Vengeance is a poor theme for the 2010 Grey Cup according to staff writer Shane Lambert.
The Montreal Alouettes defeated the Saskatchewan Roughriders in the 2009 Grey Cup and the Riders, though they say it's not about revenge now, are supposedly out to get the Alouettes this year.
However "revenge" is a poor theme for this year's Grey Cup because last year the story of the Grey Cup was the Roughriders beating themselves. They all but had the Grey Cup won as Montreal missed a game winning field goal but then the Alouettes were given a rarity in sports thanks to Saskatchewan: Montreal were given a second chance.
Saskatchewan had too many men on the field during the first field goal attempt and so Montreal got a do-over and Rider Pride should have just changed the channel right then and there.
But this year isn't about Saskatchewan avenging their loss from last season: how do you get revenge for something like what happened? Hope Montreal commits a similar blunder that costs them the game and then hoist the Cup like lottery winners?
This year is far less about revenge than it is about redemption, kind of like how Dave Henderson redeemed himself in game 5 of the 1986 ALCS in Major League Baseball.
Henderson, for those that don't remember or don't bother with baseball, came into game 5 of the 1986 ALCS as a defensive replacement for the Boston Red Sox in a tight ball game with his team facing elimination to the California Angels (Los Angeles Angels at Anaheim). Ironically, though Henderson was in for defensive purposes he screwed up, to say the least, on a catchable fly ball.
While tracking the fly ball down, one that would have stayed in the park, Henderson got crossed up and the ball bounced off of his glove and over the wall for a go-ahead two run homer for California.
That homerun was a difference in the game until Henderson stepped up with two outs and two strikes in the ninth and hit a two-run homerun of his own to save his team from elimination and to save himself from being the goat.
The relevance to the Grey Cup is that Henderson didn't get revenge on California when he hit the two-run homerun - he just redeemed himself and now all anyone remembers is that redemption with the defensive blunder relegated to a footnote.
Saskatchewan's 2010 Grey Cup campaign is about redemption, not revenge, as they can redeem themselves for the mistake they made last season and in doing so they can put a little bit of dirt on the '09 fiasco. The flip side of course is that if Saskatchewan don't win then things only get worse.
My prediction is a 13 point Saskatchewan win and I won't even be calling it an upset because the Roughriders beat the best already when they took out Calgary at McMahon Stadium. A neutral site game against a team not as good as the Stampeders should mean a bigger win.