Goodbye Stanford Samuels, hello Davin Bush?
The first full day of CFL free agency was a wacky one for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, one in which the landscape seemed to change every five minutes.
The Bombers began yesterday believing they had re-signed Samuels, a cornerback who spent the last two seasons in Blue and Gold. But they ended it by agreeing to terms with Bush, a halfback who spent the last six seasons with the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
"We have an agreement in principle with Winnipeg," Bush's agent, Paul Sheehy, told Sun Media last night. "... They put together the strongest offer and the most consistent offer."
Samuels, meanwhile, has apparently bolted for the Edmonton Eskimos, who were also in the running for Bush.
It was a roller-coaster ride of a day for Bombers GM Brendan Taman, who would not confirm last night that he had agreed to terms with Bush. He did reveal, however, that he thought he had Samuels back in Blue and Gold.
"I was led to believe we had a deal," Taman said.
But when he didn't receive a signed contract from Samuels, Taman figured something was up. So he turned his attention to Bush.
"Talks have drastically heated up in the last while, and things are progressing very quickly, but there's still some other teams involved," Taman said last night about Bush. "But it's looking good."
Bush, 29, didn't want to get too far ahead of himself last night, but he did not deny he had agreed to terms with the Bombers.
"It's talk, so it's not official to me," Bush said. "That's where I'm at right now. Official is when I sign my name."
The 5-foot-8, 165-pound Florida native did have kind things to say about the Winnipeg franchise, however.
"I'm not saying that I wouldn't love to play for Winnipeg," Bush said. "They have a great team over there, and they were probably a couple plays away from playing in the championship game last year."
Taman will never admit to agreeing to terms with a player, especially after last February, when Montreal Alouettes safety Richard Karikari agreed to terms but backed out and returned to the Als. Taman won't be happy until he sees Bush's signature on a contract, but the GM will gush about his talents.
"The poor guy is remembered probably for a game five or four years ago when Milt burned him," Taman said. "I think it was one of his first games in the league.
"... He's been a solid halfback in this league for a number of years."