CFL delays season, talks with XFL ongoing

Hamilton Tiger-Cats v Winnipeg Blue Bombers
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After canceling its 2020 season, the Canadian Football League will play in 2021. But the season won’t start on time.

CFL Commissioner Randy Ambrosie now says the season will start on August 5, will be shortened to 14 games, and will conclude with the Grey Cup on December 12 in Hamilton. But what may interest American fans more is that the CFL is continuing talks with the XFL, which will not play this year, about collaborating.

“Our discussions with the XFL have been very positive,” Ambrosie said. “What we’re looking at and what we’ve been working on on our own is improving our business model. We’ve made a lot of adjustments in the past number of months to make sure that we’ve got the best business model possible. The discussions with the XFL are really focused on that. How would working together help to improve the business model? When you get that answer, you have nearly an infinite list of possibilities on how you would make it work. What our fans really deserve and what our amateur football partners really deserve is a business that’s as good as our game. That’s what we’re working to deliver here.”

It’s unclear how a CFL-XFL partnership would work, but a championship game between the two teams could generate some interest from fans on both sides of the border. That won’t happen in 2021, but in 2022 the two leagues may find a way to collaborate that would be pleasing to the kinds of hard-core football fans who want more than the 272 regular-season games a year that the NFL offers.

9 responses to “CFL delays season, talks with XFL ongoing

  1. It works if the XFL goes in with CFL rules and merges the two, like the old AFL and NFL. Then you bring American fans in and adds a small fan base to grow in the USA.

  2. Just remember folks, THE ROCK owns the XFL now. I believe ANYTHING is possible.

  3. A normal CFL regular season is EIGHTEEN games. You guys whine about the NFL adding a 17th game, yet where is all the cries about CFL player safety by adding another XFL-CFL game?

    At least try to be consistent…

  4. Call the merger the World Football League (WFL). Wide football fields and actually get back to running the ball league just like the old NFL. I am all in when it happens.

  5. The leagues playing each other under a combined set of rules could make for some great games as the best coaches adapt new strategies.

    The American side will especially have to adjust to having just three downs if CFL gets to decide that rule; even if they go with American football’s usual four, that will still be CFL’s advantage with essentially a bonus down each possession.

  6. chefboyd the NFL players..you know the guys who you actually watch and play the game are the ones complaining about the 17th game

  7. Been watching the NFL since about 88. There have been multiple attempts at alternate leagues, plans, set ups. This one actually makes sense to me. The CFL while at closest a cousin to the NFL is an established brand even if you haven’t watched a game. In pencil it works in geography, language, and the CFL and the XFL would presumably have a media distributor in each country I presume. Of course, the rules are different in a number of ways. Downs first off. But this could be made to work if the NFL doesn’t view it as a threat in anyway, and as a result doesn’t try to dissuade it’s media partners from covering it or showing it. Wait and see mode.

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