Oh brother! Baker slugs Prefontaine

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 11:01 AM ET

CALGARY -- The Argos call themselves a family and last night they had a family squabble in public.

Kicker Noel Prefontaine and receiver Robert Baker engaged in a verbal and physical dustup in a nationally televised game at McMahon Stadium, where the Argos beat the Calgary Stampeders 22-16.

The Argos evened their record at 1-1 after losing 27-20 to B.C. at the Rogers Centre a week ago. Calgary is 0-1.

The incident between Prefontaine and Baker happened two-thirds of the way through the second quarter.

Baker had been called off the field after becoming enraged when a Calgary player, believed to be defensive lineman Rahim Abdullah, allgedly spit on him in front of an official and there was no call on the play. The rules call for for any player caught spitting to be ejected.

When Prefontaine said something to Baker, who was pulled off the field by head coach Pinball Clemons to regain his composure, the two went head-to-head, a punch was thrown and Prefontaine emerged bloodied.

Two plays later the Argos scored a touchdown when wideout Tony Miles hauled in a 11-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Damon Allen. The two also hooked up on a 23-yard touchdown play in the first quarter.

Neither Baker nor Prefontaine wanted to talk about the incident after the game, but Clemons addressed it.

"We call ourselves a family, which means a brother is always a brother," Clemons said. "Brothers scuffle at times, but a brother never ceases to be a brother."

Baker caught a 28-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter to give the Argos a 21-3 lead, but still appeared to be upset when he returned to the sideline and pointed to the scoreboard.

Clemons, who spent some time talking to Baker when he returned to the sideline, said the player had been reacting to the crowd taunting him.

"You've earned this and you have to have the courage to deal with it humbly," Clemons said when asked what he said to Baker.

Clemons said the matter of his players feuding concerned him.

"The biggest thing is managing the process," he said. "If it didn't concern you then you're not real smart."

Prefontaine accounted for the Argos' other points on three converts and a single off a missed field goal.

He also made the highlight reels with a devastating hit on Ken Yon Rambo on a punt return midway in the fourth quarter. Rambo had the Stamps' only touchdown. Their other points came on field goals.

Fighting aside, the Argos won the game because of turnovers, four of them by Stamps quarterback Henry Burris, who had two fumbles and two interceptions.

The Argos next play a week tonight at the Rogers Centre against Saskatchewan, which plays against Hamilton tonight at Ivor Wynne Stadium.


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