LAWeaver

Death of the Alliance of American Football

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On 1/31/2019 at 1:03 PM, sohiosportsfreak said:

altfantasysports.com  has a fantasy service up and running. Looks pretty good

 

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1 hour ago, bosrs1 said:

 

Interesting that they're characterizing it as a partnership with the NFL. Wonder if the NFL sees it that way. 

 

And if it is... it's good for them and bad for the other leagues. 

 

Still though, there is some skepticism about the AAF, largely through the cities the teams are in. 

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4 minutes ago, GDAWG said:

 

Still though, there is some skepticism about the AAF, largely through the cities the teams are in. 

 

How so? They chose cities not served by pro football in warmer weather locals. If anything their city slate gives them an edge on say the XFL who chose markets already saturated with top level teams in colder climates too.

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2 hours ago, bosrs1 said:

 

How so? They chose cities not served by pro football in warmer weather locals. If anything their city slate gives them an edge on say the XFL who chose markets already saturated with top level teams in colder climates too.

But, that's the point.

 

AAF is trying to market itself as 'football season isn't ending" (just like the XFL is trying to do), but, other than Atlanta and Arizona, the 30 other NFL teams WILL see their city's football seasons end until next fall. That's kinda the problem.

 

For the XFL, 7 of 8 markets they're in are seeing football season continue on with a new team playing for that market. The only exception is St. Louis, and that has a whole different angle going for it. The XFL is actually living up to its hype of 'football not ending' for those markets. Will they get those jonesing for football after their NFL team folds up shop?

 

AAF is trying to be minor league 'big team' for smaller markets. XFL is trying to be major league 'small team' for major markets.

 

The problem for each, is how many neutral fans are going to watch Birmingham-San Diego or Dallas-St. Louis if they're in Detroit?

 

That's partly why I think after Year 1 of XFL, if both are even moderately successful, there's no way they can wage ware with each other and survive, and there's no way they can stay separate and survive. War? They're both toast. maybe NFL scavenges the pieces and creates a true minor league that they haven't had any form of since NFLEL ended. Or, they both try to stay off each other's toes and do their own thing, and wind up thinning out their target audiences. NFL audiences are good because lots of games/teams/markets in broadcast windows making sure best game gets national exposure and local games are shown locally. If each AAF/XFL game is separate or actually scheduled against each other, it's not going to look good for either.

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18 minutes ago, Sykotyk said:

But, that's the point.

 

AAF is trying to market itself as 'football season isn't ending" (just like the XFL is trying to do), but, other than Atlanta and Arizona, the 30 other NFL teams WILL see their city's football seasons end until next fall. That's kinda the problem.

 

For the XFL, 7 of 8 markets they're in are seeing football season continue on with a new team playing for that market. The only exception is St. Louis, and that has a whole different angle going for it. The XFL is actually living up to its hype of 'football not ending' for those markets. Will they get those jonesing for football after their NFL team folds up shop?

 

AAF is trying to be minor league 'big team' for smaller markets. XFL is trying to be major league 'small team' for major markets.

 

The problem for each, is how many neutral fans are going to watch Birmingham-San Diego or Dallas-St. Louis if they're in Detroit?

 

That's partly why I think after Year 1 of XFL, if both are even moderately successful, there's no way they can wage ware with each other and survive, and there's no way they can stay separate and survive. War? They're both toast. maybe NFL scavenges the pieces and creates a true minor league that they haven't had any form of since NFLEL ended. Or, they both try to stay off each other's toes and do their own thing, and wind up thinning out their target audiences. NFL audiences are good because lots of games/teams/markets in broadcast windows making sure best game gets national exposure and local games are shown locally. If each AAF/XFL game is separate or actually scheduled against each other, it's not going to look good for either.

Would the NFL be willing to pay the amount of money McMahon and Ebersol will want? McMahon is playing with his own money so he'll want to get that and a good bit more to get out of spring football. 

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3 hours ago, bosrs1 said:

 

How so? They chose cities not served by pro football in warmer weather locals. If anything their city slate gives them an edge on say the XFL who chose markets already saturated with top level teams in colder climates too.

They also choose cities like Memphis and Birmingham where every new league since the USFL saw smaller and smaller audiences.  The draw of all-inclusive concessions and free parking (but with a two season ticket minimum) can only do so much in an era with Amazon Prime and Netflix being used for disposable income entertainment alongside craft beer sales impacting the big domestic and import brands.  The lack of an "integrity fee" from the seven states* which currently allow sports gaming also hurt them and the XFL since that's not a revenue stream. 

 

*-New Mexico's Native American casinos now also have sports betting.

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3 hours ago, bosrs1 said:

 

How so? They chose cities not served by pro football in warmer weather locals. If anything their city slate gives them an edge on say the XFL who chose markets already saturated with top level teams in colder climates too.

 

I think San Diego and Salt Lake will do well and Atlanta might do well if they win, but the AAF went with Memphis, Birmingham, Orlando and San Antonio.  Those four are called "cities these non-NFL leagues always go to for teams."  The USFL had all four cities, the WFL was in Memphis, Birmingham and Orlando.  XFL 1.0 was also in Memphis, Birmingham and Orlando.  The CFL's failed American experiment had Memphis, Birmingham and San Antonio. The AAF has a good chance to be the league that succeeds in those 4 cities but history of non-NFL teams in those 4 cities has not been good.  It's usually those 4, Sacramento and Las Vegas, but Las Vegas has dropped out of the failed football leagues market and is going to be at the big boys table next year. 

 

With Arizona, they are competing with baseball spring training, but with the Cardinals being terrible, if the Hot Shots are any good, it could be a success story. 

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23 minutes ago, MJWalker45 said:

Would the NFL be willing to pay the amount of money McMahon and Ebersol will want? McMahon is playing with his own money so he'll want to get that and a good bit more to get out of spring football. 

Charlie Ebersol thinks of the AAF as a "tech company" first, and a football league second.

 

He sees more value in the data and technology which he can sell to any and all sports leagues than the players and the league.  .  

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On 2/1/2019 at 6:04 PM, bosrs1 said:

 

Interesting that they're characterizing it as a partnership with the NFL. Wonder if the NFL sees it that way. 

 

And if it is... it's good for them and bad for the other leagues. 

 

The XFL is being funded entirely by the WWE, is it not? If that league had any other investors, those investors would be wise to bail in response to the announcement of AAF games on the NFL Network.

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Why do you say that?  The NFL Network has shown arena football and Canadian football games and I don’t believe either of them are partners with the NFL currently or doing real well financially currently. The XFL has more money behind it currently than the AAF does 

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Is the NFL Network actually paying for the games?  I think that income would be more consequential than a mere appearance on a niche channel. 

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3 hours ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

The XFL is being funded entirely by the WWE, is it not? If that league had any other investors, those investors would be wise to bail in response to the announcement of AAF games on the NFL Network.

WWE is not running the XFL, McMahon has created a separate group to run it. Could games be attached to the WWE Network or FS1&FS2? Possibly. It's also possible NBCSN, NFL Network or Amazon could view it as a solution for filling Saturday afternoon and evening broadcast space. It's possible both leagues choose to be complimentary rather than adversarial and agree on time frames that allow both to grow. 

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3 hours ago, MJWalker45 said:
7 hours ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

The XFL is being funded entirely by the WWE, is it not? If that league had any other investors, those investors would be wise to bail in response to the announcement of AAF games on the NFL Network.

WWE is not running the XFL, McMahon has created a separate group to run it. Could games be attached to the WWE Network or FS1&FS2? Possibly. It's also possible NBCSN, NFL Network or Amazon could view it as a solution for filling Saturday afternoon and evening broadcast space. It's possible both leagues choose to be complimentary rather than adversarial and agree on time frames that allow both to grow. 

 

Thanks for the correction about the XFL being backed by a separate McMahon entity, not by the WWE.

 

But I think that my point stands: the AAF, having attained the placement of its games on the NFL Network, has dealt a huge blow to the XFL.

 

Do FS1 and FS2 do time-buys, as CBSSN does? If so, the XFL could conceivably have its games shown there. And it's presumably up to McMahon whether he wants to show XFL games on the WWE Network.

 

But neither Amazon Prime nor any other network is going to pay for broadcast rights. 

 

And the NFL is not likely to undercut its new partner, the AAF, by showing XFL games on its network, especially considering the fact that the XFL will have teams in NFL cities.

 

The fact that the AAF now has this partnership with the NFL, combined with the fact that several AAF coaches have already been hired by NFL teams, will no doubt establish the AAF's legitimacy in the minds of the public — and also in the minds of players: the AAF is where unsigned players will want to be.

 

If this partnership goes well, the next step could conceivably be NFL teams assigning their own players to AAF teams, so that draft picks aren't necessarily expected to make the immediate jump all the way to the top level.

 

The AAF now has a huge advantage over all other potential spring outdoor leagues. It would have no reason to behave in a complementary fashion regarding the XFL, a league whose potential viability has taken a significant (perhaps fatal) hit as a result of the AAF's partnering with the NFL.

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good interview with Ward and Ebersol.

 

does anyone know how the owner model is working? Does the league own all 8, or are there 8 owners? I imagine they’re league owned since most startup leagues tend to skip paychecks.

 

also I hope the fields are painted for the teams and not for the Alliance like the scrimmage games were. The XFL and the UFL were if I remember right.

 

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7 minutes ago, raysox said:

good interview with Ward and Ebersol.

 

does anyone know how the owner model is working? Does the league own all 8, or are there 8 owners? I imagine they’re league owned since most startup leagues tend to skip paychecks.

 

also I hope the fields are painted for the teams and not for the Alliance like the scrimmage games were. The XFL and the UFL were if I remember right.

 

 

The league owns all 8 teams.

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56 minutes ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

Thanks for the correction about the XFL being backed by a separate McMahon entity, not by the WWE.

 

But I think that my point stands: the AAF, having attained the placement of its games on the NFL Network, has dealt a huge blow to the XFL.

 

Do FS1 and FS2 do time-buys, as CBSSN does? If so, the XFL could conceivably have its games shown there. And it's presumably up to McMahon whether he wants to show XFL games on the WWE Network.

 

But neither Amazon Prime nor any other network is going to pay for broadcast rights. 

 

And the NFL is not likely to undercut its new partner, the AAF, by showing XFL games on its network, especially considering the fact that the XFL will have teams in NFL cities.

 

The fact that the AAF now has this partnership with the NFL, combined with the fact that several AAF coaches have already been hired by NFL teams, will no doubt establish the AAF's legitimacy in the minds of the public — and also in the minds of players: the AAF is where unsigned players will want to be.

 

If this partnership goes well, the next step could conceivably be NFL teams assigning their own players to AAF teams, so that draft picks aren't necessarily expected to make the immediate jump all the way to the top level.

 

The AAF now has a huge advantage over all other potential spring outdoor leagues. It would have no reason to behave in a complementary fashion regarding the XFL, a league whose potential viability has taken a significant (perhaps fatal) hit as a result of the AAF's partnering with the NFL.

 

If that happens, it will be interesting to see how players from The Giants, Jets, Eagles, Steelers, Redskins, Ravens, Patriots, Redskins, Browns, Bengals, Chiefs, Packers, Lions, Vikings, Bears, Colts, Packers and Bills assign their players in regards to teams.   The easy answer is expansion, but the Northernmost team in the AAF is Salt Lake City and sooner or later the AAF is going to have to expand into the Midwest and Northeast if their end goal is a domestic NFL developmental league.  I don't see a merger between the AAF or the XFL because I don't see Vince McMahon wanting to be on the losing end of the merger. 

 

The AAF is yet another league who is dipping there toes into the Birmingham-Memphis-Orlando-San Antonio Quartet of "Failed Non-NFL Cities" so there is a bit of pessimism when it comes to that.  Can the AAF succeed in those 4 cities where the WFL, USFL, World League, CFL and UFL could not?  Time will tell, but if history is any indication, it's unlikely.   

 

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7 hours ago, BengalErnst said:

Why do you say that?  The NFL Network has shown arena football and Canadian football games and I don’t believe either of them are partners with the NFL currently or doing real well financially currently. The XFL has more money behind it currently than the AAF does 

 

When the Arena Football League's games were on the NFL Network, it already had an established brand identity amongst mainstream football fans as cheesy. (Please note that this was not my opinion; the logos of two Arena teams can be found in my sig.)

 

By contrast, the AAF is a new entity whose first impression on the American public will be one of legitimacy.

 

(The CFL is another matter entirely. Also it is doing pretty well, preparing for expansion.)

 

 

5 hours ago, Gothamite said:

Is the NFL Network actually paying for the games?  I think that income would be more consequential than a mere appearance on a niche channel. 

 

The NFL Network is more than a niche channel. It confers prestige onto the AAF.

 

The AAF's playing under the NFL's imprimatur, combined with its launch a year ahead of the XFL, will likely cement it in people's minds as the real spring league, and will make the XFL appear third-rate by comparison.

 

If McMahon wants to be involved in spring football, his best bet would be to scrap plans for the XFL and to approach the AAF in a conciliatory manner. Of course, anyone could predict that he would absolutely never do such a thing, and that he will instead continue with the XFL, heedless of the fundamental alteration of the landscape. As Sheldon Leonard's racetrack tout character used to say to Jack Benny after Jack declined to accept his tips: "it's your dough".

 

I quite liked the original XFL; but I will enjoy seeing this version crash and burn.

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

The NFL Network is more than a niche channel

 

No, it isn’t. 

 

The NFL Channel has a smaller reach than the MLB Channel and the Golf Channel.  And I don’t know who would argue that the Golf Channel isn’t a niche channel.

 

As for “conferring prestige”, we’ll have to talk about how much the Arena League was boosted by it.  This might make the AAF “the real spring league”, but we still don’t know that any spring league is viable. 

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