The news around the XFL / CFL talks has certainly gotten a lot of media attention this past week. The mentions were slight and few in the US; however, it is a different story in Canada.
The CFL, and its 100 years of tradition and a fan base that has watched the product most of their life, the CFL’s future has fans and the people who cover it talking.
Bob Irving, the longtime voice of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, said on Twitter.
“I hope those drinking the Rock/XFL kool-aid don’t include the CFL owners/presidents/board chairs who might want to take a step back and consider seriously whether they’re going down a rabbit hole from which there is no return.”
I hope those drinking the Rock/XFL kool-aid don’t include the CFL owners/presidents/board chairs who might want to take a step back and consider seriously whether they’re going down a rabbit hole from which there is no return.— Bob Irving (@BobIrvingCJOB) March 20, 2021
Concern about the future direction and financial viability of the CFL, has been a topic for discussion for quite some time in Canada. Is the product sustainable without the help of The Rock, Dany Garica, and RedBird Capital? That is the central question on everyone’s mind.
Most agree, The Rock’s media influence in getting people to watch the league is huge. Wally Buono, former coach of The Rock in his brief time with the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders, said
“I think with Dwayne involved in all this, he would have a respect for the CFL game in itself, which I think is a tremendous advantage. The fact that he’s had exposure to it, the fact that I think he sees the quality of player and the quality of the game. He knows the passion of the fans in Canada,”
Like many fans of either league and including us at XFL News Hub, we have all tried to predict what will happen next and the end game. TSN insider Farhan Lalji in an appearance on The Sportscage said.
“If I had a thousand dollars — and I don’t often have that — I would bet there is going to be a meaningful arrangement between the CFL and the XFL that includes gameplay, probably by 2023, if not sooner,”
“I absolutely believe there is real traction to this. I absolutely believe there’s going to be a significant connection or arrangement. I’m not going to use the ‘M’ word, but that may be, in fact, what happens,”
Whether it is a full-blown merger or two leagues trying to help each other, talk about the XFL, at least in Canada, has been an everyday thing. For us XFL fans in the US, we now have new fans excited and talking about what the XFL has in store next.
Quotes from 3downnation.com
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March 21, 2021 at 10:58 pm
XFL is a league that has failed twice. Then sold in bankruptcy for a song. In the states, and around the world, the NFL is the only thing that matters. So many leagues have failed quickly. The CFL, with all its problems over the years, has endured. Even US expansion failed, but it is still around. Does the CFL need to change to survive?,yes. Does it need help from a league that has no track record of success?, No! XFL seems like an anchor for the CFL if there is a merger. If they want to stay separate leagues and share resources like player exchange and economy’s of scale could potentially help both leagues. For me, that would be the only way to work this out, although, I still think it would be a mistake.
March 22, 2021 at 1:06 am
I’m an American who has grown up in Canada and I don’t want this merger. The CFL will no longer be relevant after this happens.
March 22, 2021 at 4:24 pm
As an American, stateside, who has watched the CFL intently for the last couple of decades, I would probably stop watching if the CFL merges into the XFL.
March 22, 2021 at 9:20 am
This happens, it’s on the Liberal Government. Needed 30 million LOAN to keep things going. No deal. (Where’s Howie when we need him?)..
Seems the NHL found a way to keep their game going here in Canada and they’re playing almost 60 games. Hey, they could have put the money through the We Group!point is, we now have outsiders planning to absorb the league, hoping for a ready made fan base. Sad way for the league as we knlw it to disappear.
March 22, 2021 at 12:58 pm
I’m a die-hard fan of football in general. I watch NFL for one reason, the Minnesota Vikings. If it weren’t for the greedy influence of money hungry suits who don’t even know the dynamics of the game, and the slow pace due to flags being thrown every other snap, I’d say love NFL. CFL season is my main focus. It’s still driven by money, but the core fundamentals are still there. No one remembers the horse derbys, and family oriented games and shows before and after the game. Because, the focus has slowly shifted to money. I want this team to win, so I can make more bets. The few fans of the game like myself, are being bled dry trying to keep it afloat. While everyone else is arguing over money. I don’t say I make any difference for the Blue Bombers, but I help out with whatever I can. Like I said, money means little to me. I ran a theoretical two seasons of this using a table top D&D style simulation. I kept the games played on a CFL field using CFL rules, and games on an XFL field using XFL rules. My buddy noticed a few fan integration problems in his weird, algorithms, or whatever. But, it didn’t disrupt any of the simulated revenue stream. Granted, I ain’t no sociologist, I’m just a football fan. But, I think this could bring a whole new dimension to the strategy and tactics of the game, which has never been seen before. Whether the CFL survives, or not, I will continue seeking ways to bring it back, and I will not attend another game until I do. The XFL is just as fast paced, and exciting as the CFL, but I’m becoming an old timer soon, and the world must move on, and we along with it.
March 22, 2021 at 1:53 pm
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson doesn’t have enough money to start up all 8 XFL teams by himself with Redbird Capital. He does not have $80 billion plus backing him like MLSE does with Rogers and Bell. He should try to start up with one or two teams in 2021 of the XFL playing in the CFL, Canadian rules, and take it from there.
March 22, 2021 at 8:33 pm
Im a Canadian, love the CFL, but I also enjoy NFL. And in all honesty I have yet to even see an XFL game. And I gotta say, Canadian rules make the game much more fast paced and exciting. What professional athlete (QB) needs a throw away play? I would love to see this merger and stick with CFL rules but we all know that if we want American fans, we need to adapt to play more XFL style. But if there were to be only 1 CFL rule to hang on to, it would be the 3 downs. Then American fans could watch to difference and see how much slower the game is with 4 downs.
And one other stigma Canada has always been plagued with in any league is just trying to attract American players up north when they could play for the same money in a city like Miami. (And I don’t blame them, i would move there too if I could) So another thought I had was to grant each Canadian team a “handicap” of let’s say an extra $5 Mil towards their salary cap they could use to “entice” and more superstar like player who would normally stay south for the same amount of money. Anyways just some thoughts I had, I love our Canadian game but I understand with our low population, we need to adapt to survive. And I want to thank the XFL for even drumming up this conversation with the CFL, no matter what happens. Go BC Lions!!!!! Van-Islander
March 22, 2021 at 11:23 pm
Soccer fields are about 75 yards wide and 120 yards long. Therefore, a CFL-width field will fit, but not a CFL-length field.
In 2020, three XFL teams used MLS stadiums. But potentially 6 had MLS stadiums available. Tampa Bay was an exception, but many think it’s going to move to Orlando anyway, an MLS city. St. Louis is building an MLS stadium for 2023. This means conceding that the league’s goal of 30,000 capacity will never be met.
CFL width, NFL length, plus 3 downs. Strangely, hardly anyone has commented about 12 players versus 11.