When news came out late Wednesday afternoon that the Toronto Argonauts will play their October 6th “home” game in Ottawa, several thoughts hit me at once:
1) There’s simply no denying that this is an incredibly fortunate thing for the Redblacks and their playoff aspirations. TD Place is lauded across the league as a rowdy stadium and without a doubt R-Nation will not only pack the house but be roaring through four quarters.
2) Playing the Argos twice in a row in Ottawa really lets the Redblacks control not only their playoff hopes but also realistically sets them up for a good chance to host their first playoff game since 1983.
3) If I’m an Argos fan you better believe I’m steaming over this decision. By putting the game in Ottawa it shows that lame duck owner David Braley isn’t interested in what’s best for Argo season ticket holders but rather just wants to line his pockets before bailing at the end of the year. It’s quite apparent that as far as he’s concerned, angry Argo fans will be MLSE’s problem to deal with next season. If Braley really had his team’s or his season ticket holders’ interests in mind, this game would be at Tim Horton’s Field in Hamilton.
4) The move to BMO Field can’t come soon enough. As a long suffering fan of Ottawa CFL football who had to endure his team folding twice, the way that the Argos have been treated by Rogers is appalling and frankly damaging to the CFL as a whole. The worst part of this whole situation is that a) The Jays might not even play in a Wild Card game on Oct. 6th, making this whole thing unnecessary, and b) If the Jays do go on a playoff run, other Argos home games will be affected.
5) Who gets first dibs on tickets? Will Redblacks season ticket holders have the opportunity to buy their regular seats or will displaced Argo fans jump (as they probably should) to the front of the line? Also if someone already bought a ticket to game thinking it would be in Toronto, do they simply get a refund or a credit for a future game?
6) R-Nation is going to be seriously spoiled with 3 homes games in 11 days; Sept. 26th vs the Argos, Oct. 1st vs the Alouettes and Oct. 6th vs the Argos
7) After going without CFL football from 1997-2001 and again from 2006-2013, Ottawa deserves this and I’m elated for R-Nation.