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Allan Harvie, a former minor league hockey team owner, announced yesterday that he is founding a new pro indoor lacrosse league called the Arena Lacrosse League (ALL).  He’s planning for the league to start play by February 2011.

From the Richmond Times Dispatch:

Professional lacrosse is coming to Virginia — and for a good cause.

Allan Harvie, the former owner of the Richmond Renegades, held a press conference yesterday to announce a new indoor lacrosse league he has started. Called the Arena Lacrosse League, it will begin in February 2011, play a 20to 24-game schedule and operate as a nonprofit organization.

All the profits from the league will go to an organization called virginians4haiti, a humanitarian group Harvie started in January to provide relief to the Caribbean nation that was left in ruins after a massive earthquake. When funding for the group began to slow, he decided he would use the ALL, which was already in the process of forming, to fund virginians4haiti.

“I thought it would allow an opportunity to combine two passions,” Harvie said. “And everybody wins.”

Harvie will serve as commissioner of the ALL.

He hopes to have teams in Richmond, Norfolk, Hampton, Charlottesville, Upper Marlboro, Md., Charlotte, N.C., Fayetteville, N.C. and Winston-Salem, N.C. While none of the locations have confirmed franchises, Harvie said he is in serious talks with three and hopes to have five or six by February.

Editor’s note: And here’s where things get interesting…

A camp will be held in January for interested players to try out. Teams will draft players from the camp to form their rosters. Each team can have 16 players in uniform and will have $2,900 per game to pay its players. The team that wins the game will get an extra $1,000. Coaches can be paid no more than $35,000 per year.

Editor’s note: This bring us to a very important set of questions… How much do NLL players get paid? Coaches? Is it on a per game basis? How many players would actually be willing to leave the NLL to play in the ALL?

“In the last 10 years, participation in lacrosse at all levels has come up 548 percent,” Harvie said.

Editor’s note: Ah, growth. 548% in 10 years?! Yowza! We didn’t even realize!

If each team can get $120,000 in sponsorship and sell 500 season tickets, it will only need to sell 1,100 tickets per game at a cost of $12 per ticket to sustain itself, he said.

Editor’s note: Sponsorships, ticket sales, sustainable business… We’ll see.

The rules of the ALL will be similar to the National Lacrosse League, with a few changes. The NLL operates only in major cities and is the only other indoor lacrosse league in the country. Eventually, Harvie hopes for the two leagues to be affiliated.

Editor’s note: NLL + ALL = NALL???

Related links:

– Sports Arena lacrosse hopes to play at Hampton Coliseum, Norfolk Scope | Daily Press

– Norfolk new home to professional lacrosse league | WTKR

Top photo credit: Times Dispatch



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