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CPL inaugural match - #1 attended match for 2019?

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3 hours ago, BringBackTheBlizzard said:

It's not that difficult to access the pricing scheme and my assessment that the prices were set too high is in tune with what members of the Cavalry's supporters group were posting at the time they were released both here and on Reddit so is not some offbase opinion out in left field.

**** right off with this comment. You don't know a damn thing about what the supporters in Calgary are saying.

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21 hours ago, Robert said:

Just ask any former owner. Any one of them.

Forge FC brought former Steelers owner Mario DiBartolomeo out to their launch.  He said the league was a great idea and that the time was right for a new pro soccer league in Canada.

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So here we are, the day after the CPL's schedule release. Now we'll get some idea as to what kind of attendances the inaugural/opening matches will attract. Today's Victoria Times/Colonist informs readers that Pacific FC has sold more than 600 season tickets since they went on sale last week, and the club currently has 12 players under contract. Only 59 days to go before the home opener against HFX Wanderers FC!

https://www.timescolonist.com/sports/pacific-fc-cpl-hope-split-season-equals-more-excitement-1.23648458

Pacific FC, CPL hope split season equals more excitement

Cleve Dheensaw / Times Colonist

FEBRUARY 27, 2019 10:19 PM

The Canadian Premier League has borrowed a format commonly used in minor-pro baseball. The CPL will feature a split season with the first-half champion meeting the second-half champion in the league final.

Island-based Pacific FC is among seven charter franchises in the CPL, which is the realization of the long-held Canadian soccer dream of a domestic pro league.

“The advantage of starting a new league is that you get to write your own script,” said Josh Simpson, president and co-owner of Pacific FC.

“A lot of thought went into the schedule and we believe this format maximizes the suspense.”

The format is also used in pro soccer in other parts of the world, including Mexico, where the season is split between the opening Apertura portion and closing Clausura portion.

The CPL announced its full schedule on Wednesday. It features a Spring Season from April 27 to July 1 in which each team will play 10 games. The standings will then be reset for the Fall Season, from July 6 to Oct. 19, in which each team will play 18 games.

All told, each club will play 14 home and 14 away games.

Pacific FC’s franchise-first game, April 28 against the HFX Wanderers of Halifax at Westhills Stadium in Langford, was previoulsy announced. It will constitute the third-longest trip in the world between domestic pro league Premiership soccer clubs.

It will be the second game in league history, a day after the also previously announced inaugural CPL game April 27 at Tim Hortons Field in Hamilton, Ont., between host Forge FC and visiting York9 from the Greater Toronto Area.

Pacific FC will play seven Saturday home dates, four on Wednesdays, two on Sundays and one on Canada Day, Monday, July 1.

The away portion of the schedule includes two stretches of three consecutive away games. The most glaring is the trip to Halifax on June 1, followed by another to Toronto on June 15 to play York9, and a visit to Winnipeg on June 20 to meet Valour FC.

“Travel is the challenge of any Canada-wide national league in what is one of the largest countries in the world,” said Victoria-raised Simpson, a former European pro with 43 caps for Canada.

“But that’s what makes it so attractive at the same time. Also, it’s a different time now for travel than it was 20 years ago. That’s why it’s going to be feasible.”

Pacific FC has 12 players under contract, including 27-time Canada-capped former Scottish Premiership player Marcus Haber and 56-time Canada capped former MLS and Bundesliga pro Marcel de Jong.

Training camp opens in March, on dates yet to be announced. A portion of training camp will take place in Tofino.

Westhills Stadium is being expanded to 6,000 seats for Pacific FC home games. Simpson said more than 600 season tickets have been sold since they went on sale last week.

Meanwhile, Pacific FC announced Mira Laurence has been hired as director of communications and community partnerships. Laurence was with CTV Vancouver Island for 13 years and covered the Vancouver Canucks the last two years for Sportsnet 650.

“This is an incredible opportunity to come home to Vancouver Island to be part of something special,” said Laurence.

cdheensaw@timescolonist.com

Edited by Robert

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2 hours ago, shermanator said:

This post brought to you by a man who was addicted to crack cocaine...

Howdy! Dude, that's what living in CowTown for 24 years did to one passionate soccer supporter. Are you old enough to remember the final days of the last pro soccer team way down yonder where you live?

Team misses payroll

Calgary Herald; Calgary, Alta. 01 Sep 1989: C1.

The financially-strapped Calgary Strikers are in hot water again.

The Canadian Soccer League team failed to make its payroll Thursday.

"We haven't been paid today (Thursday) and we're trying to get the funding in to meet the payroll," said Peter Welsh, Strikers' general manager. "By hook or crook, we'll get it.

"There were a couple of times in the summer when we had to wait a day."

Players are paid every two weeks - the 15th and last day of each month.

The Strikers, in fourth place in the Western Division and fighting for a playoff spot, have two games at Mewata Stadium in the next week.

They're the final two games of the regular season. Edmonton Brick Men are here Saturday, while Winnipeg Fury pays a visit Wednesday.

The Strikers are winless in their last eight games. Calgary's record is 6-15-3 and it trails third-place Winnipeg by four points.

Strikers' leading goal scorer Andy Smith and defender Gregor Young will rejoin the team for this weekend's action following one-game suspensions. Jim Loughlin (thigh) and Nick Gilbert (knee) remain on the injured list.

The top three teams in each division make the playoffs.

Vancouver 86ers have clinched first in the West, while Edmonton is in second.

In July, the club launched a public appeal for $140,000 in donations and team president Colin Austin stated the Strikers would finish the season.

However, the appeal didn't even come close to generating that much money. The Strikers raised about one-third of what they were asking for.

 

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There's absolutely nothing worst than a team of professionals soccer players, with $15,000 a year contracts, who don't get paid. Can you imagine being a player living in a city as expensive as Victoria, with a young wife and baby, working part-time at Thrifty's and you pay cheque from Pacific FC bounces? Can you say; "Money up front, please!"

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22 minutes ago, Robert said:

There's absolutely nothing worst than a team of professionals soccer players, with $15,000 a year contracts, who don't get paid. Can you imagine being a player living in a city as expensive as Victoria, with a young wife and baby, working part-time at Thrifty's and you pay cheque from Pacific FC bounces? Can you say; "Money up front, please!"

I guess there will be no reason to show up at your post season All-Star game in sunny Victoria in November then Robert?   You were 'selling' that idea about two weeks ago.  Now the whole league will fail?    

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1 hour ago, Robert said:

There's absolutely nothing worst than a team of professionals soccer players, with $15,000 a year contracts, who don't get paid. Can you imagine being a player living in a city as expensive as Victoria, with a young wife and baby, working part-time at Thrifty's and you pay cheque from Pacific FC bounces? Can you say; "Money up front, please!"

When Ottawa and Edmonton were in the NASL there were a few players that held part time jobs to help make ends meet. Hope the CPL will be able to pay players enough that they can focus solely on playing soccer. 

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1 hour ago, Ottawafan74 said:

When Ottawa and Edmonton were in the NASL there were a few players that held part time jobs to help make ends meet. Hope the CPL will be able to pay players enough that they can focus solely on playing soccer. 

According to the following that shouldn't be a problem:

http://www.themanitoban.com/2018/08/canadian-premier-league-roster-building-details-revealed/34841/

Canadian Premier League roster-building details revealed

Paving the way to the professional soccer dream

BY JASON PCHAJEKAUGUST 19, 2018

The path to Canadian Premier League (CPL) stardom has become clearer.

Following the official unveiling of Valour FC, Winnipeg soccer fans were left in the dark about exactly how their team’s roster will be constructed. Further, many young players in the city could only wonder about how they could pursue their professional dream.

In an article published July 18, Steve Milton of the Hamilton Spectator was given interesting new details about the CPL from league commissioner David Clanachan that shed light on these questions.

Milton reported the CPL will have a salary cap when the league kicks off. There will be one cap for players — with average salaries expected to fall between $40,000 and $60,000 per year — and a separate ceiling for coaching staff.

Details of the coaching staff salary cap have yet to be disclosed.

Milton also reported that, following up on the league’s promise to create “hometown heroes,” more than half of the 23-to-25-man rosters will be Canadian talent. There will also be a domestic quota during games, with the league requiring the majority of the 11 players on the field at any time to be Canadian.

The most significant of Milton’s reports, however, was how he says the rosters will be built.

In their interview, Clanachan said that players will be split into five “buckets” or “pools.”

The “foundational” pool involves Canadian players already in the professional ranks elsewhere in the world. These players will be treated as free-agents, with any of the CPL’s founding clubs able to negotiate with and sign them.

The “up-and-coming” pool will contain players currently playing in development leagues in Canada or lower tier European leagues.

World Soccer Academy Winnipeg (WSA Winnipeg) is included in this pool, and in previous interviews members of the club have expressed excitement at joining Winnipeg-based Valour FC.

“I would completely focus, put everything possible in that team and develop from there and make soccer everything,” WSA Winnipeg forward William Brown told CBC following the announcement of Valour FC.

“It would mean the world to have a contract there and play in any team, especially Winnipeg. I’d love to put on for my city and show our talent that we have here and make it great.”

The “home territory” pool will have the most impact in each team’s market. This pool contains all players deemed to be within a franchise’s region, and the teams must submit a list of said players to the league in order to secure exclusive negotiating rights with these players.

For Winnipeg’s Valour FC, fans should expect to see Diego Reveco’s name on the team’s list.

The 19-year-old spent time training and playing in Chile before moving to Italy in 2016 to pursue his professional dream. He went to the Pro Calcio Soccer School in 2016 and most recently played professionally with SS Racing Fondi Calcio.

The fourth pool is focused on Canadian college and university players and will also be interesting to watch.

As previously reported, the CPL and U SPORTS have been holding ongoing discussions about a potential draft of U SPORTS players. Players from Cape Breton and the University of Montreal are likely to top this list — the two programs are first and second ranked in the nation heading into the upcoming season.

The final pool contains all professional players not born in Canada and Canadian players not selected in the previous pools.

 

The draft

The U SPORTS draft raises some questions about the future of collegiate athletics moving forward.

The most pressing issue will be the rights of drafted players, and whether they can remain with their university program for developmental — and educational — purposes.

Currently, the NCAA allows players drafted by a professional team to remain with their collegiate program, until they sign a contract with that professional team.

There is only one similar rule in U SPORTS’ regulations concerning the years of eligibility when entering a U SPORTS program.

Currently, any player in men’s soccer that participates in regular season or playoff competition in a Canadian or American professional league will lose a year of eligibility and is prohibited from participating in U SPORTS competition for at least one year following their professional play.

As the rule currently stands, a player can commit to a CPL club, but will not be able to sign or play with them without forfeiting a year of U SPORTS eligibility.

The NCAA goes even further, with players losing eligibility if they play with professionals, participate in practices or tryouts with a professional team, accept any type of payment above their regular expenses, accept benefits from an agent or agree to be represented by an agent.

More details on the draft will be revealed as the CPL launch continues to draw near.

The CPL and Winnipeg’s Valour FC are slated to kick-off their inaugural season spring 2019.

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6 minutes ago, Ottawafan74 said:

I’ve heard some of the kids filling in the bottom of a rosters will essentially be making minimum wage. 

If you do the math, that would definitely have to be the case. A roster of 24 players at an average of $50,000 per year adds up to an annual payroll of $1,200,000 for players alone. So those numbers would only work for a semi-pro roster.

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14 hours ago, shermanator said:

**** right off with this comment. You don't know a damn thing about what the supporters in Calgary are saying.

It's easy enough to read what was being said on Reddit when the ticket pricing scheme was first released, which is what I stated my assessment was in tune with:

I agree with whoever wrote that on their assessment that Spruce Meadows is probably going to learn the hard way with the pricing scheme that has been implemented that what works with soccer is different from what works with equestrian sports. Good luck to them if [account deleted] was wrong though, because Canadian soccer will really be on its way to a new era if people flock to buy those $87.50 tickets. Time will tell basically.

Edited by BringBackTheBlizzard

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The following post may possibly be only of interest to the older, more-knowledgeable soccer supporters on this board. Please enjoy. It will, however, be of absolutely no interest at all to the younger know-it-all-alreadies. Please go have sex with your mothers: 

The Vancouver Sun; Vancouver, B.C. 28 July 1989: D2.

What may surprise you is that Vancouver 86ers can no longer claim to be the league's most successful team at the gate, as they were in 1987 and '88.

Incredibly, the Winnipeg Fury, saddled with the CSL's second-worst record of 2-9-5, is averaging about 6,000 fans per game at Winnipeg Stadium. It's a slightly inflated figure because the Fury has staged a few attractive promotional deals with local retail outlets.

The 86ers are No. 2 at CSL turnstiles with about a 4,000 per-game average.

Calgary Herald; Calgary, Alta. 18 Sep 1989: F1.

The Strikers' final battle was a 0-0 draw with the Brick Men in the second and deciding game of the Western semifinals before a crowd of 878 at Clarke Stadium. With yesterday's tie and a win Wednesday night, Edmonton took the total-point series 3-1. The Brick Men advance to the Western final against Vancouver 86ers, starting here Wednesday.

Edmonton Journal; Edmonton, Alta. 19 Sep 1989: C6.

Calgary Strikers' president Colin Austin just smiled, a look that didn't quite reach his eyes, when asked the inevitable `what if?'

What if the Strikers had upset the Edmonton Brick Men to advance to the Canadian Soccer League's Western Final? With a depleted bank account, one that couldn't cover the salaries as of Aug. 15, wasn't it almost a blessing in disguise?

"We got this far, another week wouldn't have hurt. Another week's money would have been the last of our problems."

Deadline looming But Austin has other concerns now. Namely, an Oct. 3 deadline, the date that's been pencilled in for the board of governors' meeting.

"We will then explain to them how we feel we can make it," said Austin, "and hopefully, they will give us the time we need.

"I think everybody, realistically, will want to know that we can do what we couldn't do this year. In other words, that the money for the travel and the money for the salaries, is there and contracted before the season starts.

"That's what we planned to do this year but starting so late, we realized we'd have to rely on the gate. The gate never materialized."

Austin -- a full-time truck driver who had been wearing the presidency cap of the minor soccer community for the past four years -- was to begin the club's revitalization campaign on Monday.

Commitment needed

And while he's optimistic Calgary will be back next season, he's also realistic enough to acknowledge that within the next two weeks, he's got to have a firm commitment from a sponsor, a commitment for a contract that virtually covers the salaries and travel expenses.

"We've already applied to the government for a small grant, we need some money just to help us out in restructuring for next season, and we're talking to a major sponsor.

"I'm optimistic. We're not in a lot of debt. We're in debt, but it's not insurmountable.

Advertising lacking

"I think our biggest problem was that we couldn't afford advertising and we went after the people that are soccered out, the minor people did their best for us, but (promoting the team) would be a major emphasis next year."

The bottom line, however, will be whether or not the CSL gives the Strikers the go-ahead -- again.

"The league needs us," countered Austin. "The league needs us like they need everybody else."

The Strikers, who averaged between 300 and 400 spectators a game, spent much of the season on a daily survival course, dodging bankruptcy and weaving around injured players.

To their credit, they did manage to keep the team alive well into the playoffs, largely because players and front office staff were willing to sacrifice.

Edited by Robert

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19 hours ago, BuzzAndSting said:

Ask a former owner? One who failed? Seems like a good way to get an objective opinion. Why not ask a current owner? Any of the MLS teams? Tom Fath? He's probably the only owner qualified to give an objective answer as to whether this league will succeed.

Does the name Polklington ring a bell. It's not like the CSL was was a league comprised of flunky, cash-strapped ownership. Which CPL owner/group is in the Polklington-league? It doesn't mater who owned the Brick Men, if only 800 soccer fans showed up for a play-off game in Edmonton. There simply wasn't enough interest in Edmonton, just like in Calgary, in the 3rd year of the CSL existence!

Brick Men put on block by Pocklington:

Stinson, Dan.The Vancouver Sun; Vancouver, B.C. 20 Sep 1989: D1.

EDMONTON - The Edmonton Brick Men of the Canadian Soccer League will be put up for sale because of poor attendance and the city's refusal to build new baseball facilities, team president Mel Kowalchuk said today.

The news came as the Brick Men, owned by Edmonton entrepreneur Peter Pocklington, prepared to play host to the Vancouver 86ers in tonight's first game of the two-game, total-points Western Division final.

Kowalchuk, who is also president of the Pacific Coast League's Edmonton Trappers baseball team, tied the decision to sell the Brick Men to the city's refusal to build a new baseball stadium for the Trappers.

"We've done our share," Kowalchuk said of the franchise, which has lost more than $500,000 in the past three years and drew only 800 fans for Sunday's semi-final game against the Calgary Strikers.

Meanwhile, reliable fullback Mark Carpun appears to have the green light to start for Vancouver tonight.

Carpun has been suffering from a bad flu virus over the last two weeks, but he came to two training sessions this week without any ill effects.

86ers head coach Bob Lenarduzzi said that if Carpun is fit to play, he'll line up at his customary right fullback positon for tonight's game at Edmonton's Clark Stadium (Televised live on TSN at 6 PDT).

The 86ers will be without the services of winger Ivor Evans tonight. Evans is serving an automatic one game suspension for accumulation of yellow card cautions, but he will be eligible to play when the series resumes at Swangard Stadium Sunday night.

Winner of the series advances to the CSL championship contest - a one game final on October 1st. The final will be played on the home field of the finalist team which earned the higher number of regular season points.

The Toronto Blizzard play the Steelers in Hamilton tonight in the opening game of the Eastern Division final series.

Peter Hugh Pocklington (born November 18, 1941) is a Canadian entrepreneur and vocal advocate of free-market capitalism.

Peter Pocklington first earned his place in the consciousness of North American sports fans as "Peter Puck", the maverick entrepreneurfrom oil-rich Alberta who made millions, employed thousands, bucked the political establishment, was the hostage in a famous kidnapping and, most prominently of all, as the owner of the National Hockey League (NHL)'s Edmonton Oilers during the time when they were one of the best and most dominant teams in the league. Pocklington is perhaps best known as the owner of the Oilers and as the man who traded the rights to hockey's greatest player, Wayne Gretzky, to the Los Angeles Kings.

Pocklington's life experiences were extensively documented in the 2009 biography, I'd Trade Him Again: On Gretzky, Politics and the Pursuit of the Perfect Deal, written by Terry McConnell and J'lyn Nye. The book's title was inspired by Pocklington's ongoing conviction the Gretzky trade was the right deal at the right time and had a positive impact on all parties concerned: the Oilers, the Kings, Gretzky and the game itself.

Pocklington was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, to Basil Cohen Pocklington, an insurance executive who had immigrated from England as a young man, and his wife, Eileen (Dempsey), and grew up in London, Ontario.

The greatest influence on young Pocklington was the legendary motivational speaker Earl Nightingale and his best-selling recording, The Strangest Secret. "It literally stated, 'You become what you think about,' " Pocklington told his biographers.[1] He says he still has the record today.

One of his earliest business ventures was to find old cars on the farms around his maternal grandparents' home in Carberry, Manitoba, buy them for $25, then ship them to Ontarioby train, where he sold them for upwards of $500. Because of the West's dry, cold climate, the cars, many of them 25 to 40 years old, were in better shape than comparable vehicles that had been driven on Ontario's salted roads.

By the time Pocklington was 25, he owned his first car dealership, Westown Ford in Tilbury, Ontario. At the time, he was the youngest Ford dealer in Canada. Within a few years he had sold the Tilbury dealership and bought another in nearby Chatham. By 1971, when Pocklington was only 29, he left Ontario and moved west, where he bought Shirley Ford in Edmonton, Alberta. Within a few years, Pocklington was running the most successful Ford dealership in Canada. He also had the cash flow to buy Edmonton's fledgling team in the World Hockey Association (WHA), the Edmonton Oilers.

Sports owner

Pocklington would come to operate several businesses over the next several years, but he has always said owning sports teams gave him the most satisfaction.

The man who came to be known as "Peter Puck" bought part ownership of the Edmonton Oilers in 1976. According to his biography, he offered a diamond ring his wife was wearing to dinner as his downpayment. Within a year, Pocklington bought out his partner, Nelson Skalbania, who would later own the WHA team in Indianapolis, the Indianapolis Racers. It was also from Skalbania that Pocklington acquired perhaps the greatest hockey player ever. In the fall of 1978, Skalbania offered Pocklington the rights to a 17-year-old phenom Wayne Gretzky. The Oilers' owner did not hesitate to do the deal. A few months later, Pocklington parlayed the Gretzky signing into a merger between the WHA and the National Hockey League (NHL). Edmonton had its NHL franchise. Five years later, the Oilers would win their first of five Stanley Cup championships they would capture under Pocklington's ownership.

Over the next 18 years, Pocklington also owned the Edmonton Trappers of baseball's Pacific Coast League, the Edmonton Drillers of the North American Soccer League and the National Professional Soccer League, and the Kamloops Junior Oilers of the Western Hockey League.

Entrepreneur

Edmonton in the 1970s was experiencing explosive growth fuelled by an oil boom and several fortunes were made, not only by Pocklington but by the likes of Pat Bowlen, later owner of the National Football League's Denver Broncos. Pocklington’s business empire eventually exceeded $2 billion in sales; massive real estate holdings throughout Alberta and Ontario; Fidelity Trust, one of Canada's largest trust companies; Palm Dairies, one of the largest retailers of dairy products in Western Canada; Cambra Foods, a canola manufacturer; Magic Pantry, which sold prepared foods that did not require refrigeration; Kretschmar Foods, which serviced restaurants; Green Acre Farms, a chicken-processing company with plants in Texas and Mississippi; and Gainers, an Edmonton-based beef- and pork-packing company.

Hostage-taking

Pocklington was also taken hostage by a gunman who broke into his home. "I thought I was bullet-proof — until I was shot," Pocklington told his biographers.[1] The kidnapper was caught and Pocklington made a full recovery. The plan of the kidnapper, Petrović, was to kidnap Eva Pocklington, but she escaped. The other two people in the house were released, leaving Pocklington, who was with the gunman for 11 hours while he negotiated a $2 million ransom. However, before the ransom could be paid, police snuck into the house and shot both Petrović and Pocklington, wounding both men. They each made a full recovery and Petrović served five years in an Alberta prison before he was released and returned to Yugoslavia.

Politics

In 1983, Pocklington entered the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada leadership convention. He campaigned on a platform of free trade with the United States, privatizing government-owned Crown corporations like Air Canada, Petro-Canada and Canadian National Railway, retiring the national debt and implementing a flat tax. In the end, Pocklington fell far below his expectations of delegates; one advisor jokingly guessed "99", Gretzky's sweater number, and Pocklington came close in receiving 102 delegates. He withdrew his candidacy before the second ballot and supported the eventual winner Brian Mulroney, who would adopt some of Pocklington's policies while in government.

Philanthropy

Pocklington was an active philanthropist for many years in Edmonton. Among his gifts were $1.5 million he helped raise for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation; $1 million for the Jamie Platz YMCA; $300,000 for the Glen Sather Sports Medicine Clinic at the University of Alberta; $250,000 to establish a free-enterprise chair at the University of Alberta's School of Business; and upwards of $2 million for Junior Achievement. It was through his charitable works that he became close friends with famed tenor Luciano Pavarotti, former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher, and former U.S. presidents Gerald Ford[2] and George H. W. Bush.[1] From 1995 to 2010, Pocklington served as a member of the board of directors for the Betty Ford Center.[3]

Leaving Canada for the United States

In 1998, Pocklington moved to the U.S. with his wife Eva, and settled in Palm Desert, California. He remains active in business and philanthropic pursuits there, and was for a long time member of the board of directors at the Betty Ford Center. While Pocklington remains a controversial figure in Canada because of the Gretzky trade, he has his fans, too. On October 8, 2014, Pocklington was invited back to Edmonton when the Oilers organized a 30-year reunion of their first Stanley Cup championship team. When he was introduced, the man known as "Peter Puck" received a standing ovation from the 17,000 fans in attendance.

Gainers strike

While Pocklington's business empire realized its successes, it suffered its failures, too. Prime interest rates in the early 1980s topped out at 18.5 per cent, a development that sapped the oil boom of its strength, collapsed the real estate market and sank Fidelity Trust in a sea of declining property values.

But perhaps Pocklington's most notorious setback was the result of a six-month strike with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) union that crippled Gainers, which at the time was Canada's second-largest meat packer. Pocklington used strikebreakers, primarily from Quebec, to keep the plant operating despite the picket lines, a decision that earned him the enmity of Canada's labour movement. Eventually, he agreed to settle the strike and rehire the striking workers at the request of the Alberta government. In return, says Pocklington in his biography, then-Premier of Alberta Don Getty agreed to give Gainers an interest-free loan of $50 million. Gainers would give the province 10% of its operating profit every year for the next four years, and repay a conventional mortgage after that. Pocklington also insisted the province disband its pork marketing board, which fixed prices on pork at a rate higher than what the meat packers could sell it in the marketplace. Instead, the government gave Gainers $55 million at 10.5% interest, refusing to disband the marketing board. "They said, 'Take it or leave it,'" Pocklington told his biographers.[1] Crippled with a debt-servicing cost it did not anticipate and handicapped by inflated production costs created by the marketing board, Gainers immediately began to drown in debt. Loan repayments were missed and within three years, the Alberta government took over Gainers. The province lost $89 million on the venture in the four years it operated Gainers — more than double the rate of loss in Pocklington's last few years at the helm — and eventually sold the company for 1/20th of the price Pocklington paid for it 11 years earlier.

Stanley Cup

Basil Pocklington's name on the Stanley Cup

After the Edmonton Oilers won their first Stanley Cup in 1983–84, Peter Pocklington included his father, Basil Pocklington, on the list of people and players who were to have their names engraved on the trophy. The NHL did not check the validity of the names on the list, and the Cup was engraved as usual. NHL executives, via the Hockey Hall of Fame, had the engraver strike out the name of the senior Pocklington by engraving a series of Xs over his name. Of the two dozen engraving errors that appear on the Stanley Cup all but one are spelling errors. Basil Pocklington is the only name that is covered. When Peter Pocklington was confronted with the issue, he protested it was the engraver's fault, not his, that the engraver had mixed up the people who were actually technical members of the team (Basil was not one of them) with a list of individuals who were to receive miniature replica Cups (Basil was one of them). After this error, the NHL and Hockey Hall of Fame adopted policies to confirm the roster and the relation of the people on the engraving list to the championship team.

Gretzky trade

Main article: The Trade

On August 9, 1988, Pocklington shocked hockey fans by trading Gretzky to the Los Angeles Kings for Jimmy Carson, Martin Gélinas, $15 million cash, and the Kings' first-round draft picks in 1989, 1991 and 1993. One member of the House of Commons of Canada demanded the government block the trade, another man burned Pocklington in effigy, and Gretzky's bride, actress Janet Jones, was branded hockey's "Yoko Ono".

There is debate as to whether Gretzky "jumped" or was "pushed". A book by former Kings owner Bruce McNall quotes Pocklington as saying Gretzky had become impossible to deal with since he began dating Jones, who let it be known that she was not going to live in Edmonton after they got married. Pocklington claims he has had only nice things to say about the couple, yet he has repeatedly defended the trade as being a sound business decision that he would not hesitate to make again. However, he would later admit the trade to be a difficult decision, but necessary to keep the team financially afloat.[4]

Losing the Oilers

By the late 1980s, success was also killing the Edmonton Oilers. Players' salaries began to skyrocket, and Gretzky was traded in large part because Pocklington had come to realize he would not be able to keep his star player and would lose him to free agency. More players were parceled off as their salary expectations exceeded the team's ability to pay, such as Paul Coffey, Mark Messier, Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson, Kevin Lowe and Grant Fuhr.

By the mid-1990s, the Oilers were still losing money and Pocklington expressed an unwillingness to use his other businesses to bankroll his hockey team. He publicly threatened to move the team — Hamilton and Minneapolis were among the destinations contemplated — but Pocklington never made good on the threats. He was committed to keeping the team in Edmonton and used the possibility of a move to gain improvements to the arena where they played.

Pocklington operated the team on a line of credit, paying 19% interest to the Alberta Treasury Branches (ATB). He asked the ATB to convert the outstanding amount, about $120 million into a conventional mortgage he could pay down. The ATB refused and instead called his loan. His remaining business empire was sold off piece by piece, including the Oilers and Trappers and Cambra Foods. "Losing the Oilers was like having my heart torn out," Pocklington told his biographers.[1]

Stanley Cup rings

In May 2012, Pocklington announced his family was auctioning memorabilia from his time as owner of the Oilers, including his rings from their Stanley Cup championships. According to the Edmonton Journal, this was the second time the rings were put up for auction. In 2008, an anonymous bidder offered $272,829 for the rings, but withdrew his bid amid rumours the rings were not the only set Pocklington had commissioned. Pocklington later claimed in his biography the confusion stemmed from a set of rings he had made for his father, and were sold by his father’s estate in 2001. The rings offered in 2008 and again in 2012 have been certified as authentic, he said.[5]

Business setbacks

Pocklington invested in several businesses in the U.S., including the nutraceutical maker Naturade, and golf club manufacturers Golf Gear and Sonartec. However, those investments yielded more heartache than profit, and what he claims was fiduciary malfeasance by some partners in these ventures left Pocklington the target of numerous lawsuits. In the summer of 2008, one of those suits resulted in raids by U.S. Marshals of the Pocklington home in Indian Wells, California, where a number of items belonging to his wife, including gowns, shoes and purses, as well as Andy Warhol prints of Mick Jagger, were seized. These were eventually returned.

Exoneration of Peter Pocklington

In the prior events leading up to Peter Pocklington's exoneration and vindication for the improper extension of probation, a California judge failed to provide warrant before the expiration of the probationary period.[6] "The Probation Office was crystal clear about the absence of anything resembling probable cause," wrote Judge Margaret McKeown.[7] The court had earlier heard evidence that Pocklington had, over a 19-month period, failed to disclose consulting fees paid to a company controlled by his wife. Pocklington argued that was not the case, that all income was reported through tax returns and bank statements. Nevertheless, California District Court Judge Virginia A. Phillips gave Pocklington until December 9, 2013, to report to prison.[8][9]

At the time, Pocklington released a statement saying, "I accept full responsibility for my actions."[10]

On December 6, 2013, the CBC reported Pocklington would appeal his sentence, had been released on $100,000 bail and would not be reporting to prison as ordered.[11]

On July 3, 2015, the Toronto Sun reported that the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had reversed the ruling. In vacating Judge Phillips' original order, "The district court lacked jurisdiction to extend Pocklington’s probation beyond its October 26, 2012, expiration date," the appeal court panel said in a written judgment.[12][13]

Conjecture

In April 2012, investigators with the Arizona Corporation Commission alleged Pocklington and an associate, John McNeil, had engaged in securities fraud related to Crystal Pistol Resources LLC and Liberty Bell Resources 1, LLC. Pocklington vigorously denied the allegations, insisted he and McNeil had done nothing wrong, and that investors in the mining venture were not being misled. The geologists associated with the project were, according to the mining company newsletter, also vigorously defending their data. Those geologists "boast impeccable reputations and have been conscientious and thorough in their testing", Pocklington wrote in a letter to the Edmonton Journal. "We do not tell our investors anything their data is not telling us."[14]

On June 4, 2013, a decision rendered by the Arizona Corporations Commission ordered the respondents to pay the commission $5,149,316, and an administrative penalty for $100,000. The Commission would disburse the funds on a pro-rata basis to investors. A statement by Pocklington's company was included in Canadian media accounts, which stated “the allegations of wrongdoing ... have been laid to rest” with the commission’s decision. "We have done nothing wrong," Pocklington said in the release. "We have worked diligently and honestly with all of our investors and have been conscientious in guiding the company through the necessary regulatory frameworks. We are committed to raising capital in accordance with existing rules and regulations." He added that any errors were "born of inexperience and naivete, not malice or avarice", and were quickly rectified.[15][16][17]

On December 6, 2013, a report by the CBC stated that the $5,149,316 fine remains unpaid.[11]

Edmonton Oilers' 1984 Reunion

On October 8, 2014, Pocklington was the focus of a media opportunity organized by the Edmonton Oilers Hockey Club to promote the 30-year reunion of the 1984 Stanley Cup championship team. When asked if he was concerned about the reception he would get from Edmontonians, he replied, "I really don't give a damn what some of the unwashed have to say."[18] His comment resulted in a social media storm that continued until his appearance at the October 10 Edmonton Oilers 1985 Stanley Cup Reunion at Rexall Place in Edmonton. Media polls indicated he was in for a rough reception at the event.[19] However, he received a standing ovation from fans in attendance. He subsequently sent letters to the editors of The Edmonton Sun. The Sun published the letter of thanks intact on October 14, 2014.[20]

Edited by Robert

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Penniless Strikers are loyal to fans:

Stories JOANNE IRELAND Journal Staff Writer.Edmonton Journal; Edmonton, Alta. 2 Sep 1989: D3.

The Calgary Strikers' financial well is dry. Again.

But out of an almost puzzling sense of loyalty, 11 players and head coach Tony Towers will be at Mewata Stadium today to take on the Edmonton Brick Men.

"(Thursday) it came to a head and there isn't a penny left. There was no payroll, as of the 31st," said general manager Peter Welsh, who is also without a cheque for the side's final two games.

And the Strikers who have stayed with the team can't even count on any money from today's gate as the bank has a line on those profits.

They will, however, be the recipients of any funds raised Thursday at a local pub.

"It definitely hasn't been a great season all-around," said Welsh. "The financial side hasn't been strong all along but then the injury situation nearly killed us."

The Strikers have struggled on the field as much as they have off this season and have to win their two remaining games in order to make the playoffs.

That scenario is far from promising with the now depleted lineup.

Defenders Gregor Young and Alex Percy have returned to Vancouver because of the financial situation, midfielders Len Cantello and Joe Waters are back in England and Tacamo respectively, striker Nick Gilbert is out with a knee injury, and the list goes on.

There also isn't much of a future for the club.

"The league wants to know early in October what's going to happen next year," said Welsh. "I really can't see anyone putting $60-$70,000 down in the next two weeks to clear the debts and assure the Canadian Soccer League that we'll be there."

This is the second straight year Calgary's entry in the CSL has been plagued with financial woes.

But new owners were secured after the 1988 season and optimism was high the Calgary Soccer Federation would prove to be a stabilizing force.

It wasn't.

The CSF, which operated under the auspices of the Calgary Soccer Society, had been relying on several directors with fat wallets, and after a lengthy midseason road trip drained the budget, three of the directors departed.

Players, coaches and Welsh then began pounding both the pavement and the phone lines to raise enough cash to see the club through the season. A promotion company even got involved to help raise money, but after a few weeks, realized what a hard sell soccer was, and quit.

And whatever money had been raised is now gone.

While Welsh still retains some optimism, he didn't deny the fact this could very well be the end of the line for Calgary.

The Brick Men, meanwhile, need just one point to secure second place in the Western Division -- and a good solid win to get back on track after a humbling 4-0 loss to the Hamilton Steelers.

"I really think the Hamilton situation brought us on to our backsides," said playing coach Justin Fashanu.

"The Calgary game is not important; it's the confidence and a good effort to consolidate second place."

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2 hours ago, Robert said:

The following post may possibly be only of interest to the older, more-knowledgeable soccer supporters on this board. Please enjoy. It will, however, be of absolutely no interest at all to the younger know-it-all-alreadies. Please go have sex with your mothers: 

The Vancouver Sun; Vancouver, B.C. 28 July 1989: D2.

What may surprise you is that Vancouver 86ers can no longer claim to be the league's most successful team at the gate, as they were in 1987 and '88.

Incredibly, the Winnipeg Fury, saddled with the CSL's second-worst record of 2-9-5, is averaging about 6,000 fans per game at Winnipeg Stadium. It's a slightly inflated figure because the Fury has staged a few attractive promotional deals with local retail outlets.

The 86ers are No. 2 at CSL turnstiles with about a 4,000 per-game average.

Calgary Herald; Calgary, Alta. 18 Sep 1989: F1.

The Strikers' final battle was a 0-0 draw with the Brick Men in the second and deciding game of the Western semifinals before a crowd of 878 at Clarke Stadium. With yesterday's tie and a win Wednesday night, Edmonton took the total-point series 3-1. The Brick Men advance to the Western final against Vancouver 86ers, starting here Wednesday.

Edmonton Journal; Edmonton, Alta. 19 Sep 1989: C6.

Calgary Strikers' president Colin Austin just smiled, a look that didn't quite reach his eyes, when asked the inevitable `what if?'

What if the Strikers had upset the Edmonton Brick Men to advance to the Canadian Soccer League's Western Final? With a depleted bank account, one that couldn't cover the salaries as of Aug. 15, wasn't it almost a blessing in disguise?

"We got this far, another week wouldn't have hurt. Another week's money would have been the last of our problems."

Deadline looming But Austin has other concerns now. Namely, an Oct. 3 deadline, the date that's been pencilled in for the board of governors' meeting.

"We will then explain to them how we feel we can make it," said Austin, "and hopefully, they will give us the time we need.

"I think everybody, realistically, will want to know that we can do what we couldn't do this year. In other words, that the money for the travel and the money for the salaries, is there and contracted before the season starts.

"That's what we planned to do this year but starting so late, we realized we'd have to rely on the gate. The gate never materialized."

Austin -- a full-time truck driver who had been wearing the presidency cap of the minor soccer community for the past four years -- was to begin the club's revitalization campaign on Monday.

Commitment needed

And while he's optimistic Calgary will be back next season, he's also realistic enough to acknowledge that within the next two weeks, he's got to have a firm commitment from a sponsor, a commitment for a contract that virtually covers the salaries and travel expenses.

"We've already applied to the government for a small grant, we need some money just to help us out in restructuring for next season, and we're talking to a major sponsor.

"I'm optimistic. We're not in a lot of debt. We're in debt, but it's not insurmountable.

Advertising lacking

"I think our biggest problem was that we couldn't afford advertising and we went after the people that are soccered out, the minor people did their best for us, but (promoting the team) would be a major emphasis next year."

The bottom line, however, will be whether or not the CSL gives the Strikers the go-ahead -- again.

"The league needs us," countered Austin. "The league needs us like they need everybody else."

The Strikers, who averaged between 300 and 400 spectators a game, spent much of the season on a daily survival course, dodging bankruptcy and weaving around injured players.

To their credit, they did manage to keep the team alive well into the playoffs, largely because players and front office staff were willing to sacrifice.

Is there a reason you just insulted one particular demographic on here. Your m/o usually involves insulting everyone's intelligence on here but since you chose this route I feel(as an older guy) to assure you that our younger followers on here will not have the time to "have sex with their mothers" because they'll be attending a get together at your mother's house whereupon they will be running the train on her.

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Please stop copying and pasting articles.

We want people to write about soccer in this country. Link to it, so the author gets the traffic 

There are also some very nasty rules coming regarding that kind of thing, and automated tools to find it.

EDIT: By automated tools and rules I don't mean this site, I mean nasty rules on copy write infringement.  

 

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Robert: we get your angle!  Many of us have lived through the CSL and have wounds from it; that was 30 years ago!  Things have changed, the Canadian soccer landscape has changed.  The CPL is happening.  

If the CPL fails, you can come back on here and post media articles about its failure in 2026 or whenever.  

Until, then STOP being so negative and polluting the board with recycled articles.  And enjoy the ride like the rest of us.

Edited by JamboAl

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7 hours ago, Robert said:

The following post may possibly be only of interest to the older, more-knowledgeable soccer supporters on this board. Please enjoy. It will, however, be of absolutely no interest at all to the younger know-it-all-alreadies. Please go have sex with your mothers: 

?

3 hours ago, longlugan said:

Is there a reason you just insulted one particular demographic on here. Your m/o usually involves insulting everyone's intelligence on here but since you chose this route I feel(as an older guy) to assure you that our younger followers on here will not have the time to "have sex with their mothers" because they'll be attending a get together at your mother's house whereupon they will be running the train on her.

?

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On 2/9/2019 at 6:58 AM, Robert said:

With Voyageurs flying in from all parts of the country, will the CPL's inaugural match at Tim Hortons Field, in Hamilton, between Forge FC and York9 FC end up being the highest attended CPL match of the 2019 season?

To answer the original question. 

Yes.

End of thread. 

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