Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Veteran Receiver Bakari Grant Not Shy about Making Ticats' Teammates Accountable

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Veteran Receiver Bakari Grant Not Shy about Making Ticats' Teammates Accountable

Article excerpt

Grant not afraid to make Ticats accountable

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HAMILTON - Bakari Grant isn't shying away from making the Hamilton Tiger-Cats more accountable this season.

The six-foot-four, 195-pound receiver showed that during training camp Wednesday at McMaster University. Grant took exception to Taylor Reed's tackle on running back C.J. Gable and raced across the field to voice his displeasure, touching off a skirmish that coaches had to break up.

"What I tell some of the young guys is we went to the Grey Cup twice in the past two years and we lost," Grant said. "We have one goal, and that's to win the Grey Cup which demands perfection from players as well as coaches.

"It shouldn't take the coaches getting on us all the time. Sometimes it's going to take the players and you saw me and some of the defensive guys get into it but it's not disrespect. It's all love, that's the type of team we have right now."

Veteran linebacker Simoni Lawrence downplayed the incident, saying that's going to happen during camp.

"I mean, it's football," he said. "If I'm doing this (poking reporter's chest for emphasis) all day are you going to just smile at me?

"The special thing about it is everybody after can just look at each other, smile and shake hands. It's all understood. It's like tying your shoes in the morning, it's no big deal."

Being a vocal leader isn't new for Grant, who says he comes by it naturally.

"I've been around for bad seasons, I've experienced good seasons," he said. "It's not me wanting to be a more vocal leader but it has to be said and if nobody is going to say it then I will.

"It's better when you have a team that returns so many guys because you can jump on guys a little bit because they know it's coming from a place of respect. It's not me disrespecting you as a player, it's me saying we as a team need to be better."

The Ticats return a veteran-laden squad in 2015 with many of the club's starters having been around for Hamilton's consecutive Grey Cup losses to Saskatchewan and Calgary, respectively. …

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