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  #101  
Old Posted Dec 18, 2017, 9:09 PM
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While it is not a huge story, I think the fact the Lions hired a new President, and one with experience with one of the premier clubs in the league, shows that Braley is not sitting on his hands doing nothing this year.
Well, after leaving the position unfilled for nearly two years (!!!!) and then going out and hiring an Edmonton guy for a job where local connections are important, you really have to wonder where Braley is going with all of this.
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  #102  
Old Posted Dec 19, 2017, 10:44 PM
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JR is back Mahalo

Looks like Jeff Reinebold is back!!!

https://www.bclions.com/2017/12/19/b...s-coordinator/

Good hire I think, his guys usually love him and will run through brick walls as I have seen many times (figuratively of course)
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  #103  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 12:48 AM
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Originally Posted by cjones2451 View Post
Looks like Jeff Reinebold is back!!!

https://www.bclions.com/2017/12/19/b...s-coordinator/

Good hire I think, his guys usually love him and will run through brick walls as I have seen many times (figuratively of course)
Yes, great guy and nice to see him back working. He's a bit of a celebrity in the UK.
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  #104  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 2:33 AM
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I heard Reinebold speak at a football dinner in Winnipeg a few years ago... He had me so revved up with his speech if he had told me to run full speed into a wall I probably would've done it. He's a good guy, it's impossible not to cheer for him. I hope it works out for him in BC.

(Occasionally I chuckled at the thought of him on the same coaching staff as Kent Austin... The most laid back and the most rage-a-holic coaches ever, working together on the same sideline. Heh.)
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  #105  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 2:39 AM
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Speaking of coaching, the Twitter-verse is heating up with speculation that the Alouettes will soon announce the hiring of Gary Crowton as HC. As a Bomber fan I can only say God help them, but I guess he could only work with the shoddy tools Joe Mack gave him.

What's that you say? Joe Mack is in Montreal now?
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  #106  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 4:53 AM
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Speaking of coaching, the Twitter-verse is heating up with speculation that the Alouettes will soon announce the hiring of Gary Crowton as HC. As a Bomber fan I can only say God help them, but I guess he could only work with the shoddy tools Joe Mack gave him.

What's that you say? Joe Mack is in Montreal now?
He didn't really seem to have a fair chance with the hand the Bombers dealt him. The players seemed genuinely sorry to see him go. I guess "Joe Mack" sounds a bit like "Jim Popp" (don't they both live in the Carolinas?) -- maybe the Als got confused.
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  #107  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 12:34 PM
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Heh. "Close enough, Jim. I mean Joe. You're hired."

Now there's speculation that it could be former NFL head coach Mike Sherman going to Montreal?
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  #108  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 4:46 PM
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The Als announced the hiring of Mike Sherman, best known as former HC of the Green Bay Packers from 2000-04 where he went 53-27. After that he was the HC of Texas A & M, and former OC/OL coach in a ton of places.

http://www.rodpedersen.com/2017/12/a...ead-coach.html


source: wikipedia

Quote:
Montreal, December 20, 2017 – The Montreal Alouettes announced Wednesday that Mike Sherman has been appointed the 24th Head Coach in the history of the Montreal Alouettes. The 63-year-old coach brings close to 40 years of coaching experience at the high school, university and professional levels with him. Sherman was head coach of the Green Bay Packers in the NFL from 2000 to 2005. From 2001 to 2004, he was also the club's General Manager. The team showed a 57-39 record in six seasons with him at the helm. During that time, the Packers won three division titles in 2002, 2003 and 2004. In his six seasons as the Head Coach he led the Packers to five winning seasons. His 53-27 record in Green Bay from 2000 to 2004 place him second in the club history with a winning percentage of .663 as a Head Coach.
Interesting hire of a high profile NFL/NCAA guy with no CFL background. I guess they're hoping he'll turn out to be another Trestman? He's 63 so he probably still has a lot of football left in him.

Considering what another former NFL guy was able to accomplish in Hamilton last season, this looks like a pretty shrewd move by Montreal and quite a coup for them. Now 3 out of 4 eastern division HCs are former NFL HCs.
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  #109  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 4:53 PM
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The Als announced the hiring of Mike Sherman, best known as former HC of the Green Bay Packers from 2000-04 where he went 53-27. After that he was the HC of Texas A & M, and former OC/OL coach in a ton of places.

http://www.rodpedersen.com/2017/12/a...ead-coach.html


source: wikipedia



Interesting hire of a high profile NFL/NCAA guy with no CFL background. I guess they're hoping he'll turn out to be another Trestman? He's 63 so he probably still has a lot of football left in him.

Considering what another former NFL guy was able to accomplish in Hamilton last season, this looks like a pretty shrewd move by Montreal and quite a coup for them. Now 3 out of 4 eastern division HCs are former NFL HCs.
The other tid bit is he was with Manziel at Texas A&M, but can they get the rigthts for him from the Ti-Cats, who I am not sure would trade him to a division rival.
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  #110  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2017, 10:47 PM
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The Commish is at it again...

A Holiday Surprise for These Long-Time Season Ticket Holders!
cfl.ca December 20, 2017

The Howe family of Toronto have had Argonauts season tickets for over 75 years! Commissioner Randy Ambrosie had a surprise in store for them to celebrate their loyalty to the CFL.
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  #111  
Old Posted Dec 21, 2017, 11:31 PM
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Competition

I can't believe I am bring this up, but do we need to worry about the XFL again as a competition for talent in the CFL?

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com...lan-continues/
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  #112  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2017, 12:23 AM
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I can't believe I am bring this up, but do we need to worry about the XFL again as a competition for talent in the CFL?

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com...lan-continues/
I don't think so, the XFL never really hurt the CFL in 2001 and they lost $70 million in 2001 in their only season and that was when Vince McMahon was riding the pro wrestling boom of the late 90's early 2000's. Vince doesn't have that luxury now with his product's ratings and attendance at all time low's.
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  #113  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2017, 3:09 PM
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So what is the point of the XFL reboot? Is McMahon going to swoop down and suddenly attract vast numbers of the MAGA crowd that is boycotting the NFL because, if I understand correctly, some players kneel during the anthem? Good luck to him.
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  #114  
Old Posted Dec 23, 2017, 10:50 AM
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I don't think so, the XFL never really hurt the CFL in 2001 and they lost $70 million in 2001 in their only season and that was when Vince McMahon was riding the pro wrestling boom of the late 90's early 2000's. Vince doesn't have that luxury now with his product's ratings and attendance at all time low's.
McMahon is actually worth a comparable amount now as he was seventeen years ago, so money wouldn't be an issue for him. The fading success of WWE might actually be a huge boon for a revived XFL since he won't be as likely to turn it into sports entertainment.

There's way too little to go off of right now, but if he managed to pull it off I think the XFL could be a big threat to the CFL. The only reason it wasn't a threat during the first run through was because it was so poorly managed. A functional second tier league within America would be a big draw for a lot of players.
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  #115  
Old Posted Dec 23, 2017, 3:10 PM
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There is lots of room to create a development league for the NFL. Vince is likely looking to create a spring and summer leaguea that is a by-pass of college.
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  #116  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2017, 8:08 PM
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Okay so Randy Ambrosie gave the green light on Johnny Manziel....

-so the Ti-Cats have 10 days to offer him a contract or trade his rights
-they could low ball the offer which then gives them I believe 60 days to get it done

So if he signs with Hamilton, we already knew that Zach Collaros was on his way out, but what does Jerimiah Masoli do? Does he say, screw it and sign elsewhere? What if he does and Johnny football sucks playing the CFL game?

Wow, get me some popcorn, this could get interesting.

My 2 cents as the best for the league overall. Manziel goes to Montreal, Masoli in Hamilton and Collaros in Saskatchewan
Montreal gets something to spark interest, Hamilton gets some stability, and Saskatchewan gets a QB who can light it up but remains to see if he still can.
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  #117  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2017, 12:22 AM
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Okay so Randy Ambrosie gave the green light on Johnny Manziel....

-so the Ti-Cats have 10 days to offer him a contract or trade his rights
-they could low ball the offer which then gives them I believe 60 days to get it done

So if he signs with Hamilton, we already knew that Zach Collaros was on his way out, but what does Jerimiah Masoli do? Does he say, screw it and sign elsewhere? What if he does and Johnny football sucks playing the CFL game?

Wow, get me some popcorn, this could get interesting.

My 2 cents as the best for the league overall. Manziel goes to Montreal, Masoli in Hamilton and Collaros in Saskatchewan
Montreal gets something to spark interest, Hamilton gets some stability, and Saskatchewan gets a QB who can light it up but remains to see if he still can.
I think Manziel would be a much bigger draw in Toronto than Montreal. Montreal fans support their teams when they are winners whereas Toronto fans are more obsessed with teams that have star power.
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  #118  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2017, 2:56 AM
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CFL in Halifax: A gamble with lots of field to cover
FRANCIS CAMPBELL The Chronicle Herald December 28, 2017

This is part one of a series on the possibility of a CFL franchise in Halifax.

PART TWO: Stadium talk dominates CFL expansion discussion

Third down and long.

Sports fans could not be blamed for ascribing those odds to a Canadian Football League expansion franchise in Halifax.

Jaded by past failure and sporadic expansion chatter that hasn’t gone anywhere, local fans might be too hasty in relegating the latest CFL expansion bid to the improbable bin.

“We feel that the odds are better than not,” said a guarded Anthony LeBlanc, one of three businessmen who front a company that is keen on pushing CFL expansion to the Maritimes over the goal-line this time around.

“There is a lot of work that needs to be done. We are taking a sizeable financial risk on our part. Business is a deal of risk-reward. We are certainly not at that point that anybody is saying this is approved and it’s moving forward.”

The New Brunswick-born LeBlanc was a longtime executive with Research in Motion and is the former president and chief executive of the Arizona Coyotes of the National Hockey League. Sharing the bulk of the initial financial risk with LeBlanc are Maritime Football Ltd. co-owners Bruce Bowser, a Halifax native who is president of AMJ Campbell Van Lines, and Gary Drummond, a businessman from Regina who was president of hockey operations with the Coyotes during LeBlanc’s tenure there.

The group had recent meetings with new CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie and the league’s board of governors, and an in-camera session with Mayor Mike Savage and the Halifax Regional Municipality’s city council.

“What we wanted this group to know is that we are very interested and excited about the opportunity to bring the Maritimes, the Atlantic region, into the Canadian Football League family,” said Ambrosie, an offensive guard for three CFL teams who was installed as the league’s 14th commissioner in July.

“We will support them to the very best of our abilities while recognizing that they have to drive the bus and, from time to time, we have to get out and push a little to help them move this along.”

If anyone is going to drive a CFL franchise into Halifax, they will require a stadium in which to park it. The lack of a stadium was the stumbling block after a group called the Maritime Professional Football Club Ltd. was granted a conditional expansion franchise in 1982.

That team, officially named the Atlantic Schooners, was to begin play in the 1984 season, but the ownership group was not able to meet the deadline with a financial plan for a necessary $6-million stadium slated to be built in Dartmouth. The franchise bid was withdrawn in 1983.

“The elephant in the room is the stadium,” said LeBlanc, who estimated a facility with a capacity of somewhere in the vicinity of 25,000 would be required.

Ambrosie said the league is committed to collaborating with the ownership group as “they work through a process of working with the city, the province and perhaps the federal government on a facility.”

“Obviously, that is the big question that has to get answered,” Ambrosie said.

But it doesn’t appear as if much of the funding will be coming from public coffers.

“There has always been mixed feelings on the idea of a stadium and even a CFL team,” Savage said. “Interestingly enough, when this one surfaced, many people, including people on council who had been skeptical, said this deserves a chance.

“I think there is a lot of potential for a team and a stadium here, but I don’t think there is much appetite on council for something that we have to sink a lot of capital dollars into right up front. We need to be a little more creative than that. That’s what I have told the (ownership group) and they are working on that.”

LeBlanc said the ownership group has commissioned Deloitte Halifax to prepare a third-party analysis of the benefits a stadium could bring to the city and province.

“We’re being very, very thoughtful in our approach with the city and the province in trying to construct a true public-private partnership,” LeBlanc said. “It’s not just a CFL stadium; it will be a multi-use stadium.”

Potential locations bandied about include Bayers Lake Business Park, the former Shannon Park military community on the Dartmouth side of the MacKay bridge, a Dartmouth Crossing site, and property that is part of the Halifax Commons.

“I think there are a lot of football fans in HRM and I think there are a lot of concert fans in HRM,” Savage said. “I think there are a lot of people who would come to different types of sporting events. By and large, the support could come from here, but I think you do need to supplement that with interest from around the region. It’s there as well.”

Rick Rivers has long been involved in coaching and administration of minor football at the provincial and national level.

“I think there are enough (fans) to make it a go,” he said of a potential CFL expansion franchise. “I think there has to be a starting point. I’ve watched football grow here since I came here in 1969. . . . I think it should definitely have a Maritime flavour because we want to get the people from New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.”

Jeff Cummins, the head football coach at Acadia University for the past 14 seasons, is not convinced of the viability of the CFL in Halifax.

“It would be great, but I don’t know how real it is,” Cummins said.

“There is no stadium and I don’t think there is an appetite from the public to build one. It’s not that people are clamouring for football in the Maritimes. It’s not like people are screaming and yelling that they want football. My concern is the support and, do they find it.”

Ambrosie said the expansion bid is in its infancy, but he remains optimistic.

LeBlanc said in addition to hiring Deloitte and legal representation from McInnes Cooper in Halifax, the ownership group engaged Corporate Research Associates to do detailed polling.

“The results that came back were really positive, that people want to go to a game,” he said.

Earlier this month, the legal team secured the trademark name Atlantic Schooners. The trademark provides Maritime Football Ltd. with control over intellectual property associated with the Schooners name, such as licence plate holders, athletic wear and football figurines.

LeBlanc said the trademark was acquired in case the ownership group decided to use it in future.

“We are getting to the point where we’re ready to spend real money, when you are bringing in companies like Deloitte, law firms, when you are doing serious government relations,” LeBlanc said.

“We at least have the level of comfort that we know we are doing this with 100-per-cent risk of our own personal investment to keep this thing moving along and we continue to do so.”

The best-case scenario would have the league grant the ownership group a conditional franchise as early as next year, with an expansion team on a new stadium field in the Halifax area by the 2020 or 2021 season.

LeBlanc was circumspect when asked about the likelihood of that happening.

“It is so difficult to say. Some days, I feel it’s 100 per cent. Some days, I feel it’s 50 per cent.”
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  #119  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2017, 3:09 AM
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Stadium talk dominates CFL expansion discussion
FRANCIS CAMPBELL The Chronicle Herald December 28, 2017
Place to play is top of mind in team, city, league officials

This is part two of a series on the possibility of a CFL franchise in Halifax.

PART ONE: CFL in Halifax: A gamble with lots of field to cover

Professional sports teams need a place to call home.

In the Canadian Football League, that place is a stadium, a place conspicuously absent in the effort to bring an Atlantic regional expansion franchise to Halifax.

“Getting the stadium, that’s the ballgame,” said Mike Savage, mayor of Halifax Regional Municipality. “You can’t have a team, you can’t have an ownership group and you can’t be in the CFL if you haven’t got a stadium. It has to be a multi-purpose stadium that’s realistic and economically viable.”

The stadium stumbling block has scuttled many expansion discussions.

“There is no place to play,” said Jeff Cummins, the American-born former CFL player who has run the Acadia Axemen football program for more than a dozen years. “My concern will be that until it shows up, a stadium, a place to play. You can talk about a team all you want but there is no place to fill 10,000, 12,000, 15,000 seats. There is no place to have that game.”

The necessity of a place to play is not lost on the league or the ownership group, registered under the name Maritime Football Ltd.

If you build it they might come


Anthony LeBlanc, one of three front men for the ownership group, refers to a stadium as the elephant in the room and league Commissioner Randy Ambrosie said a stadium is “first and

foremost” among the expansion requirements that the ownership group must address. The two men agree that the stadium could not be a CFL-only facility.

“We’re conscious that this would not just be about the CFL, this would be about unlocking the full potential of the Maritime region to show their hospitality to people from Canada and from around the world at a world-class facility,” Ambrosie said.

Key questions swirl around a potential stadium. Who would finance it? Where would it be built? What would it cost? Who would own it and what would it look like?

The estimate is that a stadium in the Halifax area would cost well north of $200 million. The Saskatchewan Roughriders moved into the $278-million Mosaic Stadium for the 2017 CFL season. The 33,000-seat facility can be expanded to accommodate 40,000.

A Halifax stadium, according to LeBlanc, would likely be an expandable 24,000- to 26,000-seat facility, falling in line with the size of the stadiums that are home to Eastern Division teams in Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto and Hamilton.

Moshe Lander, a professor who specializes in the economics of sports at Concordia University in Montreal, said a publicly funded stadium doesn’t make good sense.

“It is not like there is an unlimited amount of tax dollars out there, so if you are going to put it toward a stadium, then that means there is less money for health care, roads, infrastructure, education or whatever else,” Lander said. “Usually, the benefits that come from a stadium don’t justify that diversion of funds.”

Neither is Lander a proponent of the public-private partnership to build a stadium.

“The city or the province will say, ‘We don’t want to put up any of our money, so you put up yours.’ The owners say, ‘If you don’t put up the money, we just won’t have a team.’

“You will find that these ownership groups are rich to begin with because they made their money elsewhere . . . They don’t need a franchise, it’s not their source of wealth, it’s not their source of income. ‘Give us what we want or we can find another worthwhile way to use our money to benefit us.’”

That sort of squeeze play seems unlikely to move the three levels of government that could be involved with a Halifax stadium.

“From a municipal government point of view, we are saying, if you can come back with a plan that allows us to contribute but to contribute in a way that doesn't drain the resources of the municipality, in other words, do some kind of development around the stadium that brings in tax revenue which could then be used to offset our contribution, then that is the kind of thing that I think there would be an appetite for,” Savage said.

“But it’s just not in our capital budget plan right now. There are a lot of things that we need to put money into that the only way to do it is to just spend the money and do it — a fire station or any other number of projects. If there is a way that everybody wins with a stadium, a private entity with other orders of government, I think that is very attractive.”

Premier Stephen McNeil said earlier this month that it is “exciting to see interest in Halifax and Nova Scotia from a reputable group of businessmen.”

But McNeil said the provincial Liberal government had not received any funding requests.

“If we do, it would be assessed just like other requests and projects that come before government,” he said.

The Lansdowne model

Darren Fisher, a former city councillor and now Liberal MP for Dartmouth-Cole Harbour, said he has been a longtime supporter of having the CFL in Halifax.

Lansdowne Park, located in the heart of Ottawa near the Rideau Canal, encompasses the 24,000-seat TD Place Stadium where the Redblacks play, shopping, restaurants and entertainment venues, a farmers market, courtyards, a playground, heritage buildings and green space.

“I have really fallen in love with the model that is in Ottawa around Lansdowne,” the Liberal MP said. “It’s the model that uses private money and leverages the surrounding areas around the stadium in order to help fund the capital costs.

“I hadn’t really even contemplated the ability to build something with no public dollars,” Fisher said. “I kind of envisioned some public dollars and some private dollars and some leveraging of surrounding lands. I’ve also thought of where you could use the growth in tax dollars around the area just to help support it and that would be the public contribution.”

That is in line with Savage’s vision, too.

“You have the complete experience of hotels, restaurants and shops that would be a natural complement to a stadium,” Savage said. “People come in, say, from out of town, they want to shop at the same time as they want to have their football game and do their tailgating. The old idea of building a stadium outside of town where nobody lives and nobody can get to is not attractive. There has to be almost a village like you see in Ottawa with Lansdowne.”

Lander said a stadium close to downtown would be preferable.

“If you put it right downtown where everybody is, everybody can walk down to Spring Garden or the harbour front,” said Lander, who has become familiar with Halifax while teaching a course at Dalhousie University every May and June.

“You are inviting people down there. It will be part of their day or they will make a day of it. It is much more likely to create a lasting impact than putting it out in the middle of nowhere.”

Lander suggested a property like the Halifax Commons as an ideal site.

There has been speculation about properties at Dartmouth Crossing, back of the Kent Building Supplies store in Bayers Lake Business Park and even the Shannon Park military site, although both Savage and Lander dismissed Shannon Park as an inappropriate location.

“We’re talking to a number of landowners right now,” LeBlanc said. “It’s intriguing. We have some opportunities in and around Bedford.”

LeBlanc said earlier this month that the ownership group is working with all levels of government, the league and private investors.

“That final piece that we need to figure out so that we can truly understand the economic impact is doing a final site selection. That’s something we hope to get done in the next four to six weeks . . . We’ve been very open in saying that the model we are looking to replicate is the model here in Ottawa and it is more than just a stadium. It’s a work, live, play environment with significant retail and residential. We’d like to do the same thing because that is what really drives a lot of the revenue from a provincial, city and federal perspective that makes it reasonable for them to participate in that way.”
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  #120  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2017, 3:22 AM
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Halifax CFL franchise would make football a coast-to-coast sport, says commissioner
FRANCIS CAMPBELL THE CHRONICLE HERALD December 30, 2017

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is part three of a series on the latest attempt to bring a CFL team to Halifax.

PART 1: CFL in Halifax: A gamble with lots of field to cover

PART 2: Stadium talks dominates CFL expansion discussion

The Canadian Football League has always fallen short of a true national identity.

“Coast to coast — it’s easy to say,” said Randy Ambrosie, named the league’s president in July.

“This is part of our inclusion strategy that has been missing. Not having that final piece of the puzzle, to a degree, makes us kind of incomplete.”

A franchise on the East Coast would complete Ambrosie’s puzzle and the commissioner sees that last piece coming from a bid by a trio of businessmen to bring an expansion team to Halifax.

“Having a chance over the years to visit the Atlantic provinces and to get to know the people, I can say without hesitation that this would be one of the great accomplishments of all times. To see that 10th team, I personally would like to see it happen.”

An ownership group called Maritime Football Ltd., could hold the missing piece.

“We’re paying McInnes Cooper out of the Halifax office to do all of our legal work, a variety of things, incorporating our new holding company into things like trademark searches, working with various government-related people and then, of course, continuing discussions with the city and the province,” said Anthony LeBlanc, the former president and chief executive of the Arizona Coyotes of the National Hockey League and one of the trio of businessmen behind Maritime Football Ltd.

“The other aspect is working very closely with the league itself, going back and forth with commissioner Ambrosie. It’s kind of the first phase of what a conditional expansion franchise would like and allow us to really go out and gauge the market and see what the support is going to be like.”

Ambrosie said there are a series of steps that must be followed.

“Granting of a conditional franchise and ultimately a franchise is part of the process,” Ambrosie said. “What we have done is made it clear that we are going to work with them and them alone. The most important thing we want them to know is that we want to help this group — they’ve shown the initiative, they are gentlemen of high character and great reputation.”

The men who make up the Maritime Football Ltd. ownership group are LeBlanc, Bruce Bowser, a Halifax native who is president of AMJ Campbell Van Lines, and Gary Drummond, a businessman from Regina who was president of hockey operations with the Coyotes during LeBlanc’s tenure there.

“There are all kinds of things relating to the business model that we will be sharing with them as we go through the process,” Ambrosie said. “We’ve given them a high-level overview of what those requirements will be.

“We’ve made it clear that the business model has to be accretive and positive for the other nine CFL teams. We want to build the business and grow our league so we’ve shared that with them at a high level. That includes all kinds of things, including franchise fees and revenue sharing and all these other parts of our business model that we’ve spoken about. We haven’t gotten into such detail with them because, on a very high level, a very important part of this puzzle is the issue of can we get a facility in place, one that would be great for the Canadian Football League but one that would help Maritimers from the entire region to attract major national and international events.”

The stadium puzzle piece is one that the ownership is working on, an approximate 25,000-seat facility that could be built and maintained under some kind of a public-private partnership.

In the meantime, the ownership group knows that the major hurdle of constructing a stadium at a cost of more than $200 million will be accompanied by other significant franchise costs. First, there would be an expansion fee.

“We certainly don’t get in for free,” LeBlanc said.

The expansion fee for the last awarded franchise, the Ottawa RedBlacks, was $7 million, according to the unofficial CFL database. It has been speculated that the next expansion franchise fee would be in the $10-million range.

And the logistics of how to fill out a roster remains a question for down the road. The expansion Ottawa Redblacks took part in a three-round CFL expansion draft in December 2013, which included one round of import player selections and two rounds for non-import players.

“We haven’t had that conversation,” Ambrosie said of an expansion draft. “Obviously, we want to talk to the players association about that in a very thoughtful and respectful way. It’s too early in the process. We obviously are aware of the issue but we haven’t spent any time on it.”

There has also been intermittent speculation that other locations, namely Quebec City and Saskatoon, are interested in a CFL expansion team.

“Right now, we’re having no such discussions,” Ambrosie said. “From my point of view, I’m not going to speculate on what might happen if a group emerged with a proposal for a different part of the country. As it relates to these gentlemen and to this piece of the Canadian Football League story that has been unfulfilled for far too long, we want them to know that we are committed to working with them and them alone for a period of time.”

A 10th team would also give the league divisional balance.

“There are some practical advantages, to be sure,” Ambrosie said. “One of the great benefits of two balanced divisions would be fantastic. There is lots of potential if you have two balanced divisions. There are lots of reasons for us to want it, not the least of which is to make sure that our Maritime countrymen have a team to cheer on as passionately as Canadians cheer on the teams in the rest of the country.”
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