Blue Bomber Report Record: 7–11–0

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Players' verdict on deal due today

Blue rep January offers no prediction

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Today is voting day for CFLPA members.

A majority vote of players on six of the nine teams must ratify the labour agreement negotiated by their executive with the league.

Will the players ratify, Blue Bombers player representative Glenn January was asked Wednesday?

"My gut tells me we aren't going to know until the polls close," January said.

"There's a lot of people that are being very vocal about their not liking the deal.

"We'll see how it goes. Everybody has one voice no matter how in favour or against you are. You can send out as many tweets (as you want) pro or con but it's still just one vote. So we'll see how the votes come back tomorrow and we'll go from there."

The three-time East Division all-star then went out on a limb -- for him, at least -- decrying what he called a "circus" of a process that has left the players and the league to this point, with pre-season games already underway and a labour agreement not complete.

"The timing of this whole thing has been kind of screwed up," January said. "If I was in the league office, I would definitely move back the date of the expiration of the CBA but hey, I'm not commissioner Mark Cohon, I'm Glenn January of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

"This has just been such a circus from top to bottom all across the board. For that to interfere and take away from what my teammates are accomplishing on the field and what major strides we're making as a team, I think it does a disservice to the league."

-- -- --

On Wednesday, January (infected thumb) and slotback Nick Moore (back) missed time. Moore isn't expected to play Saturday in Calgary.

"We'll give him the rest he needs to feel better," head coach Mike O'Shea said.

-- -- --

The new head coach was asked Wednesday about his first game in charge on the sidelines.

"The report on me was that I was little slow to react possibly in a few situations," O'Shea said.

He added things aren't quite as easy as being an assistant coach or a co-ordinator, but he'll have no trouble working out the decision-making kinks.

And O'Shea made it clear that under his watch, his assistant coaches and co-ordinators will have a clear mandate to speak up at all times on the sidelines.

"It takes time for them to understand that I'm willing to take all information and suggestions, that they're not going to overstep," O'Shea said. "Coaches will never overstep their bounds by giving me information. Ever.

"I fully expect that when I'm about to make a mistake, that these guys bail me out."

-- -- --

After a review of the game and a day in between to resume regular breathing, O'Shea said there was no point dwelling on the 13 penalties the Bombers were flagged for in Monday's game against Toronto.

"They (the players) are not (happy) either," the coach said Wednesday. "They recognize it.

"You can't beat it to death. They understand. They see it on film. They don't want to be the reason why we didn't (win). They want to be the reason why we can and why we win."

tim.campbell@freepress.mb.ca

 

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 12, 2014 D2

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