I used to wish that they would actually start later, like they did in the 70s and early 80s, but as it`s not gonna happen, the Canada Day start date is as good a start as they could choose. Paraphrasing an earlier poster, people are out and about having fun already.
We've talked about this ad nauseum in the past, so interesting that it is coming up again, but...
I'm just happy to have a CFL football season (you could play it in January at midnight for all I care), and if the league is going to start somewhere around the end of June/early July Canada Day is perfect as far as I'm concerned.
Cohon was visibly shocked at the Grey Cup fan forum when someone raised the idea of starting the season earlier, which got a standing ovation from the crowd (there is video somewhere on the CFL site to prove it).
Personally, I'd love to see an earlier start to the season...I'm just so desperate for Canadian ball by May when the weather is so obviously perfect for playing football, that extra month kills me. (Thank god for ESPN Classic showing old games once a week!)
Anyway, if someday, someone said the league would start the season earlier, to me the only thing more"Canadian" than Canada Day is the May 2-4 weekend (whats more Canadian than a bbq, a bucket of brewskis and some Canadian football on the official start-up weekend for summer). The cool thing about starting on the Victoria Day weekend is that the season lines the big games up nicely with the Labour Day and Thanksgiving long weekends, adding even more value/weight to the games played on those days. I've mapped it out for this board before, but don;t have time to do it again today.
However, the downsides are the weather plays less of a factor later in the season and it obviously means an earlier Grey Cup (October), which means the spotlight is shared by the MLB playoffs (who are now consistently encroaching into the November that Mr. Cohon says "we own"). I don;t really see the NHL as being a factor as they're up and running either way, and their games don;t have much importance at that point in the season.
Not to mention it’s referred to as the May 2-4 weekend, and as far as I know, we’re the only ones who call a case of 24 a 2-4 (I’ve used that expression with a few American friends, and they had no idea what I was talking about :lol: ).
But the problem with this is we’d be competing with the Stanley Cup Playoffs, so I imagine ratings would be low for the first few weeks.
Ouch... :lol: But you're right. The Canadian teams haven't done well the last couple years. Of course, even after the Canadian teams have all been eliminated, I still like to cheer for the Pittsburgh Crosbys.
As I said…I’m just happy to have CFL ball anytime, but for the sake of some discussion, was just throwing it out there…
But, yes, in my scenario the CFL would have to compete with the NHL playoffs (though for the love of god I wish the NHL could figure out how to finish their season by mid-May like the old days!). And I think it would be particularly tough on attendence if a CFL city also had an NHL team going deep into the playoffs.
For the TV audience though, I think you could structure the broadcast day so that the CFL games start times work with the NHL playoff game start times. TV seems to love their big destination days…so they could do 2 CFL double headers on the Sun/Mon of the long weekend earlier in the day, followed by the big Stanley Cup playoff game in prime time.
And that way I could avoid having to cut/rake the freakin’ lawn like I usually have to on the May long weekend!
Anyway, its not likely to happen, so not going to spend too much more time thinking about it.