You heard it here first, I have very solid reason to believe (although it hasn’t been confirmed yet) that all Toronto FC games, except for those on TSN and TSN2, will air on GolTV Canada in 2011. That would mean that 21 Toronto FC games will air on GolTV Canada this season. GolTV Canada is owned by Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, the same company that owns Toronto FC. In the past, CBC, Sportsnet Ontario and GolTV split regional Toronto FC rights. Most people knew that CBC was on the way out, but many, myself included, thought that Sportsnet Ontario would be back. All games, including those on TSN and TSN2, will be preceded by a 30 minute pregame show on GolTV Canada.
This means that people who don’t have digital cable will be shut out of the majority of Toronto FC games in 2011. The broadcasts will be carried on GolTV Canada HD. It is still unknown whether GolTV Canada HD will be a full-time channel, or if it will be a part-time channel for Toronto FC games only. In the past GolTV Canada has only used a part-time HD channel for Toronto FC games; however, it has been long rumoured that a full-time HD channel is coming. GolTV Canada has told me that the full-time HD channel will be launched soon. If it is, that will mean La Liga and Bundesliga, among other leagues, will be available in HD in Canada.
It isn’t clear yet who will call the games as former GolTV commentators Luke Wileman and Jason deVos have been hired by TSN. Wileman has already stated that he no longer works for MLSE. We can assume deVos doesn’t either because it would create a conflict of interest when they call Toronto FC matches. I think that CBC commentator Nigel Reed would be a good hire for GolTV Canada considering that CBC no longer has MLS rights. I don’t know who they will go with as a co-commentator, but I think former Toronto FC player Jim Brennan would be a good choice, if available. Brennan worked as a studio analyst for some UEFA Champions League games on TSN in 2010.
Here is the complete Toronto FC on GolTV Canada schedule for the 2011 season.
Saturday 4/9, 10:30pm – San Jose Earthquakes vs. Toronto FC
Wednesday 4/13, 8:00pm – Toronto FC vs. LA Galaxy
Saturday 4/16, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. DC United
Saturday 4/23, 4:00pm – Toronto FC vs. Columbus Crew
Saturday 4/30, 10:00pm – Seattle Sounders vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 5/7, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. Houston Dynamo
Wednesday 5/11, 9:00pm – FC Dallas vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 5/14, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. Chicago Fire
Sunday 5/22, 7:00pm – Colorado Rapids vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 5/28, 12:30pm – Toronto FC vs. Philadelphia Union
Saturday 6/11, 10:30pm – LA Galaxy vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 6/18, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. Seattle Sounders
Saturday 6/25, 9:00pm – Real Salt Lake vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 7/9, 8:30pm – Houston Dynamo vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 7/23, 7:30pm – Sporting Kansas City vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 7/30, 11:00pm – Portland Timbers vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 8/13, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. Chicago Fire
Sunday 8/21, 7:00pm – Chicago Fire vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 8/27, 7:00pm – Toronto FC vs. San Jose Earthquakes
Saturday 9/10, 7:30pm – Columbus Crew vs. Toronto FC
Saturday 9/24, 10:30pm – Chivas USA vs. Toronto FC
I will update the MLS on GolTV Canada schedule to include these games sometime later today. Thanks to Andy Pereira, the editor of Soccer on Canadian TV, for the tip on this.