Last Friday I linked to the story of how the Major Indoor Soccer League HAD FALLEN ON SOME HARD TIMES and noted that their future existence seemed to be in doubt.
Yesterday the owners, after meetings over the weekend, DECIDED TO PULL THE PLUG. Future plans may include a relaunch but while a few owners are making brave noises that would seem unlikely at best.
The league hit it's apogee as the NPSL in the early 1990's, but financial difficulties caused them to reorganize as the MISL, a "single entity" league in 2001. As such, owners of teams which folded long ago still held a financial interest in the league and disbanding the thing, while it of course makes all the players unsigned free agents, also jettisons all the owners of those teams which long ago ceased to exist.
This is an organizational anomaly it shared with MLS, where a guy like Victor Horowitz (affectionately known as "Whorowitz" by back-stabbed Fusion fans) can fold his team, screw his customers and still keep his share of the league because, as we all know, "owners" don't "own" teams, they own shares of a common enterprise.
Thus, the fact that you no longer operate a team is irrelevant to your ownership interests. Your investment is still intact.
However it all works out, the legacy of this American innovation - some would say bastardization - will continue on in the form of the thousands upon thousands of youth players and late night beer leaguers who fight their way through snowdrifts and sub zero temperatures all winter long to bang a ball - and each other - off of painted walls for the sake of the game.
One suggestion being offered in regards to keeping indoor professional soccer alive is SWITCHING THE GAME TO FUTSAL.
Popular all over South America - particularly Brazil and Argentina - as well as in some European countries (Portugal being one prominent example), Futsal partisans point to the skill, the speed and the ball control as reasons why it's better for development than US style "Wall Ball"
Myself, I'd prefer to point to the countries just mentioned - Brazil, Argentina and Portygal - and note in passing that they DO seem to turn out some pretty decent players now and again.
Of course soccer purists have been trying to peddle Futsal in the US for years now and except for a couple of isolated areas - for some reason it's quite popular in and around Kansas City - not much of anyone in the US has ever seemed interested.
As a result it comes as not much of a surprise that American soccer fans aren't giddy with anticipation over the kickoff of the CONCACAF FUTSAL CHAMPIONSHIPS today in Guatamala.
As the defending CONCACAF Champions - another fact which you likely didn't know - we're scheduled to take on first-time qualifier Haiti in a noon match.
I will remind Danny to post a spolier shield when he provides his in-depth. play-by-play analysis of the results later today - so that those of you who are TIVO'ing the game don't have it ruined.
What, you mean your cable provider doesn't offer Canal 13?
Pity. They must be in league with S.U.M.