Best-of-three? Give us a break: Stamps

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:38 AM ET

CALGARY -- The last time Calgary and Saskatchewan met in the West final, the Horsemen came away with two victories.

Until 1971, the Western Conference title was decided in a best-of-three, and usually it was played in a span of eight days.

To the players that will contest this year's West final tomorrow in Regina, that sounds completely crazy.

"I know those guys were tough back then, but wow," said Stamps safety Milt Collins.

"If you win the first one it would be all right. There would be so much momentum going into the second game, it wouldn't be too bad. It would be for bragging rights and going for the Grey Cup, so you would have to ignore the aches."

In '71, the Stamps beat the Riders 30-21 at McMahon Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 13, then went into Taylor Field and won 23-21 on Wednesday, Nov. 17.

The Stamps then had 10 days off before going to Vancouver to beat the Toronto Argonauts 14-11.

The now eight-team CFL avoids the extreme short weeks except for the Labour Day battle between the Stamps and Eskimos, which goes Monday in Calgary and Friday in Edmonton.

Even that one takes a toll on the players, so having the stakes raised during the post-season isn't something Dwight Anderson can imagine dealing with.

"For me to recover, it takes until walkthrough the next week," said the Stamps cornerback. "I don't know if I could do the best of three. When we play two in one week, that kills me.

"You would have to order some stretchers and have them on the sidelines. I don't think everybody would make it through the best of three OK."

ian.busby@sunmedia.ca


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