable (now Leede Jones Gable Inc.) where he remained for over thirty years as its Chief Financial Officer during which time he earned the respect and admiration and enjoyed the comradery of his partners, business associates and staff. As a proud and committed partner, he continued to offer advice and opinions from his bedside.

What drew him away from work, was the call of the north, his passion for skiing, snowmobiling, boating, cottaging and nature in all its forms. His dedication to nature and preserving the shoreline of Muskoka Lakes in their natural habitat was evidenced by his presidency for several years of the Lake Rosseau North Association and as Treasurer of the Muskoka Lakes Association. He was, for many years, a member of the National Yacht Club where he enjoyed sailing, a member of the Muskoka Lakes Golf and Country Club and Craigleith Ski Club where he was a regular with his dad or mother Saturday mornings and with his ski buddies the remainder of the weekend. In spring and fall, his favourite activity was transplanting trees at his Grey County farm, his property on Lake Rosseau and his treasured island in Temagami. In Toronto, he was actively involved and proud to serve many years as Treasurer for The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award Canada.

His family would like to extend their thanks to Drs. Doherty, Nolan, Lau and the respective teams at Sunnybrook Hospital who enabled him to regain his health for a few months so he could enjoy his friends, family, cottaging, boating and visiting his island in Temagami. They would also like to thank Drs. McLachlin, Prebble and Plume and the nurses at Collingwood General and Marine Hospital and Campbell House who kept him comfortable in his last weeks as well as the countless friends and relatives whose visits both at home and hospitals inspired him to fight on until cancer finally took its toll.

A private family service has been held and a Celebration of Robb's life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Muskoka Conservancy, 47 Quebec Street, Bracebridge, Ontario P1L 1P8 or to the Collingwood General and Marine Hospital, 459 Hume Street, Collingwood, Ontario L9Y 1W9.

Arrangements entrusted to Fawcett Funeral Home - Collingwood.

EDNA "TED" HOBSON (nee Kirk) Tireless volunteer, former president of ACW (Anglican Church Women), WWII munitions worker, war bride, crossword puzzle enthusiast, NASCAR fan, and general mover and shaker who amazed and ran circles around all those who knew her, passed peacefully with her terrific care team at Orchard Villa Long Term Care in Pickering on Wednesday, November 6, 2019 in her 100th year.

Beloved wife of the late George Earnest 'Ernie.' Cherished daughter of the late Fred Kirk and wife, Marie (nee Whittaker). Loving mother of Stuart Hobson and Daphne FitzGerald (Brian). Nana to Casey FitzGerald (Chris Steers), Kevin FitzGerald (Elizabeth) and Simon FitzGerald. Super-Nana to Thomas FitzGerald and honorary grandmother to countless more.

Ted had a remarkable life filled with good friends, good stories and good cups of tea.

A Celebration of Ted's life will be held on Tuesday, November 19th at two o'clock at Christ Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge Street (NW corner of Yonge & Heath). In lieu of flowers, donations to Parkinson Canada in memory of her late son-in-law, Brian FitzGerald or The Hospital for Sick Children would be appreciated.

JASON BRIAN HOWE It is with profound sadness that we announce that Jason Brian Howe passed away in Scottsdale Arizona on July 1, 2019, at 47 years of age. Jason was the dear husband of Kimberly and proud father of Spencer and Madison. He is also survived by his grandmother, Alice Howe, Tillsonburg, ON; parents, Brian and Pat Howe, Lake Wales, FL; Dinah and Don Smart, Blenheim, ON; brother, James and Katherine Howe and daughter, Ella, Oakville, ON; mother-in-law, Jo-Anne Ainsworth Welsh, Toronto, ON; father-in-law, Bill Welsh, Ottawa, ON; and sisters-in-law, Kathryn Welsh, Oakville, ON and Kristine Welsh, Unionville, ON.

Jason was born in London, Ontario where he resided through his graduation from Western University before moving to Toronto, Calgary and Scottsdale.

He lived life to the fullest, filled every room with his enthusiasm and was passionate about his family, health and fitness, music and giving back to his community.

Jason will be forever remembered by his aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. May he rest in peace.

JULIA ANN KEELING (née Woodrow) Julia died peacefully on Sunday, October 20, 2019, after a long struggle with cancer. She was born on November 20, 1949, to the late Barbara and Donald Woodrow. She will be greatly missed by many people including her husband, David; her children and their families - Simon, Miche, Nyah and Cora; Jeremy, Willow and Archer; Nicholas and Tracey; Rachel, Steve and Rosalyn - the extended family, and numerous friends and colleagues.

A Service of Thanksgiving for Julia's life will take place on Saturday, November 9 at 1 p.m.

at Grace Church on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Road, Toronto, with a reception following. There will be a Visitation on Friday, November 8 between 7 and 9 p.m. at Humphrey Funeral Home, 1403 Bayview Avenue, Toronto.

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation either to La Leche League Canada, PO Box 147, Pickering, ON L1V 2R2 or to The Kensington Hospice, 38 Major Street, Toronto M5S 2L1.

VANDA KILPEN February 14, 1928 November 5, 2019 It is with deep sorrow we announce the death of Vanda at Meaford General Hospital.

Her partner Ann Cox, her family and friends will greatly miss her Joie De Vivre. Vanda's long and eventful life was characterized by her warmth, laughter and sense of adventure. A celebration of her life will be held at the Marsh Street Centre in Clarksburg on Wednesday, November 13th from 1 until 3 p.m. with refreshments provided. In recognition of the exceptional care provided by Dr. Sauriol and the staff, donations to the Meaford Hospital Foundation would be appreciated and may be made through the Ferguson Funeral Home, 48 Boucher St. E., Meaford, ON N4L 1B9 to whom arrangements have been entrusted.

http://www.fergusonfuneralhomes.ca No need for tears, I am at peace My soul is now at rest There is no pain, I suffer not For with your love, I was blessed MURIEL PATRICIA MACNAUGHTON Our dearest Mom Pat, passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, at the age of 98, in Toronto, ON. Predeceased by her loving husband of 49 years, Martin Paul Macnaughton (Mac), she was a loving mother of her children: Jennifer (Bill Stensson), Nancy (Rick Hilborn), Heather (Dave Dunphy), Carol (Russ Martin) and James. Proud grandmother (Grammy) to, Erik (Alexis Shand), Anna, Jane, Brita (Jordy Lacko), Ian (Nathalie Newby), Mackie (Shannon Blackman), Lisa (Tyler Laycock), Cameron, Ashleigh, Nicole, and great-grandmother of Mitchell, and Finley. Predeceased by her close siblings, Florence, Roderick, Phyllis and James, and her British born parents, Tracy Deavin LeMay and Florence Muriel Fereday Paget Mayne.

Pat was an accomplished duplicate bridge player, and did crosswords, suduko, and jumble every day. She loved all animals very much. Growing up, there was always a family dog and she cherished the many years she spent as a volunteer for the Toronto Humane Society. She was also an active member and sadly the last member of the Gordon Road Ladies Group, a ladies social group that was active for over 50 years. Pat was fortunate to spend every summer of her married life at our beloved cottage on Lake Simcoe. Her last visit was for our annual Thanksgiving feast 2019, where she was surrounded by her entire family right down to her great grandkids. She was funny, quirky and smart, embraced life to the very end and will be deeply missed by family and friends. The whole family loved her very much.

Services will be held on Wednesday, November 13th at 11:00 a.m. at St. John's York Mills Anglican Church, 19 Don Ridge Drive, North York, ON M2P 1H3 with lunch following the service. Donations may be made to the Toronto Humane Society at 11 River Street, Toronto, ON M5A 4C2. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

JUNE KATHLEEN MUIR June Kathleen Muir (nee Pinaud) passed away peacefully on November 5, 2019 at age 93 in Toronto, Ontario. June was born on June 9, 1926 to Victor and Kathleen Pinaud in Montreal.

June was predeceased by her son, James Muir (Mary Muir).

She is survived by her children, John Muir, Kathleen Young (Paul Young), Tom Muir (Pat Muir), June Ntazinda (Franco Ntazinda), Jocelyn Saunders (Blair Saunders) and her 10 grandchildren.

June was an avid learner who in her later years enjoyed learning about new technology, medicine and culture. She took great interest in people's lives - in their desires and families. She enjoyed debating politics, being in the outdoors and travelling.

In June's last few years she resided at Belmont House and was treated with great care by all staff. The family greatly appreciates their care and kindness to Mom. If you would like to make a donation in June's memory, please make a donation in her name to Belmont House Foundation or a charity of your choice.

June's interment will be at Mount Pleasant Cemetery attended by family.

THOMAS ARTHUR ROGERS Thomas Arthur Rogers, 82 of Ottawa, Ontario freed peacefully from Parkinson's Disease on Tuesday, November 5, 2019.

Born in Montreal to Muriel and Jack Rogers, Tom attended Bishops College School and later McGill. Tom was a respected member of the Toronto financial community as a technical analyst and later a financial planner. He was active in his church and a baritone in the Timothy Eaton Memorial choir. Tom loved time with his dog, Jiminy, whether it was hiking or occasionally sharing an ice cream cone.

Tom is survived by his son, John Rogers of San Diego, CA; daughter, Laura Gammage, son-in-law, Randy Gammage and grandson, Cole of Ottawa; predeceased by brother, John Victor Rogers of Calgary, Alberta.

His family would like to express their gratitude for the attentive, personalized care Tom received at the Perley and Rideau Veteran's Health Centre (Assisted Living division) and later the Glebe Center (Long Term Care).

A Memorial Service will be held at the Central Chapel of Hulse, Playfair & McGarry, 315 McLeod Street (at O'Connor) on Sunday, November 10 at 4 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Parkinson Canada. We will remember Dad when the fall leaves turn, when dogs happily bark and when desserts are served.

Condolences/Tributes/Donations Hulse, Playfair & McGarry http://www.hpmcgarry.ca 613-233-1143 ESTHER MARGARET STEKETEE (nee Scott) Passed away peacefully at her place of residence on Wednesday, November 6, 2019.

She leaves her stepson, Jim (Jo). Lovingly remembered by her step grandchildren Devin (Leanne), Garrett (Lisa) Sabrina (Johnny), Jackson, Jade, Justin and Vanessa. She is the great-grandmother of Tayler, Jaxon, Aiden, Jacob, Noah, Freya and Amelia. She was preceded by her beloved husband Richard, P. Eng and her stepdaughter Kathey loved and remembered by her daughter-in-law, Patricia Steketee, as well as Janice Kantor, Ann and Dave Parker, Sue and Jack Ward, Tennis Reynolds, her relatives and many friends.

Esther was a graduate of Victoria University and received her Master's Degree at the University of Niagara.

After graduation she was employed by the T. Eaton Company; worked in the executives offices add-on various merchandising areas.

As a result of this experience, Esther later owned and operated a boutique in Niagara on the Lake. In 1961 she entered the teaching profession and spent 13 years as an instructor and Director of Business Education Departments in a variety of locations surrounding the city of Toronto, the Niagara Peninsula, including secondment to the University of Toronto.

Esther was co-author and author of business textbooks, education consultant for a television program on business procedures, served on curriculum committees and conducted workshops on teaching methodology. As the result of Esther's contribution to business education, in 1979 she received the Robert Hillmer Award, an award given each year for an outstanding contribution to business education in the province of Ontario.

Esther was known for her sincere, caring personality, and throughout her career assisted physically and emotionally handicapped children and their pursuit of meaningful and independent lives.

Esther was a member of the Boulevard Club, Burlington and Thornhill Golf and Country. Although time and opportunities were limited, Esther's leisure time included piloting an airplane and skydiving.

Private cremations and burial have taken place.

Donations to a charity of your choice would be appreciated.

DR. HELLE TUPHOLME (née Solu) B.Sc., DDS 1944 - 2019 Beloved wife, cherished mother and grandmother, Helle passed away peacefully at her home in Niagara-on-the-Lake on October 30, 2019. Helle will forever be remembered by her devoted husband, Brian; her son, Michael and his wife, Meghan; her daughter, Kristi Ellenzweig and her husband, Jonathan Ellenzweig; as well as by her adored grandchildren, Paige and Brooke Tupholme and Heidi and Leo Ellenzweig. Helle also leaves her brothers, Peter Solu of Toronto and Mart Solu of Sarasota, Florida.

Helle was born in Helsinki, Finland to parents Paul and Agnes Solu, who had fled from Estonia to Finland during the late stages of World War II, and who moved shortly thereafter to Sweden.

In the early-1950s, Helle and her parents moved to Canada, settling in Toronto. There, Helle attended Swansea Public School and Humberside Collegiate Institute. She then obtained a B.Sc. degree at the University of Toronto before enrolling in the Faculty of Dentistry, also at the University of Toronto, receiving her DDS degree in 1971. Over the following thirty-seven years, Helle practiced dentistry in Toronto, opening and running several offices where she cared for a large and devoted following of patients.

In addition to her practice, Helle was a part-time faculty member at the University of Toronto's Dental School and served on several committees at the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario.

In Toronto, Helle and Brian were long-time residents of the Baby Point area where they enjoyed an active social life and where they raised their children, Michael and Kristi. Helle was actively involved in the Estonian Community in Toronto. Notably, in the early1990s, Helle, along with other members of the EstonianCanadian dental community of Toronto, made multiple trips to Estonia, taking with them dental supplies and leading instructional seminars while there, with the aim of helping to modernize the Estonian dental profession. Helle had many interests; she was an avid skier, loved travel, became an expert knitter in her later years, and she particularly loved spending summers with her family at their Georgian Bay island cottage. She loved to entertain and her culinary skills were legendary amongst her friends. Helle retired from dentistry in 2008, following which she and Brian moved to Niagaraon-the-Lake, where they made many new friends and enjoyed the community. In the last several years, Helle's health deteriorated somewhat, limiting her mobility, but being as determined as she was, she faced these challenges head-on.

A celebration of Helle's life will take place for family and friends prior to the end of the year - date and details to be announced.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Helle's name may be made to The Estonian Foundation of Canada, The Kidney Foundation of Canada and The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

Arrangements entrusted to Morgan Funeral Home, 415 Regent St., Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON. Memories, photos and condolences may be shared at http://www.morganfuneral.com DR. CICELY WILSON April 3, 1926 November 3, 2019 In her 94th year passed away peacefully. Predeceased by Art Wilson, and her sister, Myra.

Loving mother of Janet, Helen and David, cherished mother-inlaw to Fernand, Michie, Paul, and Joanna, and proud grandmother of Amanda, Lucas, Marlow, Martine, Hilarie, Jesse, Amanda, Kathleen and Kayla. Great grandmother to Henry, Evan, James and Shea.

A strong, determined, yet elegant woman, Cicely was a pioneer.

Born in London, England, she received her veterinary training at the Royal Veterinary College as the Second World War raged.

After leaving war-torn England, she became the first woman veterinarian in western Canada.

She quietly faced any barriers by proving she could do the job better than any man. Her plans to return to England changed when she met the debonair and charming Arthur. She was finally swept off her feet when Art proposed at the farm and confirmed his belief in the family.

She opened her own clinic in Richmond Hill beside the church where she married Art, followed by three decades of practice at the renowned Secord Animal Hospital and at St. Clair Animal Hospital in Toronto.

Cicely's dedication, discipline and patience inspired her family to be creative and hard working. Cicely was so very proud that her daughter Helen and her granddaughter Kathleen both followed in her footsteps - three generations of female veterinarians.

Cicely and Art enjoyed an active 54 year marriage with a rich network of friends, and dancing, music, laughter and always a 5 o'clock vodka and scotch. They were never far from a tennis court and a golf course. Tennis for Cicely was a passion. She was on many inter-county teams, and played into her 80s. Her drop shot was wicked. She always said that her lifelong friends were made through tennis. She golfed to be with Art, but was talented enough to become the Senior Ladies Champion at Donalda Golf Club.

Like her golf shot, Cicely was straight as an arrow. She was ever fair, direct, independent, and intelligent. Yet she was curious with a broad world view and a good sense of humour. The family skied enthusiastically during the winter and treasured the annual family reunion each summer in Muskoka. She became our family matriarch after Art passed away.

In her later years, she enjoyed the warmth of the Arizona sun during winters and her passion became bridge. She proudly played five days a week in her Dunfield home with her bridge friends.

Mum always said getting old is not for sissies. Too true. The Dunfield residents and staff always treated Dr. Wilson with kindness, patience and respect. Florie Coish welcomed her to the Dunfield and Lawrence was a true friend to the end. A huge thank you to Jean, Yvonne, Malou, Gladys, Lemelyn, Grace, Luci, Clara and Eden for their loving care of Mum in her last days. The responsiveness of Dr. Amos and the Temmy Latner palliative team made it possible for mum to stay in her home for this last journey. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts.

In celebration of Cicely's life, please join us on Saturday, November 16, 2019, 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the Dunfield Retirement Residence, second floor, 77 Dunfield Ave., Toronto. In lieu of flowers, a contribution to the Ontario or Toronto Humane Society would be gratefully appreciated.

CANADIANS ARE BEING DRIVEN TO DISTRACTION
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In the past decade, crashes have been rising sharply and cellphones are a major culprit. But getting drivers to put their devices down isn't easy and experts worry penalties aren't enough - attitudes about technology and safety need to change, Oliver Moore writes
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By OLIVER MOORE
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A12


The triviality of the text messages is what has stuck with Rob Duttchen.

It was Aug. 15, 2009, when the Winnipeg police officer received a call from his mother, Carolee.

His 62-year-old father, Art, had beenhitbyanSUVwhilewalking their husky-cross in suburban Kingman, Ariz., where Art was a Lutheran pastor. The 16-year-old driver had been talking on the phone - after an extended bout of texting with her boyfriend about a sex-related bet the pair was considering - and allowed her oversized vehicle to drift across the road. She hit the dog, Hobo, first, then smashed into Art from behind, sending him flying.

While Art lay critically wounded - bleeding internally, his neck fractured - the girl made several more phone calls and sent numerous texts. About 15 minutes after the crash, she wrote: "i just dont want people feeling bad for me and stuff."

Art died that night, leaving behind Carolee, their four children and a church community full of friends. As for the driver, she had her licence suspended until she turned 18, and a punishment Rob Duttchen describes as essentially "house arrest for two years."

The senselessness of the conversation the girl was having still gets to him. "There was no reason to be driving and texting at the same time," the police sergeant says.

In the wake of his father's death, Sgt. Duttchen made it his mission to draw attention to distracted driving, which has emerged as one of the most dangerous and intractable road-safety issues Canada has ever faced.

After a brief dip, crashes related to distracted driving jumped nearly 20 per cent from 2009 through 2010, according to Transport Canada, and have stayedconsistentlyhigh-averaging nearly 85,000 annually - everyyearsince.InManitobaalone, there were 4,780 collisions related to distraction in 2012. By 2017, that had jumped to 15,403 - an increase of 222 per cent.

Distracted driving is broadly defined as performing any activity that might take your focus off the road - eating, fiddling with the radio, tapping co-ordinates into a GPS device. Particularly deadly is distraction related to a cellphone, which is designed to monopolize our attention. Accordingtoonewidelycitedstudy, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, talking on a handheld phone while driving more than triplestheriskofacollision.Texting increases it six-fold.

While the problem of distracted driving is one that's immune to easy fixes, there are a host of ideas for how to reduce this deadly behaviour and minimize the harm it causes, everything from more punitive enforcement to rethinking how we build cars and roadways. Jay Winsten, whose public-health project at Harvard University aims to combat distracted driving, believes it will take a combination of both technological intervention and a generational shift in behaviour to get it under control. "The evolution of social norms is important, and I think young people can help lead the way on that," he says.

As for Sgt. Duttchen, he is doing his part to change attitudes one driver at a time. If he catches someone using their phone while driving, they automatically get a ticket. But it's different when the driver is using a phone at a red light. Although that's also illegal, Sgt. Duttchen uses those instances to give drivers an uncomfortable warning about the possible outcome of their behaviour.

"I will tell them my father's story and that it's not worth the risk," he says. "Because the issue isn't just you. The issue is all the people around you." The last time we faced a crisis of this magnitude on the roads was two generations ago, with impaired driving.

Although driving drunk was criminalized in Canada in 1969, the practice remained stubbornly widespread. During one fourmonth period in 1977, for instance, Ontario Provincial Police found that more than half the drivers they stopped for traffic violations had been drinking; about 30 per cent of them were charged with alcohol-related offences.

The tide eventually turned, but slowly. There was a 44-percent drop in alcohol-related incidents from 1978 to 1986. Progress was made through a combination of roadside sobriety programs such as RIDE (Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere), which was launched across Ontario in 1977, tougher penalties and stricter enforcement of the law.

Possibly the biggest factor in getting drunk driving under control, however, was a dramatic change in public attitudes. The advocacy group Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), created in California in 1980 and launched in Canada nine years later, helped put a human face to the issue. Police departments launched shaming campaigns, publishing the names of everyone charged with impaired-driving offences, which helped to further stigmatize the act.

The idea of the designated driver - a concept popularized in large part by Dr. Winsten - was a crucial part of the puzzle. The campaign roped in taxi companies,publictransitorganizations, bars and restaurants, and private individuals to prevent anyone from getting behind the wheel drunk. Dr. Winsten's Harvard Alcohol Project also took its campaign to pop culture, leading to impaired driving being featured in the plot lines of 160 episodes of prime-time TV between 1988 and 1992.

Gradually, public attitudes changed. What was once seen as atrivialcrime,aslongasthedriver got home safely, became more socially unacceptable. But we're notthereyetwithdistracteddriving. "You can comfortably talk publicly with strangers at a party about how, yeah, you're one of the worst offenders around with distracted driving and you've got to change your behaviour," Dr.

Winsten says. "You wouldn't say that any longer around drunk driving."

Until cellphones started to become ubiquitous in the 1990s, Canada's roads were on an improving safety trend - not just owing to a drop in impaired driving, but also thanks to stricter seatbelt laws, graduated licensing requirements and better-engineeredvehicles.Butarecentreport from the Ottawa-based Traffic Injury Research Foundation shows that over the past 17 years, distracted-driving fatalities have made up an increasing proportion of the deaths on our roads.

"In other words, the positive trend among non-distraction-related fatalities is not evident in the trend among distraction-related fatalities," the report states.

Experts began raising concerns about the dangers of mixing cellphones and driving early on. But good data on the risks werehardtocomebyandlegislators were slow to act. In 2003, Newfoundland and Labrador became the first province to enforce a ban on using handheld phones while driving.

Those laws have since spread across the country, but they're difficult to enforce since drivers typically have to be caught in the act of talking or texting behind the wheel. Unlike with impaired driving, you can't simply set up a RIDE-style checkpoint to determine who's been using their phone recently. In the event of a crash, investigators need a warrant to access a driver's phone records, even if an eyewitness confirms the person was using their device.

Charlie Klauer, an associate professor at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, knows firsthand how common this behaviour is. She sees it in her experiments and watched itsprevalence explode. As part of her work, she outfits vehicles with camerasandsensorstostudydistracted driving in the real world.

Prof. Klauer ran two studies - one from 2003-04 and another from 2006-07. "In the first study, people weren't texting," she says.

"Nobody texted - not a single person. And in the second study, everybody did it."

The psychology of driving is complicated, which is one of the reasons distracted driving is such a difficult behaviour to stamp out.

The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), for instance, points to surveys that show 95 per cent of drivers acknowledge it's "very risky" to use their phones while driving. Yet, about one-third of drivers admit to doing just that at least once during their last 10 trips.

Itturnsoutthatpeoplearenotoriously bad judges of their own driving skills.

In one study, researchers at the University of Stockholm found that people had "a strong tendency ... to believe themselves to be more skillful and less riskythantheothers." Thisinflated belief in their own skills can intersect with distracted driving indangerousways."Foraportion of drivers, their ability to text message while driving might be one of the characteristics they believe makes them a unique and superior driver," U.S. researchers wrote in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology in 2014.

Experts say this is in part because the people who drive distracted usually don't suffer any fallout. The Traffic Injury Research Foundation released a report in September showing that the perpetrator is not the most likely one to die in a crash. "Unlike alcohol-impaired drivers, distracted drivers more often kill other road users in crashes than kill themselves," the report states.

In fact, distracted drivers might not even be aware they've had a close call - say, cutting off a cyclist or forcing a truck to veer into oncoming traffic - precisely because they're not paying attention.Andiftheydorealizewhat's happened, they might interpret the safe ending as testament to their superior driving skill, instead of a warning to be more mindful.

All this can lead to the conclusion that distracted-driving laws are an excellent measure - for other people.

A common attitude seems to be, "Yeah, great idea - that'll keep all those other people safe.

I'm good as it is," says Ian Pike, director of the BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit. "Because the prevailing attitude is that injury won't happen to them. 'I've done this a million times before and I got away with it, and I will likely continue to get

away with it' - until they don't."

The truth is, people are terrible at multitasking. Rather than juggling two or three actions at once, people are actually dividing their attention, flicking from one thing to the next, often not very effectively.

In a famous experiment from the late 1990s, people were asked to watch a video and count how many times actors in white shirts passed a basketball. In the middle of the video, a woman in a gorilla suit strolls though the action, pausing to beat her chest.

Asked later about the costumed actor, half of the test subjects admittedtheyhadn'tseenthegorilla.

This is a phenomenon known as inattentional blindness. When mentally focused on one thing, we can miss something else right in front of us - such as a child chasing a ball in the street or a car nosing unexpectedly out of an alley. This has been seen in driving simulators: people talking on the phone were asked to count fast-food signs out the window and couldn't fulfill that simple request.

Weknowinstinctivelythislack of attention can have lethal results, but because of human overconfidence, many of us believe we can manage the risk. Besides, our phones and the apps installed on them have become so alluring we sometimes feel we can't help ourselves.

Prof. Klauer has seen how quickly people's best intentions can fade. Even though they knew they were being watched, participants in her experiments took just a couple of hours to revert to their old habits. "They're in their own car, in their own environment," she says. "We all have our normal stuff we do when we drive."

Penalties for distracted driving are a patchwork across the country. In New Brunswick, it's a $200 fine for a first offence. In Prince Edward Island, it's as high as $1,275. In Nunavut, which banned texting and driving only this year, there is no penalty at all.

In the face of worsening distracted-driving statistics, a number of jurisdictions have brought in harsher penalties. Some of the toughest are in Manitoba, which last year introduced the country's first automatic three-day licence suspension for anyone caught using an electronic device behind the wheel, with a sevenday suspension for second offence. The stricter regime was accompaniedbyaneducationcampaign encouraging people to put down their phones and for passengers to speak up when drivers break the law. "The point isn't to make life awful for people; the point is to make it really clear that this behaviour has serious consequences," says Manitoba Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler. A three-day licence suspension might not be much of a deterrentin,say,FloridaorArizona, he adds, but waiting for the bus in the depths of a prairie winter can be "a real cold experience."

Mr. Schuler admits it will take atleastayear,orpossiblyseveral, before they know whether the new approach is working. But earlysignspointedtothedifficulty in changing ingrained behaviour: Barely two months after the new penalties came into effect, police nabbed their first repeat offender.

There's some suggestion, though, that simply increasing penalties doesn't work. If someone is willing to risk a $300 charge, will raising that fine to $600suddenlyactasadeterrent?

It's not clear it will. "If you increase your fines to such a point, your concern always becomes, will police lay the ticket?" adds Graham Miner, director of highway safety in PEI. "I could write you a ticket for $100 for using a cellphone, but if it's $2,000 and it means you're going to lose your licence, will I write that ticket?" In British Columbia, where collisions are up 25 per cent since 2014,Attorney-GeneralDavidEby hasfloatedsomeideasthatmove beyond suspensions and fines.

Lastyear,heproposedtheideaof invalidatingsomeinsurancebenefits for people convicted of distracted driving. This is now done with those convicted of impaired driving, who are considered in breach of their insurance policy and on the hook for lawsuit settlements, medical expenses and vehicle repairs. A spokesman for the minister would only say that the idea is not part of the province's current approach to distracted driving.

Enforcement can go only so far, though. Because enforcement is intermittent and the practice so widespread, the chances of being caught remain slim. So even though penalties will always be part of the solution to distracted driving, other approaches could play a useful role."Distracteddrivingwillchallenge us in ways that traditional road safety interventions have not," says Robyn Robertson, president of the Traffic Injury Research Foundation. "Everyone's looking for the intervention that'll tackle the issue. It's not going to be one thing."

Let's face it: driving can get boring. That idea is central to a new distracted-driving campaign set to launch in April. The effort is being led by Dr. Winsten and his team at Harvard, and it's rooted in the notion that simply asking motorists to keep their eyes on the road isn't enough. They need to be actively engaged and looking around. This reflects the old ruleofthumbthatdriversshould be checking their mirrors every five to seven seconds, a practice not universally followed.

"The campaign will stress that the practice of attentive driving involves more than avoiding distractions or passively gazing at theroadahead;itrequiresactive, systematic engagement in the driving task to maintain 'situational awareness,' " according to a draft description of the campaign. The point isn't just that drivers need to be more aware of impending dangers. It's also about engaging their minds that little bit more, making them less likely to reach for their phones.

Technology might help, too.

Nichole Morris, a research scholar at the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota, says her team has studied the effects of forwardcollision warning systems and invehicle messages that alert drivers if they get too close to the car in front of them. The researchers hypothesized these systems would leave drivers more susceptible to distraction. But they found the opposite. "If we can provide some driving-relevant information to increase their mental load, just ever so slightly, you can help eat up some of that additional attention that people feel like they need to do something with," Prof. Morris says. "If it's deployed really thoughtfully and carefully, we can actually load them up just enough so that they don't pick up their phone."

Tech assistance could also come in the form of telematics - a sort of automotive black box that tracks hard braking and other actions that might indicate distraction.Thepayofffordrivers could come in the form of a break on their insuarance rates.

The ICBC ran a telematics pilot last year that showed a 40-percent improvement in driver actions. Another such project, still under way, is geared toward trackingthebehaviourofinexperienced drivers, who the ICBC says are 5.6-times more likely than 20-year veterans to be in a crash. If the insurer sees an uptick in safe driving, it could rollout the system more widely.

A more drastic, even slightly sci-fi form of tech assistance is being planned by Volvo. Starting in 2020, the Swedish automaker will offer optional on-board cameras that monitor drivers' eye movements, watching for signs associated with both impairment and distraction. If a driver closes her eyes or looks away from the road for too long, a Volvo employee would call the vehicle to check in on the driver. In extreme cases, the car would slow itself to a stop.

There are also technological fixes on the smartphone side of things. Newer Apple iPhones, for instance, offer an optional "do not disturb" feature for drivers that blocks notifications while the car is on the move. So far, these features have seen limited uptake by users, and phone makers have resisted automatic notification blockers, arguing the technology isn't perfect and could inconvenience passengers and those using public transit.

Consumers have also pushed back at this concept, too reliant on their smartphones to imagine being disconnected.

Neil Arason, the author of No Accident: Eliminating Injury and Death on Canadian Roads, says tactics to minimize distracted driving are worthwhile, but that a bit of realism is needed as well.

Some drivers will always be willing to risk looking at their phones.Knowingthis,it'sincumbent on society to build a safer road network. That could mean installing median barriers on roads to prevent drivers from driftingintooncominglanes,and using radar speed cameras to slow motorists down and reduce the damage resulting from crashes.

For Todd Litman, head of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute,anindependentresearchorganization, there needs to be a greater focus on giving people alternatives to driving. With fully reliable and ubiquitous autonomous vehicles still years or decades off, the only way to do it, he argues, is to improve public transit options and position it deliberately as the choice for people who want screen time. That way, even if the trip takes longer, the time can be used productively.

"We can shake bigger fingers, we can be louder in our anti-distracted-driving campaigns," Mr.

Litman says. "Or we can be realistic and give travellers solutions that actually respond to their demands."

However, most of these initiatives, whether public-awareness campaigns or changes to driving infrastructure, could take years to have a measurable effect on deaths and injuries due to distracted driving. And if you talk to some of the people most directly affected by the issue, you'll hear tones of weary resignation.

One B.C. man, whose wife was killed by a driver who had been drinking and was texting his exgirlfriendatthetimeofthecrash, is furious that nothing seems to change on the roads - even among his own circle.

"My friends do the same thing, even after [my wife] died and they were at her funeral," says the widower, who is still strugglingwiththefalloutofherdeath and was granted anonymity because he didn't want national media attention. He has even caught himself instinctively grabbing for the phone when a call comes in from the seniors' home where his mother is a resident. "That [phone] buzzer is just like Pavlov's dog," he says. "If people dying won't change your mind, nothing's going to change your mind."

ButinWinnipeg,Sgt.Duttchen hasn't given up hope and he's confident he's making a difference. "If we can change the behaviour of one person at a time, our mission is accomplished," he says. "Because you don't know the compounding effect of that.

You don't know what you've prevented."

Associated Graphic

Jay Winsten, seen above in Boston, Mass., runs a public-health project at Harvard University that aims to combat distracted driving. He says it will take a generational shift in behaviour as well as technological intervention to help tackle the issue.

SCOTT EISENSCOTT EISEN

Sergeant Rob Duttchen holds a photo of his father, Art Duttchen, a Lutheran pastor who was killed in 2009 when a teen driver who was texting crossed a median, like the one seen at top in Toronto, and hit him while he was walking his dog in Kingman, Ariz.

ABOVE: JOHN WOODS/GLOBE AND MAIL; TOP: DEBORAH BAIC/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Sergeant Rob Duttchen, seen left in Winnipeg, says that if he catches a driver texting at a red light, he uses it as an opportunity to give them a warning about the possible consequences of their distracted driving by sharing his father's story.

JOHN WOODS/GLOBE AND MAIL

University of Minnesota research scholar at the Center for Transportation Studies Nichole Morris, centre, says her team found forward-collision warning systems, which alerted drivers when they were too close to cars in front of them, helped to improve driver focus.

MICHAEL MCCARTHY

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

BIRTH AND death notices
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B20


DEATHS J. LAVERNE BOND (née McConkey) On November 6, 2019, at age 99, Laverne, loving mother of Thomas and his wife Lynda, and Scott and his wife Debbie, and cherished grandmother of Emily, Chris, Alison (Mitch) and Peter was reunited with her late husband Alfred Bond, who passed away in 1999.

Laverne had a sharp mind but she had become very frail over the past year. Despite her frailty, she was determined to live on her own. She was fiercely independent, creative, embraced life and found humour to the end.

Laverne will be deeply missed by her family but will continue to positively influence all of our lives.

Friends may call at the Turner & Porter Yorke Chapel, 2357 Bloor Street W, at Windermere, east of Jane Street, on Friday, November 15, 2019. Visitation is at 10 a.m. and will be followed by a service in the chapel at 11 a.m. A reception will be held at The Lambton Golf and Country Club at 12:30 p.m.

If desired, donations in lieu of flowers may be made to Children's Wish Foundation of Canada.

HENRIETTA CHESNIE (née Farb) Passed away on Monday, November 11, 2019, at the age of 96. Beloved wife of the late Dr. Joshua Chesnie.

Loving mother and mother-inlaw of Dr. Debby Cooper, and Dr. Brian and Vicky Chesnie.

Devoted grandmother of Neri and Peter, David, Sarah and Zach, Nathan and Katie, Graeme and Rachel, and the late Joanna Cooper. Adoring great-grandmother of Joshua, Adam, Tyler, Charlotte, Claire, Canon, Emmalyn, and Blakely. Her greater family, her uncles, aunts, and many cousins all remained central to her core, throughout her entire life. She graduated with a degree in Physiotherapy.

She gave of her time to numerous charitable causes, participating in organizational roles at Mount Sinai Hospital, and Holy Blossom Temple, where she became the first female President of a Synagogue in Canada. At Holy Blossom Temple, 1950 Bathurst Street (South of Eglinton) for service on Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. Interment Holy Blossom Memorial Park. Shiva 44 Charles Street West, Toronto. Memorial donations may be made to the Joshua and Henrietta Chesnie Endowment Fund c/o Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation, 416-586- 8203.

DIANA DONALD (née Harrower) April 4, 1928 November 9, 2019 Beloved mother of 4 children, who just adored her - Rick, Rob (Karen), Nancy (Tim) and Dynah, grandmother of 9, and greatgrandmother of 5, with 2 more on their way. A friend to so many and counsellor to others. She touched everyone she met.

An extraordinary woman who beat cancer twice, and got her Masters Degree in Psychology at 60. She continued working well into her 80's because she loved helping others. They all remain friends and fans to this day. As well she was an author of 2 childrens books. She was the "block mom" to all her childrens' friends throughout her life. Young or old they sought her out.

Mom, we'll all keep dreaming of the fairies..

Service will be held at: Belvedere Funeral Home, 22025 TransCanada Hwy, Senneville Québec.

11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. on November 15, 2019.

In lieu of flowers please send donations to the Children's Wish Foundation.

HEATHER ELIZABETH HEAPS (MacLEAN) March 6, 1943 November 10, 2019 Heather died peacefully on Sunday at Bridgepoint Palliative Care in her 76th year. Beloved wife of Frank, her husband of 53 years. Daughter of the late Elizabeth (Betty) and Dr. John MacLean. Loving mother of Ian (Niki), Angus (Josee), Cameron (Johna) and Cailey (James).

Cherished grandmother of Hugo and his brother Graeme, Magnolia and Ophelia (Ian), Kyra and Lucas (Angus), Shakeel, Samuel and Daisy (Cam), Mimi, Declan and Pippa (Cailey). Loving sister of Joanna (Al Gerdung, predeceased), Sheila (Brian Talbot) and Daphne (Doug Brown).

While Heather's death will be a profound loss to all who knew and loved her, her spirit will remain a positive influence on all of our lives.

She was born in Victoria, B.C., raised in Montreal and Knowlton, QC, educated at Smith College in Mass., U.S.A. (B.A., Fine Art and Economics) and U of T (M.Sc., Urban & Regional Planning), where Heather and Frank met.

Married in 1966 they lived in Toronto, Monaco, Ottawa, Montreal, St. Lucia and Vancouver before returning to Toronto.

Heather was a very caring and unselfish person, always with a ready smile. Respected and loved by all who knew her she was an inspiring and model wife, mother, grandmother, and friend.

She cherished her friendships with the Tea Ladies, the BVAA, her Vancouver connections, her Moore Park neighbours, her St. Lucia community, The Study and Smith College "girls," Longford cottagers and so many other connections that she built throughout her life.

After taking time off to raise her four children, Heather built and enjoyed a successful real estate business that saw her quickly recognized as one of Canada's top performers in her field. Heather's success was the result of the genuine and passionate care she shared serving her clients, many of whom became life-long friends.

She also impacted and enjoyed the comradery of her colleagues she met along the way.

Her favourite pastimes included time with family and friends, reading, gardening, enjoying the cottage and exploring at Longford Reserve, travelling and being involved with the many charities she cared deeply about.

Throughout her life, Heather felt a deep appreciation of nature from which she derived great spiritual inspiration. She stood out for her incredible ability to connect with people, both friends and strangers, her warm and open heart, unmatched hospitality, endless generosity, strong spirit and her incredible ability to always see the best in people.

Even until her last moments, she made sure the people around her knew how much she loved them.

Heather and her family are forever grateful to Dr. Neesha Dhani and the team at Princess Margaret Hospital and, in her final days, the palliative care teams from The Temmy Latner Centre and Bridgepoint Health. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation [Ovarian Cancer Medical Oncology Fund] via http://www.thepmcf.ca or call 416946-6560. Service at Christ Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge Street, on Monday, November 18th at 11:00 a.m. followed by a celebration at the Donalda Club, 12 Bushbury Drive at 1:00 p.m. Condolences may be forwarded through http://www.humphreymiles.com.

WERNER HIRSCHMANN Died peacefully in his sleep, age 96, on November 7, 2019, at Toronto Western Hospital, with wife Diana at his side. Born in Düsseldorf, Germany in 1923, Werner emigrated after spending time as a prisoner of war in Gravenhurst. In Canada, he leveraged his math and physics degree to become a computing pioneer, helping shape the industry during his time at the University of Toronto, KPMG, the Bank of Montreal, and the City of Toronto. Werner had a lifelong passion for the sea, nurtured under the Atlantic ocean as Chief Engineer on several U-Boats including the U-190, above water sailing on Lake Ontario aboard Anita and the Thieving Magpie, and on land through his connections to the Canadian Navy, the NAC, the RCMI, and the Esquimalt Association.

Werner is survived by a constellation of family: son Mike (Wendy), from his first marriage to Ruth; Mike's children Steve (Julie), Tyler (Suzan), Samantha (Chris), and Niki (Jon); and their children Naomi, Maeve, Chase, Connor, Brooklyn, Emmerson and Jacob. He is also survived by a son from his marriage to Diana: Thomas (Sarah), with children Wilhem and Edie. As Werner would always say when the entire family gathered, "this is all because of me." Please join us in gathering, one more time, "all because of Werner," at The Boulevard Club, Saturday, November 23rd, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

JOHN T. BODEN HOLDER It is with great sadness that the family of John Holder shares the news of his passing November 11, 2019.

He passed peacefully at Hospice Georgian Triangle Campbell House with his family at his side. He is survived by his wife, Barbara; three children, David, Susan, and Mark and was also predeceased by his daughter, Valerie.

A service will be held At All Saints Anglican Church in Collingwood, Ontario on November 14, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. The church is located at 32 Elgin St. in Collingwood.

There will be a reception to follow immediately after the service. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) or the Canadian Red Cross would be greatly appreciated.

MARGARET JORDIS NOKLEBERG/NIKIFORUK September 18, 1928 September 13, 2019 Margaret Jordis Nokleberg, the youngest of five siblings, began life on a farm in Barron Wisconsin in 1928.

Five years later the banks seized her home and her Norwegian émigré parents Emilie and Arthur divorced.

Arthur, a violin player, took Margaret out for a chocolate ice cream and then vanished from her life. Margaret and Emilie persevered during the Depression. Margaret excelled at school where the kids called her "Nockie." Her sister Astrid and her cheese making husband, Ernest, set the table with love and laughter.

After the war Margaret attended nursing school at the University of Illinois in Chicago where she met an aspiring young Ukrainian dentist from Saskatchewan, Gordon Nikiforuk. They married in 1950 as naïve as virgins. Ever the realist Margaret sent him an article on "How to Live With A Difficult Wife." It was an early happy wife-happy life manifesto.

After bearing two sons Margaret boldly returned to university as a mature student in the 1960s. She majored in history at UCLA and mastered Norwegian so she could talk to her ski-loving relatives.

(She proudly finished her degree at York University in 1971.)

But the craziness of California nearly killed her. She survived a house fire only when Bob Patrick, a burly neighbour, busted down the front door.

Then her beloved brother Chris died of a heart attack.

He spent nearly six months in a water-filled foxhole on the beaches of Anzio. She always claimed the war took years off his life, and she grieved him for months.

After moving back to Toronto Margaret returned to public health nursing and spent many years helping immigrant families in Toronto. When one of her sons became seriously ill, she founded "Parents for the Environmentally Sensitive" and battled the Ministry of Health to study the condition.

It relented and did so.

Her mother always told Margaret "you have to take the good with the bad," but when her marriage failed, she became a binge drinker.

Hallucinations and paranoia (early undiagnosed dementia) then crept into her life like a bad neighbour. A cloud of chaos and dread unsettled the family, and we became a Nordic soap opera.

But for all the trauma and tragedy, she loved life and prized its little and precious moments. A good cup of coffee at a fine restaurant. A sentimental musical. Boating on Drag Lake. Sitting by the beach in Costa Rica. Laughing about ridiculous things. The unconditional love of dogs.

Anything about Norway.

In many ways she prized the best of Norwegian virtues: courage, honesty, hard work, fidelity, hospitality, selfreliance and perseverance.

She is now at rest with her siblings: Astrid, Chris, Dagney, and Ethel. She survived her late husband, Gordon, by two months.

Her sons, Andrew and Christian, daughter-in-laws, Doreen Docherty and Mary Power, and their children, Aidan, Keegan, Torin, and Stephen and Erik wish her much happiness in the afterlife.

A celebration of life will be held at the Funeral Center at Mount Pleasant Cemetery on November 16th beginning at 12:30 with a Service at 1 p.m.

SYD LANYS Peacefully and surrounded by family, on Monday, November 11, 2019 at Mackenzie Health.

Beloved husband of Vicki. Loving father and father-in-law of Michael and the late Sandra, Sheryl, and lovingly remembered by Mehre.

Devoted grandfather of Zachary, Lindsay, and Sean. Dear brother and brother-in-law of Dorothy and the late Milton, Yetta and the late Lou, and the late Marty and Ruthie, and Izzy and Sandy. Dear brother-in-law of Bella and the late Paul.

Special thanks to Mackenzie Health Complex Care Unit, Doctors and Staff.

At Benjamin's Park Memorial, 2401 Steeles Avenue West (3 lights west of Dufferin) for service on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 at 12:30 p.m. Interment Beth David B'nai Israel Beth Am Section of Pardes Chaim Cemetery. Shiva 15 North Park Road, Thornhill.

Memorial donations may be made to the Syd Lanys Memorial Fund for Canadian Breast Cancer and for Bronchiectasis c/o The Benjamin Foundation, 416-780-0324, http://www.benjamins.ca YIO MARK SAAR November 23, 1925, Estonia My dad's final journey came to an end peacefully on October 30, 2019. He is fondly remembered by his loving family Leili, Elyn, Peter, Ross and Hayley. Special thanks to Doctors Rand, Beamish, Zalewski, Blouin and the staff at Hospice Peterborough for their wonderful care and compassion.

Arrangements entrusted to The Hendren Funeral Homes, Lakefield Chapel. A private burial has taken place. To family and friends, we invite you to a celebration of his life to be held at "The Regency Of Lakefield", 91 Concession St., Lakefield, on Saturday, November 23, 2019 from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to Hospice Peterborough would be appreciated by our family and can be made by visiting http://www.hendrenfuneralhome.com or by calling 705-652-3355.

J. BLAIR SEABORN, CM In Ottawa on November 11, 2019, in his 96th year, after a full and rewarding life. Predeceased in 2011 by his loving wife, dearest friend and companion of over 60 years, Carol (Trow). Blair was the proud father of son Geoffrey (Jan de Pencier) of Toronto and daughter Virginia of Mont-Tremblant, and "J.B." to beloved grandchildren Emma (Rob Grundy), Claire (Michael Currie) and Adam Seaborn. He was delighted to have lived to see two great-grandchildren, Fraser and Sloane Grundy. He is fondly remembered by Carol's siblings, Virginia Ings, Allen Trow, Ben Trow and Marion Doheny. Born in 1924, the youngest child of the Reverend Richard and Muriel Seaborn of Toronto, he was predeceased by his siblings, Kitty (Smith), Richard, Jean (Bertram), Jack, Bob, Charlie and Ted, but is survived by nieces, nephews, their spouses, and their progeny too numerous to mention.

After the University of Toronto Schools, he studied political science and economics at the University of Toronto (Trinity College) where, following three years in the Canadian Army, he earned his M.A. in 1948. He entered the federal public service and spent the next twentytwo years at the Department of External Affairs with postings in The Hague, Paris, Moscow and Saigon, the latter as Canadian Commissioner for the ICSC in Vietnam. His life as a diplomat was followed by nineteen years in senior federal positions with the Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (Assistant Deputy Minister), Environment Canada (Deputy Minister), the International Joint Commission (Canadian Chairman) and the Privy Council Office (Intelligence and Security Coordinator). After "retirement", he spent eight years as chair the federal Environmental Assessment Panel on Nuclear Fuel Waste Management. He was honoured to receive the Order of Canada in 2000. Blair was grateful to have had a long, varied and satisfying career, for the opportunity to contribute to the life of Christ Church Cathedral and other voluntary work; and for good health which enabled him to enjoy, into his 'nineties, numerous outdoor activities, membership in the Rockcliffe Lawn Tennis Club, the Five Lakes Fishing Club, the Rideau Club Round Table and weekends at his "dacha" in Mulgrave-et-Derry.

A man of enduring modesty and unfailing courtesy, he earned the great respect of his colleagues and the deep affection of friends and family.

A funeral service will be held at Christ Church Cathedral, 420 Sparks Street, Ottawa on Sunday, November 17 at 4:00 p.m., followed by a reception in Cathedral Hall. No flowers by request. If desired, donations in Blair's name may be made to Trinity College, Toronto or Christ Church Cathedral, Ottawa, for restorations.

GRAHAM FARRELL SIRMAN BA, MBA, LLB, LLM October 11, 1963 November 8, 2019 Cherished husband, father, son, brother, nephew, cousin and uncle, Graham died unexpectedly and tragically while hiking to the family cottage with his inseparable companion, his Landseer Newfoundland dog, Murphy.

Graham will be forever cherished by his devoted wife Allison, his sons William and Thomas, his sisters Lindsay and Hilary (Haig), and his parents Carol and Bill. He was a dear brother-in-law of Jill and Steve Conway, Debbie and Al Garrison, Clint and Susan Bowles, and Becky and Pete Moslinger. He was a beloved nephew, cousin and uncle to all in his extended Bowles and Sirman families.

A graduate of Napanee District Secondary School, Queen's University, St. Mary's University, Western University and Osgoode Hall, Graham practiced law for three years in Toronto before opening his own litigation practice in Kingston, Ontario, in 2002.

He was an accomplished intercollegiate and junior hockey player and his passion for the sport is surpassed by few.

Graham loved every minute of his involvement variously as a player, coach, General Manager and scout. He was an ardent reader of newspapers and books, particularly history and sports.

His greatest passion, however, was his family. Graham supported, loved, and was fiercely protective of Allison, William and Thomas in all aspects of their lives. He was constantly in arenas, watching his sons play across North America and Europe. Graham was modest about his own considerable accomplishments, but revelled in celebrating Thomas and William's academic and athletic successes. He loved to spend hours talking with them to help map out their futures.

Graham truly valued his many friends. He was unwaveringly loyal and happily made himself available to friends and their families at a moments notice.

Graham's life revolved around his family and friends and his death leaves an enormous void in our lives.

A service to celebrate Graham's life will be held on Saturday, November 16, 2019 at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, (390 King Street West in Kingston) at 11:30 a.m., following the service a reception will be held in the lobby.

A contribution to the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society in Graham's name, by those who wish, would be greatly appreciated by the family.

Arrangements in the care of Wartman Funeral Home Kingston Chapel Online condolences and donations at wartmanfuneralhomes.com ROCHELLE (RUCHEL) SWAYE It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Rochelle (Ruchel) Swaye z"l, after a long, valiant battle with illness. Rochelle was 71 years old. Rochelle was loved by everyone who knew her.

She was the adored wife of 50 years to Gerald Swaye QC; beloved mother to Jason (Terry), Adam (Tanya), Marlyz and Jenna; Bubbie to Ryan and Erin; and loved by so many cousins, nieces and nephews, and friends.

She was predeceased by her brother, Harold Applebaum; her parents, Nissie and Thelma Applebaum; and her grandparents, Shima and Esther Boom.

Shiva will take place at the Swaye home, 19 Robinhood Drive, Dundas: Monday to Thursday 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. Evening services at the Shiva home, daily at 7:30pm.

WILLIAM JAMES (BILL) FAIRBURN September 24, 1934 November 13, 2016 It has been three years since we lost our adored husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. Our memories remain ever strong. Bill taught us the value of family, country, and community.

He taught us the joy in embracing every day. He lived with meaning, intent and purpose. His generosity of time and spirit knew no bounds.

He will be forever missed. We will remain forever grateful to have been touched by the power of his enduring love.

The Fairburn Family

Shopify: How high can Canada's latest tech darling fly?
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By DAVID BERMAN, DAVID MILSTEAD
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B6


People are going to spend hundreds of billions of dollars online. And Shopify Inc., with its wildly popular software designed to run e-commerce websites, is going to take a good cut of the pie.

The big question is just how big Ottawa-based Shopify's slice will be. It's a $45-billion question, actually - the company's stock market value. Born 15 years ago and launched on stock markets in 2015, Shopify's rocketing share price has propelled it from upstart to Canadian champion, and it is now country's most valuable technology company by far.

Every decade, it seems, Canada produces a tech star that bursts onto the global scene with a hot new business and a stock price that flies into the stratosphere. In the 1990s it was Nortel Networks Corp. with its fibre-optics networking operations, which grew to be a giant that, at its peak, accounted for more than one-third of the value of the TSE 300 index (now known as the S&P/TSX Composite).

In the 2000s, Research In Motion Ltd., since renamed BlackBerry Ltd., soared in value as consumers around the world flocked to its groundbreaking smartphones.

Canadian investors know all too well how Nortel and BlackBerry wound up: They crashed and burned as their competitors caught up to them, or their markets shifted too fast for them to adjust.

Now, Shopify is Canada's tech darling and its huge stock market value makes it the country's 15th-largest public company, ahead of Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. and energy giant Canadian Natural Resources Ltd.

Obviously, Shopify and its ambitious co-founder and CEO, Tobias Lutke, want to avoid the fate of Nortel and BlackBerry. But daunting competitive challenges loom - enough of them, it seems, to raise questions about just how much risk Shopify investors are taking.

Just about everyone agrees that Shopify is a great company with a solid strategy. The bulls on Shopify's shares - and there are many - see a company with a best-in-class product, happy customers and an almost limitless opportunity as online commerce grows and Shopify expands its offerings to retailers. "To be honest, they essentially have no competition," Gus Papageorgiou, an analyst at PI Financial Corp., said in an interview.

Yet even though Shopify's share price has declined by more than 25 per cent since its peak this past August, the stock remains very expensive. The company has never turned a profit, and isn't expected to in 2020, so there's no way to value Shopify on its earnings. And investors are paying more than $20 for every dollar of sales Shopify records - which is more than twice the price-to-sales multiple for many other well-known growing tech companies.

Some analysts look at that lofty valuation and wonder whether Shopify can grow as quickly or as large as the stock price suggests it must - particularly if the company can't win over big corporate customers that might be able to develop their own systems, or can't compete with social media platforms, such as Instagram or Pinterest, that are adding e-commerce functions for online retailers "Any sane person would say, 'Can this company really grow revenues that fast for that long?' Morningstar analyst Dan Romanoff said in an interview. "There's not a lot of companies that have that kind of track record, to say that there's a precedent out there for that."

The company was born in 2004 when Mr. Lutke launched a business selling snowboards online and found that software options were lacking. He built his own e-commerce software, which he licensed to other retailers, then established Shopify in 2006.

The platform was enthusiastically adopted by budding entrepreneurs and small businesses who lacked the technical skills to develop their own online selling systems.

Shopify now boasts more than one million merchants on its platform - a number that has increased by 30 per cent in just the last 12 months.

Collectively, these merchants sold more than US$15-billion worth of stuff in 40 countries through Shopify in the company's third quarter ended Sept. 30.

Many of these merchants are tiny. But some, such as the BBC, Gatorade, Gund and KKW Beauty, a cosmetics company launched by Kim Kardashian West, are well-known brands that are boosting Shopify's profile as the company expands globally and embraces different languages and currencies.

In its early years, Shopify simply sold monthly subscriptions for its software, collecting extra money for each transaction a user processed. But over time, company has added new services, such as payment-card processing, online postage sales, point-of-sale hardware for its customers to sell merchandise in stores and even short-term business loans.

Shopify has also started moving up the food chain from serving the smallest online businesses to considerably larger ones. The bigger retailers are customers of the more elaborate "Shopify Plus" platform. Many analysts believe that no other company currently offers this one-stop approach-- and the platform gets better as it gets bigger.

Shopify's basic subscription fees range from US$29 to US$299 a month, depending on the complexity of the business and the features needed.

The Shopify Plus platform can cost US$2,000 a month. Shopify calls the rest of the new offerings "merchant services."

More ways to collect money from its clients, plus hooking ever-bigger retailers to the Shopify system, have made for a sexy growth story, and investors have responded. As of Friday, Shopify's shares are up 17-fold since its May, 2015, IPO on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges.

The company joined the blue-chip S&P/TSX 60 earlier this year. At Shopify's Aug. 27 Canadiandollar high of $543.76 on the TSX, the company had a market capitalization that topped $60-billion.

"By any measure, it's ahead of the competition.

It is the platform of choice for entrepreneurs, small businesses and increasingly larger businesses to launch their e-commerce operations. And we have no issue with that," Chris Silvestre, an analyst at Veritas Investment Research, said in an interview.

In a recent research report, however, Mr. Silvestre questions whether people are overestimating Shopify's potential customer base, referred to in financial-speak as the "total addressable market."

In a recent investor presentation, Shopify says it regards that total market as "anyone who wants to make more money from their site than what they pay for it."

More specifically, the presentation has an image of inverted pyramid with a huge number of entrepreneurs at the wide base at the top, and a small number of the biggest brands near the point at the bottom.

In the middle, US$70-billion of merchandise sold each year by small and medium-sized businesses. "The way it's shaped, it gives you the impression that there's a much bigger market out there," Mr. Silvestre says. "So, it really does leave a lot to the imagination."

But Mr. Silvestre says investors shouldn't plan on Shopify powering the websites of the world's largest retailers. By and large, they have complex needs, the ability and resources to develop their own solutions and the desire to retain control over them. Mr. Silverstre estimates Shopify is used in less than 4 per cent of the websites of the top 500 U.S. e-commerce retailers.

Mr. Silvestre also says Shopify faces a challenge when its merchant customers choose to depart from their own websites and sell on other platforms, such such as Amazon or eBay. Social media

sites such as Instagram and Pinterest are also developing payment tools and systems that allow users to buy things without ever leaving the app.

Shopify has apps that allow its customers to sell on those sites, as well as their own websites. But the Amazons of the world can take a much larger share of a merchant's transaction costs than Shopify collects when a customer sticks to its own Shopify-powered website.

Mr. Silvestre cuts the total e-commerce pie in half by subtracting the biggest retailers, and cuts the remainder nearly in half once again when estimating the effect of alternative platforms. The result, he says, is a total addressable market of just one-quarter of e-commerce sales - not all of them, as he figures some of the most optimistic investors may assume.

"I get [that Shopify has] a whole bunch of really fast growing amazing companies, amazing brands, organizations that want to go direct to the consumer," said Mr. Silvestre. "But there is a hard limit on the size of the opportunity, and that's the size of the total e-commerce market. And if we just start making some deductions, it becomes pretty clear that there is a limit to this market. And it's probably less than what people expect, very likely to be smaller than people expect."

What does that limit mean for Shopify's share price? Mr. Silvestre's US$275 "fair value" estimate, published Oct. 15, is now slightly below Friday's New York Stock Exchange closing price of US$297.73.

Other analysts, such as Mr. Papageorgiou of PI Financial, have a more bullish view of Shopify's total addressable market. He said it is essentially immeasurable. It's nearly impossible to quantify the number of merchants worldwide likely to spring up and start selling their products online.

Any estimate must also take into account the growth of companies after they join Shopify's platform, because their swelling top lines mean more fees for Shopify.

Mr. Papageorgiou points to Allbirds Inc., a San Francisco-based shoemaker and retailer. The company likely began paying about US$360 a year for the Shopify platform, but it's now generating an estimated US$100-million in sales a year. (The privately-held company doesn't release financial figures.)

Allbirds pays Shopify 0.25 per cent of sales, Mr.

Papageorgiou says, which translates to US$250,000 a year. That doesn't include the fees when the company's customers use a credit card to make a payment on its website.

"It's a very, very big market," Mr. Papageorgiou said.

In an interview, Harley Finkelstein, Shopify's chief operating officer, said the company estimated the size of its potential market prior to its IPO in 2015 at about 10 million SMBs (small and medium sized businesses) in the company's core market, and 46 million worldwide. That's still a tantalizing 10- to 46-times the size of Shopify's current roster of merchants.

But Mr. Finkelstein says that the early estimates didn't include merchants who don't see themselves as SMBs, which suggests that Shopify's total addressable market could be far larger.

"I don't think that when Kylie started she called herself a retail SMB," Mr. Finkelstein said, referring to Kylie Jenner, the reality-TV star who launched Kylie Cosmetics on Shopify. According to Forbes, Ms. Jenner's business generated an estimated US$360-million in sales last year.

Mr. Finkelstein said that if you add up the revenue generated by Shopify's U.S. merchants on the platform, the combined theoretical entity would be the third-largest online retailer in the United States. That puts the company behind Amazon and eBay, but ahead of Walmart and Apple.

Size now allows Shopify to create its wide suite of offerings at a great price. "This is important because what it allows us to do fundamentally is go and negotiate on behalf of these merchants in a way they couldn't do for themselves," Mr. Finkelstein said.

One of Shopify's newest offerings is "fulfillment": A merchant sells something, but Shopify is in charge of pulling it from inventory, packaging it and shipping it to the buyer. Unlike online postal services or even point-of-sales systems, fulfillment can require immense cash spending on land, warehouses, forklifts and employees. There's also a company called Amazon.com Inc. that has spent billions of dollars to first offer two-day "Prime" shipping, then same-day service and then some deliveries in just hours.

Shopify said it would spend about US$1-billion launching its fulfillment services, then in September announced a US$450-million deal to buy 6 River Systems Inc., a robotics company that promises to boost efficiency in those services. Mr. Finkelstein said any fears that Shopify is going to spend wildly and try to take on giant Amazon - which he describes as a "partner" in e-commerce, not a competitor - are wrong.

Amazon owns its warehouses, while Shopify is minimizing the cash outlay by partnering with third-party companies, he says. And while Amazon is rolling out expensive same-day delivery, Shopify is happy to stick with two days, which it expects is more than enough for its merchants.

Same-day delivery, Mr. Finkelstein said, "is probably more important for Amazon products - for toilet paper or detergent or diapers. But for a beautiful pair of shoes or a cool bracelet or great T-shirt, or anything, for that matter that is sold on Shopify, we think two-day delivery is going to be absolutely sufficient - and will delight consumers."

For now, Shopify's top-line revenue suggests it has been making the right calls. The total in the third quarter increased 45 per cent, year-over-year, to US$391 million. Analysts expect the company is on track to surpass US$1.5-billion in sales for 2019, also up 45 per cent from 2018. That's meteoric growth from 2014, its final year as a private company, when it recorded US$105 million in sales.

But already, Shopify is revealing some growing pains that could challenge some of the more optimistic scenarios underpinning the stock. Growth in year-over-year merchant solutions revenue, while still impressive, has slowed to 50 per cent from 68 per cent in the third quarter of 2018, according to RBC Dominion Securities. Similarly, growth in subscription revenue has decelerated to 37 per cent from 46 per cent a year ago.

Profits are another question. Many investors seem to believe Shopify can keep up a blistering sales pace for some time, and they assume the company will turn those sales to profits. To date, Shopify has not produced positive net income and, on average, analysts do not expect it to next year.

Shopify is a heavy user of stock in its employeepay programs, having awarded more than US$100 million worth in 2018. It releases an "adjusted" profit figure that removes the cost of stock-based compensation - and therefore, shows occasional profitability.

Analysts aren't anticipating that Shopify will generate real profits any time soon. Goldman Sachs analyst Christopher Merwin, for example, expects that the company will continue to invest in growth initiatives such as its fulfillment network and international expansion.

For now, investors will have to make do with operating income, a hypothetical measure of profit from its existing operations that doesn't include expansion initiatives. Mr. Merwin forecasts operating income will rise to US$330.3-million in 2022, up from an expected US$37.4-million in 2019.

Shopify's current stock price values the entire company at 22 times its sales for the past 12 months, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. Among nine tech companies Veritas's Mr.

Silvestre assembled for comparison, none trade for more than 10 times sales. The median price-tosales ratio in the S&P/TSX Composite is less than three, according to S&P. (See chart.)

A gigantic run-up in Shopify's share price in early 2019 cooled some analysts' heels. Many made so-called "valuation calls" - in essence saying, "We love the company, but we don't love the stock at this price."

Todd Coupland, an analyst at CIBC World Markets, downgraded Shopify in June to a lukewarm "neutral" recommendation from "outperformer," arguing that the upside potential has been priced into the stock. He was one of four analysts who downgraded the shares to neutral from mid-May to late June, according to Bloomberg. Mr. Coupland reiterated this recommendation in late October, after Shopify reported its third-quarter financial results.

Ken Wong, an analyst with Guggenheim Securities Inc., wrote that after an "active week of investor dialogue" following his May downgrade, "we found that approximately 30 per cent of conversations were in the bull camp, 20 per cent questioned the multiple but see no definitive negative catalyst, another 20 per cent were clearly negative and 30 per cent that are watching events unfold on the sidelines, possibly looking for a better entry point."

The percentage of analysts who say Shopify is a buying opportunity has tumbled to 53 per cent, down from 68 per cent at the start of the year and 100 per cent three years ago, according to Bloomberg. Still, their average target price, a forecast for the next 12 months, is US$356.20, or nearly 20 per cent more than Friday's closing price.

The most cautious analysts say, however, that it's hard to see how Shopify, as successful as it has been, can keep this up.

Morningstar's Mr. Romanoff has modelled Shopify's cash flow over the next 15 years - a task, he acknowledges, would be easier with a more mature company. He says the fair value of the company's stock is just US$175, about US$100 below current prices.

The current share price, he argues, implies revenue growth of 25 to 30 per cent every year for the next 15 years. "I don't think they can grow that fast," he says. He says Shopify's annual revenue gain could slip to 23 per cent as soon as 2023. "But again, if you own the stock, or you want to buy, you obviously have to believe there's upside, and that's something that needs to happen to make the math work." Just how big is Shopify's potential market? Veritas Investment Research says Shopify won't get many customers from the 100 biggest U.S.

e-commerce retailers. As for small retailers, many use eBay, Amazon and other third-party marketplaces to sell goods. Shopify has apps that help merchants use those sites, but it collects much less in fees for those transactions. So after deducting those marketplaces from its calculation of Shopify's revenue opportunities, Veritas estimates the company may only be able to tap into about one-quarter of all online sales.

DARK SIDE OF THE BOOM
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An explosion of U.S. TV and filmmaking in Toronto is squeezing Canadian creators out of the picture, Simon Houpt writes
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By SIMON HOUPT
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R1


A cluster of black limousines gleamed in front of a sprawling warehouse near Toronto's Pearson Airport the other day, an incongruous vision of glitz along a dull industrial stretch of road.

Once upon a time, the low-slung building served as a primary distribution hub for the Canadian operation of Kraft Heinz, sending millions of tubs of peanut butter and KD mac & cheese out across the country. On this day, though, dignitaries nibbled on finger food crafted in a more refined key - braised beef short ribs with a maple-bourbon demi glaze; pan-seared cod with a Champagne yuzu sauce - while stars from the TV shows Star Trek: Discovery and In the Dark strolled a red carpet.

Bonnie Crombie, the mayor of Mississauga, stepped excitedly to the microphone and welcomed the guests to her burg on the western edge of Toronto, which she called Studio City North: "I like the sound of that!"

she beamed.

Crombie had reason to be enthusiastic. In less than 12 months, workers had retrofitted the old Kraft operation with 20,000 sheets of drywall, 21,000 soundinsulation panels and 42 kilometres of wiring, transforming it into CBS Stages Canada. The state-of-the-art TV and film facility, boasting six sound stages totalling 260,000 square feet, is the first dedicated production hub in this country for CBS Corp.

It is also the latest arrival in a galloping expansion of studio space under way in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA). By early next year, Mississauga alone will have 700,000 square feet of space across five studios. "These investments will put our city on the international map for film and television, and inject a renewal of excitement in our creative industries sector scheme," Crombie promised.

The unprecedented expansion is fuelled by an arms race among U.S.-based streaming services stockpiling an arsenal of programming to snag subscribers.

Deep-pocketed combatants making TV in the GTHA include Hulu (The Handmaid's Tale), CBS All Access (Star Trek: Discovery), Netflix (The Umbrella Academy, Titans) and Amazon (The Boys, The Expanse).

Employment in the sector is booming: Ontario Creates, a government agency which facilitates media production in the province, says the industry now supports approximately 37,000 fulltime jobs, up more than 15 per cent from 32,000 jobs in the summer of 2018. Vic Fedeli, Ontario's Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, declared that the CBS studio, which will employ about 300 local craftspeople when fully booked, demonstrated the province is "open for business."

But as foreign business floods in, Canadian creators - who already struggle to get their projects made and seen in a marketplace of slick Hollywood product - are being squeezed as never before. Local suppliers are tied up serving U.S. companies, spurring growing concerns about a branch-plant industry smothering local talent. And while more studios are being built, there is still more demand for space than there is supply, leaving local TV producers and filmmakers priced out of the market as they try to get Canadian stories in front of the cameras and out to audiences.

Even owning a studio doesn't necessarily help. In the spring of 2018, Bell Media, which owns the CTV and CTV2 broadcast networks as well as dozens of specialty channels, purchased a majority stake in Pinewood Toronto Studios, currently the largest studio complex in the country. But Randy Lennox, the president of Bell Media, says the company is shut out of Pinewood for the foreseeable future, because the studio was already booked up before the purchase with shows such as Star Trek: Discovery, which runs in Canada on Bell's newly rebranded CTV Sci-Fi (née Space) channel.

"We can't get in," Lennox told The Globe and Mail in a recent interview. "It's a squatter's rights situation. Star Trek: Discovery is a massive undertaking at Pinewood for us."

"It's great that the show keeps getting renewed," he added. Still, he had hoped to make Pinewood "a community offering," where both Bell Media and Canadian independent producers can make their own content. That will have to wait.

According to data provided by Ontario Creates, the increased production activity in the province is due almost entirely to what is known as foreign location and service (FLS) productions: shows that are shot here with Canadian crews and technicians, but are not considered to be Canadian content because Canadians do not occupy enough of the key creative positions, such as writer, director, producer or lead acting roles. The stories are almost never set in Canada.

Such foreign productions increased approximately 23 per cent over two years, jumping from $847-million of spending in Ontario in 2016 to $1.04-billion in 2018; domestic production, meanwhile, rose a mere $5-million over the same period, to $847-million. The foreign-domestic split has gone from 50-50 to 55-per-cent foreign versus 45per-cent domestic in just two years.

That mirrors a growing imbalance between foreign and domestic production that is even more pronounced across the country. A report issued last spring by the Canadian Media Producers Association indicated that foreign production in Canada had risen 26 per cent from 2017 to 2018, to approximately $4.8-billion, while domestic TV and film production had fallen approximately 9 per cent in the same period, down to $3-billion.

(That latter figure does not include in-house production of domestic broadcasters.)

The increase in foreign spending, and the frenzy for studios, crews, locations, and other support services, is pricing Canadian creators out of the better facilities - and even Toronto itself.

"It is a bit of a bummer, in terms of certain vendors that we're used to going to that we've created relationships with over the years suddenly being not available or able to help us out, because Netflix is in town shooting 15 things," says producer Lindsay Tapscott. Last year, she and her producing partner Katie Nolan opted to shoot the indie drama The Rest of Us in North Bay, lured there by the provincial government's Northern Ontario

Heritage Fund, which rebates 50 per cent of a production's local spending, up to a $500,000 payment.

In a sign of mounting concerns, last summer, the federal Department of Canadian Heritage initiated a study of the effect of foreign location and services production activity on the domestic production industry. The results are expected later this fall.

Toronto-based production manager Robbie David says the squeeze is hurting his ability to do business. "I'm turning down shows right now, because I'm not going to be able to get a studio," said David, whose credits include the Canadian TV series Mary Kills People and the feature American Woman, which premiered at last month's Toronto International Film Festival. "This has been a problem for the last three years, and it gets worse - not every year, it gets worse every few months."

David says the industry's top priority should be new studios.

"They're building them in Toronto. But you can't just concentrate on Toronto anymore, it has to be all over Ontario." That's because the cost of studio rentals is tied in large part to the value of the underlying real estate. With the cost of land in Toronto continuing to rise, other locales are jockeying, trying to offer themselves up as legitimate alternative production centres.

Lennox told The Globe that Bell Media's Canadian version of RuPaul's Drag Race will shoot in Hamilton when it begins production this month. "I have four shows [shooting] in Ontario, none of which are in Toronto, for the precise reason it's not affordable - commensurate to the level of production that I'm speaking of," he explained.

The province hopes conditions will improve over the next few years as another dozen or so production facilities come onstream, helping to double the studio space in Ontario from 2.3 million square feet last year to as much as 4.6 million by 2022.

(Pinewood is in the middle of adding 200,000 square feet to its main campus in Toronto's Port Lands area.) Still, there is no guarantee foreign demand won't soak up all of the extra supply.

And even as construction continues, Canadian productions sometimes have to settle for the crumbs. Justin Cutler, the Ontario Film Commissioner with Ontario Creates, acknowledged that well-financed U.S. companies have tied up some of the highest quality studio space: Netflix, for example, has leased eight sound stages in two downtown Toronto facilities, totalling about 250,000 square feet.

"Ontario Creates has worked hard with some of the companies that have taken long-term leases, to understand when those stages are going dark [temporarily]," Cutler explained. "We've worked very closely with Netflix over the last month to get that stage availability back into the hands of domestic producers."

Looking for a longer-term solution, David joined a handful of industry players to form Aeon Studio Group, which last June announced a memorandum of understanding with the city of Hamilton to build a massive multiuse development on what are known as the Barton-Tiffany Lands. The city-owned site in the West Harbour area has a checkered history that includes heavy industry that likely left the land contaminated, requiring remediation. In 2010, the city demolished a handful of buildings there in hopes of constructing a new stadium for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats CFL team. But that wound up being built elsewhere, and the site has now sat desolate for almost a decade.

If the city and Aeon can agree on terms of a land purchase, the company hopes to build up to 500,000 square feet of studio space in what it is calling the Hamilton Studio District, a development that would include housing, retail and offices, and that councillors hope would help spur the city's creative renaissance. Aeon intends to open its first studio space, converting an existing building for 150,000 square feet, by next summer. By the time the development is complete - in anywhere from five to 20 years - Aeon expects it will support about 1,000 direct and spin-off jobs.

"We believe the quality of the facility we plan to build will make this attractive for productions, even if they have to spend an extra 20 minutes driving [from Toronto]," said Jeff Anders, one of the partners of Aeon.

After all, he explains, while studios are essentially commodities - landlords build and then rent out large, empty shells on a series of short-term leases - the quality of spaces can differ enormously. They depend on such quotidian factors as ceiling height (which can proscribe lighting possibilities and the size of sets) and the spacing of structural pillars: a restriction that can frustrate production designers.

"When we analyze the full stock of space [in Ontario], we think that half of the capacity is forgettable. It's either too lowceilinged, there are pillars throughout, sound attenuation isn't there, vibration control isn't there," he explains. "As a province with about one per cent of the global [TV and film production] market, I'm saying we could have and should have more."

He admits there may be some insurmountable hurdles, including the cost and logistics of site remediation. "There are still a lot of unknowns on the financial side of things. We believe this is a viable project. But it remains to be seen."

Back in Mississauga, Armando Nunez, the president and chief executive of CBS Global Distribution Group, played down concerns that Canadians might have about the explosion of American content swamping Canadian creators and their stories. "Hasn't that ship sailed?" he asked rhetorically, in an interview with The Globe. "I mean, through technology, you can be swamped by any content from any place in the world."

"We've always been sensitive to the idiosyncrasies of Canada as a market, and Canadian cultural sensitivities," he added.

"That is something over the years we've had conversations with our broadcast partners about.

But at the end of the day, the fact is that Canada has warmly and enthusiastically embraced American content - irrespective of where it gets made."

Fedeli, the Ontario minister and MPP for the riding of Nipissing, in Northern Ontario, says it doesn't bother him if this country's creators have to go outside of the major centres to make Canadian stories. He sees Toronto as a place where Canadians get trained on foreign productions and then work on smaller, domestic stories in places such as Parry Sound or his hometown of North Bay. "For Toronto, you really need this big horsepower of CBS," he said, during an interview with The Globe on the Chicago-set CBS soundstage of In the Dark.

Still, he added, "In the North, from our perspective, we really like to see the more home-grown productions." He pulled out his phone and flipped through photos of the new outdoor set in the municipality of Powassan of When Hope Calls, a spin-off of the Hallmark Channel series When Calls the Heart, which is being made for Hallmark's streaming service. "They've built an entire town!" he marvelled.

Certainly, places such as Powassan and Hamilton seem eager for the attention and business, prompting some Canadian creators to adapt their stories to the new locales. Filmmaker Atom Egoyan set his new film in Hamilton in part because he says he believed it would be logistically easier than if it were to take place in Toronto. Guest of Honour, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival last month, centres on a restaurant inspector who sometimes creates false health infractions in order to exert leverage over restaurateurs.

"On a very practical level, we needed access to a lot of restaurants, and in Toronto, a lot of those restaurants would not want to be identified with a food inspector who's coming in and finding faults: things that are not up to code," Egoyan told The Globe.

In Hamilton, however, "there was an openness. People were just so excited we were shooting there, so they weren't so stuck up on that. The places we went to in Hamilton were able to see: It's a story. They were just very open to us being there."

Associated Graphic

ILLUSTRATION BY DREW SHANON

CBS Stages Canada, a state-of-the-art TV and film facility in Mississauga, is the first dedicated production hub in Canada for CBS Corp., part of an unprecedented expansion in studio space in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

GEORGE PIMENTEL

CBS's In the Dark is one of many TV series being filmed in Toronto - sometimes at the expense of local content creators.

Universal health care on trial: What you need to know about a historic Charter challenge in B.C.
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For a decade, surgeon Brian Day has been fighting to undo laws barring patients from paying for medical care at private clinics like his. Here's a primer on how the case came to be, and how its outcome could affect you
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By KELLY GRANT
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A8


A Charter challenge to the foundations of Canada's health-care system is finally scheduled to begin hearing closing arguments on Monday, 10 years after the pugnacious private-medicine advocate Brian Day asked the courts to undo a law that effectively bars patients from paying for necessary medical care.

At stake in the unusually long British Columbia trial - which has already consumed 179 days of court time over nearly three years - is nothing less than the survival of medicare's central organizing principle that hospital and physician care should be doled out first to those who need it most, not to those who can pay the most.

"It absolutely could set a precedent for the rest of Canada," said Rupinder Brar, a Vancouver addictions-medicine physician and member of the board of Canadian Doctors for Medicare, an intervening party in the case. "I think all Canadians should be very concerned because it's in the very fabric of who we are as a nation that we provide care for one another when we need it."

Dr. Day argues there is another, equally important principle at play: the Charter-protected right to life, liberty and personal security, which he argues is violated by interlocking legal provisions that effectively prohibit patients from buying private insurance or paying out of pocket to relieve their suffering when the public system can't help them in a timely way.

In an interview, the 72-year-old orthopedic surgeon said he has never been interested in dismantling Canada's public health-care system.

The marathon legal battle, he said, has always been about adding more private options to the public system, not unlike many European countries that provide faster access and spend less per capita on health care than Canada.

That position has made the Liverpool-born chief executive officer and medical director of the private Cambie Surgery Centre in Vancouver something of a bête noire to medicare's defenders and their political allies.

Two political parties under three premiers in B.C. have fought Dr. Day's claim; the federal government joined the case as an intervenor after Justin Trudeau's Liberals won the 2015 election.

"The only good thing about the trial process," Dr. Day said, "has been that it has moved it out of the realm of politicians. It's now in the hands of a judge. And that's that."

The question soon to be in the hands of B.C. Supreme Court Justice John Steeves is whether a handful of provisions in B.C.'s Medicare Protection Act violate Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The B.C. law doesn't explicitly prohibit well-off patients from buying their way to the front of the queue. Rather, it dampens the market for private care by prohibiting physicians from "enrolling" to work in the public and private systems at the same time; by forbidding enrolled doctors from charging patients for publicly covered services; and by barring the sale of private insurance for medically necessary hospital and doctor care. (Private insurance is, of course, widely available for care not covered by Canada's "universal" system, which does not include prescription drugs, most dental care, home care and other services provided outside hospitals and physicians' offices.)

For more than two decades, the B.C. government looked the other way while Dr. Day's Cambie Surgery Centre, which opened in 1996, and other private surgical clinics bucked the law. The clinics did a brisk - and perfectly legal - business operating on patients exempt from the law, mainly injured workers whose care was paid for by the workers' compensation system. But the private clinics also treated regular patients who paid out of pocket for swifter diagnostic testing, specialists' assessments and surgeries, violating a law that Gordon Campbell, B.C.'s Liberal premier from 2001 and 2011, said in an affidavit his government chose not to enforce - just like its NDP predecessors.

"Allowing British Columbians to obtain private medically necessary services would not result in any harm to either the accessibility or viability of the public health-care system, as demonstrated by the experience over the past 20 years in British Columbia, when the prohibitions on access to diagnostic and surgical services were not enforced," Dr. Day's lawyers say in their final arguments, already submitted in writing. "Further, the government cannot justify imposing severe mental and physical harm on some residents on the basis of an ideological commitment to perfect equality in access to treatment, which is neither created by the legislation in question nor obtained in practice."

Although Cambie Surgeries Corp., along with a sister clinic and four patients, are technically the plaintiffs in the case, Dr. Day is undoubtedly its face.

The B.C. government, in its written closing arguments, said the history of the proceedings - which include an unsuccessful campaign by Dr. Day to block a provincial audit of his clinics - make it apparent that "the plaintiffs do not conceive of this as an actual bona fide constitutional challenge, but rather as a form of political theatre, and an attempt to force change on the health-care system for the financial benefit of the corporate plaintiffs."

That view is shared by Canadian Doctors for Medicare, the BC Health Coalition and a group of patients backed by the British Columbia Nurses' Union (BCNU), all of which are intervenors in the case. The BCNU set the stage for the case more than 15 years ago when the union agitated for the government to enforce the law against private clinics charging patients out of pocket for medically necessary care. Contrary to Dr. Day's view that private clinics act as a release valve for an overburdened public system, BCNU president Christine Sorensen fears that, if Dr. Day triumphs, public wait times will get worse, with private clinics cherry-picking uncomplicated patients and luring away health-care workers.

"And at the end of the day," Ms.

Sorensen said, "the physicians and nurses and other health-care professionals who work in these facilities can't be in two places at one time."

The BC Health Coalition, Canadian Doctors for Medicare and the patients and doctors who intervened with them, described in their written closing arguments how they believe shortages of anesthesiologists, nurses and doctors contributed to waiting lists in the public system. One doctor who testified in the case made $965,826 in 2016-17 working for Cambie and the Specialist Referral Clinic, another plaintiff in the case - about four times as much as what he usually earned in public billings.

The question of how private, paid-for options affect waiting lists is one of many that have been hashed out as more than 100 witnesses, including Dr. Day and patients on both sides of the case, testified in Justice Steeves's courtroom.

Exactly how much public money has been spent fighting the case, the B.C. government refuses to say.

The Canadian Constitution Foundation, a legal charity that describes itself as a defender of constitutional liberties, filed an access-to-information request to find out how much the provincial government had spent fighting the case from 2009 to 2017.

When the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia ruled the information should be released, the NDP government appealed to the B.C. Supreme Court and won, meaning the figure will stay secret. The Canadian Constitution Foundation has raised more than $5-million for Dr. Day's side of the case since 2011, said Joanna Baron, the foundation's executive director. She estimated nearly 200 people have contributed, some of them small donors who give $50 a month, others high-net-worth individuals who've given large sums to the cause.

One of those high-net-worth supporters is Anthony Fell, a former chairman of RBC Capital Markets who helped organize a fundraising lunch for the case at the Toronto Club last month.

Dr. Day and the plaintiffs' lawyer, Peter Gall, flew in to address the Oct. 8 gathering, which included co-host Prem Watsa, the billionaire CEO of Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd., and former B.C.

premier Mr. Campbell, among others.

"Our system is high-cost and mediocre at best," Mr. Fell said during an interview, after retrieving a binder about Dr. Day's case from among the tidy rows in a glass case in his office at Toronto's Royal Bank Plaza. "The population is aging and the government can't afford to keep up. We see the major hospitals across this country - including on [Toronto's] University Avenue - doing what they call hallway medicine or hallway treatment. And that's not good enough."

It's true that Canada spent more on health care per person ($6,448) and as a percentage of GDP (10.7 per cent) in 2018 than the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development average ($5,175 a person and 8.8 per cent of GDP) and that Canada is often ranked poorly on wait times and access to physicians in comparative international research. However, there are deep divisions about whether Dr. Day's prescription for more privately paid-for care would cure would ails the system.

Debbie Waitkus waited 27 months for a date for spinal surgery for her son, Walid Khalfallah, at BC Children's Hospital, before she gave up and took the teenager to the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Spokane, Wash. He suffered a stroke on the operating table in 2012 and wound up paralyzed from the belly button down, a heart-breaking outcome his mother attributes, in part, to how severely her son's spine deteriorated while he languished in a Canadian queue.

Mariël Schooff, meanwhile, was told that she could wait as long as five years in British Columbia's public system for an endoscopic surgery to relieve the chronic sinus infections that had left her in excruciating pain. Fearing she couldn't wait that long, Ms. Schooff borrowed money against her home to pay $6,125.75 to have the procedure performed in a private clinic in 2002 (not Cambie) by the same doctor who would have, eventually, operated on her for free at a public hospital.

Although Ms. Waitkus and Ms.

Schooff both faced long waits in the public health-care system, they wound up testifying on opposite sides of the case. Dr. Day invited Ms. Waitkus to become one of the plaintiffs in the case, while the BCNU recruited Ms. Schooff, now 73, to become a patient intervenor. She testified that her sinus surgeon shouldn't have asked her to pay out of pocket for faster access at his private clinic.

For Ms. Waitkus, a community nurse in Kelowna, the case is not something she dwells on daily as she cares for her son, who is now 23 and attending a college program for adults with special needs.

Testifying on Oct. 4, 2016, she sobbed as she described the panicked months she spent begging anyone who would listen to schedule a surgery to correct her son's kyphosis, a dramatic forward bend in his spine.

Ms. Waitkus is deeply upset at those who suggest that Dr. Day's case could wind up undermining the public health-care system.

She said in an interview that she only wants more options for patients like her son. "We do have a strong public health-care system right now, we really do," she said.

"But waiting has become part of our health-care system." For his part, Dr. Day said he wishes he had never started Cambie or his long war with the B.C.

government. The experience has contributed to turning all six of his children, who range in age from 20 to 42, off careers in medicine. Two of three of his younger children would like to be lawyers, he said, laughing.

"I would have been personally much better off, both financially and familywise, if I'd never gotten into this," he said. "But now that we've come this far, we're not going to quit."

However Justice Steeves rules, the case is expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Associated Graphic

Dr. Brian Day holds a sign outside an under-construction Cambie Surgery Centre in 1995. The B.C. government of the day refused to allow British Columbians to purchase services there, so Dr. Day and others at the clinic targeted foreigners or those from out-of-province. But the clinic was still able to treat British Columbia residents for years.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Dr. Day, seen in 2016, argues that the Charter-protected right to life, liberty and personal security is violated by legal provisions that effectively prohibit patients from buying private insurance or paying out of pocket when the public system can't help them in a timely way.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Walid Khalfallah greets his mother, Debbie Waitkus, after a cycle ride in Kelowna. Mr. Khalfallah waited 27 months for a spinal surgery date before going to the U.S. for private care. Ms. Waitkus says patients need more options: 'We do have a strong public health-care system ... but waiting has become part of our health-care system.'

LUCAS OLENIUK/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Dr. Rupinder Brar is on the board of Canadian Doctors for Medicare, an intervening party in the case between Dr. Day and the B.C. government. 'I think all Canadians should be very concerned because it's in the very fabric of who we are as a nation that we provide care for one another when we need it,' Dr. Brar says.

RAFAL GERSZAK/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Mr. Khalfallah gets around Kelowna on a hand-powered cycle. He suffered a stroke on the operating table in 2012 and wound up paralyzed from the navel down, an outcome his mother attributes, in part, to how severely his spine deteriorated while he languished in a Canadian queue.

LUCAS OLENIUK/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Louisiana's sinking feeling: As coastline vanishes, locals scramble to save what they can
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At the end of the most commercially important freshwater highway in the U.S., the Mississippi River, thousands of square kilometres have been lost to the ocean. Engineering a solution will be costly - and it was human interference that caused the problem to begin with
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By LEYLAND CECCO
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Special to The Globe and Mail
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Thursday, November 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A10


Ryan Lambert steers his aluminum skiff through the narrow channels of Louisiana's salt marshes at the edge of the Gulf of Mexico. His huntingdog,Logan,peersoverthesidefor birds, hidden among patches of roseau cane and windswept marsh grasses. Over more than four decades, Mr. Lambert has hunted and fished the waters. But the rapid changes to the landscape have left him deeply troubled as he scans the wetlands.

"We've already lost an area greater than theGrandCanyon,"saidMr.Lambert,who runs a fishing lodge in the town of Buras.

In May, the Mississippi River and its tributaries were flooded across its vast floodplain, which covers more than a million square kilometres. Towns and farmland far upstream were swamped, costing farmers billions of dollars and keeping residents on edge.

While land loss and flooding are distinct crises, they are nonetheless linked to asingleandprofoundlyimportantnatural resource: the mighty Mississippi River.

This heavily engineered freshwater highway, which generates billions in economic value, has increasingly punished many of the communities that rely on its waters.

Attempts to control the river's natural flood cycles have had short-term benefits, but the long-term prospects are bleak for those along its lower banks, and made bleaker by the new challenges wrought by climate change. It's unclear how much of the surrounding land can be saved, but, as relocation efforts get under way, the scenario serves as a cautionary tale about how much - or how little - we should tinker with nature. Other communities may yetlearnfromthemistakesmadewiththe Mississippi.

For thousands of years, the waters of the river have flowed unimpeded from evergreen forests in Minnesota, along the agriculturally rich midwest states and into thesouth,wheretheypassthroughstands of cypress trees draped with wispy Spanish moss, eventually emptying into the Gulf of Mexico.

Because of its slow and gently meandering route, it has become the most commercially important body of water in the United States. Each year, 175 million tons of goods move along its banks. By some estimates, the shipping traffic is worth in excess of US$500-billion. Farmers use it to get grains to China; oil and gas companies use it as a simple route for moving crude to global markets.

To ensure the orderly movement of goods, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spent decades building a sprawling system of infrastructure along the Mississippi. The upper sections of the river and its two major tributaries are constrained through a series of locks and dams maintained by the Corps to ensure the river remains navigable.

On the lower portions, from Illinois to Louisiana, the river is so large that no dams are needed.

All of the river, including its southern section, is laced with dikes, to help direct the channel, and earthen levees, to keep the river from pouring out onto the surrounding land.

But flooding, for all of its destruction, has an important role. Large rivers naturally carry millions of tons of sediment and are responsible for creating thousands of square kilometres of farmable land when the floodwaters recede. The same cities that are protected by levees - New Orleans and Baton Rouge, along with the hundreds of towns and villages in the Mississippi Delta - exist because of countless sediment layers deposited by the river over thousands of years.

The fertile sediment of Southern Louisiana,likeanydeltaregion,hasatendency to sink as it compacts, requiring constant replenishment to remain above the creeping Gulf of Mexico.

But the levees - the engineering solution meant to prevent the river's natural nst flood cycles - stop the Mississippi's floodwaters from rebuilding land. As the Traght ically Hip sang three decades ago, New Orleans is sinking.

As almost a direct result of these earthen mounds GY, tracing the river, more than 5,000 square kilometres of coastline in Louisiana - which contains nearly half of America's coastal wetlands - have been lost over the past 80 years. Areas where cows grazed only a decade ago are now beneath the ocean, Mr. Lambert said. "I've watched all the land around here completely disappear."

After tracking the damage done in 2019, a handful of water experts agree that the Mississippi is growing larger and stronger, and it is only a matter of time before a large, cataclysmic disaster strikes.

In mid-May, the Louisiana government announced ambitious plans to help move residents away from "high-risk" areas, an admission implied among the 1,500 pages of the government report that the situation is worsening.

"We have to be realistic about the current and future effects of coastal land loss and plan today to develop Louisiana's next generation of communities," Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards said in a statement after the release of the report.

Already, relocation efforts have begun.

TheLouisianagovernmentwillspendmillions to move the Indigenous community of Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw near New Orleans, whose territory on the Isle de Jean Charles has vanished by 98 per cent since 1955 because of land loss.

And on a smaller scale, residents of Pecan Acres, a neighbourhood in Baton Rouge, are set to move to higher ground by 2021 - the result of a push to remove houses from "Flood City."

With only levees to protect it, Mr. Lambert's town of Buras, an outpost south of New Orleans, is in one of the highest-risk areas in the state.

AfterthedevastationwroughtbyHurricane Katrina, and a recognition that the Gulf will continue to approach the land unabated, most of the residents have already left.

"What's the use of saving something when no one's here?" Mr. Lambert said.

The state has allocated US$50-billion to fight coastal erosion, and already, a number of solutions are on the table. While experts agree that no single plan will save thecoastline,anumberofproposalstaken together could have a substantive impact.

Some plans include developing cuttingedge - but costly - machinery to pump sediment from the river to areas where it is needed most, and creating humanmade islands to keep the ocean water at bay.

Otherresidents-includingMr.Lambert - advocate breaking open sections of the levees to divert river water back into areas that have been overtaken by salt water.

There's evidence that this approach can work: When Hurricane Camille broke through levees in 1969, one of those gaps wasleftopen,allowingtherivertoresume the flows that had for years been halted.

Over decades, the sediment-laden waters quickly rebuilt the archipelagos of vegetation, luring back wildlife that had long ago fled.

But Mr. Lambert, who has the ear of influential politicians in state government from his years of lobbying as a business owner, faces stiff opposition from oyster farmers, many of whom eke out meagre incomes from their work. They would face financial ruin if Mr. Lambert had his way - with the freshwater from the river flooding, and subsequently destroying, their oyster farms.

Anddespitetheoptimismamongthose advocating for the leash around the river tobeloosened,thecurrentrealityrequires it be controlled as much as possible.

In late spring, a deluge of melted snow and heavy rains breached levees, inundatedmillionsofhectaresoffarmlandand flooded multiple towns. In Cairo, Ill., just south of St. Louis, the river remained in a flood stage for more than 150 days in a row.

Julywasnobetter,withahurricanebarrellingdownonNewOrleansandtheriver reaching dangerously high levels. Without levees, storm surges and widespread flooding would devastate the city, which sits below the river. A full-on disaster was avoided, largely the result of favourable weather patterns. But many believe it is only a matter of time.

Yi Jun Xu, a professor of hydrology at Louisiana State University, has spent years scouring the river, studiously examining sediment buildup in different sections of the Mississippi.

With all its dams, he says, the river is like a pipe growing increasingly clogged at a rate faster than it could ever be cleared.

At the same time, Mr. Xu and his colleagueshavewatchedwithnervousnessas the river continues to carry more and more water, a combination of runoff from farms upriver, increased precipitation and increased sedimentation. Their current prediction: The Mississippi River's rate of discharge - the amount of water flowing along its banks - could increase by as much as 60 per cent by the end of the century.

"I can't even imagine what that would mean," he said, after spending an August morning collecting sediment samples in the field. "This makes me really, really concerned."

Various scenarios he's mapped out from his research, including the buildup of sediment causing the Mississippi to shift course and join a neighbouring river, the Atchafalaya, have a doomsday feel to them and their implications - the unabated encroachment of salt water and larger floods - are all catastrophic.

And the billions that will be spent on trying to save land, or even rebuild it, is "money thrown down a deep hole," Mr.

Xu said. Even if there were a silver bullet, he says, competing interests - energy companies, political parties, fisherman and residents - make decisive action impossible.

"This is a fight against nature," he said.

"And it's really hard to fight against nature."

For government officials - and those who remain in communities along the river - a difficult, if not impossible, dilemma lingers: maintain levees that stop floods,ortakethemdowntoallowtheriver to rebuild the quickly disappearing land?

The bitter irony threading the twin crises - of land loss and flooding - is the fact that the genesis of problems are human interference in the river. By endeavouring to tame the waterway, the Corps of Engineers have inadvertently created a slew of new problems.

"As our engineering and technologies improved over time, I think we've come to believe that we don't exist within nature.

Instead, we feel that, in many cases, we exist above nature," said Matti Siemiatycki, director of the University of Toronto's school of cities.

As unsalvageable as the situation in Louisiana looks, it nonetheless provides a usefulsetofinstructionsforotherregions, as governments worldwide look to adapt to increasingly erratic natural resources pushed to the brink by climate change.

"Climate change and the extremes and thespeedatwhichtheseeventsnowcome on are really challenging our infrastructureandourabilitytoengineersolutions," Mr. Siemiatycki said.

In communities along the banks of the Mississippi, cities have begun to rethink their relationship to the river.

In Davenport, Iowa, officials have removed flood walls and levees, instead letting the river encroach further into the city. Any new construction has to be high elevation, letting the river run its course with reduced risk of flood damage.

Even in Canada, communities are revisiting their own natural resources.

The Toronto Region and Conservation Authority has ambitious plans to bring the Don River back to its more natural state, before it was contorted by city planners, in a billion-dollar project that will minimize flood risk for nearly 240 hectares of land at the mouth of the river.

In Quebec, where record floods devastated numerous communities this spring, new provincial rules give affected homeowners $100,000 as compensation for a damaged house - or $200,000 if they choose to move away from the river.

With a forced rethinking of how humans interact with natural resources, a much more holistic approach with neighbouring waterways can be attained, Mr.

Siemiatycki said.

Whileengineeringwillcontinuetohave akeyroleinfutureplanning,plannerswill need to think twice. Fights against nature aren't winnable; the only question is how - and when - to finally co-operate.

The author's reporting was made possible partly through a fellowship from the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources.

Special to The Globe and Mail

SLIPPING AWAY

For decades, the coastline of Louisiana has slipped below the Gulf of Mexico. While the land loss is a combination of natural factors, including the subsidence of delta regions, both human interference in the river, as well as rising sea levels, have exacerbated the problem. Since the 1930s, Louisiana has lost nearly 5,000 square kilometres of land, through a combination of natural factors and human interference. If no action is taken, an estimated 10,300 sq. km. of coastline could be lost by 2050.

Associated Graphic

*2015 Rand Corp. analysis is based on model results for land loss from four future without-action projections developed for the 2012 Coastal Master Plan using 2010 as the base year

Ryan Lambert surveys new marsh growth with his dog, Logan. Mr. Lambert runs a fishing lodge in the town of Buras, La., an outpost south of New Orleans that is in one of the highest-risk areas in the state.

In a natural flood cycle, sediment helps to replace land lost to subsidence and sea-level rise. But the levees designed to control floods of the Mississippi River also prevent the land from being rebuilt. Here, sediment is seen spilling from a broken river barrier.

PHOTOS BY LEYLAND CECCO/ THE GLOBE AND MAIL

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spent decades on large and expensive infrastructure projects that sought to control the flow of the Mississippi, a crucial trade route. Ironically, the very infrastructure meant to prevent the river's natural flood cycles has played a key role in curbing the rebuilding of land.

Near New Orleans, a row of fishing cabins lies near quickly disappearing land. Some advocates have suggested breaking open sections of the levees to divert river water back to areas that need the sediment. But without levees, storm surges and widespread flooding would devastate cities such as New Orleans.

The extent of flooding is seen at a house near Vicksburg, Miss. Several water experts agree that the Mississippi River is growing larger and stronger, and it is only a matter of time before a large, cataclysmic disaster strikes.

Louisiana State University hydrology professor Yi Jun Xu says the billions that will be spent trying to save land, or even rebuild it, is 'money thrown down a deep hole,' and that even if there were a solution, competing interests would make decisive action impossible.

Have military medics gotten their due?
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Discuss
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Saturday, November 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O5


Ted Barris is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster and author whose books include Dam Busters: Canadian Airmen and the Secret Raid Against Nazi Germany and, most recently, Rush to Danger: Medics in the Line of Fire.

Kevin Patterson is a specialist in internal medicine and author whose books include News from the Red Desert and Outside the Wire: The War in Afghanistan in the Words of Its Participants.

They held their discussion over e-mail in October and November.

TED BARRIS: In the course of writing Rush to Danger, I reflected on the media and popculture mythology to which I was exposed as an adolescent in the 1950s and 60s. I grew up watching war-movie classics and, as a university student, watched the sitcom M*A*S*H, about medical teams in the Korean War. But I've always found myself driven to read more, dig deeper, search further for the real figures that might have motivated the creators to build such iconic wartime characters. And they're there. As an example, I was struck by the doctor Major Clipton, played by James Donald, in The Bridge on the River Kwai. In the movie, Clipton does his best to keep malnourished, disease-ridden and injured POWs alive, while Colonel Nicholson, played by Alec Guinness, seems bent on building the Japanese commandant's railway bridge, no matter how many of his fellow POWs it takes. In fact, the real doctor saving lives in the face of the Japanese using Allied prisoners as forced labour on the Siam-to-Burma railway was a Canadian: Dr. Jacob Markowitz. And Dr. Markowitz's experimental medicine - using exclusively makeshift utensils and jungle remedies - ends up being even more fantastic than any Hollywood screenwriter's imagination.

He performed 3,800 transfusions, 7,000 procedures and probably saved more than 5,000 men from certain death during the railway's murderous construction in the Second World War.

Truth is stranger than fiction.

KEVIN PATTERSON: I agree, it is surprising how rarely military medics have been depicted in detail in literature and in film. In the 18 years of war that have followed 9/11, we have seen many treatments of snipers, for instance - American Sniper was the highest grossing film in 2014 [in the United States].

But that role - killing from a distance - is so much less heroic. Medics are more exposed to danger, and their role, treating both friendly and injured combatants, is more complicated and nuanced. Is it because filmmakers and writers are preoccupied with the narrative power of death-dealing?

A close examination of the medic's role will necessarily depict the horror of war, and perhaps filmmakers are uncomfortable with that. But one would think that less bellicose artists would find this a natural and fascinating topic.

U.S. Third Army fighting under similarly bitter conditions in the Battle of the Bulge, as the Allies pushed the Germans back through the Ardennes and past the former Siegfried Line inside Germany. The episode accurately showed actor Shane Taylor (as medic Roe) nearly freezing to death, with no winter clothing or lined boots for himself or his fellow medics, and worse, meagre medical supplies for his wounded - scrounging for dressing packs, scissors, drugs and even keeping syrettes of morphine from freezing by wedging them in his armpits. More than any other depiction of army medics, I related to that one. It was my father's story in frigid technicolour, dealing with what he called "mass cals" (massive casualties) and little to treat them with but common-sense medicine.

PATTERSON: I think you're on to something important when you emphasize how Band of Brothers and some other depictions forefront the essential and defining aspect of war - suffering. The cinematography in the opening minutes of Saving Private Ryan - also made before 9/11 - shocked viewers with its muted colours and its frank unsparing examination of agony. Giovanni Ribisi's character, medic Wade, was one of that film's principal characters. Medics are the first and most intimate observers of the worst thing humans do to one another, and any narrative lens that is interested in the horror of war will tend to dwell on their point of view. Other films that gave prominent roles to medics included 2001's Black Hawk Down and We Were Soldiers, which was released in 2002, but written before 9/11.

It seems to me that depictions of war made after 9/11, especially in the first years of the war, were more likely to be drawn to ideas of righteous revenge. Here, we've mostly been discussing films, though. Are there novels and non-fiction works you can recommend to readers interested in the complex role of military medics? What secondary sources moved you, as you were preparing to write your book?

BARRIS: Probably because military medicine experienced such radical change, but also because medics, nurses and others wrote down what they saw on or near battlefields so vividly at Bull Run, Fredericksburg and Gettysburg, journals from the U.S. Civil War proved among the most striking to me.

Once read, I can't ever erase such views of carnage as that of former journalist, and later army commander, Carl Schurz. He noted in his Reminiscences (1863) "stretchers coming in dreadful procession" and surgeons with rolled up sleeves, bloodstained aprons and "knives not seldom held between their teeth" and the "beseeching eyes of the dying boy who recognized me, says with broken voice, 'Oh, General! Can you not do something for me?' And I can do nothing but stroke his hands and utter some words of courage and hope, which I do not believe myself." But on the other hand I was attracted to the memoirs of Jonathan Letterman, the Pennsylvania doctor-turned-medical-officer who drags the army brass kicking and screaming into officially accepting field ambulances, real surgeons (not quacks), hygiene; and behind the lines, hospitals with stewards, nurses and cooks to attend the wounded.

Some called him a "medical dictator" for his unflinching directives to Union Army strategists who demanded ammo over ambulances, but as the Army of the Potomac's chief medical officer, Letterman is credited with changing "a vast sea of misery" into medical treatment of wounded "at least equal to the best of the fighting men in gallantry." His impact on military medicine was the 19th-century equivalent of penicillin, or the Black Hawk medivac helicopter in Iraq and Afghanistan.

PATTERSON: Your mention of helicopter evacuation for combat casualties is interesting. This has made a dramatic difference in survival rates in the combat injured. This began in Vietnam, but the technique was more fully developed in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Medics played a very important role, too, in the recent improvements in outcomes by providing early stabilization and resuscitation, including even surgical procedures on the battlefield such as chest tube placement and tracheostomies prior to evacuation. I saw this done regularly in Afghanistan, but I've never seen such techniques delegated to nonphysicians in the civilian sphere. The stereotype of military culture is that it is intensely hierarchical and conservative, but in this instance it seems less so than civilian medical culture, where physicians keep these skill sets largely to themselves. More broadly, the position of the medic/medical assistant/corpsman doesn't really have an analogue at all in civilian life. Physician assistants and EMTs in civilian life do not operate with the same autonomy as their military counterparts. Part of this is pure pragmatism - the volume of trauma seen in war dwarfs that in civilian life. But I wonder if there may be inspiration to be found in the military experience for making health-care hierarchies more horizontal in the broader world. Are you aware of medics who have advocated for this, upon leaving the military? Did you find that medics often remained in health care after finishing their service?

BARRIS: Your point about helicopter evacuation and its impact on survival rates among combat casualties is a vital one. Somewhere in my research about medical practice during the Korean War, I unearthed statistics to support your thesis. Mortality rates during the Korean War were 34 per 1,000 wounded; it had been 66 per 1,000 in the Second World War. That statisticians went on to say that a wounded soldier in Korea benefited from greater accessibility to air-evacuation transportation, the advent of better medication - especially antibiotics - and quicker access to surgical and emergency treatment. Those advancements on the battlefield are borne out in an interview I conducted with Dan Harden, a United States Air Force veteran of military deployments to to Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. During 122 different medieval missions overseas, Major Harden's emergency ward was the back of a Black Hawk helicopter, where both he and his wounded patient were harnessed into position; and as Harden attended his wounded with oxygen, suction, ventilation, intubation, intravenous or transfusion, the chopper was flying at 140 miles an hour across the desert to deliver Harden's patient to a contingency operating base for life-saving surgery.

Harden told me, "If a wounded soldier was alive after injury, and a medic arrived in that critical time, a patient had a 97-percent chance of survival." I can think of field ambulance medics at Ypres losing up to 5,000 in the German chlorine-gas attacks of April, 1915, or the medical officers in Japanese POW compounds along the so-called Death Railway in the jungles of Burma where up to 4,000 POWs died of disease, injury or exhaustion, or the 916 Canadians that Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps medics could not save on the beaches of Dieppe in August, 1942. Those medics would have sacrificed everything to be able to enjoy a 97-per-cent survival rate among their wounded. But small-box ventilators (gas masks), anti-bacterial drugs and medevac choppers weren't around to deliver such miracles then.

PATTERSON: These successes in improving the survival rates among the (Western and Allied) war wounded are probably underappreciated. And the refinements in trauma care in war have spread to the civilian sector, not just in the most recent wars, but for a century now. Nevertheless, to describe the effect of war, especially on health, in any sort of positive sense is uncomfortable.

The excess mortality - including knock-on effects - in Iraq following the invasion may have been almost seven hundred thousand, according to the British medical journal The Lancet. These wars have been the worst decision the West has made in the past half-century. That said, military medics are in an interesting position. When I was a medical officer, we were taught that our role was to preserve the operational capability of the military. Simply put, soldiers are more likely to fight aggressively if they see that they will be cared for, once wounded.

BARRIS: I have one last thought on the point about medics and their service being underappreciated. I think even the medics themselves felt inadequate. More often than not, they took the casualty rates extremely hard. With seemingly very little positive in the aftermath of a battle, medics grasped at whatever small victories they could rationalize. Two such medical officers - Laurence Alexander with the Calgary Tanks, and Wesley Clare with Royal Hamilton Light Infantry - went into beaches of Dieppe on Aug. 19, 1942 - of 4,963 Canadians in action at Dieppe, 3,367 were killed, wounded or taken prisoner. Neither Alexander nor Clare managed to get off the beach. In fact, Alexander never left the tank landing craft bringing his medical crew and tank crews ashore; he spent the entire morning dashing from one wounded case to another all aboard the landing craft. And in the end, of his original assault group of 117 military men and 13 naval men, he managed to save but 30 soldiers and three navy personnel. Meanwhile, Clare gathered the wounded and dying RHLI troops in the lee of another bombed out landing craft just up from the surf. He'd been unable to save 197 of his regimental brothers, but chose to surrender the remaining handful, including himself, to ensure that at least a few survived the slaughter. He spent the rest of the war with those he'd saved in German POW camps in occupied Europe. And the Calgary Tankers whom Alexander saved never forgot him, either. When Doc Alexander returned to Alberta after the war, the veterans who returned with him made it their business to seek the doctor out to deliver their children and be their family doctor.

Small but meaningful thanks for saving them from the "nine bloodiest hours in Canadian military history" at Dieppe.

Associated Graphic

ILLUSTRATION BY LUIS MAZON


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