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Author Topic: 10 Plays that Made a Champion | A Statement TD  (Read 182 times)
Posts: 10874

Blue Bombers and Fans

« on: November 26, 2020, 04:10:40 AM »

10 Plays that Made a Champion | A Statement TD - Ed Tait

Let's open with a boxing story, if that makes any sense whatsoever in our '10 Plays That Made A Champion' series about the 2019 Winnipeg Blue Bombers and their run to the Grey Cup title.

Back in 1990 - about 10 months before the Bombers captured their last Grey Cup before the 2019 championship - Buster Douglas climbed into the ring against Mike Tyson in a heavyweight title fight.

This was Tyson at his badass best. He was 37-0 and a 42-to-1 favourite. And he was so thoroughly beating the snot out of his opponents at that stage of his career absolutely everyone expected the same that night against Douglas.

Except, clearly, Buster Douglas.

Douglas wasn't the least bit intimidated and he started trading punches with Tyson from the opening bell before ultimately stopping the champ in the 10th round in one of the greatest upsets in sports.

None of this is to suggest the Bombers were a massive underdog heading into the 107th Grey Cup a year ago this month, although the Hamilton Tiger-Cats squad that finished 15-3 and which had twice beaten them in the regular season were favoured.

The Buster-Bombers link here is this: from Brandon Alexander's interception on the first series to Willie Jefferson's strip sack on Hamilton's second possession, Winnipeg's defence stood right in the middle of the ring and didn't just trade punches with the favourite, but landed some serious shots, too.

Still, had the Bombers not managed points from at least one of the two forced turnovers in the first three minutes, they could also have easily gift-wrapped momentum back to the Ticats.

And then came a tone-setting touchdown by Andrew Harris - a 15-yard score on the first offensive play following the second turnover - which effectively opened up a proverbial cut on the Ticats and made them seem vulnerable......

Read the rest of Ed Tait's article here!

« Last Edit: November 26, 2020, 05:27:05 AM by ModAdmin » Logged

"You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one." - John Wooden
Posts: 10874

Blue Bombers and Fans

« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2020, 05:29:04 AM »

Interesting follow up story on Zack Collaros and Andrew Harris on their meeting when Zack and Andrew first met:

Zach Collaros made the first move in his relationship with Andrew Harris.

It was simple yet effective.

"One of the first couple days he was in town he came by with steaks and a bottle of Crown Royal and we hung out in the basement and finished the handle off. That?s how we got to know each other," Harris said on TSN 1290 radio in Winnipeg.

"A bottle of Crown and some steaks, that's all she wrote. He's an old school guy that likes to hang out with the guys. I enjoyed being around him and getting to know him. We instantly clicked."

Collaros was acquired by the Blue Bombers literally seconds before the CFL trade deadline on October 9, 2019. Matt Nichols sustained a shoulder injury in Week 10 that ended his season and Chris Streveler took over the starting role. However, general manager Kyle Walters and Mike O'Shea wanted a veteran signal caller.

"Having Collaros come in at the time he did just brought that experience, that knowledge and he was able to make some amazing throws for us in clutch situations. Ultimately, that was one of the biggest moves that the team made. Everyone rallied around him," Harris said.

Collaros produced a 4-0 record, including three wins in the playoffs, leading the Bombers to their first Grey Cup title since 1990. He finished the 2019 post-season completing 65 percent of his passes for 630 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. The final game of Winnipeg's regular schedule provided the belief in Collaros.

"The last game of the season we played Calgary and that play Collaros made to Darvin (Adams). He avoids the sack, boots out and Darvin makes an amazing catch with two feet in. That was a big statement play for us," Harris said.

It was the first start for Collaros with the Bombers. He went 22-of-28 for 221 yards and two touchdowns while leading the offence on a game-winning drive in the final moments.

Justin Medlock kicked the ball through the uprights from 34 yards out and the upset was complete. That boosted the Bombers' confidence and propelled Winnipeg to three straight playoff victories as underdogs, including against heavily-favoured Hamilton in the Grey Cup.

"Just the fact that we were counted out so much throughout the week. Every media was always talking about how good Hamilton was and this and that," Harris said.

"I knew as soon as we came out of that locker room we were ready to pounce on them and keep our foot on their throat the whole game. I was getting ready to go out and kick some Hamilton Tiger-Cat butt."

Crown Royal and steaks contributed to the celebrations in Manitoba.

Credit 3downnation for the above story.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2020, 05:31:47 AM by ModAdmin » Logged

"You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one." - John Wooden
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