With no agreement reached between the Canadian Football League and the CFL Players Association, the collective bargaining agreement expired on Saturday and the union began its first labor strike since 1974. Keep up with the latest news and reaction with the TSN.ca blog The CFL Strike.
Players’ voices, past and present, are suspended
Seven of the league’s nine teams participated in a layoff over the weekend. Both the Edmonton Elks and Calgary Stampeders reported camping on Sunday because they were not yet in legal status to strike, according to Alberta labor laws. That frustrated players, including Hamilton Tiger Cuts midfielder Simone Lawrence and CFLPA vice president and Gray Cup champion defender Adam Biegel of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
The truth squads are getting better at the moment, it’s crazy to me, well, they’re still smoking!!!
– Simone Lawrence (@Simoni_Lawrence) May 16 2022
Today it wasn’t just being on the football field and making sure that a strike wasn’t what we wanted. On the bright side, I was able to coach my sons soccer team tonight.
– Adam Biegel (@Bighill44) May 16 2022
TSN’s Farhan Lalji noted on Sunday that the next big day is May 18.
So what is the next real pressure point Tweet embed strike? IMO, it’s May 18th. If # launchers & # Riders They weren’t on the field by then, that puts the May 23 pre-season game in jeopardy. Which means the first loss of revenue for the owners. Tweet embed
Farhan Lalji (@FarhanLaljiTSN) May 15 2022
In a tweet by the CFLPA, Bighill and fellow Vice President Henoc Muamba explained how players can help grow the league, why it’s important for the PA and the league to be partners, and outline what a fair agreement looks like.
– CFLPA (CFLPA) May 16 2022
– CFLPA (CFLPA) May 16 2022
Toronto Argonauts full-back Shaquille Richardson tweeted to fans, thanking them for their support and saying he hopes to be back on the field soon.
Thank you CFL fans! Hope we get this done soon
– Chuck Richardson (@Dr4_unruly) May 15 2022
Canadian BC Lions and 2021 CFL Most Outstanding Player Bo Lokombo shouted to CFLPA representatives and said he wanted a CBA deal.
– Bosico (@LOKO4BOLO20) May 14, 2022
Alex Singleton, the 2017 CFL All Star and Defensive Player of the Year with the current Calgary Stampeders and Denver Bronco, has voiced his opinion.
Fans of this league, please do not back down from the league and ask for agreement on this. The CFLPA Members want nothing more than to play BALL under a safe deal that is fair to them! Stay strong boys 💪🏻 and fans! https://t.co/7JMvC4s6dP
– Alex Singleton (@alexsingleton49) May 14, 2022
Retired Canadian Football League veteran Marc-Olivier Brouillette issued the same sentiments as Singleton, urging the union to stay strong.
Stay strong and united. You are worth more than you think CFLPA
– Marc-O Brouillette (MOBrouillette) May 14, 2022
Fellow retired CFLPA veteran Jason Vega praised their efforts in making sure all of their players and representatives are on the same page. He adds that this has not always been the case and that he is happy to see the progress being made.
I salute #CFLPA To make the effort to get two players on the same page for a common goal. In the past, this situation hasn’t been handled properly, but I’m happy to see the players take a turn now.
– Jason Vega May 16 2022
In a back-and-forth chat on Twitter in the voice of retired bomber Bob Irving, Stampeders entrepreneur Derek Dennis noted that players want to cut a deal.
Don’t you think we want to do that? 🤣
– Derek Dennis (@6BONECRUSHER3) May 15 2022
Tickats running backwards Don Jackson notes that it’s not just about fooball.
This is about our life, our safety, our livelihood! It is your entertainment. Please be attentive and agile.
– Don Jackson (@DonnyjGLA6) May 15 2022
After the Winnipeg Blue Bombers released a statement informing fans that practices were cancelled, the players gathered together for a casual practice Monday morning, according to current bombers voice Derek Taylor.
Until further notice, the Blue Bomber practices have been cancelled. The club will release its next media schedule once further practice is confirmed. pic.twitter.com/MWXSZUqHzZ
– Winnipeg Blue Bombers (@Wpg_BlueBombers) May 16 2022
– Derek Taylor (DTonSC) May 16 2022
Possible cancellations before the season
Next Monday’s pre-season game between the Gray Winnipeg Cup defending Blue Bombers and the Saskatchewan Rogriders will not be played without a new collective bargaining agreement in place by Wednesday, according to Dave Naylor, TSN CFL insider.
Although no decision has been made yet, listening to Monday’s pre-season match between them Tweet embed And Tweet embed It won’t happen without a CBA agreement by Wednesday. Given that it’s two days from now and there’s no timetable for haggling…it seems unlikely that it will take place.#CFL #CFLPA
– Dave Naylor (@TSNDaveNaylor) May 16 2022