BC Sports Magazine – January 31st Edition

Ali Pitargue / January 31st, 2020



It was a jam-packed week in sports, but through all the games that took place, the death of Kobe Bryant on January 26th hovered over the entire athletic world.

The late retired NBA Laker died after a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California just outside Los Angeles. The casualties included his 13 year-old daughter, Gianna. The investigation is still ongoing.

The father-daughter duo were on their way to one of Gianna’s basketball games, where they were accompanied by two of her teammates and their guardians. Bryant was noted by the WNBA as a proponent of women’s basketball, and many noted how Gianna had high prospects in her playing career.

For this edition of BC Sports Magazine, we spotlight women’s basketball. Collegiate basketball, in particular, thrives with women’s participation. Our guest, Jessica Hanson, is the fifth forward of the UBC Thunderbirds. She was integral to UBC’s most recent victory against the Macewan Griffins from Edmonton by scoring 27 points.

Hanson said that basketball plays a part in her growth.

“Especially as a woman or girl, the leadership that I’ve learned through basketball and being captain of our team translates a lot into life aspects in school or outside jobs. It’s not necessarily a feminine sport, so it’s just about establishing yourself as a strong and confident woman and not being afraid of that or shying away from that.” – Jessica Hanson, UBC Thunderbirds Women’s Basketball Captain

The UBC Thunderbirds take on the The University of Winnipeg’s Wesmen after their bye week on February 7th and 8th.


In the hockey world, teams across the NHL were playing high-stakes games. The teams just returned to their home teams after the NHL All-Star games, and playoffs are in full swing.

The Vancouver Canucks, notably, are on a roll after they’ve won four straight games. The reigning Stanley Cup champions, the St. Louis Blues, paid a visit to Rogers Arena on January 27th, but the Canucks came through and defeated the Blues 3-1. Canuck veteran JT Miller scored two out of three goals.

BCIT News’ Niqhil Velji joins the podcast to discuss how that game went and what their prospects are further in the season. The Canucks’ prospects of making it very far in the season are still up in the air, but fans’ expectations were exceeded.

Elsewhere on NHL, Round 3 of the Battle of Alberta took place on January 29th, and was described as one of the most thrilling games of the season.

This week saw to multiple hockey games every night as the NHL returned from the All-Star Break.
(Marcus Spiske / Unsplash)



Football’s biggest night in underway. The Kansas City Chiefs go head-to-head against recent Super Bowl contenders, the San Francisco 49ers.

It’s arguable that the biggest draw of Super Bowl viewership is the game itself, but plenty of others tune in to see what plays in-between– the advertisements.

This year, the NFL will air a PSA announcement about police brutality. For this PSA, they partnered with the family of Botham Jean, a black man killed in his apartment by a white police officer who was off-duty at the time.

This drew criticism from supporters of Colin Kaepernick, who famously knelt during the U.S. national anthem to protest police brutality. After Kaepernick’s protest amassed criticism and caused football ratings to take a dip, many thought he was ostracized by the NFL.

Dr. Jules Boykoff, a former soccer player and a professor at Pacific University, says that while the PSA has an important message, the NFL was the wrong messenger.

“For starters, corporations aren’t leaders in this. They’re followers. And who are they following? They’re following movements. You have athlete activists protesting, then you have corporations wanting to join in, usually trying to water down the message.”

Dr. Jules BoykoffPolitics and Government Professor at Pacific Universityhttps://

The Super Bowl takes place on February 2nd, 2020 in Miami, Florida