The expansion Portland Nitro have announced their roster for their inaugural season. Portland have their first game in Week 1 against Seattle in a regional rivalry matchup on May 1.
Portland Announces 2022 Roster
All Defense Member Swanson Signs With Seattle
The Seattle Cascades have added a top tier defender in Drew Swanson for the 2022 season. Swanson was a standout part of the Chicago defense the past two seasons, earning 2021 All Defense Team honors and having the second highest blocks per game average in the AUDL.
El-Salaam Sign With Atlanta
Former all-star Khalif El-Salaam has signed with the Atlanta Hustle for the 2022 season. El-Salaam played for San Diego last year, registering 12 blocks in nine games for the Growlers as the team made a semifinals appearance. The Hustle are still looking for their first trip as a franchise to Championship Weekend.
Phoenix Announce 2022 Roster
The Philadelphia Phoenix have announced their full 2022 roster. The Phoenix had a record of 3-9 last season, and finished sixth in the now defunct Atlantic Division; Philly will play their 12-game regular season in the East Division this year. The Phoenix go on the road to face Boston Glory on April 30 in Week 1.
Montreal Re-Sign Quinlan
One of just four players to play in every AUDL season since 2012, Kevin Quinlan returns for his sixth season with the Montreal Royal. Quinlan is currently fifth all-time in assists (312), and is coming off a 2021 season where he averaged four scores (assists plus goals) and over 377 total yards of offense per game.
2022 AUDL Season Starts April 29
The first game of the 2022 AUDL season will feature a South Division rivalry between the Atlanta Hustle and defending champion Carolina Flyers. In their last meeting, the Flyers edged the Hustle 20-18. Be sure to check out the full Week 1 slate of games.
Minnesota Signs Abe Coffin
The Minnesota Wind Chill announced the signing of Abe Coffin for the 2022 season. Coffin played the last three seasons with Dallas, and was an All-AUDL Second Team member in 2019.
Five Teams Change Divisions for 2020
With the addition of the Boston franchise, the AUDL announced a divisional realignment for the 2020 season. The South and Midwest divisions will be renamed the Atlantic and Central, respectively, with five franchises shifting into new placements:
- DC Breeze - Atlantic Division
- Philadelphia Phoenix - Atlantic Division
- Pittsburgh Thunderbirds - Atlantic Division
- Austin Sol - West Division
- Dallas Roughnecks - West Division
AUDL Adds Boston Franchise for 2020
This week the league announced a new Boston franchise set to begin play in 2020. The Boston team (yet to be named) brings the league total to 22 teams, and the move marks the first expansion for the AUDL since 2016. Boston will compete in the East Division alongside the New York Empire, Montreal Royal, Ottawa Outlaws, and Toronto Rush.
Earlier this offseason, the league released an article detailing expansion opportunities for franchises in Kansas City and Portland, as well as Boston. At this time, there are no further developments regarding an expansion to Kansas City or Portland in 2020.
Empire Win AUDL Championship
The New York Empire defeated the Dallas Roughnecks 26-22 in the eighth AUDL Championship Game this past Sunday to complete their undefeated season, finishing with a perfect 15-0 record. The day before, the Empire defeated the Indianapolis AlleyCats 17-15 in the semifinals to advance to the championship.
Beau Kittredge added a fifth AUDL title to one of the most impressive resumes in the history of the sport. His five titles have been won with four different teams: San Jose Spiders (2014, 2015), Dallas Roughnecks (2016), San Francisco Flamethrowers (2017), New York Empire (2019). As AUDL announcer Evan Lepler mentioned prior to the weekend, no professional athlete in the Big Four major sports has ever won a championship with four different teams.
In the championship game, Grant Lindsley, Ben Jagt and Harper Garvey combined for 29 scores (goals plus assists), with Jagt’s five assists and six goals leading the trio. Lindsley finished with nearly 800 yards of total offense (398 receiving, 391 throwing), putting up the highest yardage total of any player this past weekend between the three games played. Garvey threw for nearly 500 yards, while Jagt finished with 358 yards receiving.
Championship Weekend 8 Teams Set
With the Indianapolis AlleyCats and Dallas Roughnecks winning their respective divisional championship games this past weekend, the field is set for AUDL Championship Weekend 8. The champions of the Midwest and South will join the New York Empire and San Diego Growlers in San Jose on August 10-11 weekend. The teams have been re-seeded as follows: New York Empire (1), San Diego Growlers (2), Dallas Roughnecks (3), Indianapolis AlleyCats (4).
The Empire and AlleyCats will go head to head in the first semifinal game on Saturday, August 10 at 4:00 PM/PT. Then the Roughnecks will take on the Growlers immediately following the first game at 7:00 PM/PT. The championship game will be played by the two semifinal winners on Sunday, August 11 at 12:00 PM/PT.
Growlers, Empire on to San Jose
After the first weekend of playoffs, the San Diego Growlers and New York Empire emerged as the respective division champions in the West and East, becoming the first two teams to earn spots at Championship Weekend 8. The Growlers defeated the Los Angeles Aviators 25-21 in the West Division Championship Game, while the Empire defeated the Toronto Rush 19-16.
Championship Weekend 8 will officially play host to the only two-time AUDL MVPs in league history: Jonathan "Goose" Helton of the Growlers and Beau Kittredge of the Empire. Helton, in his first year with the Growlers, returns to Championship Weekend for the first time since 2013. Kittredge makes his return to San Jose after leading the Spiders to back-to-back AUDL titles in 2014 and 2015.
Bonnaud Sets Goals Per Game Record
Finishing the season with a 10-goal game against the Philadelphia Phoenix, Quentin Bonnaud of the Montreal Royal set a new league record, averaging 6.9 goals per game in 2019. The previous record was held by Mischa Freystaetter, who in 2016 scored 95 goals in 14 games (6.8 goals per game). Freystaetter holds the AUDL record for most goals in a single season, however Bonnaud may have broken it this year if not for the shortened 12-game season.
Bonnaud finishes 2019 with 83 goals, 24 more than the next closest player. His plus/minus of +101 also led the league, and he set career highs in completions (208) and completion percentage (96.3 percent). Bonnaud was responsible for (scored or assisted) 41.2 percent of Royal points this season.
Pittsburgh Wins 8 of Last 9 to End Season
After starting the season 0-3, the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds went 8-1 over the remainder of the season to finish with the second seed in the Midwest. They head into the playoffs after defeating the Chicago Wildfire and Indianapolis AlleyCats by a combined 21 points this past weekend to close out the regular season.
Pittsburgh missed the playoffs in 2018 for the first time in franchise history after finishing 4-10 on the year. The team this season has been led by the play of MVP candidate Max Sheppard who this past weekend became the fifth player in AUDL history to join the 50/50 club by finishing a season with 50 assists and 50 goals. The Thunderbirds will take on the Chicago Wildfire in round one of the playoffs at home this Saturday, July 20. A win puts them in the Midwest Divisional Championship Game, where they would play the AlleyCats in Indianapolis.
Wildfire Clinch Playoff Spot
For the first time since 2015, the Chicago Wildfire (7-3) clinched a playoff spot after defeating the Madison Radicals and Detroit Mechanix this past weekend.
The Wildfire made the playoffs in each of their first three seasons, including a regular season division title in 2013. The team then failed to make the playoffs for three straight seasons, before clinching a playoff berth this past weekend. Currently in first place in the Midwest, a lot can change over the next two weeks as the Wildfire can finish anywhere from first to third. They'll take on the Indianapolis AlleyCats (7-3) and Pittsburgh Thunderbirds (5-4) over the next two weeks to wrap up the regular season. Due to the playoff implications of the games, both games were flexed to Game of the Week status and will be broadcast nationally on Stadium.
AlleyCats End Thunderbirds' Win Streak
The Indianapolis AlleyCats defeated the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds 23-20 this past Saturday, ending the Thunderbirds' five-game win streak and improving to 2-0 against the team this season. The Thunderbirds' win streak was sandwiched between two home losses to the AlleyCats, with the first loss coming in their home opener back in Week 5.
Travis Carpenter finished with five assists in game, while Levi Jacobs and Rick Gross each added five goals. Carpenter's 43 assists this season ranks eighth in the league. The AlleyCats improved to 7-3 with the win and will have the opportunity to reclaim first place in the Midwest this week against the Chicago Wildfire, a team they'll play at home in the Week 14 Game of the Week. The Wildfire notched two wins this past weekend and have now won four straight, albeit three of which have come against the winless Detroit Mechanix.
Phoenix Still Alive After Win vs. Rush
The Philadelphia Phoenix (3-6) defeated the Toronto Rush (6-5) 26-24 this past weekend, completing an unlikely season sweep after failing to win a game against the Rush prior to this year. While making the playoffs will still be an uphill battle for the Phoenix to say the least, Saturday's win mathematically keeps their hopes alive.
In order to earn the third and final playoff spot in the East, the Phoenix need to win their remaining three games against the New York Empire (11-0), Ottawa Outlaws (2-8), and Montreal Royal (3-7). The Phoenix point differentials for the season against the three opponents, respectively, are as follows: -14, +5, -10. In addition to winning out, the Phoenix also need the Rush to lose to the DC Breeze this weekend in Toronto. The teams' previous matchup in the Week 11 Game of the Week resulted in a one-goal Breeze win.
Growlers Can Clinch Home Playoff Game
The San Diego Growlers (8-2) can clinch a home playoff spot with a win over the Seattle Cascades (2-7) this Saturday. The Growlers have just a +3 goal differential on the Cascades this season, and suffered one of their two losses to the Cascades back in Week 5. The teams met last week in Seattle where the Growlers pulled out a 30-25 win.
After missing the playoffs each of their first three seasons in the league, 2019 is the second straight season the Growlers have made the playoffs and the first season in which they've finished with a winning record. Last season they met the Los Angeles Aviators in the West Division championship game in LA, losing 26-22 to end their season. With a Growlers win this week, the two teams will meet again in the West Division championship but this time in San Diego, as the Growlers look to push for their first ever AUDL Championship Weekend appearance. The West has sent a different team to Championship Weekend each of the last four seasons.
Midwest Still Up For Grabs
With just three weeks remaining in the regular season, the Midwest Division remains the cloudiest division in the AUDL. No team in the division has clinched a playoff spot, whereas six of the seven playoff teams across the rest of the league have been decided. The Indianapolis AlleyCats (6-3), Pittsburgh Thunderbirds (5-3), Chicago Wildfire (5-3), Minnesota Wind Chill (5-5), and Madison Radicals (4-5) will battle it out over the remaining weeks for three playoff spots. The Wildfire have a chance this week to end the weekend in first place if they're able to defeat the Radicals on Friday followed by the Detroit Mechanix on Sunday. The other key Week 13 matchup is AlleyCats vs. Thunderbirds in Pittsburgh - a battle between the first and second place teams.
For the first time in franchise history, the reigning AUDL champion Radicals find themselves in unfamiliar territory; the team has a losing record and sits in fifth place in the division. Since their inception in 2013, the Radicals have won the Midwest Division every year, never finishing with more than three losses, a mark they hit just once back in their inaugural season. They are still alive, however, but they will have to win out in order to make the playoffs. Working in their favor is home field advantage; the Radicals finish the regular season with three straight home games: vs. Chicago, vs. Minnesota, and vs. Detroit.
Empire Stay Perfect vs. Raleigh
In a highly anticipated interdivisional matchup between the number one and number two teams in the league, the New York Empire (9-0) defeated the Raleigh Flyers (7-2) 25-24 in a sudden-death double overtime win. The Week 12 Game of the Week ended appropriately with a Jack Williams huck to Beau Kittredge, who toed the line in the back of the end zone to clinch the win for the Empire. In his return to Raleigh, Williams finished with two assists and four goals, bringing his season totals to 22 and 18, respectively. Ben Jagt continued his MVP-caliber season, notching nine assists and six goals in the game. He now has 83 scores (goals plus assists) for the season, second only to reigning MVP Rowan McDonnell for most in the league. With the win, the Empire clinched first place in the East, earning themselves a first round bye and home field advantage in the playoffs.
For Raleigh, the loss snapped a seven-game win streak that began the day after their season opening loss to the Dallas Roughnecks. With the Roughnecks also sitting at 7-2 and having split 1-1 head to head with the Flyers thus far, first place, and home field advantage in the South Division championship game, will likely come down to the Roughencks vs. Flyers game on July 5. In their previous matchup, the Flyers defeated the Roughnecks 27-18 in Raleigh. For Dallas, it was their largest margin of defeat in franchise history.