I have been hearing rumblings for about 6 months now and just recently the rumors have become heated and are now looking like a reality.
The report I have been told is Rogers-SportsNet wants in on the CFL and they want to be partners with TSN on the venture.
Part of the deal would include
-Game of the Week
-Buying rights to selective Labour Day game
-Buying rights for a 'hockeytown' like theme game where the game will promote grassroots level.
-Rogers has also been making play to acquire radio rights to CFL teams. Which ones I do not know.
They also would like to produce a weekly CFL themed show.
Looking forward to it Mirage. To have Rogers in with them owning probably the most popular team in Toronto the Blue Jays, just makes a lot of sense and with, as well, Rogers being a huge media business in Canada. Really hope these rumours are true and a deal can be made.
It makes sense for Sportsnet/CBC to keep their HNIC audience during NHL's off-season with a Sat. night CFL game which could draw 1 million viewers or more. They would likely pay a substantial rights fee for that game and a Labour Day classic...and maybe even the Grey Cup (which TSN basically gets for free by lumping it in with TV rights for the entire season.)
And they bought the rights to the Vanier Cup a few years back. Don't get me wrong...next TV contract maybe something happens...pretty unlikely mid-contract that TSN sells them a couple games.....2022, who knows. I suppose it is possible TSN sweetens the put for them to come in by providing access to a couple ARgo games per season...but when you only have 81 games I doubt it.
I think it would serve Bell well if they could air some Blue Jays games and Rogers if they could air some CFL games. I think there might be a deal there at some point.
Also remember that at some point if the NFL is in the possibility for Toronto, I think that both Rogers and Bell would have to go into that together, even with others, to make that happen due to the huge amount of money involved. They went in together to see to it that the Leafs and Raptors stayed in Canadian hands so even if that was done reluctantly, it was done.
From Rogers perspective, it makes business sense...
TSN has a Canadian content problem - or a lack thereof. TSN is overflowing with U.S. content and, if Rogers can syphon away what little Canadian content TSN has, why not do it?
If Rogers can push up the cost of the CFL package in 2021, and make it less profitable for TSN, why not?
Rogers does NOT like having an anti-CFL image. In fact, they have gone out of their way to say they are NOT anti-CFL. If stealing a game a week from TSN can fix that, especially while hurting the competition, it is a smart/easy decision.
Nothing bad (from a CFL perspective) can come from Rogers being interest in the CFL.
They can't go in on an NFL team together. NFL does not accept public (traded) corporate ownership. They have a fair number of general ownership rules outside of that as well, one being that they can not own other football teams in other leagues, which is likely a reason they never went in initially. I believe there are exemption possible for that one though.
Well, TSN has to bid for CFL rights, too. Once the current contract is up the league can sell a TV rights package to Rogers, CBC or any other network. TSN might still tender a substantial bid for 85 of 86 CFL games, with the league earning another $7.5M or more for Grey Cup rights.
Rogers/CBC might pay $1 million for a featured Sat. night CFL game, double what TSN is paying per game (which currently includes the playoffs and Grey Cup.)
Let's not forget Bell and Rogers are partners in MLSE ownership. For the right dollars, TSN might be persuaded to relinquish part of their CFL schedule to Rogers/CBC, perhaps starting as soon as next year?