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It begs the question as to why MLS chose multiple home stadiums for the third phase of its 2020 regular season after going the bubble route for the MLS is back tournament in Orlando. It also raises the stakes — and the associated risks — for those in the NFL and college football still pushing forward without bubble protocols and at least some fans in the stands in several markets, including a proposed 22 per cent capacity at Arrowhead Stadium, home of the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.
Bears of the week
Whenever a heritage league announces it will not award a championship for the first time in 101 years, it’s a losing proposition.
And that’s the bear market the Canadian Football League finds itself in after the somewhat surprising — and certainly disappointing — cancellation of its 2020 season. Just when it seemed like the CFL had all of the requisite pieces in place for a shortened schedule in the single-stadium hub city of Winnipeg — including an interest-free $30 million loan from the federal government — the league’s board of governors announced Tuesday that the government assistance did not materialize and without it, the CFL would not be playing games this year.
It was a jarring end to five months of contingency planning, negotiations and general uncertainty, especially for league and team employees, including the more than 450 players in the CFL. It laid bare how gate-driven the CFL business model remains to this day. It also clearly exposed three different tiers to the nine member franchises: the three bullish community-owned clubs in Regina, Winnipeg and Edmonton; the three privately-owned urban teams in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver; and three in the middle (Calgary, Hamilton and Ottawa).