Dangerous game

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:57 AM ET

HAMILTON -- The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are at rock bottom, while the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are feeling better than ever.

Toss in the fact that the Bombers blasted the Ticats 44-14 just two weeks ago, and the outcome of their rematch tonight at Ivor Wynne Stadium should be obvious.

This, however, is the wild and wacky CFL.

The Bombers were wary of the wounded Tabbies two weeks ago at Canad Inns Stadium, so they should be downright scared of how scrappy their opponent is going to be tonight.

Hamilton is 0-8, and the rebuilding process has begun. The Tabbies released veteran cornerback Dedric Mathis earlier this week, and threats of more cuts have been made.

Some pundits are saying, however, that if the Ticats are going to win a game this season, it'll happen tonight against the Bombers.

Winnipeg is 3-6 and riding a season-high, two-game winning streak, which started with the blowout win against Hamilton on Aug. 13.

If they don't make it three in a row tonight, let's just say it will not go over well with anyone who bleeds Blue and Gold.

Here's a closer look at tonight's tilt:

KEEP AN EYE ON

Winnipeg SB Darnell McDonald, No. 80

The latest receiver to play for the Bombers, the 6-foot-3 slotback will be looked upon to play a role in keeping the offence humming. Rust could be a fact for the Kansas State product, considering he hasn't played since 2003, when he was a West Division all-star with the Stampeders.

REMEMBER WHEN?

The Bombers strolled into Ivor Wynne Stadium last June hoping they would even their record at 1-1 against a Tiger-Cats team that was 1-17 the year before? Unfortunately for the Bombers, the Ticats had other ideas. Hamilton QB Danny McManus passed for a career-high 525 yards and three touchdowns to lead his team to a 32-22 win over the Blue and Gold. Winnipeg QB Khari Jones threw for 297 yards and a touchdown but served up two picks.

ESSENTIALS

KICKOFF: 6 p.m. at Ivor Wynne Stadium; TV/RADIO TSN/CJOB; THE LINE: Winnipeg is favoured by 4 1/2 points; ALL-TIME SERIES: Winnipeg leads 44-37 since 1961.

LAST MEETING

Keith Stokes had 276 all-purpose yards, including a 68-yard touchdown reception, as the Bombers crushed the Tiger-Cats 44-14 at Canad Inns Stadium on Aug. 13. RB Charles Roberts rushed for three touchdowns, and QB Kevin Glenn had 374 passing yards and three majors.

QUIRKY FACT

The Bombers averaged 378 passing yards in their last two games. They averaged 181 passing yards -- or almost 200 fewer -- over their first seven contests.

THE FINAL SAY

"A win cures a lot of things. It makes guys' confidence grow. It makes the atmosphere in the locker-room and on the practice field a little bit better. (Then) you're not just striving real hard to get one win. You got that one win, now let's make it two. Winnipeg's a prime example. They got that win, and now they're rolling with it and they're doing a great job."

-- Ticats QB Danny McManus on trying to get that first win.


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