A football with the new CFL logo sits on a chair in Winnipeg, Friday, November 27, 2015. An MP with a long history with the CFL is hoping the league has called an audible in its approach to securing financial help from the federal government. Liberal MP Bob Bratina, who spent 20 years doing play-by-play on Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Toronto Argonauts radio broadcasts before entering politics, is questioning the CFL’s strategy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie lays out best-case scenario for 2020 season

Ambrosie also stated a cancelled 2020 season remains a possibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Commissioner Randy Ambrosie says the earliest the CFL can start the 2020 season is September, and there won’t be a “traditional” Grey Cup in Regina.

Ambrosie made the statement Wednesday during a virtual video conference with season-ticket holders.

Ambrosie also stated a cancelled 2020 season remains a possibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Please note that we are not announcing or promising a return this fall,” he said. “We are just letting our fans know this remains one of the remaining possible scenarios for 2020.

“A cancelled season is also possible. Again, it’s too soon to make a sure call at this point.”

The prospect of the CFL starting the season in September isn’t new as Ambrosie told The Canadian Press in April, “there’s a lot pointing to September as being a reasonable person’s view of when we might be able to resume.”

READ MORE: Trudeau: Discussions ongoing with CFL as league seeks government assistance

Last month, the CFL postponed the start of training camps — which were to open last week — and pushed back the June 11 start of the regular season to July, at the earliest.

Ambrosie also called upon the Canadian government for financial assistance.

The league asked for $30 million immediately, additional monies if the ‘20 season began late and up to $120 million for the worst-case scenario — the cancellation of the entire campaign.

The CFL is also changing its ‘20 Grey Cup plans.

Regina was scheduled to host this year’s game but instead has been awarded the 2022 contest.

Hamilton will remain as the 2021 Grey Cup host.

If there’s an abbreviated 2020 season, the Grey Cup finalist with the best regular-season record will host the CFL championship game. The contest could still be played in Regina if the Saskatchewan Roughriders were one of the finalists and the team with the better record.

“The pandemic has had a drastic effect on travel, tourism and the economy,” Ambrosie said. ”It has become increasingly clear we will not be able to host a traditional Grey Cup and Grey Cup Festival, certainly not with the size and scope that has become customary.”

And if the CFL does hit the field starting in September, it will mean the cancellation of the Touchdown Atlantic game slated for June 25 in Halifax between the Toronto Argonauts and Saskatchewan Roughriders at Huskies Stadium on the campus of Saint Mary’s University.

“The only thing deeper than our regret is our resolve to return to Atlantic Canada,” Ambrosie said. “It pains us that this pandemic is preventing us from showing our friends in Nova Scotia, in person, just how saddened we are by the senseless tragedy they have been forced to bear, and how much we admire their strength.”

Dan Ralph, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CFLCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nelson’s American sister city faces COVID-19 culture war

In Sandpoint, Idaho, wearing a mask is about Black Lives Matter, gun rights, and COVID-19

UPDATE: Body of Slocan River drowning victim recovered

The man was swimming near Winlaw on Wednesday.

Nelson’s SMRT1 Technologies to provide vending tech to Vancouver company

UpMeals will launch 22 machines across Canada using SMRT1’s personalized machines

July Kootenay real estate sales at record high

Sales and prices of Kootenay real estate on the rise

Kaslo council says it was overlooked in long-term care announcement

“We’re fed up … They have ignored every attempt we’ve made to contact them”

B.C. records 30-50 new COVID-19 cases a day over weekend, no new deaths

Many of those testing positive were identified by contact tracing for being linked to other confirmed infections

Five B.C. First Nations call out Canada for ‘discriminatory’ food fish practices

West Coast nations say government ignoring court-won right to chinook and coho

Rent-relief program becomes new front in fight between Liberals, opposition

Opposition trying to draw parallels between decision to have Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. run program and the WE controversy

Ottawa sets minimum unemployment rate at 13.1% for EI calculation

Statistics Canada says the unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July

$45K in donations received after couple’s sudden death in Tulameen

Sarah MacDermid, 31, and Casey Bussiere, 37, died August long weekend

Famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer brings movements of joy to Long Beach

Internet-famous dancer is exploring Vancouver Island, visiting the B.C. Legislature and more

Battle of Fairy Creek: blockade launched to save Vancouver Island old-growth

‘Forest Defenders’ occupy road to prevent logging company from reaching Port Renfrew-area watershed

COVID-19 could mean curtains for film and TV extras

Background performers worry they’re being replaced by mannequins on film and TV sets

Most Read