The CFL the most unsuccessful sport league in the World?

This is the type of war that has sprung up in Ottawa created by Melnyk, its a shame that the choice between stadium sites has become a CFL vs MLS. Another stupid ignorant comment by a coach supporting the MLS and a big supporter of Melnyk

"Are you kidding me, CFL football? It is probably the smallest, most unsuccessful professional sports league in the world"
The MLS commis was also dissing the CFL yesterday and vows Ottawa will get an MLS team.

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In their opinion it is unsuccessful. It's an 8 team league, no American teams, no team is really making a ton of money and the CFL doesn't get much exposure. Those are all reason why I love the CFL - lol - but from a business standpoint... I dunno.

I guess the people of Ottawa should ask themselves - before they support the MSL - what defines a successful league and what is the MSL looking for in Ottawa?

I think the answer is $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Jealousy I'd say that Canada's league is still going and going strong! They look like fools IMHO. And to think I actually was thinking of going to a game in Toronto at some point. NEVER!!!!!!!!!!

Average attendance across the 14 teams in the MLS was DOWN 2% in 2008, to 16,000. It was DOWN by as much as 14% (Dallas) and 7% in Colorado and KC. TV viewership was DOWN a bit (235,000/game) on ESPN2.

2008 league attendance was bouyed by the lingering Beckham effect (highest average attendance 26,000 in LA, 20% higher than anywhere else, average 28,000 to see the Galaxy on the road).

Sure, it's hot ticket in Toronto, but it's a hard ticket to give away in 5-6 of the 14 cities. It's a relatively cheap league for an sports owner to buy into, figuring he can be the next Toronto rather than the next KC. It's a new league, with a bit of momentum still trying to find it's place - it will add some teams, probably lose some current teams, and we'll see where it stands 5/10/20 years down the road.

I wish MLS well, but it's a bit premature to be counting it among the world's great leagues.

Depends how you measure success I guess.

Financially the CFL is very unsuccessful. Over the years very few teams have been consistently profitable, likely none. Many have teetered on the brink of insolvency periodically, including the Ticats. A few have gone over... Montreal and Ottawa (twice).

At the same time though, it's a century old (counting from the first Grey Cup), older than the NFL and many other leagues that have come and gone in football and other sports. To manage this in the face of that very financial weakness is a major accomplishment.

Canada's hospitals as non-profit organizations are very unsuccessful in the money making area and yet I don't hear the entire country saying they should go private. Just because something doesn't make a ton of money doesn't mean that it is unsuccessful even in a financial sense, you have to look to see what the product or service is first. Of course we'd all like the CFL to make owners tons and tons of money but we realize as a strictly Canadian business organization, this probably isn't going to happen.

Typical soccer snob, with typical soccer snob attitude. "Soccer is the wave of the future! All other sports suck! World's game!" Same refrain for decades. Of course they can't explain why CFL TV ratings, financial stability and almost live attendance are better than ever before. Why the NFL continues to dominate the US sports market. The enormous profile of NCAA football.

Yes gogo and I don’t hear them saying that the NFL or NCAA is unsuccessful.

What the MLS doesn’t get is that even if the CFL should go down the tubes (god forbid), it doesn’t mean that football in the US would be affected at all in terms of viewership and that. I’ve said that before. They can bash all the football they want in Canada but that isn’t going to get rid of football in the US, and not Canada either, really. It seems like they have some sort of vindictive vengeanance to be sure the CFL doesn’t expand to any market the CFL might want to put a team into where the MLS could have one as well. Almost on the side of being psychotic about it. Weird.

If the CFL is so unsuccessful, then why is it still around?

Unsuccessful leagues are as follows:
AAFL
XFL
USFL
WFL
NFL Europa
AFL
AWA (American Wrestling Association)

At one point, yes, these leagues did survive but success is if it survives over the long term. Unfortunately none of these have survived and those ventures are unsuccessful.

Pretty soon you can add the new USFL, UFL, WNBA and MLS. I think that none of these leagues will survive in the long haul.

What is the backbone of any professional sports league today? Is it the cost of an expansion franchise? The cost of an existing franchise? The size of the arenas and stadiums and fan support for each team? How deep the pockets are of owners or their makeup, local or otherwise? Or is it the television deal(s) that the league have? Just like paper money, a country can't just go around printing more money with something behind it.

I would argue that it is 1st an excellent television deal. I've heard the MLS is keen on getting a national deal in Canada as they probably know this will be difficult in the US. So are they selling the $40 mill expansion fee to owners that they will get a small, initiating type deal in Canada that will be followed up in the US at some point? I would say so. But that is as yet to be proven that they can get this. So then, what is a franchise worth exactly? Could the bottom fall out? When you have $40 mill teams, they can fall a lot farther than say a CFL team at what $5-8 mill.

You have separate Toronto FC from the rest of the league. TFC is just different in that they sell out every home game. Tickets are a little pricey but people are paying for the experience which is awesome but the product is very poor. I see TFC flopping in a few years.

The rest of MLS is struggling. Even in LA with Beckham they weren't selling out. The games I see on TV are to half filled football stadiums. The league is ridiculous that they can get 40 mil for an expansion team. It's going to take a long time to make that money back.

I see this league going the same way as so many other leagues. It's a league that doesn't have the best talent and isn't in a soccer mad country.

The league has been semi successful but I predict that it's going to go down within the next 5-10 years.

Yes Tiger, can't you really go around saying you are Major League Soccer when, in fact, that isn't what you are. It's almost a lie, false advertising. Major league means just that, it doesn't mean major in that it's the highest level of soccer in North America. Right now, this name is selling at a premium price, but at some point people might start to realize this isn't the major leagues of soccer at all. And never will be.

The CFL doesn't have this disconnect built into it although I do know some people find that unless you play in the National Football League, you don't deserve a penny for playing football and that they can appreciate the CIS but can't the CFL because it doesn't have a "right" to exist in the first place. This is confusing to some people out there but the MLS model would be doubly confusing to these sorts with seeing the word "major" in the name of the league.

A better name for the MLS in the long run would have been America's Soccer League or something like that.

In MLS, there is no ratio you have to have. You have to go out and get the best talent you can. The CFL is unique in the fact that it's a totally different game from the NFL and there is the ratio that has to be taken into account.

Are the players in the NFL better than the CFL? Yes, for the most part but it's very difficult to compare the 2 games because the skill set and overall play of the game is different.

Anyone who is half descent in MLS is given a contract over in Europe. There are CFLers who go to the NFL but for the most part, the best players in the CFL stay in the CFL.

Tiger, what is the knowledgable soccer fan's view of Major League Soccer calling itself Major? That's what I'd like to know, the fan that knows the world leagues inside and out and understands the English language and how the word "major" is used for sports here in North America?

Obviously this guy is talking out of his butt and is in someway trying to sway the decision to build the stadium that THEY want for their league. Yeah....right. "Most unsuccessful sports league in the world"? I would have to strongly disagree with that NOT because I'm an avid CFL fan but based on the longevity of the league and the strong TV ratings it draws, especially the Grey Cup games.

8) You are completely wrong with your statement regarding the AWA (American Wrestling Association) as not being a successful league !!!
  It was a thriving, money making company for over 30 years, thereby making it a sucess over the long term, as is your defintion above as being a successful league  !!!

  It's demise was the direct result of Vince McMahon and his WWE, taking over the whole wrestling business in North America, creating a monopoly for himself , and putting companies like the AWA and the NWA , and WCW (Ted Turner owned) out of business  !!!!

I used the AWA as an example because it was successful but then it wasn't. Success isn't measured in years. Success is measured over a lifetime. Success is never dying. The AWA died because they were unsuccessful. Leagues and companies have success over years and decades but it's the ones that last that are truly successful.

I would also support this in part. The AWA died in part because it refused to move with the times, and Verne Gagne kept booking lots of old folks on top and didn't let any younger talent get ahead. Hence, they went to the WWE and it crushed him. The NWA (WCW) lingered much longer than the AWA, and eventually destroyed itself through its own excess and lack of foresight.

All I know is that CFL audiences are about 1.5 time those of the MLS -- in the U.S.
In Canada, the average CFL game gets about 400,000 viewers (give or take), the average MLS game gets about 40,000.

And, our average attendance is about 4,000 more than their best. I dunno, seems like a pretty clear cut victory to me.

Say what you want about CFL football. When you're watching the most brutal, boring, blowout of a mistake filled game, you can take much solace in one simple fact --- at least you aren't watching soccer.

Call me when the MLS is handing out their 100th championship...then I might alter my opinion a bit.