Sunday 7 March 2010

What Could Have Been, Pt. 2

Last week I decided to look at the first half of the 2009 Hamilton Tiger-Cats season and try to project how they should have done. With the demand for Part 2 being as huge as anything I have done so far, I will post it earlier than I had anticipated. At first I had decided to do the final 9 games and the playoffs, but after some thinking I've decided to save the playoff topic for a third, and final, post. We can now call this the "What Could Have Been Trilogy." With the demand being so high why not stretch it out to three posts? Without further ado, here is Part 2.

Week 11 @ Toronto
Original Outcome: LOST 25-22 (2OT)
Original Team Record: 5-5

No, no, no, no, no. NO! Absolutely not! No, no, no! This was pathetic. This was beyond pathetic. On no plain of existence should the Ti-Cats have lost this game. Coming off the HUGE win in the Labour Day Classic, the Cats were poised to put the Argos down once and for all. What did the team do? They went out and laid an egg. Arland Bruce was returning to TO for the first time and the Cats were at or above .500 after Labour Day for the first time since 2004. This should have been a cake walk for the Black & Gold. This one changes, BIG TIME.

Revised Outcome: WIN 28-13
Revised Team Record: 7-3

Week 12 vs. Calgary
Original Outcome: WON 24-17
Original Team Record: 6-5

This was another great game featuring a team of equal skill from the West Division. Just like the game against the Esks earlier in the season, this was just a well played contest. I'll remember this game for two reasons. One, this was the first time I was in a crowd that got so loud that the opposing team had to call a timeout. It was such a cool experience. Second, this TD pass from Adam Tafralis to Arland Bruce.

Awesome, just awesome. It was the game-winning TD, and was just a fantastic throw by Tafralis and a great catch by AB3. This one stays the exact same.

Revised Outcome: 24-17
Revised Team Record: 8-3

Week 13 vs. Montreal
Original Outcome: LOST 42-8
Original Team Record: 6-6

Aside from the gimme post-Labour Day game against the Boatmen, this was the most disappointing game of the regular season for the Cats. The buildup was immense; the team had unveiled their "13th Man" initiative, and the hope was that the Cats, who had a 5-1 record at home, would at least play the Als tight. Not to be. Blown out from the word "Go." This one doesn't change one iota.

Revised Outcome: LOSE 42-8
Revised Team Record: 8-4

Week 14 @ Calgary
Original Outcome: LOST 15-14
Original Team Record: 6-7

After coming off the embarrassment a week earlier at home against Montreal, the Cats traveled to Calgary and put the game the week before behind them. This wasn't a great game, but it was a close one. Coaching mistakes and one big mistake by QB Quinton Porter cost the Cats this game. This time out it's different.

Revised Outcome: WIN 17-15
Revised Team Record: 9-4

Week 15 vs. Winnipeg
Original Outcome: LOST 38-28
Original Record: 6-8

This was also a big disappointment, on par with the losses to Montreal and Toronto from earlier. Thanksgiving Monday, the Cats holding a lead on the Bombers in the standings, this was as big a game as Cats fans had seen in quite some time. The score of this game does not indicate how badly the Tabbies were outplayed. Another one that doesn't change.

Revised Outcome: LOSE 38-21
Revised Team Record: 9-5

Week 16 @ Montreal
Original Outcome: LOST 41-38
Original Team Record: 6-9

Turning-point game. Point blank, this was the game that changed the season. Coach Marcel Bellefeuille finally made the change from Porter to Kevin Glenn at Quarterback, and that provided the spark the team needed. While the Cats lost this one, one mistake stays in my mind – Marquay McDaniel fumbling on the seven-yard line late in the 2nd quarter when the Cats had a 15-14 lead and were looking to extend it. The fumble was returned by the Als to the Ti-Cats 10-yard line, and a couple of plays later the Als scored. That was the difference in this game. Another one that gets altered.

Revised Outcome: WIN 45-41
Revised Team Record: 10-5

Week 17 @ Toronto
Original Outcome: WON 26-17
Original Team Record: 7-9

The score does not indicate how bad the Argos looked. If it wasn't for a 95-yard TD by the Argos this one would have been a huge blowout. Not much changes with this one.

Revised Outcome: WIN 26-10
Revised Team Record: 11-5

Week 18 vs. Saskatchewan
Original Outcome: WON 24-6
Original Team Record: 8-9

This was a huge game. The Riders were coming in sporting an offense that couldn't be stopped. The Cats came in needing a win. This wasn't a pretty game, but the defense game up as big as they did in any game in 2009. The Cats created turnovers on consecutive Riders possessions. This game was never in doubt then and still isn't now.

Revised Outcome: WIN 24-6
Revised Team Record: 12-5

Week 19 @ Winnipeg
Original Outcome: WON 39-17
Original Team Record: 9-9

In reality, this game meant everything. It was win or go home for both teams. Revised, this game means nothing, except that it could alter who the Tabbies played in the playoffs. The Bombers were 7-10 going into this game, and a win would have knocked the Lions out of the playoffs. A loss and the Bombers go home and the Lios come to Ivor Wynne. As much as it would be nice to change this game and have a rematch the following week, I think with the way that Bombers QB Michael Bishop played, the Cats could have played with high school players and still come out on top. Even with the backups in for the majority of this game, the outcome remains.

Revised Outcome: WIN 34-20
Revised Team Record: 13-5

In reality, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats finished with a very respectable record of 9-9 and made the playoffs for the first time in a half decade. In my version of history, the Ti-Cats finish 2009 with a 13-5 record, but still finish 2nd in the East division, behind a Montreal team that finishes 15-3 (in the actual season they finished 16-2, but in this revised season they lose 45-41 to Hamilton in Week 16, which creates that third loss). After a great season the Cats hosted the Lions in the 2009 East Division Semi-Final. After a greater revised season The Cats will host the Lions in the 2009 East Division Semi-Final. Will the Tabbies do what they couldn't do and beat Casey Printers and the BC Lions and head to Montreal for a date with the Als in the East Division Final? Or will the outcome remain the same? "What Could Have Been, Pt. 3: The Playoffs" will be coming soon.

PREVIOUS: What Could Have Been, Pt. 1

No comments:

Post a Comment