I, for one, cannot wait for the debate to come about the merits of pro-rel!
Seriously, though, this is a very interesting tidbit from Canadian Soccer News’ Duane Rollins:
Confirmed with two regular sources: #CanPL will launch with a plan to switch to a *ducking* Pro/Rel system once they hit 16 teams.— Duane Rollins (@24thminute) June 1, 2017
Beirne sees CPL teams coast to coast and, eventually, in different divisions.
...but to this point most had assumed that referred to something similar to the two-conference structure of MLS in order to reduce travel.
Actually having a first division and a second division is much more surprising for a number of reasons, the most obvious of which is that creating one successful professional league is enough of a challenge without adding a second tier.
The upside is competitive; promotion and relegation battles, of course, would create much more drama and excitement than the wasteland that is the bottom half of the MLS table provides. A second tier would also allow smaller markets to take a slower, steadier approach towards creating a sustainable professional club without suffering morale-draining whackings every week in their early years by wealthier rivals.
Both of those things would be helpful, but I have to say I remain skeptical about the viability of an eight-team second division playing coast-to-coast as well as the potential for geographic imbalance that could create.
It certainly is nice to be talking about the possibility of sixteen Canadian professional soccer teams, though.