Time to admit CFL has serious challenges - The Lions are one

Ed Willes Vancouver Sun - July 13 - had a very good article - that underlines the problems we have been stating on this form

  1. Last Fridays lion - rider game had 32 penalties - for 272 yards - in One stretch of 24 plays there was 11 penalties - in last 3 minutes there was a stretch of 5 penalties in a row -
  2. Has several comments from fans how they will not go back to attending games because of penalties
  3. Only 23,000 fans out - very concerning - hey we need to accept what Bungle said months ago that the Lions would be closer to 20,000 per game this year - what a sad statement that the upper level is closed - looks so Bush - like a minor league team - I am so disgusted with Braley - skulsky , Buono - they are out of step with this generation - not having 35,000 per game is a failure for this once proud organization - I doubt we the posters could do worse

And may I add not having a half time show is again foolish and lame - embarrassing not having a marching band - or create a
Drum band like the riders have - or spend some money and bring in Pacific Northwest bands - take 1 or 2 dollars from each ticket and use to bring in the bands - spend on half time and pre game concerts
Lions games must be an event - not a fleecing of customers hard earned $ to see something that at times is sputtering and
Tired and almost worn out
Come on mr. Braley show your resolve and guts and turn it around - we don't want your money to bank roll the team only we want your heart and passion - right now you and your admin team are out of step with Vancouver - this is not your Father's Oldsmobile any longer .

Sell sell sell… He is too cheap to have anything… I honestly believe that Braley has done nothing but harm to this league for a very long time… Forcing the Argos into his ownership and then pretending to save the team, and then completely running it into the ground… Now he is sucking the life out of the Lions…Skullsky is also a moron…

The era of gridiron football as we know it might be slowly coming to an end with concussion issues and PEDs to bulk up whereby parents I think are seeing gridiron as perhaps not a sport they want to put their kids into or support. Soccer is going to do nothing but keep increasing in popularity as much as it pains me to say that, especially with Canada becoming more ethnic.
Penalties, well, not sure about that and exactly what effect this has. Price of tickets, might have an effect. Better high def TV, an issue for sure. I'm actually becoming more of a CFL fan but a CFL fan who wishes to watch from my living room and less of a fan to go to the stadium. I pay for cable for sports, I want to get my money's worth and high def is delivering for the basic cable package I have but now as someone without a job, if cable goes up too much, I might cancel that and simply watch whatever I can over the internet even if it's just highlights as I want/need the internet much more than cable. Also if you need socialization to watch sports there is always the sports bar where the seat is free, you go for a night or day out to the restaurant and have a meal with some drinks with people who want to watch the sport. The ticket is free.

But hey, it's easier to just blame it all on Braley. :wink:

NFL Attendance Falls as At-Home Viewing Experience Improves

[url=http://northwesternbusinessreview.org/nfl-attendance-falls-as-at-home-viewing-experience-improves/]http://northwesternbusinessreview.org/n ... -improves/[/url]

I don't really know what you want them to do about penalties. Even with the rule changes, half the penalties are due to basic stuff like offside: http://www.tsn.ca/talent/patience-will- ... s-1.331252

If the players can't figure out at this point how to line up for a play, there really isn't much anybody can do about penalties.

I'm getting the sense that Braley is doing what he did with the Argos, that is trimming the fat so to speak.

Make the business operation leaner, employ less staff, have less expenses, and then be attractive for a purchase.

This is nothing new.

If that is what's happening, hopefully it isnt a 2-3 year process.

I personally thought we'd see 2016 as a year where alot of teams flourish, with the Argo's situation solidified a bit, but that appears to not be the case.

Always issues in this league..

The on-field product is unwatchable at the moment, with all the penalties. Not blaming anyone in particular for that but you certainly can't fault fans from staying away if that is going to be their experience at the stadium.

This league has a lot of challenges right now, no question. When you have 15 000 people in Montreal for a playoff game and 23 000 in BC in the most beautiful stadium in Canada there is a problem. Ticket pricing is out of wack, penalties is problem, stale and poor presentation on TSN (Black, Cuthbert, Schultz and others), roster turnover caused by SMS. Bad headlines warring with doping agencies or fighting with their union. Five years of messing around in Toronto.

Owners, Broadcaster and the Union need to come up with a Marshall plan and fast. Of particular concern is neglecting the average Joe, families and young fans by pricing them out of attending live events. That has always been the backbone supporting the CFL IMO. CFL fans are passing away and retiring down south faster than they are being replaced...They've known this for over five years and have done nothing.

Right now the CFL is going the way of the Baby Boomer...

The funny thing is, some people and players were screaming for a huge pay increase for the players last year. Could you imagine the financial mess the league would be in, if it went along with huge pay increase ?? :roll: :roll: Thankfully common sense prevailed .

None of these problems have anything to do with player wages. Player wages have gone DOWN in relation to percentage of revenues taken in down from from 35 to 40 percent a decade ago to 13 to 25 percent today in some cases. The problem is that none of the massive profits are going back into promoting and improving the game.

Yup. Going into owner pockets and not back into the community or to the players. Mafia-run league that will eventually kill itself through shortsightedness and greed.

Massive profits ? After SK , there is no massive profits. The league is healthy but not flush with cash. Especially if teams struggle at the gate .

I agree with the Lions, it looks like Braley is setting up that team for a sale much like he did in Toronto.

I've read somewhere in a multiple 'Argos to BMO/MLSE' threads that there are 8-10 groups looking to buy the Lions. If that is true, then the Lions are far from a serious challenge.

Yes, the league is changing. Tickets are not cheap anymore, that's good if you're in a 24Kish stadium. Need to create demand. Filling a 50-60K seat stadium, even in the west is problematic, teams don't need those numbers to make a profit anymore.

At the end of the season, I'm looking forward to see what the average attendance is now with Hamilton being in a full sized stadium for a complete season. Compare that league figure to 2012(last year in IWS). From there compare the average ticket price between then and now and we'll have a better picture how the league's gate business is doing.

Massive profits in Winnipeg, Edmonton, Regina, Ottawa and likely in Hamilton as of this season. Montreal doing very well considering they haven't won anything in five years. Only team that will not turn a profit this year is Toronto and that will completely change in 2016.

Not sure what your business accumen is but you tell me of a business that turns 20 to 25 percent net profits on revenues of 25 million. You won't find many and that's not even counting the GC the biggest money maker in Canadian sports. None of that is being re-invested in a video game, advertising or growing the game while not mandatory IMO is a mistake.

Hftx, Winnipeg made a couple Million last year and that is not a massive amount. Ottawa and Hamilton will not make that much . Toronto has been bleeding the league dry for the last 20 years .The other issue is , Ott,Mtl and Ham do not disclose their financials , so how can you predict how much they will make ,lose or break even ? Unless you personally have seen the books ? I agree with you a 100% on a video game. I think it would make a killing . I still have the CFL armchair QB board game from the mid 1980's. Time for an update . :smiley:

If this league doesn't have "challenges", I hardly recognize it.

If attendance of $23,000 is cause for concern now, I choose to see a good sign in that. And it seems to be that there have been complaints about officiating for as long as there's been officiating.

That's not say that pressbox isn't correct about the need to make a game in BC more of an event or what-not, but when we're suggesting halftime shows and stuff, it seems to me we're actually in a pretty good place overall as a league.

I know, let's get the Gliebermans back as owners for one of the teams and with some of those promotions that people raved about in Ottawa. That should 'up' the entertainment value of the games. :lol:

But yes, the league is turning a bit into like kids hockey which is turning into a well-off family sport, a bit more for those that have discretional money for tickets. It's tough, people have to make harder choices when tickets are more expensive. I am sure there are families out there that would love to get their kids into hockey programs but can't because of finances and how they choose to spend their money that is left over after paying for mortgages and that.

Before the TV deals (there has been two since then, one last month) where the financials were not divulged but likely increased to compensate for Ottawa coming into the league and the extra nine games of content for the broadcaster gets.

21k was the break even point in the CFL. So yes Ottawa, Montreal and Hamilton will make money. As for Winnipeg, I'm pretty sure that with their concerts and GC this year, they are doing quite well. 2.3 million does not sound like a lot but it is when you look at the attendance, huge increase in tv money, concerts and GC.

Some money is obviously being stashed in some ledger accounts, nothing wrong with that but it does have an impact on how much you wish to show on your bottom line.

Until the teams agree to pool some money to develop the product (games, advertising, movie licensing...) the age of their average paying customer will continue to increase as their inability to replace them with younger fans. In many ways the CFL is eating itself...

One reason why many communities from what I hear in the US especially are quite happy with university football sitting on a bench with an inexpensive ticket compared with an NFL ticket sitting at the same basic area of a stadium.

Going to be interesting what happens in Buffalo over the course of the next few years if they build a shiny new stadium near the downtown that will definitely have more expensive seating than what it is in the boonies at Orchard Park.

Personally I think leagues like the CHL and university in Canada are the way of the future where you aren't paying players and the ticket prices are very reasonable. Pro sports, just not sure of for in-stadium attendance other than more for the well-off and more of a television product.

I am pretty close to the situation here in BC and I don't see it as a "sky is falling" scenario. Capacity in the lower bowl is now 27,500 so we have to recalibrate attendance expectations. People who previously sat in the upper bowl, aren't going to automatically just move down, so let's dispense of the notion that they're going to automatically (or should) 'sell out' every game, especially when it costs a minimum of $44 a ticket - taxes and fees included.

That said, they can certainly build on the 23K for the home opener. But you have to remember that this market was thoroughly turned off by the really dull teams here for the past couple of years (the 50-17 shellacking at the hands of the Alouettes in the East Semi did not help). I am not entirely certain what other teams do in their market (would love to hear!), but this regime believes that the best marketing is winning (a risky proposition). They have stepped up online efforts, but have cut back on traditional media (limited print, no TV). I have just started to see "BC Lions" shrouds on transit buses.

Someone mentioned that less expensive seats can be had at his (or her) team’s stadium. I kow Ottawa has seats in the $25 range. Not great seats, mind you, but seats nonetheless.

Does every team do this? I recall finding prices for Toronto to be pretty crazy, in light of the lack of demand right now, but doesn’t every team have a more family-friendly pricing option? Not everyone who attends a game has to spend upwards of $60 a person, surely.