Done deal. TSN announced today that it won the rights to the entire CFL package. 72 regular season games and the entire playoffs go to TSN---- including the Grey Cup.
That's right, The Grey Cup goes to cable TV for the first time--- so the release says anyway.
You know, great for TSN, I'm sure they will do a great job over there. They really put an effort into showcasing the CFL and making it the top sporting package on that network. But this is a really sad day for CBC Sports. This was one of the sports they really did give a hoot about, the CFL, and it's gone.
Then again, after last year's infamous CBC lockout and what went down with the broadcasts last year with announcerless football games and all that, maybe the CBC deserves what it got today. And it'll deserve the ratings hit it will get when all those millions of football viewers migrate to TSN. Maybe the CBC didn't bother with a major bid; if so, they are fools. I gotta say, I keep trying to find reasons to keep watching the CBC, I want to support this network, but they are doing their best to drive me away. The loss of the CFL is one less reason for me to watch the CBC.
We now await the fate of Hockey Night in Canada--- seems the CBC is entirely betting its hat on saving that. We shall see.
UPDATE: Now I'm reading that CBC is not totally shut out; apparently they will keep showing the Grey Cup and probably take the TSN feed for that. Well, they needed to keep SOMETHING.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Forget what I just said. I'm hearing the CFL commish on FAN 590 and he doesn't know of any such deal with CBC in place. Also read this story at the CBC website and the CBC is acting as if it's totally shut out. So unless TSN decides to sell the CBC a piece of the Grey Cup, that's it.
UPDATE TO THE UPDATE: Now the word from the CBC is that they were planning a bid but never got a chance to put that bid before the CFL! The CFL went and negotiated with TSN and that was it!
People are now saying the CFL did a lousy deal for themselves and could have negotiated for more money if they allowed CBC to put up a bid. I think they have a point. Personally I don't see how going cable-only helps this league, but that's only my opinion.