Ticats have no interest in playing at West Harbour Staff

8/11/2010 6:58:25 PM

A day after Hamilton city council voted to build a new stadium for the 2015 Pan Am Games at a West Harbour site that the Tiger-Cats opposed, the CFL team has said that they are not willing to talk to the city about playing games at that site.

"We think it's a massive mistake and may end the Ticats in Hamilton," Team owner Bob Young told the FAN 590 radio station on Wednesday.

Tiger-Cats team president Scott Mitchell told the Hamilton Spectator that there is nothing that the city can do, or offer to make the team return to negotiations.

"When you ask if we'll come back to the table, for what?" Mitchell told the Spectator. "Nothing has changed of any substance since their initial offer to us way back in February of a 15,000-seat stadium in the west harbour."

Mitchell also said that even if the club wouldn't have to spend their own money to expand the stadium to 25,000 to 30,000 seats, that it wouldn't make a difference as the location simply wasn't good enough for business.

"At the end of the day, whether it's Bob Young or anybody else, no owner is going to own a team that they're convinced they're going to lose millions of dollars on," he added, "Nobody."

The Ticats' stance leaves the CFL club with no place to play after its lease at aging Ivor Wynne Stadium runs out in 2011. At that point, according to Mitchell, the team will "look at any and all options."

For their part, the city hopes that the two sides can find some middle ground.

"I hope entrenched positions on their side don't continue and they come to the table in earnest and talk about the serious intent of our city council," Hamilton mayor Fred Eisenberger told the FAN 590 on Wednesday.  "At the same time, we all want to find ways to make it more financially sustainable for them."