If you're like me, and I know you are, you probably spend months without thinking about Arena Football. In fact even now you're probably finding it hard to concentrate on the subject. When you do it's probably to reflect on how you haven't had much reason to think about Arena Football in months, and don't have much reason to think about it now. So I was surprised to read the news that the Arena Football League was cancelling its 2009 season, although for right now they're pretending that they'll be back in 2010. The league was forced to shut down for the coming year after the New Orleans team folded and after owners said the teams in Philadelphia, Chicago, Dallas, Cleveland, Georgia, and Colorado would have to shut down too. An unnidentified source told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that ``We couldn't be taken seriously if we lost too many teams, especially in big markets,'' like Colorado I suppose, so they had to shut down and reorganize. Still, it looks like their Grand Rapids, Michigan, franchise was safe.
What really surprised me was that I discovered this news item through Reuters, which I thought only covered Commonwealth sports like soccer and referring to teams by their city names and that as if the name were a plural noun, and that it was the Most Popular story featured on Reuters this morning. More, it was still the Most Popular story early in the afternoon, and again just before I left the office. Somehow people are really fascinated to hear about the bad fortunes of Arena Football. Wouldn't it be a kick if this were the event that finally made Arnea Football a sport that average people took an abiding interest in? They could make a whole new business model out of suspending business.
Arena Football's minor league AF2 teams are still scheduled to play the 2009 season, since they have teams playing in Albanies of both New York and Georgia (plus Columbus, the Albany of Ohio) and also have the Kennewick, Washington, market in their bag.
Trivia: By 1875, its last year, the National Association, baseball's first professional league, had grown to 14 teams, but only Boston, Hartford, and the Philadelphia Athletics played an approximately full schedule. Source: The Rules of Baseball: An Anecdotal Look at the Rules of Baseball and How They Came To Be, David Nemec.
Currently Reading: A Short History Of British Expansion, Volume 2, James A Williamson.