OTD: BC Lions lose inaugural game to start dismal first season

On today’s date in 1954, the BC Lions played their first Canadian Football League (CFL) game, which they lost 22-0 to the Montréal Alouettes at Empire Stadium in Vancouver, B.C.

Under head coach and general manager Annis Stukus, the Lions earned only one victory in their inaugural CFL season. The Lions’ first and only win that season didn’t come until Sept. 18, when the team defeated the Calgary Stampeders 9-4; however, the season was an overwhelming disappointment.

In fact, the team’s first touchdown, scored by By Bailey in an 8-6 loss to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, didn’t come until Aug. 28—three weeks into the season.


In 2012, the Royal Canadian Mint issued an eight-coin set to commemorate the 100th Grey Cup, which took place that year (the Toronto Argonauts beat the Stampeders 35-22).

As part of the set, each team – the Lions, Stampeders, Argonauts, Blue Bombers, Alouettes, Eskimos, Tiger-Cats and Roughriders – was commemorated on a 25-cent coin that was issued alongside a pair of stamps.

The 25-cent commemorative coin was issued alongside two commemorative stamps (left to right: Scott #2568 and #2569).

A 25-cent commemorative coin was issued alongside two commemorative stamps.

With a weight of 12.61 grams, the cupro-nickel coins have a 35-millimetre diameter and feature the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse.

Filip Mroz, of Bensimon Byrne, designed the reverse.

One of the stamps issued with the coin depicts the Grey Cup dividing a retro CFL player to the left and a modern CFL player to the right. The other stamp features former Lions’ kicker Lui Passaglia, who won his team the 1994 Grey Cup with a last-second field goal in from of hometown fans.

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