The COVID-19 pandemic has had a terrible impact on sports events worldwide and, while some leagues like the NHL may have had a troubled season, the CFL got cancelled entirely. With this decision, fans, teams, and the whole league had to resign themselves to look forward to the future but, as time goes by, this future becomes more uncertain.
The CFL did not go down quietly, as they evaluated many alternatives before deciding that the season in 2020 would not happen. One of the things that the league tried was to get some funding from Trudeau´s government to make up for the lack of fans on stands, and which was rejected thoroughly.
Many feel that the main cause for this subsidy request´s fail was the fact that the league started with an unrealistically high $150 million. Yet Commissioner Randy Ambrosie still states that he does not understand why no deal could be worked out, even for a fraction of that amount.
COVID-19 and Uncertainty
The truth is, all of this is happening because there isn’t a better way to handle the virus than to try and keep numbers low by avoiding big crowd gatherings. We do not have a vaccine, nor a cure and this COVID-19 is deadly in too many cases, not to mention how healthcare services become overwhelmed.
This level of uncertainty is hitting the CFL hard because there is no way to know if things will be any different by June 2021 when next season is supposed to start. Nobody knows if there will be a cure or a better way to handle it and the league simply can´t afford to take all the social distancing measures without some extra investment.
It is looking more and more like we will have to learn to live with this virus for a while and, consequently, that the CFL needs to get creative to survive the whole pandemic. While it is true that so far the league has funded itself from fans on stands and merchandise sales,I know it might be time for them to get creative about ways to bring fans back.