***Jason Maas Officially a Tiger-Cat!!!

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After six years with Green and Gold, quarterback heading to Tiger-Cats

A teary-eyed Jason Maas walked out of the Edmonton Eskimos dressing room on Wednesday for the final time.

With his golden helmet and No. 12 jersey in hand, the quarterback silently shuffled past the "Once an Eskimo, Always an Eskimo" sign and headed for the elevator at Commonwealth Stadium.

"He's got a lot of memories here," said fellow quarterback Ricky Ray.

"He's spent his whole career up here, so far. With all the things that are going on, he's probably thinking it's his last time in here.

"I'm sure a lot of emotions are going through his mind right now."

Sometime in the next week, perhaps as early as today, Maas will be announced as the next starting quarterback for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, confirming an already widely rumoured trade that will bring to Edmonton quarterback Danny McManus, offensive lineman Tim Bakker and a first-round draft pick in 2006.

The deal marks the end of Maas's six-year-tenure with the Eskimos.

"If this is it for me here, it would be a storybook ending for me here with winning the Grey Cup," Maas said earlier this week.

"I just love the organization so much."

Maas's looming departure put a damper on an otherwise celebratory day for the Grey Cup champions. For the other eight CFL teams, the garbage bag pack of shame marks the end of a CFL season. But the Eskimos joyfully exchanged numbers, had their fingers sized for Grey Cup rings and talked about their chances of winning yet another championship.

Throughout the room, the smell of beer hung in the air.

"I actually have a bit of a headache," said defensive end Tim Fleiszer. "I'm dealing with that first and foremost.

"Garbage day after you win the Cup is the only time it's fun to clean out your locker. Any other time, it means you were cut, you were traded or the season ended in a way that you didn't want it to."

The season ended exactly the way Ray wanted. After being pulled in his last three starts, he played the entire game in a 38-35 overtime in over Montreal for the Grey Cup.

Together with his wife, the California native plans to winter in Edmonton for the first time.

"Thank God we won, so we can stay up here," he said with a laugh.

Cornerback Davis Sanchez has other plans.

"Hopefully, I'll get married in the off-season," Sanchez said. "But I've got to find a girl first."

On a serious note, the Eskimos stand to lose up to four offensive linemen to retirement in Bruce Beaton, Chris Morris, Sandy Annunziata and Kevin

Lefsrud. Cornerback Malcolm Frank, kicker Sean Fleming and defensive back Shannon Garrett are also considering calling it a career.

Garrett, 33, would like to retire a Grey Cup champion, but the Mississippi native needs the money to rebuild from hurricane Katrina. Two weeks ago, the insurance company denied his claim for compensation for a rental property he owned by ocean.

"I would like to retire an Eskimo," said Garrett, who didn't have flood insurance. "But I really don't know what the future holds."

Beaton knows his future is waiting for him in Nova Scotia where he'll raise a family and look after his stable of rental properties.

"The hardest thing for me today was listening to the speeches about next year from Danny Maciocia and Hugh Campbell ," he said. "You're talking about a president who won five in row, and he knows the formula. You're talking about the best young coach in the league, who told me he started thinking about 2006 on the plane ride back from B.C.

"It's going to be a drag not to be a part of it, but I'm going to take a lot of satisfaction in watching these guys play next year. It's just part of life. You have to retire and move on."

Not official yet.

the CFL website says hes done as of yesterday....what more do u want?

I want to see it on the TiCat website with the word "signed".

signed?...hes not 'signing' as a free agent. he's being traded for Bakker and Danny Mac.....it will say 'Aquired'!

Sometime in the next week, perhaps as early as today, Maas will be announced as the next starting quarterback for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, confirming an already widely rumoured trade that will bring to Edmonton quarterback Danny McManus, offensive lineman Tim Bakker and a first-round draft pick in 2006.

and if CFL.ca is reporting this, then the Ti-cats website should say something soon....there was once smoke, then more smoke. now some flames...later today, or tomorrow will be all-out FIRE.

Ok, ok, until the TiCat site says 'acquired' then!
You are right though about the wording - darn it.

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Quarterback should be in lair 'within days'

ChristMaas has come early for Hamilton Tiger-Cat fans. The widely-rumoured deal which turns Edmonton Eskimo star passer Jason Maas into a Ticat will be official within days, a source close to the deal told The Spectator yesterday.

In return for the 30-year-old Beaver Dam, Wisconsin native, the Tabbies will ship to Edmonton veteran quarterback Danny McManus, veteran left guard Tim Bakker and the Cats' first overall pick in the 2006 Canadian College Draft.

The pact comes less than two months after Hamilton sent to Edmonton star running back Troy Davis and starting left guard Dan Comiskey in return for Edmonton backup cornerback Tay Cody and backup Canadian receiver Brock Ralph and Edmonton's first pick in the 2006 Canadian College Draft. Both Davis and Ralph become free agents in February.

While the two pacts are separate deals, what must be understood is that the Cats don't get Maas unless the club agreed to the Davis deal on Oct. 7 while Hamilton was still, technically at least, in a playoff race.

But the Tabbies get a marquee quarterback in Maas, a bonafide star who enjoyed a breakthrough 5,270-yard season in 2004. During that season Maas completed 361 of 549 passes for a spectacular 65.8 per cent completion percentage. The Eskie quarterback fired 31 touchdown passes while rushing for 252 yards and eight majors on 79 carries.

"He has done it. When you're looking at the list of guys that you want to bring in at quarterback, the list of available guys who have done it over a 18-game season and thrown for more than 5,000 yards and were their team's most outstanding player nominee twice, it's a short list," the source said.

A key bonus is the fact that Maas is under contract for the next three seasons at a salary believed to be below a starter's premium. That will give the Cats plenty of room to compete for expected Ottawa free agents guard George Hudson and running back Josh Ranek among others in the free agent market this February.

A secondary bonus is the fact that at least two teams, the Toronto Argonauts and the Saskatchewan Roughriders, pushed hard to acquire Maas but were beat to the punch by Hamilton. Toronto reportedly offered all-star kicker Noel Prefontaine and two others for the talented passer.

The Cats were also interested in acquiring B.C. passer Casey Printers at one time. But Printers is entering his option year and could bolt to the NFL in February, which could have left the Tabbies with nothing following a trade with the Lions. The B.C. club is also reportedly interesting in trying to re-sign Printers and trading starter Dave Dickenson. But Dickenson is older, injury-prone and commands a salary in the $400,000-plus range.

A consummate team player, Maas kept his mouth shut when the Eskimos opted to make Ricky Ray, who returned from a 2004 season spent with the New York Jets of the NFL, their starter this season.

While Maas only fired three passes in the 2005 regular season, his star-power emerged in the playoffs with a 19 of 24 post-season performance which saw him fire winning touchdown passes in the Eskies' semifinal and western final victories over Calgary and B.C. respectively.

Maas joined the Eskimos March 21, 2000 as a free agent after spending 1999 with the Baltimore Ravens, where he was limited to one pre-season appearance.

But in northern Alberta, the 6-foot-2, 211-pound passer blossomed when he emerged as the Eskimo starter in 2001. That season Maas put up a 59.3 passing percentage and fired for 3,646 yards. He was named both a CFL western all-star and the club's nominee for the league's most outstanding player award.

In 2002 Maas endured an injury plagued season that saw his performance limited to 115 passes on 213 attempts for 1,872 yards, nine majors and six interceptions.

In 2003 while recovering from off-season back surgery, the Edmonton passer was limited to holding for field goals until mid-season.

But with starting passer Ray opting to head south for 2004, Maas enjoyed his breakthrough season, once again earning the nod as the club's nominee for outstanding player.

Maas gives the Cats their first marquee quarterback since McManus signed with the club as a free agent in 1998. That season, McManus led the club to the Grey Cup where the Tabbies lost to Calgary.

But the following season McManus fired for 5,334 in leading the club to their first championship since 1989.

McManus' performance stayed rather consistent over the next three years, with 4,500-yard passing seasons, before dropping off dramatically in 2003 where he tossed for less than 3,000 yards.

But McManus rebounded in 2004 where he finished fourth in the league with 5,034 yards, leading the Cats to their first playoff berth in three seasons.

This past season, McManus suffered his worst season in black and gold, passing for just 2,500 yards in another season that saw him miss three games to injury.

Bakker signed with the Cats as a free agent in 2004 after four seasons in the league, including three with Edmonton and one with B.C.

This past season the Oakville native was platooned at centre with Marwan Hage before moving to left guard late in the season in place of the traded Comiskey.

With the loss of the first overall pick the Cat fans can probably forget about seeing Western Ontario star receiver Andy Fantuz or McMaster star linebacker Jason Pottinger in a Ticat jersey anytime soon.

Still the Cats do own picks nine, 11 and 12 in what is expected to be a excellent draft harvest.

And there is Maas. And that's really something.

The Ti-cats just got a whole lot better!

good for them !

.......absolutley, good on the cats who now have a great chance to do something in the east, and shut down the cross-over scenario, there by barring Edmonton a 35th straight playoff appearance :lol: .......

Reminds me of how Hervey (or was it Tucker ... I always mix the two up) was supposed to sign with Ottawa, and was essentially a Renegade - even Paopao was saying so - until Edmonton did something sneaky to keep him as an eskimo ...

pressure is really on the Renegades now... they look like a lock for 4th place.

Loonie will hold another Mardi Gras or Toga night with the proceeds going to sign another average player… :cry:

Have faith...He'll remain in Edmonton yet....Why dont all of you unloyal eskimos fans move to cowtown

huh?...who are u refering to?

its best, for the league, that he leaves edmonton....its a shame to have such a talent sitting on a bench for a whole season....same goes for Printers.

the East was a 2 team race this year, with the Argos and Alouettes....
the '06 season is gonna be, atleast, a 3 team East race now....now, if ottawa gets on track, could we see 4 east teams in the playoffs?


It appears Jason Maas will be a Hamilton Tiger-Cat by the end of the week.

According to the Edmonton Sun, a deal sending Maas to Hamilton will be announced on Thursday or Friday.
The report indicates veteran quarterback Danny McManus and offensive lineman Tim Bakker would be sent to Edmonton along with the Tiger-Cats first round draft choice this year.

According to the Sun, the Eskimos were planning on taking more time to work out the details of the deal but Maas is planning on leaving Edmonton this weekend and the Tiger-Cats wanted the deal done sooner than later.

Earlier this season, the Tiger-Cats sent Dan Comiskey and Troy Davis to the Eskimos, who went on to win the Grey Cup.

.........ha ha......you're hooped now, who's gonna step in and save the EEs when RR is laying flat on his back with tweety birds flying formation above his head....

Who is going in when Burris goes down?Same answer!!!!
If Allen goes down.Well by that time we will have Printers all locked up!!

i just posted an Update on Printers status with the Lions and CFL.

.......AAAAAA, wrong......Jason Gesser, Danny Wimprine and/or Josh Harris, two of who are now entering into the Arena League.......who do the Eskimos have?.........I honestly don't even know........sure didn't get any playing time that's for sure........