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It’s the “Wait Until Next Year” period in the Canadian Football League


Winnipeg fans will head to a parade this week with the idea of ​​becoming one of only two modern-day teams to win more than two Gray Cups in a row – the 1954-55-56 and 1978-79 -80- 81-82 Edmonton Dynasty teams

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HAMILTON – ‘Wait until next year.’

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It is every year in the world of sport.

But this year in the Canadian Football League, “Waiting for Next Year” is more compelling than any other year.

I mean, think about it.

After a Gray Cup game which, like the playoff games that preceded it, presented an outstanding, exciting and entertaining example of classic Canadian three-way football that came to the top, at least when it came to the finish, with one of the biggest matches of the 108 editions of the event.

First, there’s the big picture. And this image has rarely been as blurry as it is today.

Commissioner Randy Ambrosie, at the Football Reporters of Canada’s annual Sunday morning breakfast, said he hoped the game would be 30-30 in the dying minutes and after that he didn’t care who marked.

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He got his wish. It was 25-25 and was decided in the fourth overtime game in Gray Cup history.

Just two mornings earlier at his annual State of the League media event, Ambrosie dropped the major announcement that the CFL, for the first time in nearly 40 years, will adopt a revenue-sharing model. .

Now the boards of community-owned teams in Saskatchewan, Winnipeg and Edmonton are heading home from here and finding out how it will play out with their fan bases with some of their season pass money going to the owner of the Toronto Argonauts, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, the multi-billion dollar company that also owns the Toronto Maple Leafs and Raptors.

Two television reporters from rights-holder TSN have revealed that “everything is on the table” as a result of the announced partnership involving an international sports marketing company and betting company, Genius Sports.

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That, reported Farhan Lalji and David Naylor, included the move from three-a-side to American four-a-side football. That would be insane, especially after Sunday’s great example of what makes the Canadian game great.

“Waiting until next year” is also an unusual situation in Winnipeg, where the Blue Bombers have just joined the very exclusive list of teams that have won back-to-back Cups after ending a 29-year Gray Cup drought. without winning the trophy.

Winnipeg fans will head to a parade this week with the idea of ​​becoming one of only two modern-day teams to win more than two Gray Cups in a row – the 1954-55-56 and 1978-79 -80- 81-82 Edmonton Dynasty teams.

The problem with this is that the Bombers are believed to be leading the league when it comes to players with one-year contracts this year, and almost all of them are on the cusp of being agents. free now.

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And Sportsnet’s Arash Madani, a former media relations manager for Bomber, shakes up the concept of CFL Coach of the Year Mike O’Shea, who joins Edmonton in a dual coaching role and of general manager.

I don’t buy this. I don’t see O’Shea becoming a Chris Jones guy who would bail out his Championship team for a double-paying job. And what makes someone think they would be a good GM?

And how will “Wait Until Next Year” play out with Hamilton Tiger-Cat fans after this team has the game on their hands?

“Goalkeeper” Bob Young has put his team on four Gray Cups in eight seasons and lost them all.

Many Tiger-Cats fans returned from here sad Sunday. Maybe others have gone mad at home.
Fans had a lot to criticize for the way the home side played the fourth quarter. But they were particularly annoyed to have conceded a single that could have allowed them to win by one and not have to make an overtime.

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Then there’s TSN’s Lalji and Naylor’s proposal that popular head coach Orlondo Steinhauer is set to go on a million-dollar-a-season deal to become a defensive coordinator with the University Huskies. from Washington. This one, I buy it.

The other thing the two TSN insiders are trying to peddle is the idea that Edmonton wants to rehire 2015 Gray Cup champion coach Jones as general manager and coach after not only leaving Edmonton high and dry, but also took a significant number of players with him for Saskatchewan.

If Edmonton rehired Jones, I guess they would lose several thousand more season ticket holders.

But that’s another column for another day.

There is also the “Wait until the year after next year” in Hamilton.

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The Hammer hadn’t been given a Gray Cup in 25 years because of the previous disaster where, essentially, they ended up offering tickets for the purchase of a cup of Tim Hortons coffee and a donut.

This time it was a clearance sale. And despite too many COVID-19 protocols and a drastically scaled-down version of the Gray Cup festival, Hamilton put on a whale show. Hamilton is looking forward to hosting a full Gray Cup meal in 2023, and fans who have been here this year are looking forward to returning.

With Edmonton blowing everything up and in need of a GM and head coach before Christmas, there is certainly no wait for “wait until next year”.

Email: [email protected]

On Twitter: @byterryjones

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