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Canadian Football League Announces Official Sports Gaming Partner

James Murphy
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  • The Canadian Football League (CFL) has named BetRegal as their ‘Official Sports Gaming Partner’.
  • The sports betting regulations in Canada were recently revised to facilitate single game betting.
  • The CFL starts their 2021 season on Thursday, August 5. The 2020 season was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The past few years have been transformative for sports betting in North America and that trend is going to continue. While the United States lurches toward coast to coast sports betting in a series of fits and starts it won’t be long until Canada joins the fun. Until recently, Canada allowed only parlay betting but that has recently changed. The regulatory framework is now being put together for single game betting but once it is in place the Canadian sports betting market will be huge. Since parlay format betting has been available nationwide for years there’s every reason to expect that all of Canada’s provinces will get on board.

Meanwhile, the players in the Canadian sports betting ecosystem are seeking the most advantageous position now in order for them to hit the ground running once everything goes live. Not surprisingly, one of the first to stake out a presence is the Canadian Football League (CFL)–since they’ll be one of the country’s top betting sports that’s only natural. As the CFL prepares to launch their 2021 season, the league has announced that BetRegal will be their ‘Official Sports Gaming Partner’ as part of a multiyear deal.

At this early juncture, the primary goal of BetRegal is to start to develop brand awareness among Canadian sports bettors. The deal with the CFL will allow the sportsbook plenty of good branding opportunities and BetRegal is also in the process of building out their own lineup of ‘brand ambassadors’. The first two Canadian Football icons to join this group dubbed the ‘BR Legends’ are quarterbacks Damon Allen and Matt Dunigan. They’ll join previously named NHL veteran and Haliburton, Ontario native Bernie Nicholls who played 17 years in the league following a stint in junior hockey with the Kingston Canadians.

BetRegal is a Canadian company that originally launched in Europe where they’ve had considerable success. The CFL represents their first partnership with a North American sports league. BetRegal previously became the Global Betting Partner of Dundalk FC of the Irish Premier League soccer circuit. They’re now looking to get in on the forthcoming changes in Canada’s sports betting industry. CFL Commissioner Randy Ambrosie is glad to be working with them:

“The sports gaming landscape is changing rapidly in Canada and to be able to partner with BetRegal who has international experience, and the expertise is crucial for growing the league’s business going forward. With BetRegal’s Canadian roots, we can’t wait to collaborate and engage through the Canadian game with our fans across the country”

Michael Mirtl, CEO of BetRegal, is excited to expand into Canada:

“The Canadian Football League is one of the most iconic brands in all of professional sports and we are thrilled to be partnering with a league so rooted in Canadian culture.”

“The evolving regulatory landscape around sportsbetting in Canada presents an amazing opportunity to enhance the CFL fan experience. As fellow Canadians, we are excited to apply our decades of experience in this sector to help educate Canadian sports fans on the sports gaming experience, with a particular focus on responsible gaming.”

The details of the partnership will obviously evolve with changes in the Canadian sports betting landscape but for now a press release announcing the deal outlined these collaborative endeavors:

BetRegal will be prominent in league marketing strategies beginning this season. It will have distinguished media assets throughout the playoffs and Grey Cup including the postseason jersey patch, partner of the Grey Cup Festival, as well as the presenting sponsor for exclusive premium experiences during Grey Cup weekend.

Both the league and BetRegal will have updates on more fan facing initiatives for the 2021 CFL Season. This will include a free-to-play sportsbook experience, CFL squares, and the Race to the 108th Grey Cup, a pick’em style game that will allow fans to pick winners and predict scores to win BetRegal and CFL prizing. Additionally, BetRegal will engage CFL communities by celebrating and rewarding community MVP’s who have gone above and beyond to help their communities through the challenges presented since last March.

The CFL will begin the 2021 season on Thursday, August 5th as the defending Grey Cup Champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in a rematch of the 107th Grey Cup. The 2020 season was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic making this the first CFL game to be played in over 18 months.

The rest of the opening weekend slate will include the Saskatchewan Roughriders hosting the BC Lions on Friday, August 6 and a pair of games on Saturday, August 7, with the Calgary Stampeders welcoming the Toronto Argonauts and the Edmonton Elks hosting the Ottawa REDBLACKS. There’s good news for US fans of CFL football as the entire season schedule will be broadcast on the ESPN family of networks and the ESPN+ streaming service.

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