STAMPS NOTES: Receiver Luther Hakunavanhu ready for spotlight

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You get the feeling that Luther Hakunavanhu is ready for a greater workload.

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The Calgary Stampeders receiver was a reliable and consistent option for the team in his one and a half season with the team.

That came as a surprise last season, when Hakunavanhu was expected to return to York University after a training camp, but was so impressive that he deserved a stay in the professional ranks.

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This season he will pick up where he left off. He may not be the Stamps’ primary target, but he has good hands and can outsmart defenders, especially in the end zone.

Now that the Stamps look like they could lose Richard Sindani’s services in the long run, perhaps they should rely on Hakunavanhu to take on a bigger role.

And the player himself? He wants to show that he is ready.

“I’m excited to step into that light and show what I’ve got,” Hakunavanhu said. “People have glimpsed and even for me I’ve had moments. A little here, a little there, but I’m excited to fully show what I’ve got.”

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Saturday’s game against the Argonauts in Toronto (17 hours, TSN/770 CHQR) has the potential to become a big one for Hakunavanhu.

Not only is it clear that his team will need him, but it’s also his first time playing in the city he calls home and where he played his college ball.

For a moment, though, it looked like it wasn’t going to happen. The Stamps should thank their lucky stars that Hakunavanhu is available.

It was only two weeks ago that he was added to the list of injured from six games with a hamstring injury. However, after tests, it was determined that the injury was not as bad as originally thought.

Hamstrings were a problem for the Stamps this year, but they dodged a bullet with this one.

“It felt great today, so take it a little bit from day to day. I’m healthy, I’m looking forward to seeing if I’m in the game plan and moving on from there,” Hakunavanhu said. just take care of it.”

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Having Hakunavanhu available can be huge for the Stamps. They struggled against the BC Lions last weekend after Canadian trustees Sindani and Jalen Philpot were injured, and while it looks like Philpot won’t be out for too long, there are indications Sindani will be out for at least a few games.

Having a man like Hakunavanhu available will help ease the burden.

“We love Luther when he plays,” Stamps head coach Dave Dickenson said. “He had that hamstring problem, he’s a weapon.

“We’ll see if we can use him, one of our guys who we think is starting to take those next steps forward, we’d love to see him there more often.”

Rysen John will participate in Chicago Bears training camp at the end of July.  The Stampeders receiver and draft pick have been released by the Bears.
Rysen John will participate in Chicago Bears training camp at the end of July. The Stampeders receiver and draft pick have been released by the Bears. Photo by David Banks /USA TODAY Sports

KEEP AN EYE IN EYE

This week, the Chicago Bears released Rysen John.

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The 6-foot-7 receiver was selected by the Stampeders in the third round of the 2020 CFL Draft and while he is expected to explore his NFL options for at least a while, the Stamps have certainly kept their finger on the pulse. . at him.

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“Oh yes, I’m paying attention,” Dickenson said. “We had (Director of Players Personnel) Brendan Mahoney and (Director of US Scouting) Cole Hufnagel was there, scouting him. Right now he weighs about 260 lbs., maybe 250. He should fit his body to start our game.

“We want those guys to do what they have to do because when you come to Canada, if that’s in the cards, we want you to give it your all. We’re not going to beg anyone to come to the Calgary Stampeders, but we’d love to given the chance to work with Rysen, when we drafted him we thought we might have to wait a little while. If he comes here I think he’ll have a good, long career.”

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NEW DRAWINGS

The Stamps have added two players whose names the most hardcore fans might recognize.

On Wednesday, the team brought back running back Aca’Cedric Ware, a USC product that was on the practice roster last season and was activated from the retired list.

The Stamps also brought back linebacker Perry Young, who spent a training camp with the team.

“(Ware) was a man that we thought could join in and compete, but life took him in a different direction, but we kept in touch,” Dickenson said. “Perry Young was camp with all of us, thought he was a good player who can play in this league, I needed some extra depth there with (Jameer Thurman) who was injured. We’ll see how it plays out.”

daustin@postmedia.com

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