The Albany Empire, owned by former NFL star Antonio Brown, has been expelled from the National Arena League (NAL).
Brown’s ownership tenure has been plagued by scandal and controversy, leading to the league’s decision to remove his team from the competition.
The NAL made the announcement on Thursday, citing repeated failure by Brown to pay the team’s monthly assessments, which are crucial for supporting the league’s operational budget.
According to the league, the Empire initially made its assessment payment in April, but it was subsequently challenged. Despite this, the team refused to fulfill its financial obligations by failing to make the payment in May.
League officials attempted to address the matter by engaging with Brown’s accountant, who conveyed that his client had no intention of meeting the assessment responsibilities or paying the $1,000 fine issued to him for Conduct Detrimental to the League.
These recent comments made by Brown further exacerbated the already strained relationship between him and the league.
Major league not minors
— AB (@AB84) June 15, 2023
Antonio Brown took over the ownership of the Albany Empire in April, but his tenure has been marred by numerous controversies. The former Super Bowl champion has faced allegations of non-payment to players and coaches, engaging in heated exchanges with members of the organization, and reneging on promises to participate in games himself.
In a statement released by the NAL, the league expressed its decision to terminate the membership agreement of the Albany Empire after exploring all possible options. The announcement came following an emergency conference call among the league’s owners, who unanimously agreed on the termination due to the Empire’s failure to meet its financial obligations.
Each team in the league is required to contribute one-seventh of the operating budget through monthly assessments, starting from April. Additionally, Antonio Brown was fined $1,000 for Conduct Detrimental to the League, a fine which he adamantly refused to pay.
The Albany Empire was given until noon ET on Thursday to submit the required payment. The team failed to meet the deadline, resulting in its expulsion from the NAL.