The battle for top spot in the East Division will reach a fevered pitch Friday night at BMO Field.

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats enter this week on a three-game winning streak and will face an opportunistic Toronto Argonauts squad that is a perfect 5-0 at home this season.

The Tiger-Cats have finally found their groove on offence, with Jeremiah Masoli firing on all cylinders. He’s thrown eight touchdowns and no interceptions in his last five starts.

Masoli has now gone 144 pass attempts without an interception and aims to improve on his 6-2 career record against the rival Argos.

Add in the resurgence of 2019 CFL M.O.P. Brandon Banks and the Ticats offence is starting to look more like the juggernaut from two years ago.

Last week against the Lions, Banks caught six of eight targets for 75 yards and his first touchdown since the 2019 East Final.

Seven hundred and nineteen days was a long time coming, but now that Speedy B has found the end zone, expect more of the same down the stretch.

Don Jackson has taken advantage of his role as the Cats primary ball carrier, with 200 rushing yards on 28 carries since his return to the lineup.

One final factor to consider is the all-important turnover battle.

Hamilton currently has a solid turnover differential at plus-12, while Toronto sits at a disappointing minus-14. That is truly shocking for an 8-4 team. And soon to be 8-5 and second in the East.

The Prediction: Hamilton -1

In another matchup with East Division playoff implications, the Alouettes square off against the CFL’s top team in the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for a second straight week.

With Trevor Harris at the helm as Montreal’s starting quarterback, the team performed admirably last week, falling just short in the fourth quarter by a score of 31-21.

The biggest difference for Harris with the Alouettes has been his improved play in the red zone.

This season with the Elks, Harris only managed 3.64 points per red zone trip (ranked last in the CFL through Week 9).

Since moving to La Belle Province, he has produced a touchdown on all three of his red zone trips with the Als.

Getting the most out of each opportunity to score will be key in Saturday afternoon’s matchup against the CFL’s stingiest defence.

On the other side of the football, it appears that the Bombers are starting to gear down as they look ahead to hosting the West Final.

Sean McGuire will make his first career start this week in place of M.O.P. front-runner Zach Collaros.

Choosing rest over results will ultimately help Winnipeg’s quest for a championship repeat, but in the meantime, it will allow opponents to keep the games closer.

The Prediction: Montreal +7.5