4th and Louder Than You Think
Wednesday August 13, 2014
Every business has its ups and downs. In the sports business, winning is the top factor. You see so many teams that, because of its fan base, seem to be under so much pressure to please their fans. In the NFL, for example, 32 teams have only one purpose: Reaching and winning the super bowl. With their 32 teams, their fans respond by coming to their games only when they usually provide for their city.
But what about expansion teams? How often have you heard in any kind of league that has had a successful team in their first year of existence. You can maybe count the Arizona Diamondbacks, who in their second year were able to reach the playoffs. Two more years later, they were the first team in the state to win a title in the four major sports in the United States.
Now, once again, look at the Arena Football League, where so many teams have fled after just a season or two because its “business” had floundered. Instead, where they should have focused was the chemistry of what they had on the field. The Los Angeles KISS
had been a prime example of the 2014 season. A 3-15 season said one thing, but the moves they made day after day proved that the team outside the field had stressed more about the will to win rather than the will to build.
It only took about 15 minutes of the new show "4th and Loud" to realize what kind of issues the entire organization had gone through from the start. Los Angeles appears to be a city that is destined to support a team that is a winner from the start. From the first press conference where the owners and pitchmen came to make their case for a new football team in the league, many of the owners had stunned look on their faces. If you even see the facial and emotional expression of new head coach Bob McMillen
in their first meet and greet, you can already sense that there would have been tension from the start.
Brett Bouchy stated the most memorable quote of the show, and most likely the series, mentioning that it will be McMillen's team if they start winning. If not, then the business will have to intervene. Those words alone had summed up what the 2014 KISS season had become: a team with no chemistry and no connection between the players and the coach, simply because every day there had been new faces that appeared on the field the first day of practice after every game.
Most of the athletes that you will see will most likely have a change of emotion throughout the series. Players such as Donovan Morgan, Beau Bell, and J.J. Raterink, who was with nearly half of the arena teams this season, will give you a sense what life had really been like playing for a team like the KISS.
There was never a problem with the entertainment value. With a mix of emotions week after week, you will most likely see a group of men trying to please their fans in every way, but missing the biggest picture of pleasing the team first. The chemistry was there to start, but it faded fast just weeks into the season. Sure this will be a sad story about a team that suffered through loss after loss, but if you look at the bigger picture, it will give you a real mindset of how stressful things can be when your product isn't doing what its supposed to be doing. It will be interesting to see at what point in time everyone had decided to hit the panic button.
Watch the series, not for the team, but to see how everything had unfolded from the start.
Manny Nunez is a freelance writer who resides in Los Angeles. He has been an arena football fan since 1996 while living in Phoenix, dedicated to the Arizona Rattlers. Although he lives in Southern California, he still reps his Arizona teams. He is also a beat writer for the Phoenix Coyotes for InsideHockey.com.
The opinions expressed in the article above are only those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts, opinions, or official stance of ArenaFan Online or its staff, or the Arena Football League, or any AFL or af2 teams.