I have been posting my articles on www.yardbarker.com. Apparently my last post angered an Eskimo fan. Here's what they wrote and my repsonse.
Your comments are ABSURD. AJ Gass doesn't "pick and choose" the game that he sits out, he is simply going through the league's "legal process" - the same process, which you obvoiusly didn't know, that Bobby SIngh went through (for hitting a ref with a helmet) and his suspension still pending after TWO YEARS! So unless you want to take a run at Bobby Singh too, get off AJ Gass' case. Also, maybe you should educate yourself on the facts before making such ridiculous comments. First of all, Gass appealed the firt time because the league took too long to decide on the suspension (two days into practice) and Gass had already taken the reps up until then, clearly because the team was NOT expected it (the suspension). Second, Gass has obviously been persuaded by his coaches, management and the CFLPA to go to arbitration because they believe that he has a legitmate case - considering the most recent helmet throwing incident (in which the helmet was not thrown at another player or a ref) was Dave Dickenson and he didn't get suspended. If you want to talk about ridiculous, you should talk about the fact that AJ Gass threw a helmet into an empty field AFTER being "groped" by Pilon, blasted from behind by Pilon, and then grabbed by Comisky to fight. Up until Comisky grabbed him, Gass had WALKED away from Pilon's dirty actions and cheap shots...he was staying out of it. And, if you look at the footage, you will see that Comisky's helmet is not on very secure and he had his hands on Gass' too. I repeat - Pilon and Comisky started it, not Gass. And, furthermore, what Pilon did was FAR worse than what Gass did. And, speaking of FAR worse - what Dwight Anderson and Diamond Ferrs did to Jamie Stoddard and Charles Roberts (respectively) by BODY-SLAMMING them to the ground was a LOT worse than a guy throwing a helmet into an empty field (and not even being the one to instigate the whole thing). The other reason that AJ Gass is going to arbitration (obviously because his coaches and management want him to - he wouldn't be doing it if they didn't want him to) is because the Eskimos are SERIOUSLY hurting for injuries - 22 guys received treatment after the last game!!! The Eskimos have a TON of injuries, esp on defense, and they desperately need Gass in there. So, if the SYSTEM allows for the case to go to arbitraiton and that's what the team and coache's want him to, then so be it! To compare it to a judge's sentence for a criminal is absolutely ABSURD. If taht was the case, then AJ Gass wouldn't have been the only one suspended, a couple Calgary Stampeders and a handful of other player sin the league would've been suspended by now too. If you want to compare it to the "real world" then you better wait until the league has fair and consistent officiating and policies on suspensions and fines, otherwise, there is nothing about this case that REMOTELY reflects the "real world". The fact that AJ Gass is supsended for what he did and others who committed similar or worse acts didn't get suspended means that the only JOKE in whole thing is the people who make those decisions, NOT the process itself. Again, get your facts straight and educate yourself before making such stupid comments. AJ Gass is an excellent linebacker who has battled back from more injuries than most players could imagine - he is an oustanding member of the community and well-loved by his teammates and even well-respected by his opponents (read Jason Clermont's article that compliments Gass). So give him a break!
Dear Concerned Reader,
Let me assure you that the Rider Prophet is very educated on the "facts" you reference. You are correct, Bobby Singh is appealing the decision to suspend him in 2005. What you conveniently left out was the fact that Singh served the suspension. You are also correct that the last helmet throwing incident was Dave Dickenson and he was not suspended. What you forgot to mention is that Dickenson threw his own helmet as opposed to one he ripped off an opposing player.
Now that we have clarified a few of your facts let me get to this gem of a quote from you:
"The other reason that AJ Gass is going to arbitration (obviously because his coaches and management want him to - he wouldn't be doing it if they didn't want him to) is because the Eskimos are SERIOUSLY hurting for injuries - 22 guys received treatment after the last game!!!"
So in other words, you're saying that if it weren't for the injury situation,AJ Gass would likely not appeal the suspension and end up sitting out the Rider game?... no, that doesn't sound like picking and choosing when he serves his suspension at all!
But you know what, your little rant reminded me that AJ is indeed a good guy and so in the spirit of fairness I decided to review the footage of the incident. Turns out I had the situation all wrong. Here's what really happened:
During the last play, Gass noticed that Comiskey's helmet was defective, and as such was a danger to both himself and others players. AJ, being the good guy that he is, was merely trying to remove the dangerous piece of equipment and acquire a new one for Comiskey from the Calgary bench - Gass was as shocked as anyone when a new helmet was not thrown back! I hope this clears things up regarding AJ Gass.
I look forward tofurther comments from you this season.
Sincerely, The Rider Prophet