Commissioner Town Hall - Review

Quite surprised that nobody posted this so i'll put some bullet points in.

Event was held at Mohawk College - perfect venue, seemed intimate enough. Seating was more than ample.

Here are some of the highlights...

- Officiating -
New head of officiating, looking a new ways to get better, going back to a Crew system for games rather than piecing refs together. Replay has spiralled out of control from only fixing huge game changing errors to micromanaging officiating. Considering rotating on field officials into the replay booth. Considering removing all challenges together as coaches feel they are under too much pressure as to when to use them. Want more transparency. (too many obnoxious fans thinking we have it worse than anyone else blurting out comments)

-Grey Cup in Hamilton-
Basically - city and team need to be on board together, and place a bid. Until that happens we wont see movement. (Basically saying its not the leagues fault, and I agree).

- CBA/Player movement -
Agree we have to keep players in the same cities, looking at ways to discuss it in the next CBA, Morreale offered an idea to only count the minimum salary against the cap after a player has earned that right (5 years, etc). Other ideas thrown out there. Says we need to figure it out as it hurts our continuity and the game is better when teams stay in tact.

- Moving the season up -
Sounds like they are ready to move forward with this. again seems people over the age of 50 moaned and groaned at the idea, but the idea of moving it up passed about 60/40 on a show of hands. A couple players in attendance were asked, both loved the idea.

- Grey Cup Saturday -
a great question from the crowd about having set times for games, knowing every week games are Thurs - Fri x2 and Sat. He followed it up by suggesting we move the Grey Cup to Saturday for a number of reasons - Kids staying up, Being able to drink and party, travelling to and from the game the game, American TV, etc. Randy loved the question and put it to the crowd. By his count it was 85% in favour of a Saturday Grey Cup. Something I also agree with.

TV network and the amount of money it pays for the broadcast rights will be the biggest contributor that determines starting times of games and the day on which the Grey Cup is played.

I can absolutely see TSN going for it. They have he NFL on Sunday nights.

Way back when I was a teen-ager, and probably even afterwards, the Grey Cup was always on a Saturday, in the afternoon, usually the first Saturday of December. The main bug-a-boo for me in those days was the fact that at that age, we had "after school jobs", often were scheduled to work Saturdays, and would miss the game. Also, my mother always seemed to pick that particular Saturday as the day to put up the Christmas decorations, so if we weren't working, we were expected to help with the decorations. Major downer.

On a positive note, the Saturday games generally involved more of a festival atmosphere, often with a parade in the morning, rallies before the game, and then the game itself. And as Crash mentioned, there were lots of Grey Cup parties that would extent into the evenings after the game ended.

Of course, now-a-days, the games are typically scheduled for the evening, like a 6:30 start, so that would be better for those who are working (I'm retired, no longer a member of the "working class"), plus PVRs and the frequency of game replays would also help. Not as nice as seeing the game in real time, but at least, it would be available.

I guess, over-all, a Saturday game, with a little later start, might be okay. Major task now might be to avoid hitting the bubblies too early on a Saturday, and falling asleep during the game.

I get he wants to build relationships and wants you to feel authenticated and heard but that's not a good way of directing a course in financial solvency . By talking to too many cooks and getting too many opinions you will have a meal no one will end up eating .

If I go see the man responsible for my business a CEO to show me his business plan that's thought out , measured , balanced against foreseen factors and some unforeseen you will feel that the ship is headed on the right course .

A townhall meeting without a plan financially for why moving the season back is good is not a financially astute move . It's like asking kids do you like candy when your selling potatoes . Let me see a show of hands Kids do you like cookies with raisins or chocolate chips . Players do you like playing when it's warmer ? That's no way to be leading a league let alone a meeting where you are the leading man on design improvement that leads to better sales .

I get we like him next to Orridge and on a personal level he is very likeable but if he doesn't show some concrete numbers based on a factual presentation on how he is going to grow this league by next June he is delinquent in his primary duty of growing wealth in the CFL and is actually fallen behind his predecessors in that respect .

Hank - you realize this guy ran a financial services firm, right?

I’m pretty sure he knows a lot about finances. I don’t think the point of these meetings has been to obtain fan approval on a detailed business plan.

Actually Mr Ambrosie asked for everyone's email addresses and will be sending out the league's financial statements with full business plan this week to all in attendance.

I found the best part of the town Hall was Lesley Stewart oh yea !!! other then that an interesting evening ! A Saturday Grey Cup sounds good! Like how he skirted the questions around the lousy officiating last season.

Yes of course . I have looked into his resume . It's okay but from personal experience with financial planners I am really not impressed and see it as a negative . I would rather have Cohon who actually worked in the sports world like the NBA and MLB and knew to rebuke the silly notion of moving the signature Grey Cup game . That man actually had a background in sports marketing not Ambrosie .

What impressed me with Ambrosie was he wasn't afraid to say the games were unwatchable and be critical of a product and take action quickly to correct it and more needs to be done .

That start gave me hope that for once someone is running the ship properly .

Then during a successful grey cup in Ottawa he blows it with the silly side step into the abyss of an October Grey Cup .

It takes someone with very little common sense to know you don't mess with your signature or showcase product especially if it's iconic and extremely lucrative for CFL teams .

Yah I wouldn't be surprised if he did but if your a shareholder in the Riders you should get one every year and take the time to read it .

The Esks also put there's out for public viewing as well .

Usually a business plan is self evident and transparent but I am not sure some of the people realize that there is no secret weapon or secret ingredient here to protect . He is going to these town halls to try to gauge an unpopular decision to move something which could have huge consequences for the leagues future this is called politicing and placing the blame on defacto opinion polls within town hall meetings making himself like Pontius Pilot that had no choice to move the game and weaken the leagues product placement behind the shelves covered in Stanley Cup /NBA /World Series products .

He is Steve Jobs without any new ideas just questions for the audience that use the I phone . Not very compelling leadership . He sounds more like a politician every day and not a business leader .

Which unpopular decision? Moving the season? Most seem to be for it.

I noticed sitting in the crowd the only people against anything he put to a vote were a specific demographic. Older.

A have a huge group of friends that have said this... "Get games off Sundays and don't go up against the NFL and I'll watch."

Moving the season up -
Sounds like they are ready to move forward with this. again seems people over the age of 50 moaned and groaned at the idea, but the idea of moving it up passed about 60/40 on a show of hands. A couple players in attendance were asked, both loved the idea.

Love this idea. If you ask me, many orhwrs and probably all of Alberta, there is fantastic reason for moving up and keeping GC game out of late November. GC champions the last 2 years were totally decided by weather. Should not be the case for our final event.
Starting the season pre-summer, pre-vacation period should be financially sound from viewership standpoint. I dont know why anyone would think it is not!

Follow the money Hank01 Starting the season early is about money, TV money US TV money. US TV money is part of the CFL Commissioner's financial plan. Money and fan exposure CLICK hereGrey Cup In October

Thanks for this thread, really appreciate the feedback from this Town Hall. Wish I would have gone.

You would need to buy seasons tickets to have the privilege ?

Could have just walked in. There were lots of seats and no check of who was there.

I seem to remember many many many years ago that Grey cup games were on Saturday....

Just because Randy didn't talk about it or give details doesn't mean there isn't one.

Perhaps, this information needs to be confidential. Don't forget, he works for the owners and maybe they don't want this stuff made common knowledge...

The poll here is close to 75 percent against it so it is an unpopular decision .

Get games off Sundays - What are you talking about ? The CFL hardly plays any games on Sundays except for the Playoffs and Grey Cup and they do really well on TV against the NFL .

Get better more knowledgeable friends . The Tiger cats do not play ONE game on a Sunday in all of 2018 so that's a ridiculous statement to make . How can a huge group of anything be so misinformed ?

As far as a Saturday Grey Cup ; Why would anyone go against HNIC traditional base on a Saturday night especially when the Leafs are playing ? It's on a Sunday night because it's more lucrative for advertisers /sponsors because they have more viewers across the country on Sunday night .

Hank..I have to agree with your though process. I don’t see a Saturday Grey Cup being of any real benefit. I like it on the Sunday even if it is a couple of weeks earlier.