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Makes me wonder if maybe the XFL and CFL decide to let British Columbia go to the XFL (and get a rival in Seattle) while the XFL euthanizes the Los Angeles franchise so both leagues would have 8 teams.
 

Or if that won’t work, maybe the CFL gets a 10th team assuming either the Atlantic Schooners can finally become a thing or by expanding into Detroit or Buffalo or another Northern US market and the XFL expands by 2 teams. Either way, I see a merger down the line. Not now or next year, but it is coming. Maybe rename the league the IFL?

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10 hours ago, GDAWG said:

Most CFL fans want the CFL to remain 3 downs because they don't want to be NFL Canada.

Do you have a source for that?

 

Is the question asked with a counterpart of 'what do you prefer, no CFL or one in which it has 4 downs?'? 

 

IF this were asked, I imagine the answer would be a league in which the name and teams of the CFL survive.

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1 hour ago, Sec19Row53 said:

Do you have a source for that?

The vast majority of Canadian football fans like Canadian football, yes.

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1 hour ago, Red Comet said:

Makes me wonder if maybe the XFL and CFL decide to let British Columbia go to the XFL (and get a rival in Seattle) while the XFL euthanizes the Los Angeles franchise so both leagues would have 8 teams.
 

Or if that won’t work, maybe the CFL gets a 10th team assuming either the Atlantic Schooners can finally become a thing or by expanding into Detroit or Buffalo or another Northern US market and the XFL expands by 2 teams. Either way, I see a merger down the line. Not now or next year, but it is coming. Maybe rename the league the IFL?

 

This is a good question. It would make sense that the XFL (3.0? 2.1?) might rid itself of the markets that showed the most indifference to the league last year (LA, NY, Tampa, maybe?) and build around where it was successful (Seattle, St. Louis.) But that might also make it less appealing when negotiating for a TV contract, when having a presence in the biggest media markets -- regardless of fan indifference -- seems to matter. 

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2 hours ago, gosioux76 said:
15 hours ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

My guess is that the two leagues will agree on some kind of player-sharing deal, whereby players will be able to sign multiple-year deals with a team in each league. 

 

I’ll say it again: how does this save the CFL any money or make it more sustainable? 

 

This would save the CFL money by removing the need for that league to pay its players enough to keep them from signing with another league.

 

And sharing with another partner the costs of player compensation (including medical care) makes the CFL more sustainable.

 

A player-sharing scheme would also enhance the CFL's ability to keep its top players from season to season, thereby making easier the promotion of teams to fans and the luring of advertisers. (This, of course, is mitigated by the additional risk of star CFL players being injured while playing in the XFL.)

 

If largely the same player pool were employed by both leagues, and so were making twice the money that they used to make in the CFL or XFL alone, this would ensure the continued participation of of a high calibre of player in each league.

 

Finally, employment in both leagues would offer the CFL's Canadian players a tremendous opportunity in terms both of earning and exposure.

 

I have absolutely no idea whether a player-sharing deal is what is actually being discussed. But I am willing to presume that it must be, because it makes sense for both leagues.

 

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On 3/13/2021 at 11:19 AM, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

This would save the CFL money by removing the need for that league to pay its players enough to keep them from signing with another league.

 

And sharing with another partner the costs of player compensation (including medical care) makes the CFL more sustainable.

 

A player-sharing scheme would also enhance the CFL's ability to keep its top players from season to season, thereby making easier the promotion of teams to fans and the luring of advertisers. (This, of course, is mitigated by the additional risk of star CFL players being injured while playing in the XFL.)

 

If largely the same player pool were employed by both leagues, and so were making twice the money that they used to make in the CFL or XFL alone, this would ensure the continued participation of of a high calibre of player in each league.

 

Finally, employment in both leagues would offer the CFL's Canadian players a tremendous opportunity in terms both of earning and exposure.

 

I have absolutely no idea whether a player-sharing deal is what is actually being discussed. But I am willing to presume that it must be, because it makes sense for both leagues.

 


I don’t know man, this sounds like a great way for players to make more money, which doesn’t exactly help the league.
 

And again, there’s no reason to believe that either league poses any sort of threat to the other in terms of talent, especially with the CFL’s requirement that each team employ at least 20 Canadian citizens. It’s not as if Canada has such a deep talent pool that an upstart league, particularly one like the XFL that will likely be swimming in second-tier D1 college talent in the US, needs to mine the CFL to fill out rosters. That’s especially true when they play schedules that don’t overlap. 

 

And you basically said it yourself: employing players that play for two teams in different leagues is a risk to not only the player, but the team’s investment in the player. I doubt the CFL is in a position to entertain this sort of risk.

 

The CFL as it exists is in limbo. It doesn’t generate enough support from some of its biggest markets. And it needs a big splash to drive excitement and build exposure. Giving the Stampeders quarterback a cameo with the St. Louis Battlehawks isn’t going to excite anyone.

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Posted (edited)

Really? I’d say going to something like a pre-1997 MLB would be the perfect arrangement for both leagues. Resources are pooled, but all the teams involved play within their own leagues with their own rulesets with the only interleague play being when champions from both leagues face off against each other with alternating rulesets each championship and any hypothetical All-Star Game.
 

I’d love to see an American team trying to adapt to Canadian rules and vice versa. 

Edited by Red Comet

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Leadership of the CFL and XFL are sadly kidding themselves if they see the other league as being the agent of their salvation.

 

To paraphrase Shakespeare, "Looming insolvency, questionable necessity, and a global pandemic acquaint a league with strange bedfellows."

  

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10 hours ago, IceCap said:

The vast majority of Canadian football fans like Canadian football, yes.

I get it - I'm being obtuse in asking for a source for something that is entirely likely to be true. Because it is entirely likely to be true, why bother to state it? That's why I tried to extend the conversation by asking the question that OUGHT to follow.

 

So - Canadian football over no football?

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11 hours ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

If largely the same player pool were employed by both leagues, and so were making twice the money that they used to make in the CFL or XFL alone, this would ensure the continued participation of of a high calibre of player in each league.

 

Finally, employment in both leagues would offer the CFL's Canadian players a tremendous opportunity in terms both of earning and exposure.


Yes, and said high calibre players would have the tremendous opportunity to subject themselves to even more potential physical injury over a combined 28 regular season games. Pllus a potential combined 5 playoff games for those players lucky enough to make both league championships. Twice the money, twice the brain trauma... huzzah!!! 

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If there is a merger, the XFL isn't going to just take the big 3 (BC, Montreal and Toronto) to go with the 8 teams that they already have.  They will take all 9 teams unless a few of them bow out and fold, which would suck.  A merged XFL-CFL would need to have the Saskatchewan Roughriders as well, as they mirror the Green Bay Packers in many ways.  Both teams are community owned and are in the smallest cities in their respective leagues but also have significant fanbases, both in and out of their area.  If the Packers can thrive in a league with major TV markets like Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, San Francisco and Washington DC, so can a Roughriders in a merged XFL-CFL league with many of those same American markets and Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.

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43 minutes ago, GDAWG said:

If there is a merger, the XFL isn't going to just take the big 3 (BC, Montreal and Toronto) to go with the 8 teams that they already have.  They will take all 9 teams unless a few of them bow out and fold, which would suck.  A merged XFL-CFL would need to have the Saskatchewan Roughriders as well, as they mirror the Green Bay Packers in many ways.  Both teams are community owned and are in the smallest cities in their respective leagues but also have significant fanbases, both in and out of their area.  If the Packers can thrive in a league with major TV markets like Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, San Francisco and Washington DC, so can a Roughriders in a merged XFL-CFL league with many of those same American markets and Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.

XFL is single entity. That's why I don't see the leagues merging. Is the Rock going to charge $15 million per team for owners? I'd think he'd rather keep control of each team. 

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2 hours ago, Sec19Row53 said:

So - Canadian football over no football?

I'm not sure if this is a choice that needs to be made. 

 

The CFL was never on GREAT footing but it was on solid footing when the pandemic hit. Sadly that may be the killing blow if things don't change soon but... 

 

...cross boarder travel is one of the major things the pandemic has affected. The Canadian/US border is essentially shut down. I can't even get back into Canada and I have a Canadian passport. 

 

So the CFL's fate- regardless of what it ends up being- will happen regardless of the XFL. Even a "separate leagues that share talent" arrangement is dead on arrival unless the border opens. 

 

The different schedules and different styles of play are non-factors because nothing's happening so long as the border is shut down. 

 

So where is this "the CFL needs to make a choice, American football or no football" binary coming from? 

If the CFL manages to survive this then it means they'll get back up and running by a point where the border is open. And then what do they need the XFL for? 

 

But hey- pie in the sky. Let's say the CFL and XFL partner up and form a huge continent-spanning minor league of gridiron football. 

Treat it like baseball- play by the home team's rules. That would be fun, right? Imagine the analysis that could be had, trying to figure out if a team's particular strengths will aid or hinder them when they face to cross the border to play by Canadian/American rules. 

Would make fantasy pretty damn interesting. 

 

Of course there's also the attitude my dad had when he and I were talking about this proposed merger/partnership/whatever the other day. 

 

"The CFL has a long and storied history. This would be like John Diefenbaker dating a hooker." 

 

 

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32 minutes ago, MJWalker45 said:

XFL is single entity. That's why I don't see the leagues merging. Is the Rock going to charge $15 million per team for owners? I'd think he'd rather keep control of each team. 

 

The Rock is a minority I think.  I think the majority investor is Redbird Capital, who has a net worth of $4 billion.  

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7 hours ago, GDAWG said:

 

The Rock is a minority I think.  I think the majority investor is Redbird Capital, who has a net worth of $4 billion.  

Whomever the majority owner is, I don't think they'd want to hand off assets as soon as they get them. I also think the CFL owners would want too much money to sell to the league.

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14 hours ago, IceCap said:

Let's say the CFL and XFL partner up and form a huge continent-spanning minor league of gridiron... Imagine the analysis that could be had... the attitude my dad had... "The CFL has a long and storied history. This would be like John Diefenbaker dating a hooker."


I want your father serving as color commentator on CXFL broadcasts. Otherwise, it's a non-starter.

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On 3/13/2021 at 11:20 PM, MJWalker45 said:

XFL is single entity. That's why I don't see the leagues merging. Is the Rock going to charge $15 million per team for owners? I'd think he'd rather keep control of each team. 

The XFL is a single-entity league now. But I’d assume that in discussions like this, all scenarios are on the table. I don’t think we can make any assumptions that the XFL in its current state, with new investors who have thus far shown us nothing, will be anything like the XFL of a year ago,

 

There’s also the option that they retain each league’s ownership structures but form a joint venture between the leagues that manages league operations and oversees TV contracts. 
That could feasibly all happen without a change to either league’s current setup, though I’m not sure it’s really worth the effort. I’d have to think the whole appeal of this exercise is to explore the lucrative marketing appeal and TV contracts that could result from broadened exposure were they to combine in some way.
 

Also, to @IceCap’s point about the closed border, I can see why that would be a concern if this plan were to be enacted in, say, the next three months. But the XFL has already put its 2022 start date on hold, and I’d be surprised if these Canada/US travel restrictions last through August let alone a year from now. If anything comes from this, it certainly wouldn’t take effect this year.

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31 minutes ago, gosioux76 said:

The XFL is a single-entity league now. But I’d assume that in discussions like this, all scenarios are on the table. I don’t think we can make any assumptions that the XFL in its current state, with new investors who have thus far shown us nothing, will be anything like the XFL of a year ago,

 

There’s also the option that they retain each league’s ownership structures but form a joint venture between the leagues that manages league operations and oversees TV contracts. 
That could feasibly all happen without a change to either league’s current setup, though I’m not sure it’s really worth the effort. I’d have to think the whole appeal of this exercise is to explore the lucrative marketing appeal and TV contracts that caught result from broadened exposure were they to combine in some way.
 

Also, to @IceCap’s point about the closed border, I can see why that would be a concern if this plan were to be enacted in, say, the next three months. But the XFL has already put its 2022 start date on hold, and I’d be surprised if these Canada/US travel restrictions last through August let alone a year from now. If anything comes from this, it certainly wouldn’t take effect this year.

 

I'd be surprised if the border is still closed by September to be honest, because that will be when the Toronto Raptors and the Canadian NHL teams have to prepare for the upcoming season.  The Raptors expect to return to Canada by the next NBA season.  

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5 hours ago, gosioux76 said:

Also, to @IceCap’s point about the closed border, I can see why that would be a concern if this plan were to be enacted in, say, the next three months. But the XFL has already put its 2022 start date on hold, and I’d be surprised if these Canada/US travel restrictions last through August let alone a year from now. If anything comes from this, it certainly wouldn’t take effect this year.

That's my point though. Say vaccine rollout on both sides of the border go off as well as can be expected and everything's reopened by August. It's entirely possible that if things are going that well that the CFL will be kicking off by then. And if that's the case there's a very real possibility that the CFL survives this. 

 

And if they do then what does the XFL offer? 

 

The game is different and the schedules don't line up. 

At most I could see some sort of agreement for talent sharing put in place so they don't have to worry about bidding wars. It's minor league football. Neither side can afford that. So I could see some sort of "pooled scouting/talent pool" arrangement with maybe some high profile player swaps for buzz. 

 

Beyond that though? It's hard to see how these leagues will "join." Not unless the CFL agrees to start their season in February or the XFL moves to the summer. 

The CFL won't change their schedule, I can tell you that much. So it would fall on the XFL- and I don't think they'd do it either. The prevailing thought among alt-league football since the USFL died has been "we start after the Super Bowl." 

Never mind that it hasn't worked yet, that's what everyone seems married to.

I'm unsure the XFL would be interested in ditching that notion. 

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I don't see  merger as being the answer--if anything a merger could be the end of the CFL.

 

Now other ways of partnering together--as some have suggested?

Some of those ideas could work.

 

But not a full on merger.

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