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FIFA World Cup 2026


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I don't think the Bills are going anywhere. First they just extended their lease by 10 years at Ralph Wilson Stadium. That gives new ownership time to get the long desired waterfront stadium built. The two frontrunners for new ownership are former Bills quarterback Jim Kelly (his health is a serious issue though) and the current owner of the Buffalo Sabres. The more likely candidates to relocate are the St. Louis Rams and the Jacksonville Jaguars, though Los Angeles is at the top of the list for relocation in the NFL.

In the short term I agree, but even people in Buffalo think they will leave sometime after 2020. You have to consider the timeline. The Bills aren't leaving town tomorrow, but it would take a few years for Toronto to build a stadium anyway. A new stadium in six years is actually the right amount of time for Toronto to go through planning and construction.

I have been accused of being too negative in another thread, but this is one case where I can see a very realistic positive side. (For Toronto, anyway.) The Bills are for sale, Toronto is close enough for their current fans to travel to the games, and an NFL team would make a 80k-90k capacity stadium work for the city of Toronto. Very few NFL franchises would agree to have an athletics track in their stadium, but the Bills would likely accept it as the cost of getting a new stadium in a much larger market.

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I don't think the Bills are going anywhere. First they just extended their lease by 10 years at Ralph Wilson Stadium. That gives new ownership time to get the long desired waterfront stadium built. The two frontrunners for new ownership are former Bills quarterback Jim Kelly (his health is a serious issue though) and the current owner of the Buffalo Sabres. The more likely candidates to relocate are the St. Louis Rams and the Jacksonville Jaguars, though Los Angeles is at the top of the list for relocation in the NFL.

Well considering Jim Kelly has cancer, it wouldn't be smart for him to lead an ownership group. He could lead 4 groups and none of them would win. (Get it, LOL). The front runners are probably the Toronto group led by Bon Jovi but more importantly advised by a very experienced sports management group, and Donald Trump, who's got a sh*t ton of cash.

IMO, a team in Buffalo is not viable for the long term. Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment have already tasked a group with two goals: one, to renovate BMO Field for the Argos, Pan Ams, TFC, NHL Winter Classic and the World Cup; and two, to design a stadium for the Bills of another NFL franchise, and a World Cup bid. Toronto provides a much more attractive market for the NFL, and Bon Jovi has strong relationships with several NFL owners which could help sway a relocation vote.

As for those who site the Bills Toronto Series as a joke, they're right. As someone who's gone to a game, I know that the event is poorly advertised, poorly managed, it's in a dump of a stadium, has rediculous ticket prices and tailgating isn't allowed under Canadian law. Parking is also a disaster. A new stadium and assitance from MLSE, who have done a hell of a job under Tim Leiweke (see Toronto Raptors northern uprising video, YouTube it.) will draw crowds to Games and make the NFL in Toronto a success.

I just can't see a way that the Bills stay in Buffalo for the long haul.

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A slight side note. I believe that the NFL is resistant to move teams because a new franchise fee for Toronto or LA would be significantly higher than a relocation fee.

No. The NFL isn't going to add new franchises now that it has the magical number of 32 teams. The only way it would happen is if a European Division was added.

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It's only a matter of time when the Bills eventually relocate and Toronto makes the most sense considering the market the Bills are currently in.

No. The NFL isn't going to add new franchises now that it has the magical number of 32 teams. The only way it would happen is if a European Division was added.

I'm not sure why 32 teams is the magical number. Can you explain further. Is it because of its an even number?


Well considering Jim Kelly has cancer, it wouldn't be smart for him to lead an ownership group. He could lead 4 groups and none of them would win. (Get it, LOL). The front runners are probably the Toronto group led by Bon Jovi but more importantly advised by a very experienced sports management group, and Donald Trump, who's got a sh*t ton of cash.

IMO, a team in Buffalo is not viable for the long term. Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment have already tasked a group with two goals: one, to renovate BMO Field for the Argos, Pan Ams, TFC, NHL Winter Classic and the World Cup; and two, to design a stadium for the Bills of another NFL franchise, and a World Cup bid. Toronto provides a much more attractive market for the NFL, and Bon Jovi has strong relationships with several NFL owners which could help sway a relocation vote.

As for those who site the Bills Toronto Series as a joke, they're right. As someone who's gone to a game, I know that the event is poorly advertised, poorly managed, it's in a dump of a stadium, has rediculous ticket prices and tailgating isn't allowed under Canadian law. Parking is also a disaster. A new stadium and assitance from MLSE, who have done a hell of a job under Tim Leiweke (see Toronto Raptors northern uprising video, YouTube it.) will draw crowds to Games and make the NFL in Toronto a success.

I just can't see a way that the Bills stay in Buffalo for the long haul.

I agree with this

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It's only a matter of time when the Bills eventually relocate and Toronto makes the most sense considering the market the Bills are currently in.

I'm not sure why 32 teams is the magical number. Can you explain further. Is it because of its an even number?

I think it has to do with the current division format. You can evenly create 8 divisions, which was a problem back when the NFL had 31. 34 doesn't really divide well either. So you'd have to move to 36 teams to really make sense of it all, which is too many teams imo. 32 is a comfortable number. Besides, the NFL schedule on Sundays is overwhelming enough.

The whole European team thing Nacre suggested is drivel. That would never happen. Maybe a team in London, but there are no other cities in Europe where a franchise is viable. Just look at the failure of NFL Europa.

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I definitely support Canada's efforts with a World Cup bid. I'm inclined to believe Toronto will not have much chance at winning 2024 (even though their not bidding) or 2028. Focus on winning the 2026 Fifa World Cup and then submit a bid for the 2032 Summer Olympics. Toronto's stadium will already be in place for a 2032 Olympic bid and that cycle will be the most favourable for the city to bid.

Have the Americans given much indication that they're really focusing on winning a World Cup bid? I'm asking this because the USA would be a very big opponent for Canada to go up against considering they already have all the stadiums in place.

Edited by dave199
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Have the Americans given much indication that they're really focusing on winning a World Cup bid? I'm asking this because the USA would be a very big opponent for Canada to go up against considering they already have all the stadiums in place.

They haven't given any strong indications, but I'd be very surprised if they weren't in the running.

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As for the Bills.. yes, the extended lease is a stay of execution in order for the city to try and figure out a way to get a new stadium built, but let's not bury them just yet. The NBA's Kings were all but gone from Sacramento before the city managed to save them. Easier said than done with an NFL franchise, particularly where the ownership situation is in flux. I'm still skeptical that Toronto is where they land though, unless the city is willing to build the stadium before they have the franchise. Because no team is going to want to move there unless the stadium is already a done deal. It's the reason Los Angeles doesn't have a team yet. And keep in mind, as much as the size of Toronto is attractive for the franchise, the TV networks will have something to say about that. Trading out Buffalo for Toronto is NOT an improvement for them unless it improves their position in Canada, and I'm not sure I see that happening.

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As for the Bills.. yes, the extended lease is a stay of execution in order for the city to try and figure out a way to get a new stadium built, but let's not bury them just yet. The NBA's Kings were all but gone from Sacramento before the city managed to save them. Easier said than done with an NFL franchise, particularly where the ownership situation is in flux. I'm still skeptical that Toronto is where they land though, unless the city is willing to build the stadium before they have the franchise. Because no team is going to want to move there unless the stadium is already a done deal. It's the reason Los Angeles doesn't have a team yet. And keep in mind, as much as the size of Toronto is attractive for the franchise, the TV networks will have something to say about that. Trading out Buffalo for Toronto is NOT an improvement for them unless it improves their position in Canada, and I'm not sure I see that happening.

I can't see why this is an issue to the tv networks. Please elaborate.

As for the stadium, a lease in Buffalo gives plenty of time for one to be built in Toronto and ready for when that lease is up (from the looks of it, this is 2020)

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I can't see why this is an issue to the tv networks. Please elaborate.

As for the stadium, a lease in Buffalo gives plenty of time for one to be built in Toronto and ready for when that lease is up (from the looks of it, this is 2020)

You can't see why it's an issue to American TV networks if a team moves to Canada? The 5 networks with NFL rights in the United States (CBS, Fox, NBC, ESPN, and NFLN.. plus DirecTV is a part of the equation as well) only make money off American viewers. They don't get rated in Canada. So especially in the case of CBS, who broadcasts the majority of Bills games, it doesn't help them to not have a team in Buffalo and instead for that team to be in Toronto. The league as a whole might benefit (even that's debatable) but not the US networks, each of which pay about a billion dollars a year in rights fees (nearly double that for ESPN).

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You can't see why it's an issue to American TV networks if a team moves to Canada? The 5 networks with NFL rights in the United States (CBS, Fox, NBC, ESPN, and NFLN.. plus DirecTV is a part of the equation as well) only make money off American viewers. They don't get rated in Canada. So especially in the case of CBS, who broadcasts the majority of Bills games, it doesn't help them to not have a team in Buffalo and instead for that team to be in Toronto. The league as a whole might benefit (even that's debatable) but not the US networks, each of which pay about a billion dollars a year in rights fees (nearly double that for ESPN).

You think that if a team moves to Canada the games won't get American viewers? The visiting team's viewers will watch, and the Bills fan base will remain the same and they will still watch. And if a game lands on national Primetime, the viewership won't simply change because the game is in another country. Bills games would still air on local Buffalo affiliates for CBS/Fox/NBC because the city would still lie within the home territory. I truly fail to see how this shakes the American NFL televison landscape and how it would affect the networks.

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You think that if a team moves to Canada the games won't get American viewers? The visiting team's viewers will watch, and the Bills fan base will remain the same and they will still watch. And if a game lands on national Primetime, the viewership won't simply change because the game is in another country. Bills games would still air on local Buffalo affiliates for CBS/Fox/NBC because the city would still lie within the home territory. I truly fail to see how this shakes the American NFL televison landscape and how it would affect the networks.

Not a coincidence that many of the most-watched teams are in larger markets rather than smaller ones. That's a bigger problem for some other sports, particularly MLB, but it still rings true in hockey. Yes, American TV ratings will drop if a team moves to Canada, particularly in the market which currently has a team, but wouldn't if that team moves to Buffalo. You really think the Buffalo fanbase is going to remain the same if there's no Buffalo Bills anymore? Try telling someone from Buffalo that their team being in Toronto is the same because it "would still lie within the home territory." You're giving American TV viewers much more credit than they deserve. You don't think the viewership will change because the game is in another country? CBS from the early 90s tells a different story. The ratings for the World Series took a huge dip in 1992 and 1993 when the Blue Jays were in the World Series. Why? Because CBS isn't rated in Canada and that's where a lot of viewers were coming from relative to a regular World Series between 2 teams from the US.

I know we're only talking 1 of 32 teams here, but again, the networks literally invest a billion dollars a year on NFL rights. And they get that because of rabid fanbases in US cities, not from Canada (or London for that matter).

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I'm not sure why 32 teams is the magical number. Can you explain further. Is it because of its an even number?

It matters for both divisions and scheduling. 33, 34 and 35 don't work, so they would have to jump up to 36 teams if they were to add any teams.

The whole European team thing Nacre suggested is drivel. That would never happen. Maybe a team in London, but there are no other cities in Europe where a franchise is viable. Just look at the failure of NFL Europa.

It's a horrible idea, but it's the only way to get a London franchise to work (because of the travel schedule), which they seem intent on.

If they are really determined to play in Europe wish they would instead play a tournament of preseason games with each team adopting an overseas city. (Three games ala the world cup group stage to determine standings followed by a championship final between the top two teams for the fourth game.) That way foreign fans would get to see a team in person they could root for without screwing up the regular season or diluting the league.

As for the Bills.. yes, the extended lease is a stay of execution in order for the city to try and figure out a way to get a new stadium built, but let's not bury them just yet. The NBA's Kings were all but gone from Sacramento before the city managed to save them. Easier said than done with an NFL franchise, particularly where the ownership situation is in flux.

I agree, but building a new NFL stadium also costs at least twice as much as an NBA arena.

When does the official bidding process begin? I can't find any timelines online.

Originally they said the trust operating the team would take about two years to complete the sale, but now they say it could be resolved by the end of this year. Either way a new Toronto ownership group would have enough time to negotiate with Toronto and build a new stadium for 2020.

You can't see why it's an issue to American TV networks if a team moves to Canada? The 5 networks with NFL rights in the United States (CBS, Fox, NBC, ESPN, and NFLN.. plus DirecTV is a part of the equation as well) only make money off American viewers. They don't get rated in Canada. So especially in the case of CBS, who broadcasts the majority of Bills games, it doesn't help them to not have a team in Buffalo and instead for that team to be in Toronto. The league as a whole might benefit (even that's debatable) but not the US networks, each of which pay about a billion dollars a year in rights fees (nearly double that for ESPN).

All of the TV deals will expire by the end of 2022. If the NFL wants a franchise in Toronto they can make it work for all parties. I don't know if they are motivated to do that, though.

However I really question how angry CBS would be to "lose" the Bills, anyway. They would still have the right to broadcast the Bills games in the US, and the Bills are not a major draw: they only have a fan base in western New York and the games are often blacked out. I think a few million would easily set things right with CBS.

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All of the TV deals will expire by the end of 2022. If the NFL wants a franchise in Toronto they can make it work for all parties. I don't know if they are motivated to do that, though.

However I really question how angry CBS would be to "lose" the Bills, anyway. They would still have the right to broadcast the Bills games in the US, and the Bills are not a major draw: they only have a fan base in western New York and the games are often blacked out. I think a few million would easily set things right with CBS.

It sounds nice in theory, but there are a lot of logistical hurdles involved in putting a team in Toronto (just like with London, beyond the obvious travel headaches. They would have to pay their players in American dollars, despite much of their revenue coming in Canadian dollars. There's also the matter of the CFL.. how are they going to feel about the NFL coming onto their territory, moreso than they already have? They may not be too happy about the Bills moving to Toronto.

As for the TV contracts, it's still a loss. The AFC contract has always been less prestigious than the NFC contract because of market sizes. Sure, the Bills aren't a big draw, but what if they get good again? Even still, to lose the Buffalo market and trade it for a market that essentially doesn't count from the standpoint of CBS is still a loss. It devalues that contract. Again, from the league's standpoint, maybe the offset for them is Canadian rights fees (although that's a whole different story altogether if there's a team in Canada), but from CBS's standpoint, they're losing out without really gaining anything. So yea, they'll be angry.

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Well, from what I've seen (& the politics of American sport still mystifies me) Toronto seems to come 3rd behind LA & London for a franchise. As many of you have said, LA is the favourite, would the NFL do anything to move the Bills there? New franchises are an option, but 32 gives 4 divisions, each with an even number of teams - 40 would be the next number up for that. And the big obstacle to Toronto is CFL - would the Argos last long if there was an NFL team in their patch?

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London is a pipe dream. Toronto and Los Angeles are light years a head of London. In fact several other US cities have a better chance than London at landing a team.

I would 100% Disagree. Also, we don't want an American Football Team. We are a Football nation, not American Football!

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I would 100% Disagree. Also, we don't want an American Football Team. We are a Football nation, not American Football!

London is not getting a permanent team lol. It's a logistical nightmare and a non-starter. Anyone who thinks otherwise knows next to nothing about football, geography or modern day travel methods.

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I would 100% Disagree. Also, we don't want an American Football Team. We are a Football nation, not American Football!

There are very strong rumours Spurs are redesigning the masterplan of their new stadium to accommodate a London NFL Franchise.

http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2013/10/28/Facilities/Tottenham.aspx

Insiders at Spurs have confirmed this alternative plan to be true. There are strong suggestions the Jaguars (whose owner now also owns Fulham FC) could be the team to move.

It could all come to nothing but I'm more than certain this is being discussed as we speak. Whether anything concrete will come of it remains to be seen.

Edited by Rob.
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London is not getting a permanent team lol. It's a logistical nightmare and a non-starter. Anyone who thinks otherwise knows next to nothing about football, geography or modern day travel methods.

I know everything about Football. I support Arsenal and my Country England.

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I would 100% Disagree. Also, we don't want an American Football Team. We are a Football nation, not American Football!

I know everything about Football. I support Arsenal and my Country England.

Tony, we're talking about an American football team here. No one is questioning your knowledge to your Arsenal or your England or your chocolate, but I don't think you can speak for 60+ million Brits. For reasons already stated, there won't be a National Football League team permanently based in London anytime soon, but attendance of the London games the NFL has played thus far tell a different story. Obviously it's different when we're talking about supporting a team there full-time, but still.

There are very strong rumours Spurs are redesigning the masterplan of their new stadium to accommodate a London NFL Franchise.

http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Issues/2013/10/28/Facilities/Tottenham.aspx

Insiders at Spurs have confirmed this alternative plan to be true. There are strong suggestions the Jaguars (whose owner now also owns Fulham FC) could be the team to move.

It could all come to nothing but I'm more than certain this is being discussed as we speak. Whether anything concrete will come of it remains to be seen.

It's going to take more than a stadium to lure an NFL team across the pond. The logistical challenges of putting a team there go way beyond the availability of a stadium. That's the least of the concerns here. I doubt don't for a second that it's being discussed, but we've also heard rumblings about a franchise in Los Angeles for more than a decade now and they're still without a team.

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It's going to take more than a stadium to lure an NFL team across the pond. The logistical challenges of putting a team there go way beyond the availability of a stadium. That's the least of the concerns here. I doubt don't for a second that it's being discussed, but we've also heard rumblings about a franchise in Los Angeles for more than a decade now and they're still without a team.

Sure, but I was more or less responding to Tony and ofan97 who seemed to dismiss the notion completely. The fact that Spurs has been working with architects to draw up plans for an NFL compatible stadium shows this is more than pie in the sky and has some legs. They must've had some encouragement from someone involved in the NFL to be putting resources behind such a plan.

That doesn't mean there aren't other hurdles which may or may not be surmountable. But to dismiss the notion entirely isn't right either.

Edited by Rob.
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