Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ playmaker Bralon Addison wants to ruin the party in Winnipeg.
Addison is assuming the Blue Bombers will raise their 2019 Grey Cup championship banner August 5, the opening night of the 2021 CFL season.
“It’d be a little sweet to spoil them dropping the banner, I won’t lie about that. It would be sweet to spoil them dropping the banner,” Addison said.
President and CEO Wade Miller has stated the Bombers will not raise the 107th Grey Cup banner until IG Field can hold a capacity crowd. The province of Manitoba has signed off on the Blue and Gold hosting a full stadium and vaccinated fans will be allowed to attend.
The Ticats lost 33-12 in the 107th Grey Cup in the last CFL football game played. It was an upset after Hamilton produced the best single-season record in franchise history at 15-3. The defeat meant the Tiger-Cats have the longest CFL title drought in the league, having last won the Grey Cup in 1999.
“Regardless of who we step out there with August 5, we want to make a statement. I don’t think it’s necessarily Winnipeg, we know what happened in 2019, but whoever it would be that we play,” Addison said. “It’ll be a heightened sense of urgency and competitiveness because it is the rematch since the Grey Cup.”
The 27-year-old pass catcher was named a CFL all-star in 2019 after recording 95 receptions for 1,236 yards and seven touchdowns. He’s been easing into training camp after a lower body issue was discovered during his training camp physical.
“That’s why I’m trying to get back in the swing of things right now and get going, get myself back to playing shape,” Addison said.
“I don’t want to go out there and give a half-product. I’m a competitor so I just want to be able to go out there and give the fans what they want to see and give the team what they deserve.”
Addison has been used in a variety of ways by Ticats’ offensive coordinator Tommy Condell. It led to Addison being recognized as a league all-star for the first time in his career. The five-foot-nine, 197-pound receiver has been watching Hamilton’s starting quarterback competition intently.
“In my personal opinion, because I’ve been around one before, it actually raises the level of urgency for the team. For those guys personally, it might be a little nerve-wracking or frustrating, especially because they’re so close and such good friends,” Addison said.
“For the team, it’s a sense of urgency because they’re trying to win a job, so we feel that as an offence as far as trying to keep up with them and get things right. It’s a stressful thing for them, but I think anytime you have competition within the team that wants to go win a championship, it’s great because it helps everybody.”
Head coach Orlondo Steinauer and Condell are using their training camp plan for Jeremiah Masoli and Dane Evans to compete with equal opportunity. Age, contract dollars or any other outside factor won’t be included in the final call.
“We got two guys that could start on probably 95 percent of teams in this league,” Addison said.
Only one can start for the Ticats and No. 86 will be there to provide a weapon for whoever earns the No. 1 job.