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The battles for 2 of essentially the most tradition-steeped trophies in Canadian sports activities are heating up. On Saturday, the matchup for the a hundred and tenth Gray Cup sport shall be determined whereas the chase for the 58th Vanier Cup will get minimize to 4 groups.
Here is what to know for an enormous day of Canadian soccer playoffs:
CFL division finals: Are we headed for a Gray Cup rematch?
In response to the betting markets, most likely. Reigning league champion Toronto is favoured by 11 factors over Montreal within the East last (3 p.m. ET), whereas Winnipeg is a five-point favorite to defeat B.C. within the West last (6:30 p.m. ET) and attain its fourth consecutive championship sport.
Toronto appears to be like particularly powerful to beat proper now. Since upsetting Winnipeg in final 12 months’s Gray Cup, the Argonauts have morphed right into a juggernaut, matching the CFL single-season wins report by going 16-2 as quarterback Chad Kelly blossomed right into a star.
After coming off the bench in final 12 months’s Gray Cup, the 29-year-old nephew of Buffalo Payments nice Jim Kelly capitalized (actually) on his first shot at a full-time beginning job within the execs. He threw 25 landing passes and rushed for eight extra to earn the East nomination for the CFL’s Most Excellent Participant award and change into the league’s highest-paid participant.
The Argos, who loved a first-round bye final week, gained all three of their regular-season matchups with Montreal. However the Alouettes (11-7 this season) can harbour some hope of slowing down Toronto after surrendering the second-fewest factors within the league after which conserving Hamilton out of the endzone throughout final week’s 27-12 playoff win.
The West matchup is tougher to name. Winnipeg (14-4 and coming off a bye) is a deserving favorite after scoring essentially the most factors within the league (33 per sport) and giving up the fewest (about 21). The Blue Bombers, who got here inside one level of a championship three-peat final 12 months, can change into the primary crew in additional than 4 a long time to play in 4 straight Gray Cup video games. Their high-scoring offence is led by CFL passing-touchdowns chief Zach Collaros (the league’s Most Excellent Participant in 2021 and ’22) and hometown working again Brady Oliveira, the West nominee for this 12 months’s MOP after speeding for a league-high 1,534 yards and scoring 13 touchdowns.
However the Lions have proven they will not roll over for Winnipeg. Earlier than final week’s 41-30 playoff win over Calgary, they went 12-6 within the common season and have been the one visiting crew to win in Winnipeg. The Bombers avenged that early season 30-6 blowout with a 50-14 rout in B.C. earlier than successful a 34-26 additional time thriller on the highway in Week 18.
Lions quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. all the time provides his crew a puncher’s likelihood. He led the league with 4,769 passing yards and completed second to Collaros with 33 landing throws earlier than accounting for 5 TDs in final week’s playoff win.
U Sports activities convention championship video games: Western is on a mission
A 12 months in the past, the Canadian college soccer season appeared destined to finish with the perennial Ontario energy hoisting the Vanier Cup on its house turf. With the nationwide championship sport set to be performed on their London campus, the top-ranked, undefeated Mustangs rolled by the convention playoffs with a speeding assault averaging greater than eight yards per carry. However Western misplaced within the nationwide semis to Laval, which went on to win the Vanier Cup.
Quick-forward a 12 months, and Western is again in a well-known spot: unbeaten, ranked no. 1 and making ready for its eight consecutive Ontario title sport. The Mustangs’ opponent within the Yates Cup is Laurier, ranked No. 2 within the nation and led by nationwide passing-yards chief Taylor Elgersma. Watch the sport stay Saturday at 1 p.m. ET on CBCSports.ca, the CBC Sports activities app and CBC Gem.
The opposite convention championship matchups are No. 5 Laval vs. No. 3 Montreal for Quebec’s Dunsmore Cup, No. 6 Alberta vs. No. 8 UBC for the West’s Hardy Cup, and No. 7 Bishop’s vs. No. 4 St. FX within the Atlantic’s Loney Bowl.
In subsequent week’s nationwide semifinals, it’s going to be the Atlantic and West champions squaring off within the Mitchell Bowl whereas the Ontario and Quebec champs meet within the Uteck Bowl. The winners will play for the Vanier Cup on Nov. 25 on the Queen’s College campus in Kingston, Ont.