Ottawa is not a CFL town

Ottawa will end up with ANOTHER CFL team. It's fact. But that's not because it's a CFL town. Infact... I would go as far to say that Ottawa isn't a SPORTS town. Here's is what I base my opinions on...

  • They've had two CFL teams. They've lost two CFL teams.

  • They've lost a AAA Baseball team.

  • They've lost a NLL team.

  • The Senators don't sell out. When they are in first place they have good ticket sales... but not great. When they're slumping... there are LOTS of empty seats. I went to a game against Washington this year... lots of empty red seats.

  • They lost two WHA teams (granted that was in the 70's and who didn't lose WHA teams? LOL)

Ottawa is a town made up of yuppie Government types... they're more inclined to go out for Mocha Frappa Lappa Latte Floats with Soy Milk than they are to go watch sports. The only team that's done well in Ottawa is the 67's.

So... Ottawa will get a CFL team. They don't deserve it but really... where else will the CFL expand?!?! The only positive I can see in Ottawa getting another team is that I can see the Ticats without having to drive 5 hours!

Boo Ottawa!!!!

The Ottawa 67's do well because they are promoted correctly by Jim Hunt and the arena is at Landsdown Park. A CFL team with these owners would do just as well in the same location.

I didn't see many empty seats the few times I attended a hockey game in Kanata, but I could understand why many people might not want to attend on a regular basis. The place is out in the middle of no where and takes an hour to get out of the parking lot.

When the Rough Riders were properly run, attending a game (even as a TICAT fan) in Ottawa was one of the true CFL experiences; knowledgable, passionate, dedicated fans. If the various nutcases that ended up owning the Ottawa franchise had instead purchased the Cats, their would be no football team in Hamilton. I'm not optimistic that the CFL will return to Ottawa, but it was a sad day when a city with such CFL history left the CFL. Rusty, tossing around stereotypes like you chose to is a two way street. More than a few have been tossed Hamilton's way over the years. Such broad brushes are rarely accurate and don't add much to a conversation.

I would agree with you had Ottawa only lost CFL teams due to the Gliberman's... but it seems like no sports teams do well in Ottawa.

Though... Hamilton could be painted in the same manner...

  • Hamilton Fincups
  • Hamilton Steelhawks (still one of my favorite names ever!)
  • Hamilton Canucks
  • Hamilon Dukes

I'm actually really surprised that the Bulldogs are still there.

I'm going to go out on a limp here though...

Hamilton lost their last OHL team in the 80's and nobody really WANTS the AHL. C'mon... in reality 90% of the guys that actually make it to the NHL full time become 3rd liners...

I think that if an OHL team were to move to Hamilton now it would not only survive but flourish!

I believe that Hamilton is a sports town... I'm still not convinced that Ottawa is.

I'd bet $10,000 that if the Senators moved to Hamilton they'd do better than they would in Ottawa.

/rant

(ps - sorry if I seem grumpy and rude lately guys... I'm just missing football and I get sick of the same posts over and over)

AGREED 100% Put a Team in Quebec City Forget Ottawa

novascotiakid wrote:

"When the Rough Riders were properly run, attending a game (even as a TICAT fan) in Ottawa was one of the true CFL experiences; knowledgable, passionate, dedicated fans. If the various nutcases that ended up owning the Ottawa franchise had instead purchased the Cats, their would be no football team in Hamilton. I'm not optimistic that the CFL will return to Ottawa, but it was a sad day when a city with such CFL history left the CFL."

novascotiakid:
Well said. I went to Ottawa Rough Riders games when I was in the RCAF there in 1963/64. I went to cheer for the other teams :twisted: ! Always a Tiger-Cat fan.
But I will say the Ottawa fans were tough and loyal. They were hard core and tried to made life miserable for people like me who cheered for the visitors. Good for them. Thats what hometown fans should do. Pat Marsden did the radio play -by-play back then and he was always good for a chat when I called him to talk about football. The local papers provided great coverage and Coach Frank Clair had his own TV program every week. So..like Hamilton..it was a good football town.
I also am not optimistic the CFL will return to Ottawa. I wish Mr Hunt well because we need 4 Eastern teams but I really wonder if the strong fan base they had for all those years is still there. They have been burned badly by poor ownership and each year Ottawa is without a CFL team the tougher it will be to re-kindle the interest. Loyalties will go elsewhere.
Maybe the damage has been too great already and that's why it appears to be so difficult to get solid municipal support for what ought to be a motherhood issue -a new stadium for a CFL team.

Don't forget about Horn Chen. He was the owner of the first re-birth in Ottawa. He totally neglected the team in every way. In some ways he was worse than the Glibermans.

Ottawa has lost teams but many cities have a similar list to them. Brad Watters and his crew killed the Ottawa Rebel (NLL) team and handcuffed the Ottawa Renegades by leaving town with the Grey Cup money, selling equipment and laying off all the staff prior to the sale of the team.

How's this for an idea though. Why not let Melnyk and his goons build their new stadium, then when they find out they are only getting an MLS Div 2 team and it flops Jeff Hunt can put his new CFL team into a nice shiny stadium albeit stuck in Kanata.

They said the same thing about Montreal and Vancouver...

How's this for an idea though. Why not let Melnyk and his goons build their new stadium, then when they find out they are only getting an MLS Div 2 team and it flops Jeff Hunt can put his new CFL team into a nice shiny stadium albeit stuck in Kanata.

I was thinking the same thing Rids.

I enjoyed going to see the Cats and Renegades in Ottawa back in 2006, was certainly an experience

Don’t forget the Ontario Raiders and the Hamilton Skyhawks and the Hamilton Steelers!

I don't see the CFL going back to Ottawa.

I know the they have a proper ownership group in place and now they are left to battle with the city for the stadium.

I honestly believe that these groups of people get together for the wrong reasons for the CFL. Like anybody, they want it to succeed and make money.

Okay, you know it will be at least 5 years before they are competitive. Will the fans stick through it? I am not familiar with the Ottawa fan base. You can ask people now and they will tell you, oh yeah, we'll still support but when actually put in that situation, I am betting that it will end up like the Cats where attendance just keeps going down.

You don't make money in the CFL. If you do, it's not much. There are exceptions, like hosting a Grey Cup or having fans jump on the bandwagon (SSK) because their team is good.

If you have a group of investers, say 5, they are putting up their own money to start the team from the ground up. It's going to take you years before you even break even in a season. How long do you think it will take for a team to start making these people money to go towards the initial investment.

Bob Young, knew he was going to take a bath with the Cats. Cinamin and Sokolowski got lucky and won a Grey Cup in their first year, then hosted one 3 years later.

I will make a prediction. If Ottawa is granted a franchise, within 5 years, the ownership group will be looking to sell and they will find some sucker who thinks he can make money with it.

YOU DON'T MAKE MUCH MONEY ON THE CFL! Owning a part of the CFL is more to be a part of it. Yes EDM, MTL, CGY, SSK and BC make money, but in reality, how much money do they really make?

I have never been to Ottawa but they have lost franchises twice. The fan support may be there but IMHO there was not enough to make people money.

Honestly, a new franchise coming in should start with a 20,000 seat stadium, like Montreal, and create a buzz about the team. You can't create a buzz when there are 5,000 tickets still available for the game.

Look at London with the Knights. They have a 10,000 seat arena, sold out every nite, sure they are playing well, but there is a buzz because you are looked upon highly if you have tickets. Same with Kitchener. It's all about supply and demand.

That's my 2 cents!

You are an IDIOT!!! and ignorant

Ottawa made up of yuppie Government types…why don’t you come up to Ottawa where I live, I joined the military and was posted here!! We have over 3,000 people in the military in Ottawa, I think that’s more people than steelworkers in Hamilton!! I haven’t met too mnay yuppies!
If I met you I would like to “Frappa Latta you” …

Ottawa has the highest paid population in Canada - a combination of high teck workers and government workers. They have a lot of money to spend.
The Renegades and Riders didn’t fail because of attendance or fan support - I seem to remember them easily having higher attendance than Hamilton or Toronto - up until Mr Young bought the Cats. The failure was a combination of bad management and having the highest rent for a stadium in Canada.

And I also think Toronto isn't a CFL town!!
If you don't think that Ottawa is a CFL town and Toronto gets an NFL franchise - we're not left with much of a league if any. It's critical that Ottawa gets a CFL franchise. It's the future of the CFL

You can't create a buzz when there are 5,000 tickets still available for the game.

No offence Tiger but I hate that word "buzz". The Blue Jays are doing relatively well in attendance but many games are around the 15,000-20,000 mark in a 50,000 seater. yes, it's baseball with so many games but still, it's not like back when the dome opened and they were basically packing the joint every night.

5,000 tickets available for a TiCats game isn't bad IMHO when the team hasn't performed on the field that well.

The model for me for new arenas/stadiums around these parts apart from the ACC I suppose is the JLC in London, an arena that was built the perfect size and very, very nice at a reasonable cost of about $42 mill. And in a great downtown location near restaurants and bars. London was very nervous about this project, I know first-hand, and there were nay-sayers galore but man, they did it right there for the demographic and the league they are in.

[quote="Rusty25]

  • The Senators don't sell out. When they are in first place they have good ticket sales... but not great. When they're slumping... there are LOTS of empty seats. I went to a game against Washington this year... lots of empty red seats.
8) Sounds more like you are describing the Tiger Cats fans, and the city of Hamilton with those comments !!! :roll:

I think we have to be fair about both Hamilton and Ottawa.

Ottawa, to me, amazed me when anyone showed up to watch football. Their crowds have never been that bad -- the owners have been horrendous. When you haven't had a winning season since the '70's, are you expecting people to line up around the block for seats??

The '67's, Senators and the World Juniors all show(ed) top-of-the-class attendance numbers. Sure, if the Sens struggle, crowds will fall. Let's not forget that they play out of about the 3rd largest building in the league (about 19,500...yet drawing crowds north of 20k periodically) and are probably in the bottom 3 for market sizes. So cut them some slack. Finding non-NHL teams that pull between 8 and 10,000 is pretty amazing -- yet they've done it for a pretty long time now.

The Lacrosse foray might have been misguided anyway. At the time, Ottawa didn't even have a junior team. Expecting fans from Cornwall/ Akwesasne to make the trip and fill the building is asking a lot.

Much like Hamilton, there are options. We aren't talking about selling sports in Owen Sound or Sudbury here. So, if you do it poorly, it shows. I still think Hamilton could be a wildly successful OHL city...yet, the boneheads who've managed that in the past have expected people to just appear at the rink. I played minor hockey during the Steelhawks and Dukes era -- never knew when the home games were. The area Junior C teams put more of an effort into getting people into the building.

Ontario Raiders were the same. I lived within about a 10 minute walk to Copps when the Raiders were in town. I'm a huge Lacrosse fan...never once saw a Raiders game...but have seen many Rock games since they moved. The ill-advised name of that team was probably a tip-off that they wouldn't connect with Hamilton.

Jeff Hunt (edit: and Bob Young) seems to have figured out that it takes effort to sell tickets . You have to be creative and communicate with your customers. Something sorely lacking in many other failed attempts.

I doubt that the addition [ again ] of a CFL team in Ottawa will be a sucessful fan based team. The fans should before season told that three strikes and you are out. The Renegades were a good team and, with time were set to be winners. Despite the energence of a top QB and other supporting players [ just examine the number of players still playing via the cfl draft ] the fans did not support the team.

This is/was in stark contrast to the Hamilton Ti Cats who with a losing team, have maintained many losses in the past several years but still attracted their fans. Hamilton deserves and, this year will be shown to have great fans. I predict the TiCats will be winners in 09.

Sorry Hassall, but you're completely wrong. I've been to Ivor Wynne when attendance was low there, and then I moved to Ottawa and every Renegade game I went to had much better attendance than any pre-Bob Young Ticat game I ever went to. The Renegades seemed to average a realistic 18,000 fans despite the fact that they were never a winning team and despite the fact that everyone here knew the ownership situation was a mess and bound to fail.

The problem with the CFL in Ottawa is not the fans, just like it wasn't the fans in the Hammer. Bob Young proved everyone wrong and turned it around there, but the CFL let Ottawa down by abandoning the franchise here, after bailing out basically every other team in the league at some point in the recent past. (esp. Hamilton and Toronto)