The Toronto Arrows’ 2021 MLR schedule has officially been revealed. Their first game will be against 2019 MLR finalists, the San Diego Legion on March 28. The Arrows will have 16-games with eight of them at home and the other eight on the road. It is important to keep in mind that the Arrows home games might be moved to the U.S. because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. This can be seen with other Toronto sports teams in a league with mostly U.S. teams like Toronto FC, the Blue Jays, and the Raptors.
There will be six teams in the Eastern Conference (including the Arrows) and seven in the Western Conference. The possible format of the MLR playoffs was revealed in September. However, things can change with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Toronto Arrows 2021 MLR Schedule
Dallas Jackals and the New England Free Jacks
One of two expansion teams in the 2021 MLR season, the Dallas Jackals will be in the Arrows’ last season home game on Sunday, July. 11. The Arrows will also be meeting the New England Free Jacks as they are slated to be the Toronto Arrows’ first home game on April 10. The Arrows will then play the Free Jacks on the road on May 29 and July 18. July 18 will also be the last MLR season game for the Toronto Arrows.
These are interesting matchups as the Arrows have never met the Jackals or the Free Jacks. The fact that the Arrows’ will face the Free Jacks’ so often though should interest the Canadian rugby viewers.
NOLA Gold was part of Toronto Arrows’ history in 2019. The Gold was in the Arrows’ first-ever game in MLR on January 26. They also participated in the Toronto Arrows’ first-ever home game at Alumni Field on April 7. The Gold won both games including a come from behind win on April 7. This loss ended up being the Arrows’ only home loss in the 2019 MLR season.
— Toronto Arrows RFC (@TorontoArrows) January 26, 2019
The Gold is playing the Arrows twice next year. The first game will be in Canada on May 2, while the second game will be on the road for the Arrows on June 26.
Rugby United New York and Old Glory United
Rugby United New York are the Arrows’ expansion cousins into MLR in 2019. They were incredibly competitive with each other in the 2019 MLR season with each team winning once at home. In fact, Rugby United New York won their first-ever home game at MCU Park on March 15 against the Arrows 24-21.
The Arrows would return the favour though in their last home game at Lamport Stadium. The Arrows scored a game-winning drop goal to win the game late at Lamport Stadium and won the game 22-20. This allowed the Arrows to clinch a playoff spot in the 2019 MLR playoffs. It also leapfrogged the Arrows past Rugby United for third place in the 2020 MLR standings.
Lastly, former Toronto Wolfpack player Quinn Ngawati signed with Rugby United New York. This will also be the first time Ngawati has played professional rugby union after playing professionally in the rugby league.
— Rugby United New York (@rugbyunitedny) October 2, 2020
There is a similar storyline with Old Glory United. Former Wolfpack player and American Ryan Burroughs will be suiting up for United. He played three games last year for Washington D.C., including two tries. The first game will be at home as the Arrows host D.C. on April 17. The Arrows will then travel to America’s capital on June 12.
San Diego Legion and Seattle Seawolves
The Arrows’ first game as previously mentioned will be against the San Diego Legion on March 28. The Legion was the only team to remain unbeaten in the 2020 MLR season. The Legion won all five games before COVID-19 hit, causing the MLR season to be cancelled. This will be the only meeting between both teams.
And lastly, the Seattle Seawolves. Yes, in 2020, they did not have a great MLR season winning only one of five games. This included losing to the Arrows. However, the Seawolves are still the two-time defending MLR champions. They defeated the Toronto Arrows twice in 2019, both in Seattle. The first one was a close 35-30 win for Seattle at Starfire Sports. They would then have a comfortable win at the same stadium, ending the Arrows season with a 30-17 win in the MLR playoffs.
FULL TIME@TorontoArrows’ attempt to climb back but a penalty try and solid defensive phases see us hold the lead for all 80 minutes of this historic match.
— Seattle Seawolves (@SeawolvesRugby) June 10, 2019
The Arrows would again need to travel to Seattle next year. This will be the Arrows’ fourth road trip in Seattle, which will take place on May 23.
Toronto Arrows Schedule Overview
The Toronto Arrows are a lone bright spot for what is going to be a dark year for professional rugby in Canada next year. There is going to be no Ottawa Aces XIII next year and the future of the Toronto Wolfpack is uncertain after being denied entry back into Super League.
However, the Arrows can use this as an opportunity. They are the only professional rugby team of either code in Canada that will be playing next year. This will also most likely be the only time the Arrows will have the attention of the whole country of Canada. The Aces will play in 2022, and there is no reason not to think otherwise, especially after Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau said that the majority of Canadians will get the COVID-19 vaccine by September according to Al Jazeera English.
Furthermore, there is no evidence that the Wolfpack team will not continue operations in 2022 or beyond in the lower English divisions. This is a golden opportunity for the Arrows that may only be available in 2021. They already have one of the best attendances in MLR, and they can build on it for 2021.
— Toronto Arrows RFC (@TorontoArrows) December 8, 2020
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