When it comes to Arena football betting, there is still quite a bit to be desired, especially when compared to the NFL, in terms of quality as well as quantity, but the guys behind the budding National Arena League are working on at least the latter. “What you guys are going to see in Portland is awesome,” chair of the NAL’s expansion committee, Joe Bouchy, said about a football franchise in Portland that, barring any unforeseen even, should begin play next April at Cross Insurance Arena. “We’re putting a lot of money and expertise behind the Portland market.”
Commissioner of the NAL, Chris Siegfried, and Bouchy both attended a press conference Wednesday in Worcester to announce the league’s newest member, the Massachusetts Pirates, which brings the number of teams in the league to a grand total of… drumroll, please… five. Wait, five? And to think that the Jacksonville Sharks left the AFL due to the reduced number of teams. Sigfried did say, though, that two more franchises, the one in Portland and another in Greensboro, North Carolina, would be announced in the oncoming weeks. “We’re going to play starting in April,” Siegfried said. “The main focus now is getting the word out. We know that if people [whether or not they bet on Arena football] come to a game, they’re going to fall in love.” Huh. So it’s kind of like the Love Boat.
And then there were three
Eight teams participated in the inaugural 2017 Arena football betting season, but only three survived the fickle waters of indoor football; namely, the aforementioned Jacksonville Sharks, the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks, and the Columbus Lions. And the other five? Let’s do like the end of American Graffiti, where you found out what happened to everyone!
- Corpus Christi Rage. Team operations were taken over by the league after four games and the franchise folded at the end of the season.
- Dayton Wolfpack. The owners failed to secure a lease and all home games were removed from the schedule. The league ran the franchise as a travelling team using a variety of semi-professional units based out of Georgia.
- Georgia Firebirds. The league announced after the season that the team was changing ownership but could not commit to the 2018 season until the new ownership acquired a new arena lease. The Firebirds were removed from the league in November 2017.
- High Country Grizzlies. Left after the 2017 season for the new American Arena League.
- Monterrey Steel. Could not commit to the 2018 season and were removed from the league.
Siegfried admitted that the league’s growing pains were almost as bad as the actual Growing Pains, but said he and Bouchy have years of experience in arena football and are confident that their venture will be successful. “The National Arena League is committed to its fans and every game is going to be played,” Siegfried said. “Our first year was a tumultuous year, but it was a successful year because we completed it.” one wonders, what would be the Arena football betting odds of a second complete season?