Veteran CFL receiver Bakari Grant retires

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

After eight seasons in the Canadian Football League, including five years with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, receiver Bakari Grant announced his retirement after signing a one-day contract with the Ticats.

“I want to start by saying thank you. Thank you to all of my teammates, coaches, every under-appreciated staff member that makes the football machine operate, and the entire Ticats organization, especially Bob Young and Scott Mitchell. I have so much love and appreciation for the CFL and for all the people I’ve met over the last eight seasons,” Grant said in a statement.

“I am forever grateful to the entire country of Canada that has afforded me an eight-year football career, two Canadian children and countless life lessons. I also want to take this time to thank all of my friends and family. Without their love, support and understanding, my football career would’ve never existed.”

Grant, 32, appeared in 99 career CFL games (97 starts at receiver) with the Tiger-Cats (2011-15), Calgary Stampeders (2016 and 2018) and Saskatchewan Roughriders (2017), registering 374 receptions for 4,732 yards and 26 receiving touchdowns. The 6-4, 207-pound native of Oakland, California was named a CFL East Division All-Star with the Tiger-Cats in 2013, scored the first touchdown at Tim Hortons Field when the stadium opened September 1, 2014, and won the 106th Grey Cup as a member of the Stampeders in his final season in 2018.

“We would like to congratulate Bakari Grant on his eight-year playing career in the CFL,” said Orlondo Steinauer, Head Coach of the Tiger-Cats. “Bakari’s leadership and dedication to our team helped guide us to back-to-back Grey Cup appearances in 2013 and 2014. We wish him and his family nothing but success in life after football.”

The University of California-Davis product also played in 11 career CFL playoff games and four Grey Cup games, including the 101st and 102nd Grey Cups with Hamilton versus Saskatchewan and Calgary, respectively. Prior to joining the Tiger-Cats, Grant signed as an undrafted free agent and attended training camp with the National Football League’s San Francisco 49ers in 2012.

“Football has taught me so many lessons and I look forward to extending that experience into every aspect of my life moving forward,” Grant said.

“I want to give a special thank you to the entire city of Hamilton. To the Tiger-Cats fans, you are amazing and words can’t describe how much I appreciate every person I’ve met, talked to, exchange stories with and learned from! I’ve been on other teams but I will always bleed Black and Gold and I’m honored that I will forever be a Ticat. Oskee Wee Wee and one for the road, even though I know Bob Young wouldn’t approve, Argos SUCK!”