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It’s Ottawa in 2020 says Eric Perez

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7 hours ago, Captain Survival said:

Its been some time since I have commented on the forum.  I have lurked occasionally but my professional life has had me very busy of late.

However, I felt this news exciting enough to log in and comment.  Somewhere in 2017 in one of the many exasperating endless threads debating Toronto/expansion I discussed at length for the potential of a viable franchise in Ottawa.   In my professional opinion as a businessman it is a slam dunk, and great news for RL.  Here are some of my thoughts as to why:

1) Ottawa is a large city with an even larger catchment area - beyond the local CMA which exceeds 1 million people it is in fact within easy driving distance of both Montreal and Kingston, and many Torontonians who are Wolfpack fans will think nothing of the 500km trip to go see a game in Ottawa whether the Wolfpack or new Ottawa team.  

2) I grew up in Ottawa and can attest to the fact it is a very sports oriented city.  And Ottawans like rugged sports so I see rugby being an easy sell to the population.  Ottawa is also generally familiar with Rugby - I played while in high school and I think it will actually have an easier intro into Ottawa then it did into Toronto.  BTW Ottawa has a fair sized UK expat population.

3) Ottawa is well known to peer sporting cities such as Toronto, Montreal, Boston, New York and Philadelphia and having a team in Ottawa will allow for an easy sporting rivalry with any of these should they ever get involved in RL.  A Toronto/Ottawa/NY basis for RL to gain a presence in NA is such a natural step.  Should it come to fruition adding Boston and Philly would be an easy fit and result in very manageable travel times for both the local and visiting teams.

4) Ottawa is a very pleasant place to visit as a tourist.  The venue is easy to get to.  Its right beside the Rideau Canal which itself is a tourist attraction.  Ottawa has many attractions which can easily keep any tourist busy for several days.  And if coming from the UK it cuts about an hour off the flight time.  Plus Montreal is an alternative for flights.

5) Landsdowne is a modern stadium in great shape.  It beats the pants off almost all the other RL grounds.  Its easy to get to as its just off the highway.  Its served by public transit.  One potential matter might be some scheduling conflicts with the CFL team that the backers also own, but I think that is very easily resolved.

6) the Ottawa partner is very successful.  They have the deep pockets such that this venture is not even remotely a stretch for them.  Other then the NHL hockey team they own every other major sporting entity in the city already, and have promotion & marketing down to a science.  They know their market and how to work it.  The entire cost associated with the RF team including travel etc is likely not even a secondary expense figure on their annual statements.   If only we had more ownership groups in RL that were as capable and financially sound as this one.

7) There will be no lack of external sponsors - there are a lot large companies with a major presence in Ottawa.  Ottawa is one of the high tech hubs in North America as well as a major legal hub due to government.  I expect corporate boxes will sell out quickly.  I can see Ottawa getting to 8-10k attendance very quickly and Lansdowne park lends itself much more to the type of atmosphere the WolfPack has created as its a much larger space that is traditionally set up for family type events.

7) I do believe having a 2nd Canadian team will imprint upon the psyche of young Canadians the potential of pursuing RL rugby as a sport.  It will improve the potential for government funding.

Even Ottawa weather is not what it used to be.  In the 60's and 70's it was common for the winter temp to be below -20C from end of Nov to end of March continuously.  This is a pipedream now.  I suspect by mid april games could be played outdoors.  I also think they could actually cover Lansdowne but I don't think they have enough reasons yet to justify the cost.  And a few early season games in the RL is not enough on their own to justify that expense.

With all due respect to Man of Kent and his observation of having visited some family and thinking Ottawa is dull, I beg to disagree.  Ottawa would not get a million people attending its winter carnival, all freezing their asses off in Feb, were it a dull place.  But I suppose in the end each place we visit is what we make of it.  Some do better then others in this regards.  I think away visitors will not have any difficulties finding many attractions to enjoy.

Thus about Perez and the ownership group and the capability to make Ottawa a viable RL entity I have no qualms.  On the usual matters debated ad nauseam on the forum such as the amount of talent available, developing Canadian junior talent, etc I am happy to let someone else discuss - I think they are non-issues.

Edit:  I think Rowley will be a contender to be coach. 

Great post and I agree that the player pool argument is weak.

Ottawa could recruit from Canadian Rugby union, Canadian 7’s,  the Toronto Wolfpack,  the PNG Hunters (highly advisable IMO), both the NSW and Queensland cup competitions, and of course the NRL and maybe even some young French RL talent (also advisable for the bilingual aspect).....

The suggestion that they’ll ‘weaken’ League 1, Championship and Super League is a weak argument when Ottawa or any other club could tap into talent pools they don’t currently use. 

Not to mention the dozens of young players who leave Super League clubs year on year because of the lack of a reserves structure. 

I hope they do a serious raid of Canadian RU talent along with the Wolfpack and make it clear that RL is the pathway for professional rugby in Canada. 

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1 hour ago, Cdd said:

Great post and I agree that the player pool argument is weak.

Ottawa could recruit from Canadian Rugby union, Canadian 7’s,  the Toronto Wolfpack,  the PNG Hunters (highly advisable IMO), both the NSW and Queensland cup competitions, and of course the NRL and maybe even some young French RL talent (also advisable for the bilingual aspect).....

The suggestion that they’ll ‘weaken’ League 1, Championship and Super League is a weak argument when Ottawa or any other club could tap into talent pools they don’t currently use. 

Not to mention the dozens of young players who leave Super League clubs year on year because of the lack of a reserves structure. 

I hope they do a serious raid of Canadian RU talent along with the Wolfpack and make it clear that RL is the pathway for professional rugby in Canada. 

We both know the team like the Toronto team will be filled with Northern Englishmen and some Aussies and Kiwis. Who are you trying to kid?

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3 hours ago, Chris Reid said:

We both know the team like the Toronto team will be filled with Northern Englishmen and some Aussies and Kiwis. Who are you trying to kid?

That isn't really fair , we can only see what they do 

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Hopefully the Ottawan club helps to promote tag rugby which is a great way for kids and adults to get fit. Kids, men & women can play together which is good for ‘inclusivity’. 

Tag would also be great for those with learning difficulties etc.

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I don't think Ottawa is a threat to the talent pool of players in the UK however BC/Alberta I could see them raiding the talent pool which could hurt both areas big time.

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8 hours ago, Chris Reid said:

We both know the team like the Toronto team will be filled with Northern Englishmen and some Aussies and Kiwis. Who are you trying to kid?

And so what if it is? Any of the clubs that those players get taken from are welcome to use ANY of the player pool so mentioned. It’s ridiculous to suggest the player pool will be weakened when clubs aren’t even utilising all the potential pools at their disposal at this point in time. 

And also some of the clubs that people don’t want to die because of new clubs coming in.... they don’t produce their own players either, so why has nobody ever mentioned them being a drain on the player pool? 

Are the likes of Wakefield, Salford, Hull KR and Warrington producing swathes of players for the game? To me they all seem to be living off one or two players. Salford don’t even run an academy, Wakefield have one decent winger, Hull KR run a joint academy to cut costs and Warrington rarely back any home grown player over an import.

The ‘player pool’ argument is only thrown around as a convenient way to bash expansion clubs when the expansion clubs aren’t any more of a drain on the current player pool than some other clubs. 

Then you’ve got Catalans and Toulouse who have increased the player pool and get little praise for it. 

How dare Toronto sign players from Wakefield and Salford who those clubs had to sign from elsewhere themselves because they weren’t producing the talent. 

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5 hours ago, GUBRATS said:

That isn't really fair , we can only see what they do 

Check out the brief posting history of "Chris Reid", then leg it down the bookies to put a fiver on him not getting near 50 posts, let alone the magic 100.

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"Men will be proud to say 'I am a European'. We hope to see a day when men of every country will think as much of being a European as of being from their native land." (Winston Churchill)

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While it might not be the same take Major League Soccer there are many in the UK that might not be a fan of the league but what they like is it creates more spots for players could the same not be said about Toronto/Ottawa and New York in a way it creates more spots for players.

 

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Cdd said:

And so what if it is? Any of the clubs that those players get taken from are welcome to use ANY of the player pool so mentioned. It’s ridiculous to suggest the player pool will be weakened when clubs aren’t even utilising all the potential pools at their disposal at this point in time. 

And also some of the clubs that people don’t want to die because of new clubs coming in.... they don’t produce their own players either, so why has nobody ever mentioned them being a drain on the player pool? 

Are the likes of Wakefield, Salford, Hull KR and Warrington producing swathes of players for the game? To me they all seem to be living off one or two players. Salford don’t even run an academy, Wakefield have one decent winger, Hull KR run a joint academy to cut costs and Warrington rarely back any home grown player over an import.

The ‘player pool’ argument is only thrown around as a convenient way to bash expansion clubs when the expansion clubs aren’t any more of a drain on the current player pool than some other clubs. 

Then you’ve got Catalans and Toulouse who have increased the player pool and get little praise for it. 

How dare Toronto sign players from Wakefield and Salford who those clubs had to sign from elsewhere themselves because they weren’t producing the talent. 

You probably know .  Professional clubs do not produce the games players , amateur clubs do . Most amateur clubs struggle for numbers once you get away from the younger age groups . Most amateur clubs struggle for money , one reason is that lots of clubs are situated in deprived areas .   

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So will Ottawa be receiving central funding seeing as they’re taking the place of Hemel? I can’t see someone bankrolling a team of Canadians in League 1 for long

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2 minutes ago, Mr Plow said:

So will Ottawa be receiving central funding seeing as they’re taking the place of Hemel? I can’t see someone bankrolling a team of Canadians in League 1 for long

I don't think they will be in League 1 for long.

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On ‎3‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 6:45 PM, Captain Survival said:

On the usual matters debated ad nauseam on the forum such as the amount of talent available, developing Canadian junior talent, etc I am happy to let someone else discuss - I think they are non-issues.

What you mean is you are unable to sensibly answer the reality that this phoney club will go nowhere, indeed won't even start unless it brings in players from actual rugby league playing countries.  Very poor post indeed. See the last point I make.

20 hours ago, Cdd said:

Great post and I agree that the player pool argument is weak. Ottawa could recruit from Canadian Rugby union, Canadian 7’s,  the Toronto Wolfpack,  the PNG Hunters (highly advisable IMO), both the NSW and Queensland cup competitions, and of course the NRL and maybe even some young French RL talent 

Your just making this rubbish up now with a silly list designed to pretend there's a player pool available to Ottawa. None of those Canadian players would be capable of holding their own against sides like Hunslet, Workington, Oldham, Donny, Whitehaven, Keighley etc. whose players are often ex-academy players and seasoned semi pro's with a long grounding in the game. They'd simply never get out of league one whilst it lasts so what would be the point? If they did they'd be murdered in the championship.

As for raiding Australasia for lower grade players, clubs here are not allowed to do that, visas are required and players have to be of a standard to get a visa. They can't just come here and elbow players aside so this phoney club won't be allowed to access a player pool 10,000 miles away our clubs can't access. Anyway the right thing appears to be happening that the English Championship clubs are actually being asked (and it's about time) if they really do want to have to compete against these made up clubs, acting as cannon fodder for TWP or Ottowa or New York, do they really want as clubs with players who have a full time job to go to, to be dragged thousands of miles away, losing holiday days or wages, just to be a bit part player in a silly dream. Mark Aston's scathing condemnation of Eagles treatment when they went to Toronto is enough to indicate the Championships would like to get back to having their own proper competitions and not be used for rich men's fantasies.

Apart from Argyle it appears the case all these other un-named rich Americans are themselves fantasies.

10 hours ago, Cdd said:

Some of the clubs that people don’t want to die because of new clubs coming in.... they don’t produce their own players either, so why has nobody ever mentioned them being a drain on the player pool? 

Are the likes of Wakefield, Salford, Hull KR and Warrington producing swathes of players for the game? To me they all seem to be living off one or two players. Salford don’t even run an academy, Wakefield have one decent winger, Hull KR run a joint academy to cut costs and Warrington rarely back any home grown player over an import.

The ‘player pool’ argument is only thrown around as a convenient way to bash expansion clubs when the expansion clubs aren’t any more of a drain on the current player pool than some other clubs. 

Cas, Saints, Leeds, Hull/HKR, Warrington, Wakefield, london, Widnes, Bradford, Newcastle and Huddersfield all run academies. They also support and promote local amateur junior RL and schools RL. Of the thousands of kids that play, these academies give a chance to hundreds of kids to take their game to a higher level. Only a small number make superleague but many make a part time career in the Championship at clubs like Halifax, Featherstone, Dewsbury, York, Barrow, Oldham, Batley and Swinton etc.

The Imports are SL quality players the NRL clubs produce who we get to sign. We have to provide a quality competition if we are to get a paying TV deal so it's nonsense to condemn clubs for not playing "home grown players only" we have to find the best players. The SL clubs average  up to six overseas quality players, and 19 largely academy developed in their 25 man first team squads so that's well over 200 academy players playing SL and probably same again and more playing at championship clubs. Salford produced their own players for years there are some great lads from Salford playing RL. They can't now afford an academy but the Salford RL foundation is still promoting the game in Salford to young players and supporting the junior clubs and schools.

It really is time  for this Charade to come to an end, and as was noted in League Express it does look like it is being knocked on the head.  The worst thing for me is how are we supposed to be supportive of people like you who just make stuff up about how wonderful these phoney clubs are, and slag the game off here?

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3 minutes ago, Jayme2020 said:

I don't think they will be in League 1 for long.

Maybe not, but how long can they afford to be outside of SL for? 

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5 minutes ago, Mr Plow said:

Maybe not, but how long can they afford to be outside of SL for? 

I think the Championship League is key for them if they can get there in year 2 or 3 they will be fine there for years.

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2 minutes ago, Jayme2020 said:

I think the Championship League is key for them if they can get there in year 2 or 3 they will be fine there for years.

But how will they be funded? There will be less money in Championship next year and I can’t see someone bankrolling them in lower leagues for long, it can’t be cheap running a transatlantic sports team.

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11 minutes ago, Mr Plow said:

But how will they be funded? There will be less money in Championship next year and I can’t see someone bankrolling them in lower leagues for long, it can’t be cheap running a transatlantic sports team.

1)In the Championship I could see them avg 10,000 per game.

2)There will be some major sponsors that will help off set costs.

3)Tsn or Sportsnet likely will try and push for broadcasting rights and offer massive $.

4)The team likely will get the same deal as the soccer and football teams and get rent free for the field etc.

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The Parksider

Ottawa does have a good size player pool as it is now take Carleton and U of Ottawa both teams have very solid teams and have a good amount of players that will only increase.

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3 minutes ago, Jayme2020 said:

1)In the Championship I could see them avg 10,000 per game.

2)There will be some major sponsors that will help off set costs.

3)Tsn or Sportsnet likely will try and push for broadcasting rights and offer massive $.

4)The team likely will get the same deal as the soccer and football teams and get rent free for the field etc.

So you’re saying it’s a different market to northern villages? A place where sport operates differently to tiny clubs over here? 

Surely not. That would make too much sense.

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6 minutes ago, Cdd said:

So you’re saying it’s a different market to northern villages? A place where sport operates differently to tiny clubs over here? 

Surely not. That would make too much sense.

If Ontario had say 6 SL teams and 4 Championship teams it would be really hard for Ottawa to have success but with just Toronto it does make it much easier for them. 

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One thing people might not know fans think nothing of travel in Ontario and Quebec example if Ottawa has a home game and the WolfPack are out of town you will see a ton of Toronto fans travel to Ottawa.

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1 hour ago, Jayme2020 said:

I think the Championship League is key for them if they can get there in year 2 or 3 they will be fine there for years.

If they have the backing and finance like they are making out then they will walk League 1 in year 1 with ease. Any full time, well financed team will find it too easy really.

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40 minutes ago, roughyed8 said:

Pitch is  for CFL which is larger than NFL  at 60m approx wide should be ok

 

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There's likely enough room either side of the CFL sidelines to make it 65 metres wide IMO.  How they'll handle the multiple sets of lines on the field is another matter though.

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