Reason why soccer got on CTV and not CFL - TSN had no choice

Everyone needs to settle down on the news front that soccer got on the CTV schedule. Its not all what it seems for the tv contract for the MLS and CFL dealings with TSN.

Here is the rundown. TSN and CFL have a deal in place where CFL is #1 on their platform. The TSN offers this due to the CFL being after the NHL the networks greatest asset. They guarantee schedule dates and front line production from week 1 to Grey Cup on all platforms.

Now for soccer. TSN wanted to regional for TFC but during negotiations no other networks really stepped up to offer MLS/TFC/Vancouver anything that TSN could not or would not. Sportsnet and CBC saw very little to no reason to big for MLS.

So TSN made an attempt to guarantee every game on more than 1 regional network and on the main network TSN1 during non CFL-Hockey-NFL-MLB-NBA events.

So when the schedule came out TSN could not offer their end of the bargain as there were soooo many conflicted dates.

The biggest is the NCAA Basketball. TSN would not budge for soccer so Bell (unhappy doing so) got the games on CTV during poor programming dates. Thus there are other conflicted dates and reason why CTV was willing to adjust.

Ah…the ban has been lifted! Finally.

And I was informed that if ratings are as equal to last season TSN will only put the game on regional in '18 and may not cover all games.

TSN deal with MLS is extremely small and TSN has not been able to even fill advertising spots this close to season.

Its a bad move for TSN to get into the soccer biz but they did it for a future business decision.

You can spin it any way you want, MLS does not deserve any coverage.
As for the CFL, being the number 1 summer property and overall close to number 1 there is absolutely no reason why the playoffs and GC should not be shown exclusively on the mother network or at least simulcast.
It's a mega slap in the face.
I hope during the next contract discussion these crucial blunders are corrected not to mention at least doubling the annual fees.
If not.....walk.

Not buying that. TSN has five stations…

5 stations covering other TSN programs and multiple NCAA basketball games. This is the reason. If you do not like it. Deal with it.

Thanks for the info, AM, now it makes sense. CTV has very little on Sat. afternoons and few opportunities to sim-sub, so either it’s “Fishfull Thinking” or MLS, i guess.

I had also heard that TSN could not sell all ad spots for TFC and WCaps games last year. It was tweeted that TFC averaged 40k viewers and WC 62k in the reg. season, which is very poor for Canada’s No. 1 cable network. I’m not surprised they bid low.

I doubt CFL reg. season games on CTV would add many viewers, maybe 50k to 100k. But TSN would lose it’s CFL exclusive and the league risks having their status on TSN diminished. The playoffs and Grey Cup would likely see a much bigger spurt of viewers with CTV added to TSN.

TSN3,4,5 are regional channels and supposedly TSN1 too. So putting MLS games on TSN4, for example, would see only one region having access to the games (unless households optionally subscribe to all TSN channels).

MLS has virtually no viewers on the prairies or maritimes, with fans in Mtl, Tor & Van mainly interested in their own team, not other MLS games.

I wouldn`'t go the far, I mean the recent games of TFC vs Montreal showing an actual rivalry and of course the MLS Cup performance of TFC did show that there is a market and a potential for viewership in soccer in Canada. Those games are the only ones you can consider "Canadian Content" by the CRTC, so in that regard, yes they are worth it.

That said, MLS games that don't involve the three Canadian MLS franchises, you are completely right. No one in Canada cares if San Jose plays Dallas in soccer, nor should they because fundamentally a local connection or a high level of play is why people tune in, and no one is going to say MLS has a high level of play, when the EPL is readily available on TV.

Another reason I for one am hoping the CanPL comes around to grow the game of soccer in our country. We deserve better then three teams, and MLS's plan to try to copy the MLB and NBA (only a few or one team representing the nation) I would love to see fall through.

As far as renegotiating the contract, I would bring it up, but this should not be a deal breaker next contract. I have severe doubts that Sportsnet, even if they owned the rights, would ever provide the level of marketing for the CFL, if only because they aren't about to sabotage the Jays, who I would expect to start tanking in 4-5 years, once the Yankees and Red Sox have their houses in order.

B.S. Most of the time TSN is showing the same thing at the same time on multiple channels.

Yay - our fiction writer is back - and doesn't disappoint in this post!

TSN1 - the main regional channel for BC and Alberta only - he is still insisting is TSN's main channel. lol

And the biggest reason for 7 MLS games being on CTV is NCAA basketball?

OK that might make sense for one of the seven dates. But the other six games on CTV are not in conflict with NCAA Basketball games.

So try again fiction - oops I mean access.

Maaaaaaaat's Daaaaaaaaaaad

Not true - Sportsnet 360 is showing 12 TFC games this year in addition to the TSN/CTV games

[url=] ... -announced[/url]

Also the Impact have all of their games on TVA Sports, the exception is when they play the one game against Vancouver (CTV) and their TFC game when TSN and TVA will broadcast the games.
Unless you subscribe to TVA sports which is not available outside of Quebec you won't see the Impact and ratings are meaningless if you are trying to do a comparison to other sports.

All of Vancouver's games are on TSN, except the one game against Montreal on CTV and a week later on CTV against Minnesota

TSN/CTV is the only network showing TFC games. That link is one year old.

Ouch! my mistake.
Here is the 2017 - only 3 games on CTV

[url=] ... -announced[/url]

Who Cares???

Nobody watches mls anyways....

CTV is shooting itself in the head.


OK - if CTV can show 7 MLS games - why not some CFL games?

Even if this is the real reason, who cares?
CTV can put whatever it wants on it's channels but the fact that the CFL hasn't fought for a simulcast to extend its reach and become a staple in potentially all Canadian households is ridiculous. Everyone know s they can turn to CTV on Sunday and watch a particular nfl match up. All you literally have to do is turn it on and you know there WILL be football.
If CTV were given a set day to broadcast one CFL game per week then that's instantly a consistent way to appeal to new viewers and cements the already enthusiastic fan base. Imagine tuning in on a Saturday (for arguments sake) and knowing that there WILL be football on CTV.

Agree. Putting the games on CTV can only help the League.

Unfortunately, the CFL will have little say between now and 2021.

I don't know Kev wouldn't you make your partner happy if they were not getting the best exposure from the parent company before the renew date . Not surprised as I mentioned in another thread that the CFL would need a new partner if TSN wants to broadcast all three MLS teams . Only difference is it was MLS who moved over to the bigger network not the CFL to accommodate the program conflicts .

My belief is that Thursday games which have been a part of the CFL but not mandatory are a key to TSN's interest in the summer . They have MLS for Wednesdays .

Friday is also well suited in TSN hands .

It is the Saturdays / Sundays in the Fall that get lost in the programming especially the division finals and now the Grey Cup . This is where the battle for viewership needs to be waged . CTV flagship stations must pick up the slack
and populate the airwaves both on sister radio stations and TV to remind viewers of what games are being played .

I know radio stations are continually telling me who is playing hockey tonight on the Rogers network and they ring the bells for Blue jays all season long . It's time the CFL tells it's partner it fell in bed with that they want the same
propaganda from their Radio/TV cohorts .