The guessing game is over for another year as CFL Commissioner Tom Wright, signed on for a one year extension to his contract. Having presided over a rather unusual bout of stability for the normally stormy league, Wright chose to accept the terms offered and stay on the job for a little while longer. With his contract set to expire with this years Grey Cup game in Vancouver, Wright decided that he'd like to continue his work on through the 2006 season.
The terms were not particularly as Wright may have wished for, he basically has taken on his job for another year without an increase in pay. But at a reported 400,000 dollars a year it's not like he's going to be selling off old autographed footballs to get by.
Three teams are reported to have been against a longer term deal (originally Wright wanted a two year deal and a pay raise) and that will give him cause for thought. As it stands at the moment 1/3 of his owners group aren't showing complete support for his efforts. Rumored to be Montreal, BC and Hamilton it will be interesting to watch how Wright handles the three malcontents over the next two years. He has big plans he'd like to put in place and enforceable salary cap and expansion eastward with a fifth franchise for the East division. The nine CFL owners rarely can agree on what to have for lunch, so it will take all of his diplomacy to get everyone on the same page on these issues and more.
Since Wright took over the television ratings have rebounded nicely, the marketing of the league seems to have finally found some success and of course troubled franchises have all been placed into the hands of those with a more progressive way of thinking.
But this being the CFL, old habits die hard and Wright can look forward to a few more battles along the way as he carries on with his duties. If nothing else it may be shrewd move by Wright to collect one more year of salary and prepare a soft landing for himself should the band of three grow to a majority of five!