Wednesday was the hottest day of the year in Toronto sitting at a sticky 35 degrees and the Toronto Argonauts were taking on one of the hottest teams at BMO Field. The Argos were facing the Ottawa Redblacks who are coming off the first tie in the CFL since 2009 when they played Calgary and had a final score of 26-26. Because of that tie the Redblacks entered BMO field on the sweaty Wednesday night as the only undefeated team in the CFL.
The double blue entered the game on a two game win streak after dropping the home opener against the Hamilton Ti-Cats 42-20.
Argo fans going to the game were facing many obstacles. They were cheering for a team that has been forgotten about in the big smoke for years and the literally were facing the road blocks for the Hondy Indy Toronto that takes places this weekend. The roadblocks forced the tailgaters who fell in love with the new tradition at the home opener to take their 4-dollar beer elsewhere.
The most suspenseful part of the game was before the game even started. Four mics were lined up on the field for the national anthem. Could the shamed Tenors be trying to slowly gain back fan support after the one rogue member changed the lyrics at the MLB All-Star Game? Was this the moment? Thankfully it was not. The Toronto Gay Men’s Chorus sang ‘O’ Canada’ and sang it brilliantly.
It wasn’t the full house at BMO field that fans saw at the home opener but let’s keep in mind it was plus 35 outside. The turnout of 12,373 was just below the average of the 2015 season (12,431). The big difference is that their new home seats 26,000 fans so it doesn’t look as horrible as the Rogers Centre which seats 52,000 for football. The home opener this year vs the Ti-Cats was at 95% capacity (24,812).
In the first quarter Argo’s quarterback Ricky Ray added another accomplishment to his already long resume. Ray moved to 4th on the passing yards list in CFL History. Ray passed Danny McManus (53,255) to pass for his 53,271 yard. He now trails Anthony Calvillo (79,816), Damon Allen (72,381) and Henry Burris (60,957).
The Redblacks were picking up penalties like Tom Brady was picking up defeats in court for deflate gate. Ottawa had racked up 8 penalties by the middle of the 2nd quarter totalling 77 yards.
All three of toronto’s touchdowns by the end of the 3rd quarter were set up by Ottawa’s penalties
A 75 yard return at 4:19 into the 4th quarter by Ottawa’s Tristan Jackson put the Redblacks up 27-20.
Ottawa beat Toronto 30-20 and the Argos fell to 0-and-2 at BMO Field.
(stay tuned for updates)