President: Joe Piccininni
Toronto alderman Joe Piccininni returned as president.
Clubs and players
Before the season Italia had recruited the Steelers’ 1981 Championship winning coach Carlo Del Monte. They were helped by Carlos Salguero joining them in mid-June on loan from the Buffalo Stallions of the MISL, by September 22 he had scored 16 goals. Italia also borrowed two more players from Buffalo, fullback Mark Peckman and midfielder Eddie Azavedo. In addition they had foreign stars in Romanian Marinel Risnita and Dane Niels Guldbjerg, a former NASL and MISL player. Local players included Dale Baxter, Enzo Concina, John McManus and Ed McNally. Italia were watched by usually no more than 1,500 fans.
Hamilton Steelers finished second this season with a team that included former Blizzard players Graham Hatley and Gordon Wallace. After the season Hamilton Steelers joined the new Canadian Professional Soccer League that would operate for the first time in 1983.
Panhellenic star player Leon Voudouris helped his team to a fourth place finish.
First Portuguese brought in former Toronto Metros coach Artur Rodrigues as general manager. The club operated six teams, including one girls’ team. Led by the goalscoring of Hildeberto Ponte the First Portuguese team finished fifth.
Dinamo Latino, a new South American team, were strengthened by players from Argentina and finished sixth.
The struggling Detroit Besa team withdrew from the league during the season. After the season Bradford Marshlanders took a one-year leave of absence, but never returned to the league.
Review of the season
The league started what was said to be its 57th season with 1981 league champions Hamilton Steelers meeting Toronto Italia at Ivor Wynne Stadium in Hamilton on Sunday May 16th. The very strong Italia team would go undefeated through their league season.
Results and standings
GP W L T GF GA Pts Toronto Italia 18 14 0 4 43 10 32 Hamilton Steelers 18 9 4 5 31 21 23 St. Catharines Roma 18 9 8 1 33 33 19 Panhellenic 18 8 7 3 20 22 19 London City 18 7 7 4 33 29 18 First Portuguese 18 6 7 5 28 27 17 Bradford Marshlanders 18 5 7 6 24 29 16 Dinamo Latino 18 4 8 6 20 23 14 Toronto Falcons 18 4 10 4 19 39 12 Toronto Croatia 18 3 11 4 15 29 9 Detroit Besa withdrew Leading goalscorers: 1. Carlos Salguero (Toronto Italia) 2. Hildeberto Ponte (First Portuguese) Semi-finals 1. Leg Hamilton Steelers 2 London City 0 2. Leg Hamilton Steelers 3 London City 2 1. Leg Toronto Italia First Portuguese 2. Leg, October 10, 1982 Centennial Stadium, Etobicoke, Toronto Toronto Italia 2 (Cosimo Comisso, David Crabb) First Portuguese 1 (Stewart Miller) After overtime NSL Championship Finals 1. Leg, October 20, 1982 Ivor Wynne Stadium, Hamilton Hamilton Steelers Toronto Italia 2. Leg, October 24, 1982 Centennial Stadium, Etobicoke, Toronto Toronto Italia Hamilton Steelers NSL CUP NSL Cup Final First Leg September 19, 1982 Centennial Stadium, Toronto Toronto Italia 3 (Fred Ferrara, John Moniz, Eddie McNally) St. Catharines Roma 0 NSL Cup Final Second Leg September 22, 1982 St. Catharines St. Catharines Roma Toronto Italia