Power, Arena Football League expect to return to Pittsburgh in 2014
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Attendance is stagnating at Consol Energy Center, and victories are scarce, but the Power and Arena Football League plan to return to Pittsburgh in 2014 for a fourth season.
“I absolutely expect them to be back,” AFL commissioner Jerry B. Kurz said.
Power owner Matt Shaner, who will meet with Penguins officials this summer to discuss next year, is equally optimistic.
“I have heard nothing to lead me to believe (otherwise),” he said.
Jay Cooper, interim general manager at AEG Facilities, which manages Consol Energy Center for the Penguins, declined to speculate on the Power's future beyond this season.
“The focus has been making this season successful as best we can,” he said. “We haven't really looked at next season.”
Kurz, who will attend the Power's final home game of the season July 13 and meet with fans and media, said Shaner and his ownership group have been good for the league, serving on committees and last year helping to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement with the players' union.
“Matt Shaner and (co-owner) Lynn Swann put not just money into the team and the league but their heart and soul, as well,” Kurz said.
Shaner said the Power's contract with Consol, the most important element to maintaining an AFL franchise in Pittsburgh, stipulates the team's average attendance must reach 6,000 over the first three seasons.
Otherwise, the Penguins have the right to renegotiate the Power's lease. After announcing a crowd of 5,036 on Saturday, the Power is averaging 6,724 over its first 26 games.
Average attendance this season is 5,706, an increase of 10.5 percent over last year but down 38 percent from two years ago.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Penguins see Stars, blanked by Dallas in opening game
- Police: Woman, 18, pretended to be student, assaulted Perry principal
- Steelers quarterback Vick getting more acquainted with offense
- Starkey: Pirates gaining bad big-game rep
- A field day on social media as Pirates’ Rodriguez attacks Gatorade cooler
- What’s old is new at Toll Gate Revival in Lawrenceville
- School supplies, equipment on the auction block in former Kittanning school gym
- Steelers hoping to establish run early against San Diego
- Pirates notebook: Fastball command issues hurt Cole against Cubs
- Kennametal HQ relocation rankles Westmoreland County business leadership
- Clerical error blamed as Armstrong inmate is released