American Fight League “Re-Launching in 2009”
Upstart MMA promotion, American Fight League, has decided to halt operations and regroup as they plan to re-launch their organization in the first quarter of 2009. When the official AFL website originally released the news, many jumped to the conclusion that they were going out of business also. “Don’t believe everything that you hear, big things will happen in 2009 for the American Fight League and it’s fighters.” CEO BJ Santiago said.
It was recently revealed that the AFL was looking into offers of airing their events on television to fill the void that has been left by EliteXC following ProElite’s bankruptcy.
“We’re also trying to land one with one of the major cable networks,” Santiago told MMAJunkie.
It seems as though the AFL is following the UFC’s blueprint with Spike. They want to be able to build a long-term relationship with a network that’ll allow both the network and the promotion to grow. “We’re just doing things a little bit more methodically than some of the organizations that have gone out of business trying to be too over-aggressive.” Santiago continued.
The flip-side of the halt on operations is now fighters are free to fight elsewhere in the mean time, as long as they adhere to their current AFL contracts. It could be possible to see promotions attempt to sign the AFL’s biggest stars to a fight, specifically Bobby Lashley.
Lashley is a former WWE champion, like Brock Lesnar, who has yet to make his MMA debut. His debut was originally scheduled for December, but with the hold in the AFL, he could be looking elsewhere to begin his career.