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Hamilton Tiger-Cats to decided soon whether they can open stadium

CFL Commissioner Mark Cohon speaks to media prior to CFL action in Winnipeg Thursday, July 3, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

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CFL Commissioner Mark Cohon speaks to media prior to CFL action in Winnipeg Thursday, July 3, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

WINNIPEG - CFL commissioner Mark Cohon says the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will decide in the coming weeks whether they can open before construction of their stadium is finished.

"What they've potentially talked about is opening with not the full stadium ready but they have to make that decision in the coming weeks," he said in Winnipeg, where the Ottawa Redblacks played their first regular season game against the Blue Bombers.

The Blue Bombers are experts on missing stadium opening dates. Theirs was delayed an entire year.

Cohon said he was in Hamilton on Wednesday and the Tiger-Cats were meeting Thursday and Friday with Infrastructure Ontario to review where they are with the project.

But he also stopped in Ottawa this week and says the Redblacks revamped home field is expected to open on schedule July 18. The Redblacks have brought the CFL back to the nation's capital after almost a decade, a move Cohon started working on in 2007.

Meanwhile, the commissioner admitted only six of the nine CFL teams are expected to break even or make money this season but says a new TV deal and players' contract has positioned the entire league to do better in the future.

"I think what the deal does, and this is important, it creates the foundation moving forward for our teams to prosper," he said of the new CFL contract with the players.

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