Brief whirl with Esks

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 11:37 AM ET

TORONTO -- The spring of 2001 is still fresh in Bashir Levingston's mind.

The special teams phenom and the Edmonton Eskimos had a brief and tumultuous relationship that year, as Levingston was signed in May but cut one month later.

He claims the Eskimos weren't honest with him.

"(Team officials) told me I'd be there playing DB. When I got there they already had DBs," said Levingston.

But since being cut and shown the road out of Edmonton, it has been a sweet ride in the CFL for Levingston - and he's hoping to inflict more pain on his ex-team this afternoon when the Argos battle the Eskimos.

"It was a blessing in disguise," said Levingston yesterday afternoon. "I haven't been anywhere where they can say somebody is better than me. From the New York Giants to the Miami (Dolphins) camp, to here.

"It ain't ever going to happen until I get a little bit older and can't run no more."

Levingston was picked up by the Toronto Argos and put up all-star numbers in 2003 and 2004, scoring 10 return touchdowns during the two years combined.

The 29-year-old import has just one touchdown return this year, but has had three other majors called back on penalties.

"He's the home-run king," said Eskimo special teams boss Malvin Hunter. "He's the guy that is most able to turn nothing into something."

Edmonton's Tony Tompkins - a Hunter pupil - actually has three return touchdowns this year, the most in the league.

But Levingston still claims to be the best.

"As long as I am in this league, I am going to be the best returner," he said. "I am going to have the most return touchdowns - but stuff does get called back.

"But even with all that, I am still going to have more than Tompkins, (Keith) Stokes, more than all of them when this year is done that count."


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