CFL, union fail to reach CBA agreement; teams to reportedly strike

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The CFL and its players' association failed to agree on a new collective bargaining agreement ahead of the current CBA's expiration at midnight ET on Sunday.

As a result, seven teams will start a strike Sunday, reports TSN's Farhan Lalji.

Players on the other two teams, the Edmonton Elks and Calgary Stampeders, will still report for the start of training camp and are expected to practice for three days, Lalji adds. The clubs can't strike until provincial labor laws allow, according to The Canadian Press.

The players' association rejected the CFL's latest offer Saturday hours before the deadline. The league said it's no longer willing to negotiate, according to Lalji.

"We made a comprehensive offer to the union today. Unfortunately, that was rejected. There are no further talks scheduled at this time," a league spokesperson said in a statement obtained by TSN's Dave Naylor.

Commissioner Randy Ambrosie outlined the CFL's latest offer in a letter sent to fans and players Saturday. The league proposed a new seven-year term that included $18.9 million in total guaranteed increases to the salary cap league-wide. It would have added two increases to the league's minimum salary and offered partially guaranteed contracts for the first time in CFL history.

The union responded to Ambrosie's letter by criticizing the league's behavior.

"Instead of using the time to consider our counterproposals, the league instead took the time to craft the communication you just received," the players' association said in a statement obtained by 3DownNation. "When we returned to the bargaining table, the league informed us they are walking away from the bargaining table and that they would be communicating directly to you.

"They have effectively instigated an unnecessary work stoppage by acting in such an authoritarian manner."

The CFLPA added it's "ready to return to the table" whenever the league wants to negotiate "in good faith."

The players' association was open to the proposed salary-cap increases but still had concerns about how those numbers are being calculated, believing the league's net increase would be significantly lower, per Lalji.

It's also concerned about other factors, including the league's revenue-sharing formula and the return of padded practices with no additional safety protections, Lalji adds.

The two sides had been involved in intense negotiations since the league tabled a proposal Wednesday. The current CBA was ratified in 2019 and amended prior to the 2021 season.

There hasn't been a player strike since 1974, though an agreement was ultimately reached before the start of that season.

The 2022 regular season is scheduled to kick off June 9.

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CFL, union fail to reach CBA agreement; teams to reportedly strike
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