John WP Fan

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  1. Could it get worse for Toronto?

    The field is used for lots of other sports,and is normally covered by a bubble (just the field, not the stands) until the end of April. And I believe there is a tournament of some sort scheduled for the last weekend of April.
  2. Home games

    I would bet the newsletter was well down the pipe when the Halifax news came out. I believe the WP planned to wait until they knew where the Halifax game WOULD be played and then make one announcement covering everything, rather than torture people with dribs and drabs of incomplete news (as has been the result after Halifax RLFC spilled the beans). The WP can't control the RFL or other teams, and that makes communication more difficult. I agree though that they ought to say something to explain why the "all home games will be in Canada" commitment fell apart, and clarify what they can about the schedule.
  3. Home games

    I was sure about it at the time, but yes I turned out to be wrong. I'm disappointed that 2 games have been moved, but I understand the logistics this year are challenging.
  4. New Super League Board structure

    A lot of energy in this forum goes into arguing that I think is hiding some common ground. Most of us who support Toronto actually agree with you that it's important to grow the game in Canada. We may differ on the time frame for that. Anyone who thinks Toronto can add a new Canadian player every year is dreaming; it will take many years to develop substantial numbers of players who can step into Super League, though in the short term we can probably convert some Union or gridiron players who can contribute. Toronto is expanding the game by introducing it to a huge new audience. It will take time for that audience to pay attention, and for kids to start playing the game as a result. I agree the Wolfpack need to start investing in local RL teams, but the sport will grow here from the top down more than bottom up, and that will take many years. In the meantime I do believe we will inject a lot of money into the sport, and create more opportunities for players in the UK and Australia. I think the Phoenix Coyotes of the NHL are an apt example. Many fans from the hockey heartland were outraged when the Winnipeg Jets moved there, and mocked Phoenix as a terrible place for a hockey team. And in fact that team has struggled financially, so they are not an example of business success. But because they were there, a young Phoenix boy named Auston Matthews developed a love of hockey and, over many years, amazing skill, and he is now one of the top players in the league.
  5. You say "mercenaries"; we say "professional athletes". Potato, potahto. We are accustomed to supporting teams of professional athletes from all over the world, and welcoming them to our city. And we are very happy when they get to know Toronto and then tell the world, as Jozy Altidore of the MLS champion Toronto FC just did, that this is the greatest city in the world (see https://www.mlssoccer.com/post/2017/12/09/2017-mls-cup-mvp-jozy-altidore-toronto-forever-special-place). This is how real major league professional sports work in most places unreachable by the M62. And yes, we do enjoy seeing local athletes on our teams when that can happen too!
  6. Dave, Dave, Dave, think this through a bit. They still do the same travel, but now the jet lag hits them for the Toulouse game instead of the Leigh game. Both should be important games, so I don't see any advantage gained from this, and remember they have forfeited one of their home games, with the advantages that come from that. And Toulouse gains a big advantage from the much shorter trip to Newcastle, and no jet lag. It's they who get an advantage from this, not Toronto.
  7. Location of 2nd Canadian Team?

    I believe they are trying to do two things right now: 1) Work with the city of Toronto to accelerate the needed work as much as possible, to minimize how many of the early home games need to be played elsewhere. Without speeding up the work it might be 4 games; maybe they can reduce that to 3 or 2, and they want to do that. 2) Find one alternate location not too far from Lamport for all of those games, to minimize disruption and the effort in supporting multiple stadia. They may be arranging buses to help supporters get to the alternate stadium. I think they will announce their plans only when they have settled both of these issues so they can make one announcement that settles everything. It's unfortunate that the uncertainty and unfounded speculation continues in the meantime.
  8. Pre-Season Games

    Yes, just the one, and it’s not likely to be televised. They may scrimmage a few times with other teams.
  9. EXPECTATIONS

    I interpreted it as saying he didn’t think Hall had been a great captain, and not sour grapes after he left. Rowley is much more blunt than we’re used to from other coaches we see here. Not necessarily a bad thing.
  10. EXPECTATIONS

    Cross posting my summary from the Toronto Wolfpack Fans Facebook Group, for those that don't follow there: It was a really good event. Only about 20 fans there, along with several WP staff, including Scott from Wolfin Around, who is now with the team full-time. They served beer and some snacks, and after mingling for a while, Coach Rowley took some questions. He was both eloquent and passionate about being here, and said even if it all came to an end right now coming to Toronto would still be the best decision he ever made. He was asked about the location(s) for early home games and just said they were working hard on that, working with the city to try to speed up the work, and they should have an answer soon. He was asked about a new captain, and as he did on Thursday mentioned Ashton Sims as a leading candidate. He emphasized that the WP are not over-paying players as rumoured. They are aiming to pay players fairly, and are still well under the salary cap. There is more interest from players now after the successful first year. Owner David Argyle asked him what was his best decision last year, and what decision would he reconsider if he were to do it again. He said his best decision was his choice of assistant coach, and the one he would reconsider was his choice of captain. He suggested that Jonny Pownall and Ryan Brierley are both potential kickers, and said that as things stand right now neither Quinn Ngawati nor Ryan Burroughs are likely to make the main squad, and the team will be looking for a place for them to get lots of playing time and develop, probably in League 1. Bradford Bulls? he was asked; silence. He expects a couple more signings. I got a few minutes to chat 1 on 1 with both the coach and David Argyle (can't say I've ever had either opportunity with any other team I have supported!). I talked to Argyle about our future home, and he said he would rather renovate Lamport and have it seat 15,000 than move to BMO, even if they could fill it, because he prefers an intimate experience where the fans know each other, the beer and the food are great (work to do on the food...) and the players can hear what we're saying from the stands, even if that brings him less money. Talking to another team rep I got the impression that they are working to have all games that can't be played at Lamport at just one other stadium, rather than move them around from place to place, because most of the effort involved is for the first game, and adding additional games somewhere isn't much more work. They will announce what's happening "soon", but I think "soon" probably isn't in November. My best guess is that as things stand right now they would need to move the first 3-4 games out of Lamport, and they are trying really hard to reduce that by finding ways to speed up the work. The availability of new jerseys has slipped to January because the sponsorship deal with Maple Leaf Diamonds (announced yesterday) took a little longer to finalize than they hoped. The new jerseys will be very similar to last year, with a larger WP logo on the left chest, Maple Leaf Diamonds on the right, Kappa moved to the middle above the Air Transat logo. The wolf will be a little different, and will also appear on the black jersey. I think that's all I can remember! Maybe others who were there (RobertAM?) can fill in more detail. And to those who are skeptical or critical of the WP endeavour: please be careful to distinguish between what I quote the WP people as saying, and what I'm speculating at!
  11. EXPECTATIONS

    This was not discrimination against Yorkshiremen, Scots or other stereotypically miserly folk. I bought the cheapest level and got the invite. I heard that the WP do not yet have data for those who bought via Ticketmaster, so they missed the invite.
  12. 2018 Fixtures

    You really have to watch out for the no seeums...
  13. 2018 Fixtures

    -5 would be somewhat miserable, but not the worst. We're worried about potentially -30 C in February.
  14. 2018 Fixtures

    I agree the complaints about schedule are overblown, and I actually see the delay as a sign that the deal with Lamport is short-term. The city is funding the renovations, while the Wolfpack sit back and wait. If they were really committed to Lamport long-term, they might invest money of their own to speed up the renovation (and perhaps we'll soon learn that is in fact the case). I remain hopeful that they will move to BMO field for 2020. It's a far better stadium that I consider under-used, and it seems wasteful to spend millions bringing Lamport to SL standards when there is a fine stadium so close by. The only down side is the expected loss of the craft beer garden if they move to BMO.
  15. Home games

    Don't book your flight just yet. Wait a week or two until they have sorted out alternate venue(s) for the handful of games that won't be played at Lamport. Actually, wait a little longer than that until packages are announced, which may be better value depending on how you choose to travel. My very strong belief is that almost every home game will be in or near Toronto (BMO Field, Varsity Stadium, Tim Horton Field in Hamilton), and maybe, just maybe one or two will be in Montreal to prime the pump for a new team to come. All home games will be in Canada for sure.