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Author Topic: CBA negotiations  (Read 12229 times)
theaardvark
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« on: May 06, 2022, 01:56:55 PM »

Is anyone else having big bouts of dread seeing the tweets coming out about the state of the negotiations?  Is this just early round sabre rattling?  Or are both sides seriously overplaying their hands, and not realizing the exterior threats the league faces? 

Do the CFLPA realize that over 700 jobs depend on them coming to a reasonable agreement?

Does the CFL realize that 100+ years of history hinges on having a great 2022 season to fend off USFL/XFL threats?

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Blue In BC
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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2022, 02:27:11 PM »

I don't have access to tweets so I don't know what you've read and / or from either side.

Can you give some examples where the main issues look to be causing the concern?

Generally I'm not concerned and this may just be the saber rattling or not. Coming out of a missed 2020 season and an abbreviated 2022 season, it's not the time to mess around. I don't see either the USFL or XFL as any threat.

The CFL was already in a declining revenue string prior to Covid.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2022, 02:41:29 PM by Blue In BC » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2022, 02:46:30 PM »

The link below provides some insight into the CBA/CFL discussions...

https://3downnation.com/2022/05/05/cfl-wants-to-eradicate-canadian-ratio-in-cba-proposal-to-players-association/
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TBURGESS
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« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2022, 02:49:10 PM »

Quote
In the CFL?s proposal to date, a number of key issues still concern your bargaining committee:
? A ten-year agreement with zero increases in the cap.
? A revenue sharing program which will not likely show any significant growth by the CFL?s own accord, until the TSN contract is renewed in five years
? Although earlier discussions around guaranteed contracts were held, the CFL has now removed the PA?s proposal to allow players to negotiate guaranteed contracts.
? The CFL demands our members go back to padded practices, even with a decrease of 35% of on-field injuries, yet refuses to support our proposal for coverage for those same on field injuries.
? Various proposals on the table aimed at what appears to be an effort to try to lock as many players as they can into contracts.
? Full elimination of the Canadian ratio and Veteran American Ratio. As well as a reduction of Canadians on the Roster. 
?  The league wants full discretion on practice time that varies during the week (increasing and decreasing hours). Which will create lack of certainty for members.
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« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2022, 02:53:26 PM »

It's the CFL. A deal will get done. The players can't afford not to play and the teams can't either. If I had to straight up guess, a few of the league's hardline positions seem to be in there to allow the players to feel they've got a "good" deal. No way the league thinks the players will sign a 10 year deal with no escalations. I doubt the league truly wants to reimplement padded practices, but threating to take it away and then giving it back might be a decent bargaining ploy. I am hopeful that the ratio gets dramatically reduced but we all know there's mostly disagreement on here with me about that. Either way, I'm glad to see it on the table even though I doubt that is entirely sincere either although perhaps they can get it further reduced. If they could ever get it so there are less than 50% of Canadians in the PA it would make it far easier in negotiations to slam through in a future CBA.
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Blue In BC
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2022, 03:01:08 PM »

Yikes Those are some big huddles to overcome.

SMS level and ratio are the biggest areas to deal with I'd think.

Total elimination of the ratio? Ratio comes up every CBA. IMO the size of the roster could be smaller if there were less Canadians and a few more DI's. That would allow the SMS to be spread over a smaller group. In a perfect world I'd like to see the roster increased by 4 ( Canadians ) but that's a problem financially. Increasing the number of Canadians ( by me ) is suggested only because of the current ratio. If the number of Americans is increased, then I'd suggest the opposite as I did above.

In year 1 of new agreement:

I'd like to see another 3 year deal with no increase to SMS.

I'd like to see 2 more DI's added and the global designation eliminated. Globals kept would just be classified as imports.

I'd like to see a reduction of 4 Canadians on the roster with the combined roster reduced to 44, all dressed.

In the next 2 years, I'd like to add one more DI and eliminate 1 more Canadian each year.

Number of starters to remain at 7 for the next 3 years but 4 more Americans and 4 less Canadians over this time frame.

Let the yelling begin.

« Last Edit: May 06, 2022, 03:07:49 PM by Blue In BC » Logged

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Jesse
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« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2022, 03:02:59 PM »

It's the CFL. A deal will get done. The players can't afford not to play and the teams can't either. If I had to straight up guess, a few of the league's hardline positions seem to be in there to allow the players to feel they've got a "good" deal. No way the league thinks the players will sign a 10 year deal with no escalations. I doubt the league truly wants to reimplement padded practices, but threating to take it away and then giving it back might be a decent bargaining ploy. I am hopeful that the ratio gets dramatically reduced but we all know there's mostly disagreement on here with me about that. Either way, I'm glad to see it on the table even though I doubt that is entirely sincere either although perhaps they can get it further reduced. If they could ever get it so there are less than 50% of Canadians in the PA it would make it far easier in negotiations to slam through in a future CBA.

That's one thing I'm pretty sure they do want back.
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« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2022, 03:31:17 PM »

The loss of the ratio will sacrifice the main competitive advantage that the CFL has, and the gradual diluting of the ratio any further that it already has been, will just make it a lingering death.  

Its a real short term view, based on some misguided belief that a faster, higher scoring game with gimmicky rules will hold fan interest more than national identity.  It's deluded thinking and not based on the evidence of many years.

Think, if you will, about what the extinguishing of the ratio would have meant to earlier eras.  Ask yourself the following questions:

1.  Statistically, James Murphy was a better and more productive receiver than Joe Poplawski.  I love James Murphy and the fact that he settled in Winnipeg and made a home here.  But does anyone truly believe that he enjoys a higher regard with the fans than Joe Pop?

2.  Without the ratio, I doubt anyone would have invested the time and effort to convert a defensive lineman from Div 2 Dickinson State into an offensive lineman.  Chris Walby went on to become one of the best OTs in the history of the CFL, but without the ratio he probably doesn't get to start his storied career.

3.  Does anyone really think Nic Demski would have been able to stick around to develop after his first 3 years in the league?  He is a top notch talent now, but without the ratio, he most likely goes the way of Charles Nelson or a thousand other receivers who were moved on from after a slow start.  

4.  Rick House put up 8000 yards as a CFL receiver.  He was buried on special teams until he developed.  No way he has that career without the ratio.

5.  Estimate the percentage of fan discussion dedicated to ratio management, projecting the 7 starters, the draft, which player may "go home" in free agency etc.  Probably at least half of the off-season discussion revolves around that.  Heck, with no ratio, is there even a reason to have a Canadian draft?  Probably not.  

6.  Do Kyle Walters and Mike O'Shea become football executives/coaches at the professional level without the ratio?  Probably not, as neither of them would likely have had a professional football career without it.  Without that entry into the league, both those guys are probably selling insurance or real estate.  

I could go on, but I'm either preaching to the choir or talking past people who don't accept the premise.  But I think it is an absolute disgrace that Wade Miller is leading a negotiating committee that takes this stance.  If he has convinced himself that fans want to relinquish the leagues national identity so we can get a couple more NFL cuts who can run a 4.4 40, then he has forgotten where he came from.  

If this CBA guts the ratio, that finishes me.  I kept my season tickets last year, even though I didn't attend a single game, because I wanted to support the team.  A game that relegates Canadian content to special team duty has no interest for me.  If I want to watch all Americans, I'll watch the best Americans.  Giving up the "game day event" isn't a huge sacrifice for me, I go to 9 games in person a year, but I watch about 60.  I can convert my ticket spend into a speciality channel that will give me as much NFL content as I can handle.  Maybe I'm a relic, but I think if the CFL believes that they can replace a fan like me with some Gen-Z kid who wants to bet the over-under on sacks from his phone, I think they are going to be disappointed.  
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« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2022, 04:03:59 PM »

The CFL has always been in danger of folding for the past 30 or 40 years.  The days where the CFL reign supreme are gone with all the sports available on TV.  If the CFL doesn't change their marketing approach to target kids and youth as well as make game day experiences more lively and entertaining, it doesn't matter how much the players make or what rule changes they have.  The CFL will not be able to survive another century or even decade if it doesn't take steps now to address the many issues it faces.
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dizzycamper
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« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2022, 04:26:04 PM »

The loss of the ratio will sacrifice the main competitive advantage that the CFL has, and the gradual diluting of the ratio any further that it already has been, will just make it a lingering death.  

Its a real short term view, based on some misguided belief that a faster, higher scoring game with gimmicky rules will hold fan interest more than national identity.  It's deluded thinking and not based on the evidence of many years.

Think, if you will, about what the extinguishing of the ratio would have meant to earlier eras.  Ask yourself the following questions:

1.  Statistically, James Murphy was a better and more productive receiver than Joe Poplawski.  I love James Murphy and the fact that he settled in Winnipeg and made a home here.  But does anyone truly believe that he enjoys a higher regard with the fans than Joe Pop?

2.  Without the ratio, I doubt anyone would have invested the time and effort to convert a defensive lineman from Div 2 Dickinson State into an offensive lineman.  Chris Walby went on to become one of the best OTs in the history of the CFL, but without the ratio he probably doesn't get to start his storied career.

3.  Does anyone really think Nic Demski would have been able to stick around to develop after his first 3 years in the league?  He is a top notch talent now, but without the ratio, he most likely goes the way of Charles Nelson or a thousand other receivers who were moved on from after a slow start.  

4.  Rick House put up 8000 yards as a CFL receiver.  He was buried on special teams until he developed.  No way he has that career without the ratio.

5.  Estimate the percentage of fan discussion dedicated to ratio management, projecting the 7 starters, the draft, which player may "go home" in free agency etc.  Probably at least half of the off-season discussion revolves around that.  Heck, with no ratio, is there even a reason to have a Canadian draft?  Probably not.  

6.  Do Kyle Walters and Mike O'Shea become football executives/coaches at the professional level without the ratio?  Probably not, as neither of them would likely have had a professional football career without it.  Without that entry into the league, both those guys are probably selling insurance or real estate.  

I could go on, but I'm either preaching to the choir or talking past people who don't accept the premise.  But I think it is an absolute disgrace that Wade Miller is leading a negotiating committee that takes this stance.  If he has convinced himself that fans want to relinquish the leagues national identity so we can get a couple more NFL cuts who can run a 4.4 40, then he has forgotten where he came from.  

If this CBA guts the ratio, that finishes me.  I kept my season tickets last year, even though I didn't attend a single game, because I wanted to support the team.  A game that relegates Canadian content to special team duty has no interest for me.  If I want to watch all Americans, I'll watch the best Americans.  Giving up the "game day event" isn't a huge sacrifice for me, I go to 9 games in person a year, but I watch about 60.  I can convert my ticket spend into a speciality channel that will give me as much NFL content as I can handle.  Maybe I'm a relic, but I think if the CFL believes that they can replace a fan like me with some Gen-Z kid who wants to bet the over-under on sacks from his phone, I think they are going to be disappointed.  


I totally agree with you, other than spending time watching 4 down & NFL boring football. Secondly, I'm not that crazy about the rule changes for excitement, because in my mind it supports those that like to wager and of course pleases the Greater Toronto Area, including that media out there. A good defensive cfl football game is exciting as well, geeze. Do tell me, such is life, now a days and buy into that crazy stuff (could use a different word).

But, before I go of the edge, I would like to know the details of these negotiations between the two sides. If Wade Miller is indeed supporting the venture of removing/downsizing Cdn talent, I would like to hear it from him in front of a camera. If the answer is yes, this will be my last year as a Bomber supporter in the stands.

 
« Last Edit: May 06, 2022, 04:28:24 PM by ModAdmin » Logged
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« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2022, 04:38:23 PM »

The loss of the ratio will sacrifice the main competitive advantage that the CFL has, and the gradual diluting of the ratio any further that it already has been, will just make it a lingering death.  

Its a real short term view, based on some misguided belief that a faster, higher scoring game with gimmicky rules will hold fan interest more than national identity.  It's deluded thinking and not based on the evidence of many years.

Think, if you will, about what the extinguishing of the ratio would have meant to earlier eras.  Ask yourself the following questions:

1.  Statistically, James Murphy was a better and more productive receiver than Joe Poplawski.  I love James Murphy and the fact that he settled in Winnipeg and made a home here.  But does anyone truly believe that he enjoys a higher regard with the fans than Joe Pop?

2.  Without the ratio, I doubt anyone would have invested the time and effort to convert a defensive lineman from Div 2 Dickinson State into an offensive lineman.  Chris Walby went on to become one of the best OTs in the history of the CFL, but without the ratio he probably doesn't get to start his storied career.

3.  Does anyone really think Nic Demski would have been able to stick around to develop after his first 3 years in the league?  He is a top notch talent now, but without the ratio, he most likely goes the way of Charles Nelson or a thousand other receivers who were moved on from after a slow start.  

4.  Rick House put up 8000 yards as a CFL receiver.  He was buried on special teams until he developed.  No way he has that career without the ratio.

5.  Estimate the percentage of fan discussion dedicated to ratio management, projecting the 7 starters, the draft, which player may "go home" in free agency etc.  Probably at least half of the off-season discussion revolves around that.  Heck, with no ratio, is there even a reason to have a Canadian draft?  Probably not.  

6.  Do Kyle Walters and Mike O'Shea become football executives/coaches at the professional level without the ratio?  Probably not, as neither of them would likely have had a professional football career without it.  Without that entry into the league, both those guys are probably selling insurance or real estate.  

I could go on, but I'm either preaching to the choir or talking past people who don't accept the premise.  But I think it is an absolute disgrace that Wade Miller is leading a negotiating committee that takes this stance.  If he has convinced himself that fans want to relinquish the leagues national identity so we can get a couple more NFL cuts who can run a 4.4 40, then he has forgotten where he came from.  

If this CBA guts the ratio, that finishes me.  I kept my season tickets last year, even though I didn't attend a single game, because I wanted to support the team.  A game that relegates Canadian content to special team duty has no interest for me.  If I want to watch all Americans, I'll watch the best Americans.  Giving up the "game day event" isn't a huge sacrifice for me, I go to 9 games in person a year, but I watch about 60.  I can convert my ticket spend into a speciality channel that will give me as much NFL content as I can handle.  Maybe I'm a relic, but I think if the CFL believes that they can replace a fan like me with some Gen-Z kid who wants to bet the over-under on sacks from his phone, I think they are going to be disappointed.  

And nobody wants to read a rehashing of this so I won't respond again but my rebuttal would be:

1. James Murphy and Joe Pop are entirely irrelevant to the game today. Even more so to future fans who need to come on board. Who cares who you think should be in higher regard (I don't mean that rudely).

2. It may have not worked out for Walby but it would have worked out for someone else. A star is a star and every football team can celebrate talented offensive lineman.

3. Demski probably would not have developed now, but someone else would have and they would be a recognizable name/face. If we're playing the 'what if' game 'what if' that player was even better?

4. There are plenty of players who develop into stars in all professional sports. The story of a player earning his dues is not unique to the CFL. The NFL makes entire reality shows about them and they have no ratio. But yes, if you have a deep connection with Rick House that could be alarming. New fans don't care or potential new fans don't care one wink who or what is a Rick House.

5. If eliminating the ratio made the Canadian draft irrelevant, then oh boy is that not the biggest incitement of talent I have ever seen. In addition, every single popular sports league has a TON of rumors and speculation around free agency. You absolutely do not need a country of origin rule to generate that.

6. Speculation at best. You could be right. Maybe Walters isn't a GM which would be a shame because he is good at it. However, other than that he is good at it, what else would be a loss that it wasn't 'him' specifically. Basically zero.
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Waffler
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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2022, 04:43:48 PM »

A strike in pre-season would not surprise me. Losing league games would though.

The CFL is just asking for too much. How do you even negotiate with that "offer"? Not much time left and we are miles apart.
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theaardvark
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2022, 04:46:27 PM »

All the things that make the CFL Canadian are important to preserve.

SMS is a concern, and unfortunately, the majority of the bargaining committee are not getting ELC / min wage money.  The reason I mention that is that it could be a double edged sword... players getting paid more than min want even more than that... wheres a min wage / elc player might just be happy to have a job, and see that wage as worth protecting.  

The CFL is the second highest paying football league on the planet, and has the most to offer young players.  When CFL teams can sign over 100 players to the roster in the off season, I'm not thinking that money is a big issue.  It seems, though, most people make it a big deal.

NAT's do two things, first, they spark local interest and keep the game alive in USports,  Second, they provide much of the periphery players that are developmental and special teams / backups at an affordable rate, to offset the top end talent getting compensated as "stars".  Getting paid in $CAN and many living at home / close to home makes that minimum wage more liveable.  

The fact that we have no issue keeping 10-15 players on PR's at far less than ELC/Min salary shows that money is not the big issue some make it out to be.  I guess we will see how many players we lose next year to the XFL / USFL if either play.  Regardless if we do lose some periphery players, I can't see it affecting the CFL talent pool that much.

I get that the CFLPA has to "fight" for more money, but I really wish they focused more on quality of life for the players.  

I get the need for padded practices from a team perspective, and the increased injury issues they entail.  THAT is a fight that needs to be fought, and I truly think the CFL needs a better post injury / post career health care window.  

There are logical points to debate, and there are emotional ones. Unfortunately, money is emotional.  I do not begrudge the players trying to maximize their earning potential from a dangerous career that can be short lived, but they need to realize they cannot get blood from a stone, they are getting a very decent wage compared to other leagues, and if they concentrate on post injury/career health care... it will serve them a whole lot better.  

One thing that surprised me about the USFL was their "Every one gets a free education" spiel.  I'm guessing its mostly an online thing, and that the USFL is getting a serious deal on it in exchange for publicity for the offering university, but shouldn't just about every player have a degree from his NCAA/USports days?  Would this be something to work into the CFL CBA?
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Blue In BC
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« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2022, 04:47:23 PM »

I don't think a complete elimination of the ratio is really in the cards. I do believe a re-distribution of the ratio will be the final solution.

It makes no sense to me to have 7 Canadian starters backed up by 14 Canadians while only 4 imports ( 5 if you count the 2nd QB ) backing up 17 starters.

Level / balance this out more on the roster. Keep the 7 Canadian starters. I suggested a movement towards 4 less Canadians and 4 more imports.  A 2nd step might to a change to the breakdown for the ratio on the PR.

If we re-balance the ratio on the AR then we could take an opposite approach on the PR. IE: A higher number of Canadians and a lesser number of imports.

That gets a bit more complicated because the PR was increased from 10 to 12 to accommodate Global players. Then it was increased by 5 more due to covid.

Global players eliminate Canadian players since the number of Imports doesn't change. So pro ratio folks should be in favour of just making then imports or getting rid of them all together.

If they're counted as imports we could then reduce the size of the PR and make that part of a breakdown there.

I'd suggest a PR of 12 with 8 Canadians and 4 imports.

All that seems like a reasonable trade off. It retains the Canadian starters, the next man up Canadian back ups on the AR and the next next man up on the PR.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2022, 04:51:32 PM by Blue In BC » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2022, 04:54:25 PM »

A strike in pre-season would not surprise me. Losing league games would though.

The CFL is just asking for too much. How do you even negotiate with that "offer"? Not much time left and we are miles apart.

A strike in preseason would surprise me. It's a part of how teams decide on final rosters It's not something you want to decide completely just in TC. It also prepares veterans for the regular season.
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