Wetenhall & Ted square off on salary cap


Quotes from today's Herald:

"The salary cap, while approved by the governors, needs some very serious adjustments."

"Because we're a fan-driven leage... we need to have exceptions to the cap, which allow us to keep our veteran players, the veterans who attract fans to our games."

"Every owner in this league has the right to his own opinion."

"Montreal is welcome to brin forward any ideas thay have at the end of the season. But the SMS was a document that was arrived at after an exhaustive process of over a year..."

On exceptions to the cap "That concept was tried and discussed for years. We discussed it at great length again this time. But the majority of owners decided not to go in that direction."

"At the end of the year we'll review it, but I don't think it will change fundamentally."

I say, suck it up, Wetenhall, the SMS is good for the league overall. Just because the Als won't get acclaimed into the Eastern final this year doesn't mean the rules should be changed just to appease you!

Kudos to Ted for stickin' to his guns, I imagine he as 5 other owners and the entire fan base behind him. However, I would imagine the westernmost and easternmost teams are probably allied against the SMS.

lol, exceptions are just stupid as every team will use it, just some teams will go over-board.

The Als Idea is probably 1 marquee player(QB basicly) doesn't count, basicly that means Calvillo's reported 600K per year new contract won't count. WHY? lol.

Don't give 1 player such a huge % of the team salary and there is no issue.

Funny how the owners say they want to work together but want to screw over all the other teams by changing the price of starting QB's by so much(reportly, even 550K would mess up other teams when other Starters re-sign)

Every team is equal that is soooo how the SMS should work mr. Wetenhall. not: the team cap is X amount except those 4 players don't count. huh? lol.

Well, Wetenhall has a point. Teams are getting rid of many of their best known players because they make the most money. If the teams can afford to pay the salaries, whats the big deal? I think the league should of went to more of a “luxury tax” rather than a salary cap. Big spending teams like Mtl and Sask (who spent nearly $6 mil on salaries last year) could subsidize the lower spending teams (like Wpg & BC, yep, Wally said he is under the cap this yr and last yr ) through a luxury tax. This artificially low SMS is a joke. Just wait until next year when the +$1 mil of signing bonuses used this season (paid before Nov 21/06) won’t be allowed. The SMS should be raised to at least $4.5 mil for next season.

Invader do you watch baseball? The resaon is they have a luxury tax and guess what it doesn't work. The SMS will work it is only the first week of the season and already we see an owner that may have his team playing over the cap. Of course he would like changes but really what was the reason for the SMS right! If your team can not be competitive like the others and you need to have more money to do this is really sad if you ask me. Why do you think Ottawa has left the league? Do you want other teams such as the Riders in that boat with changes. I think not. Su-ck it up princess Wetenhall.

This feels so wrong.. but I agree 100% with RO05.

The MLB Luxury tax is a pathetic excuse for a salary management system.

I'm fine with a "Luxury tax" system, but it would have teeth so big no team would dare go any further then they would right now.

if teams spend 300K over the cap they pay 900K into the Luxury tax. fine if MTL can spend it.

There are two issues:
1.QB's are getting over-paid. 450K is too much for a QB who does have atleast 5 Grey cup rings and is still going atleast 12-6.
yes people won't agree
No QB has shown the ability like Flutie in 96-97 showing they deserve 450K.
Most shouldn't even be 350K(and I don't beleive they are) but for MTL, EDM, BCL who have top quality QB's but they also spend over 10% of the cap on 1 player.

I didn't see any top players getting cut. the issue that older players are getting hurried out the door really, Edmonton and Hamilton got rid of alot of "Known" players, it wasn't so much the SMS as sucking!! No offence to Morreale, Hitchcock, Mitchell and the many other guys who got released but they didn't do too well in 2006(or their teams).

The only player I saw who really got released due to the SMS was Bobby Singh. That's it.
Some were said to be "SMS" but could it also not be the team thought they could do better by going younger?

Now it was also the first season of implementing the SMS(full force) meaning teams are adjusting to it, the high 2006 numbers are due to bonuses given to players. But the 2009 season should not have any "SMS" implications providing GM's understand to not just give FA's big money left and right or else cuts will be made due to the SMS.

For a guy like Wettenhall who complains that the Al's don't make much money, why would he want this rule? Obviously he's either lying about the financial status of the Al's, or he's got something else in mind and we're all out in the dark.

I also think a luxury tax is a ridiculous idea, especially since the person who suggests it thinks the Riders have deep pockets. They were well over the cap last year, but they also didn't make any money because of it.

The SMS system we have in place is fine. I wouldn't be opposed to it going up a bit as the teams revenues go up, but we want all the teams to be profitable and on solid ground, and it's owners like Wettenhall who are too selfish to see this.

Montreal can still go over the cap if they want, but they will pay the fine, the SMS is useless, lets say the CFL gets a cocky owner with deep pockets, the guy can still spend recklessly and get away with it.
Honestly the cfl should have cap exception to sign QBs and veteran players.

From my understanding, repeatedly going over the cap will result in some measures worse than just a fine.

Actually, as we don't really know what Wetenhall has in mind, there are ways to improve the cap in the area he suggests, ie., veteran salaries.
And that is to introduce something similar to the way the NFL treats its vets.
In the NFL, the cap total doesn't change, but a portion of a veteran salary, if he is making the minimum, is excluded from the cap total.
As the CFL does not mandate minimum salaries based upon years of service, a workable idea might be to allow a certain % of a veteran's salary to be excluded.
Just as an example, perhaps as little as 1% a year. That way a 5 year vet could be paid 5% more than a rookie without hurting the cap.
If we want our players to be identifiable in the community, something along that line is needed.
On the other hand, I completely oppose the exclusion of a "marquee player" from the cap, as that is just a fancy way of saying the richest teams will always get the best (most expensive) free agents, normally the key QB position.

OK, nobody likes the luxury tax idea. But I have plan which might work well for the CFL.

Set the salary cap at the average payroll of all 8 teams. Teams over the cap would pay a fine to the teams under the cap...allowing them some extra cash to sign players and bid on free agents.

The actual salary cap could go up or down each year, dependant on how much money the teams are spending on payroll. If a team overspends by a considerable amount, he knows he is also helping pay the salaries of his competitor's players.

Here is a sample chart of each team's payroll. The median salary is $4.5M. The first $200k above or below the average could be exempted. A fine of 50% would be applied on overspending above $200k. Teams would be fined 100% on overspending above $500k, for instance:

  1. Mon. $5.3 +$600k = $350k fine
  2. Sas. $5.0 +$300k = $150k fine
  3. Edm. $4.8 +$100k = $50k fine
  4. Tor. $4.6 (median)
  5. Cal. $4.4 (median)
  6. B.C. $4.2 -$100k = $50k subsidy
  7. Wpg. $4.0 -$300k = $150k subsidy
  8. Ham. $3.7 -$600k = $350k subsidy

Some may argue that the fine should be 100% or 200%, but you don't want to encourage teams to deliberatly underspend, then expect handouts from the other teams to top up their payroll.

With this system, the salary cap isn't a rigid number, but is flexible and reflects the actual average of what teams are spending on player's salaries.

It's reassuring to know that the system is working. It's when you don't hear anyone complaining about it that should get you suspicious.

Exactly pigseye. Invader luxury taxes do not work! The SMS that is created is to level out the playing field is it not. As far as an owner with deep pockets he may be able to afford the fine but the loss of Canadian talent is the key to this. Whats the problem? The SMS is working for most teams why not the Als? :lol: :lol: Losing their first game to the Riders will do this to you.

Invader, the system now is actually fairly similar to what you suggest.
The difference, is that the average you talk about is enforced, not flexible. And it needs to be, otherwise salaries escalate and get out of control as in the past.
But the cap is determined as a % of revenues, and as revenues rise, the cap will too.
And there must be penalties beyond just financial ones, or it will not work either.
Deliberate underspending is somewhat controlled by the existance of a minimum salary.

The system as it stands right now likely isn't perfect, but maybe we need to actually get through one season with it before we start making too many changes.....?

The only real problem with the cap as it stands now will be on the enforcement side.
If an owner like Wettenhall openly flaunts the cap, what can the league really do to him?
In the NFL, technically, they can suspend or revoke a franchise.
That ain't gonna happen in the CFL.

Losses of Canadian Talent will hurt the team and loss of money is not the critical aspect of the SMS.

What will losing your second game to the Riders do.....?

But seriously, taking away draft picks is the key, but if an owner goes completely rogue on this issue, why would he care if we take away his 1st round pick next year if he can just sign a guy like Jason Clermont to a contract?
Wetenhall has been a fly in the ointment on this from day one, and a priority for the new commish will be to balance listening to his suggestions for change while being firm in disciplining the system as is.
Certainly this continues to be a far more important concern than coddling the media with drug testing....

You are bold on your prediction and I will leave your green crying towel out for you.

The loss of draft choices will hurt a team why would it not? Sure you can go out and sign a Canadian Free agent but they are costly are they not. Do you not think that these teams other then heee heee heee Winnipeg develops their Canadians.

Where did you dream up that number? AC is playing the option year and has not signed a new contract.

But seeing how you brought it up. This has always been as will always be a problem with fans. We have no clue as to what any of the players are being payed. If a team wins they will be accused of breaking the cap. Look at the surprises last year, a few teams that fans defended to the end about being poor and respecting the cap turned out to be the bigest spenders. People will always equate winning with spending,

As for Wetenhall, The fact that he has voiced his opinion against the cap doest not mean he is breaking the rules. He is simply offering his opinion on ways to make it better. I might add that there have been many many thread here about changes to the system. Many owners don't like it and many fans don't like it.

The difference is that Wetenhall has the guts to say it.

Guts but no brains! Why does he think we should not have an SMS in place. Or why does he feel it is necessary to change it. He was against it from the beginning. He would rather have it like a few years ago. He has to realizze this is for the good of the league not just for the Montreal team.

He has the brains to know that every owner will break the cap and screw the system at the first available opportunity.

It like I said, many fans have posted all kinds of options to the SMS. Why shold he be any different

The difference is he is an owner and should not only be responsible for his team but the league as a whole. Obviously the majority of the owners agree with the current SMS.