Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Are The Silverbacks An Endangered Species?

Playing the waiting game!
By: Aaron Gunyon

I have a lot of questions about Atlanta and none of them have been answered up to this point.  It all stems from the question I keep asking myself.  

Is the NASL a healthy league? 

Yes, there is expansion in the near future, but there has also been collapse in recent weeks.  I feel like I am singing a Paula Abdul song about opposites and that this will be a recurring theme for the next few years.

People that already follow the Silverbacks closely will be aware that the team has been league owned and is intended to be sold.  The NASL is hoping an investor will come in and #SaveOurSilverbacks .

Only a handful know if an investor has been identified or if new ownership is even a possibility.  Last December, the NASL announced that Atlanta would be league owned for 2015 and that the search was currently underway to secure a better tomorrow for a team with diminishing habitat.  

What is concerning to me is the lack of team preparation that would be necessary if the NASL, or anyone for that matter, were to attempt to field a competitive team in 2016.  Time is running out for Atlanta.   

The roster page on the Silverbacks website is non-existent.
There has been no news published since November 12th.
Atlanta has not announced any signings or contract extensions.  
Atlanta's PR has not responded to my inquiries. 

But, NASL has! Spoiler alert: There is very little useful information here, but I did copy and paste an email chain I had with Neal Malone who is the Director of Public Relations with the NASL.  

Can you name the 2 teams from NASL 2015 that are not promoting season tickets for 2016?  I'll give you a hint.  One of them is no longer playing in the NASL.  

These questions and answers have not been doctored in any way. I did bold and highlight to make the conversation more clear.  It is true that I have poor email etiquette so I changed my greetings and salutations to appear more flattering.  


Could I have an official comment or statement with regards to the future of the Atlanta Silverbacks?

I have not received a response from Atlanta and Matthew hasn't gotten back to me yet.  

Thank you.


To: Aaron Gunyon
Subject: Re: Fw: Fw: NASL Transactions

We're still working to secure local ownership in Atlanta and we hope to have some news soon.





Thanks again and just a couple follow ups.  

What will happen if local ownership cannot be found? 
Will the NASL continue to operate the team? 
Have any player/personnel moves been made to prepare for 2016?

That's all I have for you on Atlanta, Aaron. Wish I could provide you further information, but I'm unable to do so at this time. I do really appreciate you reaching out, and let me know if you might need anything else.

Happy New Year! 




Final Thoughts

What is the advantage to dismissing my question if the answers are "Yes"?  I wasn't asking for a playbook, but rather if the team or the had been busy making preparations.  I would assume they have been making preparations so the fact that no one can tell me makes me wonder what else they aren't telling me.  

Something is going on in the background. Spring schedules for 2016 have not been released yet and that currently puts them about 3 weeks past last years release date.  Could it be they don't know if they need to schedule for 11 or 12 teams?

Indy Eleven are billing their season ticket package as a 16 ticket package, one would assume on advice by the league. A 32 game season would align with 11 teams in spring and 12 in fall.

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  1. Not a living creature wants to have their backs. Beware Arizona Diamondbacks, Arkansas Razorbacks, Colorado Springs Switchbacks and University of Alaska-Southeast Humpback Whales

  2. Simply breathtaking! Thank you