FRIESEN: ‘It gets your blood boiling again.’ Bombers loved reliving the run

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The last word goes to Collaros.

“That was fun,” he said. “We’ll do it again.”
Twitter: @friesensunmedia

Winnipeg Blue Bombers quarterback Matt Nichols lets everyone know he has the Grey Cup during the team parade on Nov. 26, 2019. Nichols would later be traded to Toronto. Kevin King/Winnipeg Sun

Nichols gone, not forgotten

He doesn’t know how he would have pulled it off or what the ramifications would have been, but Mike O’Shea would like to have one play back from the 2019 Grey Cup game.

The last one.

The Blue Bombers head coach wishes he’d have given injured quarterback Matt Nichols a chance to take a final bow.

“If I were to do it over again I would have had him go in on the last snap to take a knee,” O’Shea told the Winnipeg Sun. “Whether he had equipment on or not. It would have been worth the fine.”

Nichols was the forgotten man in Winnipeg’s historic championship run.

Knocked to the sidelines with a season-ending shoulder injury in mid-August, the then 32-year-old didn’t get a chance to reap what he’d sewn the previous four seasons.

But his contribution to ending Winnipeg’s championship drought shouldn’t be overlooked.

Nichols holds a 37-17 record in games he started for the Bombers, including 7-2 when he went down with the shoulder injury.

“He was part of the turn-around from when he went in in Edmonton, years earlier,” O’Shea said.

The Bombers were a perennial loser when they acquired Nichols late in the 2015 season.

They haven’t missed the playoffs since.

On a CFL Zoom call last week, I asked Nichols, now a Toronto Argonaut, what he’s most proud of from his time here.

“I’ll probably think more of that stuff when I’m done playing,” he began. “The things that instantly come to mind is always trying to leave a place better than you found it. The work I did in the community … I feel like we helped make the place better than before, and that’s all you can really hope for. It was a great chapter in my career and my family’s life.”

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