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Where do you begin with the Montreal Alouettes? Im not going to mention the coach that was fired five weeks into the 2013 campaign. With clear minds and open hearts, whatever... Im wont recant them losing pro footballs all-time leading passer Anthony Calvillo for the season on August 17th. Or how they lost All-Star receiver Jamel Richardson to a torn ACL and LCL in his left knee a couple weeks earlier. Wont do it. Im not going to talk about losing their explosive running back Brandon (2-Way) Whitaker to injury either. Or their injuries on the offensive line - losing Scott Flory, the All-Star guard for the Als the past 15 years or his teammate/fellow hog Andrew Woodruff, who anchored the other guard position for five seasons. Not going to do it... I also wont rehash how Doug Berry became the acting offensive coordinator midway through the year. Or how ridiculously short (three pass attempts) the leash was on young quarterback Josh Neiswander earlier in the season. Im not going to write about the Marsh Madness and Tanners contagious play. And Im not going to write about how the Als changed their offensive terminology two-thirds of the way into the season. Let me write about Jim Popp actively going out and doing something about the ups and downs that are intrinsic to our game. Its called managing! He stepped up to the plate once again in 2013 and delivered Big Papi (make that Poppy) Style... This has been the finest of his 18 years at the helm of the Alouettes. A single here, a bunt there, a liner in the gap for a stand-up double, and oh yes, there have been home runs too! Duron Carter, Mike Edem, Arland Bruce, Tyrell Sutton, and yes, a kid who has been on the teams negotiation list since 2005, Troy Smith! More on him in a minute... The old saying goes, "When the going gets tough, the tough get going." Well Popp is as tough as they come folks. He rolled up his sleeves when he was dealt a bad hand, and I mean to tell you it was a real bad hand, and he got busy. Its just like taking the play of Calvillo for granted; soon you just expect great things to happen because Anthony made the routine plays routinely and made the tough plays look routine. Popp does that when he manages. You expect there to be a Ryan Bomben there to replace a Scott Flory or a Michael Ola to replace an Andrew Woodruff. How about a Duron Carter for a Jamel Richardson? You lose two Canadian free safeties to retirement in Etienne Boulay and Matthieu Proulx and BANG, say hello to Mike Edem! Popp makes it happen almost effortlessly. But make no mistake about it, managing the way he does takes a ton of foresight, knowledge, effort, experience and sacrificing of time. It was during Weeks 6 and 7 when Popp went out and added another young gun to the promising stable of Marsh and Neiswander; Canada, say hello to Troy Smith, the Heisman Trophy recipient and three-time Bowl winner from Ohio State! Popp brought him in as the No. 4 quarterback as AC was still factoring into the equation back then. You know the guy who has been sitting on my left hand side for the past 14 years at TSN, Chris Schultz, he likes to say "prior preparation prevents poor performance." Well doesnt that just fit perfectly here? Back in August when Popp was asked what Troy brings to the table at a press conference, the coach and GM responded, “You look at his skill set, and we have been wanting a fourth QB and we have been waiting for this one to work out and it did.” “Getting him in, introducing him to the game - he has not been in a training camp since last year with the Steelers - get him back involved, let him learn the rules. Its not an easy transition at quarterback. Get him up to speed so he can compete for one of those three jobs. What the future holds we will find out.” Crazy how that prior preparation thing works out! Fast forward 12 weeks and that kid is going to lead the Als when they play the Ticats in Guelph on Sunday in the Eastern Semi-Final. He will need some help from the Als vaunted defence, he will need to protect the football, he will need his o-line to establish the line of scrimmage and get Sutton and Jerome Messam going. He will have to play smart and yet play to his strengths and realize hes not out there alone. Spread the responsibility and manage the game. Its asking a lot from an inexperienced yet extremely gifted quarterback whos learning the CFL game on the fly... Another great find for Big Poppy! David Freese Dodgers Jersey . "It was a little weird looking over and seeing all the green uniforms," he said of his first game against the Boston Celtics. 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Scott reached the major leagues with Houston in 2005 and hit 23 homers or more for Baltimore each year from 2008-10.WASHINGTON - Alex Ovechkin and the mistake-prone Washington Capitals were embarrassed by the travel-weary Arizona Coyotes, prompting coach Barry Trotz to keep the locker room doors closed for a few extra minutes after the 6-5 loss on Sunday night to deliver a grim message to his players.Behavior has to change, Trotz said. Or we have to change people, plain and simple.The Capitals collective misbehaviour allowed Washington to blow a two-goal, first-period lead by allowing five straight goals to a team that could have been forgiven for having one foot on the plane headed home.The Coyotes, wrapping up a four-game road trip, had been outscored 12-4 in the first three games.But there was breakdown after breakdown by the home team, and Ovechkin was often in the middle of it. He broke a six-game goal drought and had three assists, but he committed a crucial penalty that led to the Coyotes tying goal in the second period and had a sloppy turnover that gave Arizona another score in the third.He hasnt been the only culprit, for sure. The Capitals have lost four straight and allowed at least four goals each time.Sometimes I get the feeling we want to play as hard as we just need to, and thats not how I operate, said Trotz, who is in his first season with Washington. Thats not how you win in this league.Its an old story — already. Its too old for me.Trotz was particularly upset by a sequence in the final minute of the second period. A needless icing forced him to take a timeout because his skaters were tired. Then came a high-sticking penalty on Ovechkin, although the call appeared to be a bit dubious. Shane Doan scored on the ensuing power play with 5 seconds left in the period to tie it at 3.The commitment level has to be a little better than it is now in a lot of differentt areas, defenceman Brooks Orpik said.dddddddddddd We have guys making mistakes that experienced guys shouldnt make.Right now one guy makes a mistake and everybody else kind of watches it happen.Trailing 3-1 after the first period, the Coyotes rallied with power-play goals by Michael Stone and Doan in the second before Sam Gagner and Doan capitalized on sloppy turnovers early in the third. Doans second goal came after Ovechkin completely whiffed trying to control the puck near the side boards in the Capitals end.Antoine Vermette tallied in the first period, and Tobias Rieder added his first NHL goal late in the third for the Coyotes. Mikkel Boedker assisted on both third-period goals, ending his streak of seven games without a point. Devan Dubnyk made 32 saves.We wanted to end the trip on a good note, Arizona coach Dave Tippett said. Things hadnt gone our way.The Capitals managed to put together their own rally late after pulling goalie Justin Peters for an extra skater. Joel Ward scored on a power play with 1:53 remaining, and Troy Brower cut the deficit to one with 27 seconds remaining, but it wasnt enough.Peters, getting his third start of the season ahead of Braden Holtby, stopped just 24 of 30 shots.NOTES: Ovechkin ended his drought with a classic Ovechkin goal — a one-timer from the left circle during a power play late in the first period. His six games without a goal had been his longest such streak since November 2011. His four points moved him into a tie with Peter Bondra (825) atop the franchises career points list. ... Backstrom passed Dale Hunter (375) for fourth place on Washingtons career assists list. ... The Coyotes won for the first time in six road games this season.___Follow Joseph White on Twitter: http://twitter.com/JGWhiteAP ' ' '