They way it SHOULD be ...

I have been involved in a rather heated debate regarding the, in my view, completely IRRATIONAL organization of the CFL's divisions and the consequent playoff match- ups they create.

The following was taken from the thread in which I was vehemently arguing against the East /West divisions.

I've gotta say, I've heard many arguments about what makes the CFL bush league, but the fact that is has divisions never seemed to bother anyone
So here it is, in living color - why it is that the CFL could be negatively perceived, and yes - called BUSH ... it has EVERYTHING to do with the fact that the playoffs have no TRUE relation to the regular season results ... and the competitive structure of the playoffs have been completely bastardized by the STUPID East /West divisions ... ------------------------------GP W L T PTS 1. BC ------------------------18 13 5 0 26 2. Calgary-------------------18 12 6 0 24 3. Montreal-----------------18 11 7 0 22 4. Toronto-------------------18 9 9 0 18 5 Saskatchewan------------18 8 10 0 16 6. Edmonton-----------------18 7 11 0 14

The 'forced results' I spoke of in the other thread about the stupidity of the divisions stems from the fact that, under the current system ...

Although Montreal only deserved a first round home playoff game, by virtue of their 3rd place overall standing ... they get a free ride into the semi-finals ... where they will host a team that will be playing their second playoff game. That is a HUGE discrepancy between what they get and what they deserve, based on the regular season performance.

It goes on ... Edmonton was the worst of the playoff teams - but because of the STUPID divisions, and the equally stupid crossover they will play a mediocre Argo team instead of the better Alouettes.

And on ... Saskatchewan - a better team than Edmonton, based on regular season results, is forced to play a disproportionately better team in the Calgary Stamps, than the team they deserve to play - the Argos.

On top of it all ... the OVER RIDING fact in all this is, the TWO BEST teams, again, based on the regular season - will be FORCED to meet before the Championship game.

There is just soooooo much wrong with these scenarios it drives me absolutely insane.

Based on the regular season, and the elimination of East / West ... here is what the playoffs SHOULD have looked like ...

BC BYE into Semi versus lowest seed from Quarters.
Calgary BYE into Semi versus highest seed from Quarters

Quarter-Final 1 .... (3)Montreal versus (6)Edmonton
Quarter-Final 2 .... (4)Toronto ** versus (5)Sask ** (**digression)

To me, the answer is SIMPLE ... you either do away with the crossover rule, and accept the results the divisions create. Or you do away with the Divisions ... because as it stands now ... the regular season meant almost NOTHING and was not used as a true measure of success.

**Digression ...**It was asked in another thread, what could be done about those "meaningless" games at the end of the season. The specific game referenced was the BC / SASK game.

In my CFL, the above mentioned game would not have been 'meaningless' ... Saskatchewan would have been playing for the chance to HOST Toronto in the first round of the playoffs - because had they beat BC they would have won a tie break with Toronto and gained the #2 seed, overall (due to more points scored head to head ).

If your that upset about the league,s division set up, don't watch the CFL,do something else. You may as well get over this issue. It's not changing anytime soon. Winnipeg will probably be back in the West and maybe one day, a 5th team in the EAST ?

Every league I know of in North America has divisions and has the same issue with unbalanced divisions. In the NHL, the top team in every division gets one of the top three spots in their conference. This often (usually?) results in the sixth place team having an easier first round than either the fourth of fifth place teams. (And who could forget the "Porous Norris" division from a few years back?) For years, the western division in the NBA had two or three teams just being edged out of the playoffs, all of which had more points than at least one, and often two or three, eastern teams that did make the playoffs. The NFL has the same potential, although there seems to be more parity in the league. MLB has the same problem, with the Detroit Tigers clinching the AL Central division with fewer points than a couple of teams that didn't make the playoffs.

So, explain to us again, what makes the CFL any different?

Totally agree with kasps,i.e. if you atre not happy/so upset, just don't watch the CFL. The CFL does not need negative "flyers" like you.

The CFL divisions are here to stay and I am in total agreement.

Richard

Agree 100%. The NHLs Southeast division was terrible for years, and the leader got a gimmie home team advantage in the first round when they would have been fighting for 8th in any other division. MLBs AL East was so famously tough the third and fourth place teams in it could have been fighting for division leads in other divisions.

The CFL`s situation is only abnormal because 75% of the teams make the playoffs. Expand the league to 10 teams and the problem becomes no different then any other league has.

I think you should just shut up. and go hide.

This is absolutely ridiculous.

West vs East is part of the fun.

Also we have crossovers for a reason.

Divisional playoffs are great for rivalries. I would rather see the Riders play Calgary than Toronto

I think you should just shut up. and go hide.

This is absolutely ridiculous.


I know, eh ? ... Nothing says 'ridiculous' like playoff seedings actually reflecting the results of an 18 game regular season schedule !!

I mean, what is more ridiculous than the top 2 finishers of the regular season getting a bye into the second round of the playoffs !!??

Gosh, and the more I think about it ... it is so ridiculous to suggest that the last team to qualify for the playoffs actually play a tougher opponent than the team to qualify ahead of them in the standings !!

You are right cflsteve ... I should just shut my ridiculous mouth, and hide ... :roll: :roll: :roll:

As troll’s go your not even a good one. Your whole theory falls apart based on the unbalanced schedule. Had you ranted about all teams playing everyone equally and ranking as one group from there I would give you marks for good pot stirring, but this is a complete fail. How can you measure east and west records when teams only play the other division twice each while facing division rivals 3 or 4 times.

Go back to the drawing Flying_A (hmmm, wonder what that stands for?) and give it some effort this time. 8)

Every league I know of in North America has divisions and has the same issue with unbalanced divisions. In the NHL, the top team in every division gets one of the top three spots in their conference.
All of these comparisons to the other major leagues are (in that wise person cflsteve's vernacular) RIDICULOUS.

We are talking about leagues with 4 times the number of teams in them for crying out loud !! A rational argument can be made, and defended for divisions. The argument defending divisions in the CFl is anything but RATIONAL.

This is an 8 (soon to be 9) team league ... Divisions are absolutely unnecessary ... especially when they create unbalanced schedules, and playoff tournaments that make a mockery of the regular season.

I think it is fine the way it is. Sometimes tradition should be maintained, IMHO. To say it should be anything is totally subjective.

Your whole theory falls apart based on the unbalanced schedule. Had you ranted about all teams playing everyone equally and ranking as one group from there I would give you marks for good pot stirring, but this is a complete fail. How can you measure east and west records when teams only play the other division twice each while facing division rivals 3 or 4 times.
Oh, I have ranted elsewhere about the idiosyncratic scheduling ... and in this case, if I included the unbalanced scheduling into the equation - it would most likely have EXACERBATED the ridiculousness of the CURRENT situation ...

If you account for the unbalanced scheduling ... especially this season ... one could argue it is an EVEN BIGGER shame that Calgary and BC be forced to playoff against each other ... had they not had to play each other as many times as they did ... and perhaps played the Winnipegs, and Hamiltons more often - than their records , arguably, would / could have been even better.

BTW, if you think I am such a troll ... than stop feeding me ... otherwise - enuff already.

Not sure how this is an argument justifying divisions. You're just saying, "I don't care to discuss this." Maybe you should not bother posting.

I think you make some valid points Flying A. Thanks for providing some food for thought. The divisions thing goes back a long way just like East vs West. The problem with the latter is we could actually end up with a Calgary vs Edmonton Grey Cup game. So much for the East vs the West concept. In the end it is all about having the two best teams play for the Grey Cup. If standings were the criterion then by rights that would be Calgary and BC. but that of course is not going to happen.

Given the present situation where 6 teams are eligible to make the playoffs perhaps the following would be viable:

1st and 2nd earn a bye
Winner of the 3rd and 5th place team playoff meets up with the 2nd place finisher.
Winner of the 4th and 6th place team playoff meets up with 1st place finisher. [1st place earns this right because of where they finished].

Theoretically the 1st and 2nd place finishers would still end up in the Grey Cup.

This is how it would go:

  1. BC ------------------------18 13 5 0 26
  2. Calgary-------------------18 12 6 0 24
  3. Montreal-----------------18 11 7 0 22
  4. Toronto-------------------18 9 9 0 18
    5 Saskatchewan------------18 8 10 0 16
  5. Edmonton-----------------18 7 11 0 14

BC and Calgary get the bye [why not, they earned it]
Montreal plays SSK [Calgary plays the winner]
Toronto plays Edmonton [BC plays the winner]

It's just a thought but I don't see much changing anytime soon.

Since the teams that didn't make the playoffs were in fact the worst teams in the league, how does the playoff schedule make a mockery of the regular season?

We want the top teams in. The top teams are in.

Furthermore, your argument isn't all that convincing. There's lots of reasons for geographical divisions:

  1. By playing teams within the division more often then other teams, you're playing closer teams and cutting down on travel costs. In a league on a budget, that matters.

  2. TSN wants a national audience for the Grey Cup, and you don't get that with Calgary playing BC. Since TSN pays a lot of the freight, what they want matters.

  3. Fans like local rivalries. There's a reason we get Toronto/Hamilton and Calgary/Edmonton instead of Montreal/Winnipeg. No offense to Bomber fans, but who in Montreal really cares to see Winnipeg? If we had a team in Quebec City, it'd be gold. (We had that problem as an Ottawa fan - no local rival. We kind of wanted it to be Montreal since they were the class of the East, but for Als fans it was hard to get that worked up against a pretender from Ontario.)

  4. The problem of an undeserving team getting in over a deserving one due to divisions doesn't exist thanks to the crossover, so there really isn't much that needs fixing. We're not talking about the AL East here that one year had arguably three of the top 5 teams in baseball.

  5. The regular season means money. That's really what it's about, and you don't seem to realize that. If they really just wanted to use it to sort the playoff order, they could get rid of 4 games. They won't do that, because $$$.

As well, with the soap opera, suggestions of conspiracies, surounding the Eskimos and Argonauts. I would argue that the Eskimo/Argo match up is the most compelling of the playoffs.

go tell it to the nfl, nhl, and nba

The only way to have a balanced schedule is to have a 10 team league... you can still have the divisions, then rank them according to their regular season record.

Just to add fuel to the fire here is a scenario for you... say the 4th place finisher in either division has a better record than the 2nd place team in the other division, then the team with the better record should get a home playoff game... and trust me, there is a precedent for that happening.... what it might do is make things more intersting down the stretch... as for having less meaningless games in the future, maybe the schedule should be open ended so that teams fighting for position play each other in the last 2 or 3 weeks of the season... depending on who gets eliminated and when... could make things interesting for teams already in the post season to play for home field advantage as well.

MLB: 30 teams, 6 divisions, 5 teams per division (one with 4, one with 6 for geographical reasons)
NFL: 32 teams, 8 divisions, 4 teams per division
NBA: 30 teams, 6 divisions, 5 teams per division
NHL: 30 teams, 6 divisions, 5 teams per division
CFL: 8 teams, 2 divisions, 4 teams per division

I still don't see much difference.