Fallout from the United States' historic housing bust relentlessly matriculates downfield...its tentacles grabbing at everything and anything in its way. The economy's latest victim is the venerable Arena Football League, which on Sunday, Dec. 14, 2008, decided to suspend the entire 2009 season, leaving everyone from players and coaches to macroeconomists asking, “Who dat?”
Interim commissioner Ed Policy explained the rationale behind the decision: “Owners, however, recognize that, especially in light of the current unprecedented economic climate, the A.F.L., as a business enterprise, needs to be restructured if it is to continue to provide its unique brand of this affordable, fan-friendly sport.”
Not all AFL franchise owners were happy with the decision. Dissenting owners, especially Ferguson Shankdale of the Auburndale Super Obliterators, are surprisingly vocal about where they see their sport heading: “This reminds me of when the USFL folded. I’m just worried about the kids—our players need to find jobs and be rehabilitated back into society. Me, I’ll be fine, I’ll just go back to running the car company...but the kids...”
Willifred Barksworth, who owns the Laredo Quintessential Super-Hubble’s franchise, says he’s more optimistic about the future of the league: ”Our players and their families are going to be fine. We did extensive background checks, and virtually all of our players majored in Kinesiology, whatever the hell that is. But it sounds scientific, and science should be recession proof...if not GOP proof.”
In an amazing string of clichés, ShaDre La’Tempest Jones offers insight from the player's perspective: “We hate to lose, losing ain’t not no fun. But we lost; we lost not one game, but the season. But a career ain’t built on one season, and we’ll live to fight another day. Because the bottom line is that on any given season, any team can be beat. We just need to be prepared for the next season, and not let another season beat us. I’m cool wid it...I’m gonna get a hook me up at UPS.”
Demand for fewer and fewer bouncer positions is expected to increase as players flood the job market, while the arenas that players previously called “work” will surely be added to the already glutted Arena Property market.
In Enid, Oklahoma, rumors abound regarding the future of the "Cactus Nursery Growers Collective Arena," home of the Enid Impenetrable Legionnaires. The arena where the Wasilla Scorched Earth plays is on the verge of foreclosure, as banks and the local arena owner’s association close in.
Says the Scorched Earth’s GM Harvis Grey, “We just took down the last sign from the old Fannie Mae Arena and were testing the new signs at Serendipity Field at General Motors Arena when this setback occurred. I don’t think that GM will be around in 2010 when we’re supposed to restart our league.”
In what was once seen as a promising entrée into the lucrative vanity breast enhancement market, the future of the Nike “Air Boob” is now in doubt, as the AFL can no longer present a highly targeted audience of cable installers' wives
Lest you think that all the news is negative these days, it appears that there is a silver lining to this story...as citizens in the 16 AFL markets will now have access to plumbers, A/C guys, and locksmiths on Friday nights.
We're following new developments in this fast breaking story, as Charles Barkley has declared the historic recession that has caused the AFL's apparent demise as "racist".
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