Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The West Wins TO Goes NFL

Well that was a spectacular set of CFL finals on the weekend. As I said to my partner it would be sweet to see the Blue Bombers beat the Argonuts. An all West Grey Cup in the city we all love to hate; Toronto.

After all Torontonians could care less about the CFL they want the NFL. Torontonians have no use for Canadian sports, they view themselves as home to American sports, like baseball and basketball. The CFL well that's just a prairie league. And the prairie league is coming to their home town to show them how the game is really played.

In the midst of a breakout season, Alex Rios was sidelined for several weeks with a serious infection in his leg.  (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)


The program
OTR (Official Toronto Report) on the Toronto Sports Network (TSN) , a program given to prestidigitation on when the perennial losers the Maple Leafs will win the Stanley Cup ,had Paul Godfrey and Pinball Williams on earlier this year once again talking trash about bringing in the NFL. The premise is if they do the CFL will collapse.

Paul Godfrey, the president and chief executive officer of the Toronto Blue Jays who has been pressing Toronto's NFL viability for 20 years, said that Larry Tanenbaum, chairman of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and media mogul Ted Rogers have joined forces and will bid on bringing an NFL regular-season game to Toronto in 2008 and 2009.



What a pretentious proposition. The CFL is a Western League always has been. Its greatest support and fans are in the West and Hamilton. Toronto has always viewed the league as second best next to the NFL. Ottawa is gone, Montreal collapsed and came back. But in the West the teams are strong. And because of that they were able to bail out Hamilton and Montreal when they had tough financial times. Because unlike privately owned teams that go bankrupt, the majority of teams in the West are community owned.

If Toronto gets the NFL it's impact on the CFL will be minimal. The game will continue. It is a blue collar sport, where the players at the end of the season go back to their jobs, their farms, and work until next season. Unlike U.S. pro sports.

If Toronto got a NFL franchise then the CFL would still have Hamilton, could revive Ottawa, and look east to a team in the Maritimes. Lack of a team in Toronto would only hurt Toronto. And for the CFL no great loss except for Skydome, and that can be rented. And if Toronto gets the CFL the Skydome rent will be cheap because the plan is for Godfrey and pals to build a new stadium for its NFL team.

Toronto must prove mettle as host of the Grey Cup
Tue, November 20, 2007
By TERRY JONES, SUN MEDIA

Bubbling in the background of the 95th Grey Cup is the fight for the right to play host to the 100th anniversary edition.

Should the 2012 Grey Cup be in Toronto? Or out West?

With Toronto to be flooded by football fans from the West for a surprise Saskatchewan Roughriders-Winnipeg Blue Bombers Grey Cup, there will be no lack of fans here to support the concept of the 100th anniversary belonging where the Grey Cup has flourished since Toronto last fumbled the football here in 1992.

Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatchewan and Winnipeg each have held two successful celebrations of Canadiana in the interim with almost no Toronto fans showing up to participate.

But there's more to it than that. Looming in the background is the NFL and the Buffalo Bills. Toronto will have one pre-season game and one regular season game of the Buffalo Bills for each of the next five years.

It's possible the 100th anniversary Grey Cup game could be held here the same year Toronto becomes a full-schedule NFL city.

A Grey Cup on Sunday and the Toronto Bills hosting Monday Night Football the next night? Would that be a good thing or a bad thing?


Canadian Colts? NFL team considering move to Toronto

By Dave Forister, THG Sports

Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay was recently quoted as saying the Colts would consider a move to Toronto in 2007 if the team can’t come to an agreement with the city of Indianapolis on the building of a new stadium by that time.

The Colts, whose revenues are among the worst in the league, feel they need a larger, more modern stadium with luxury skyboxes to be able to compete financially with other teams in the NFL. If the city won’t build them a new stadium, then it is very likely they will move. “The RCA Dome is a very nice facility—by 1984 standards. It is depressing when we go on the road and see all these great new facilities and then have to come back here and play,” said Irsay in a Sunday afternoon interview.

Irsay told The Hoosier Gazette he would like to keep the team in Indianapolis because of the tremendous fan support the team receives, sometimes even selling out a game when a very good opponent comes to town, but in the end the decision will come down to finances. “It is all about the Benjamins,” said Irsay.

Toronto has a metropolitan area of over 5.5 million, five times that of Indianapolis, and is willing to build a new stadium if the NFL wanted to move a franchise into Canada’s largest city.

“We would welcome the NFL to Toronto with open arms,” said the city’s new mayor David Miller, “Except if the Cardinals wanted to move here of course. They suck.”

If the Colts can’t come to terms with Indianapolis and do decide to move, they would play in the Toronto Sky Dome until a new football-only stadium was built. The Sky Dome seats 53,506 for football and is currently the home of Major League Baseball’s Blue Jays and the Canadian Football League’s Argonauts.


SEE:

unintended consequences

Edmonton Eskimo Moon's NFL Hall of Fame

SKYDOME THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF SPORTS



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4 comments:

James Bow said...

(ahem)

You know better than to paint with brush strokes _that_ wide.

eugene plawiuk said...

I now visiting my friends in Toronto that they gave a flying flick about the CFL it was baseball or basketball with even the NHL coming in a distant third in interest. And when it came to football that suburb of Buffalo looked south towards the NFL. Which is why it takes out of towners to fill the stands for a CFL game.

Heck we can get more fans out here for the Grey Cup than Toronto has.

Not a broad brush at all.

James Bow said...

Well, yeah, that's your friends. That's not every Torontonian.

You can count on my father, at least, to be paying attention to the game.

eugene plawiuk said...

I think that's the problem them young'ins want to watch BBall and Baseball. And the pro sports fans in T.O. whom I was referring to do to. While the pro sport media eggs them on to look south for their idols.