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Mixed start for Alliance of American Football

The spring-season Alliance of American Football had a mixed inaugural weekend as it looks to fill the post-Super Bowl gridiron void.

Its first two games which aired on CBS on Saturday night, ‏averaged 2.913 million viewers between 9pm and 11pm Eastern Time, outdrawing ABC’s NBA game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets (2.5 million).

The remaining fixtures, up until the championship game, will be on TNT, NFL Network, CBS Sports Network or streaming service B/R Live so it appears unlikely that these viewing figures will last.

In regards to attendance, San Antonio Commanders v San Diego Fleet drew 27,857 fans; Orlando Apollos v Atlanta Legends drew 20,191, and Birmingham Iron v Memphis Express attracted 17,039 fans.

However, the attendance at the Arizona Hotshots’ home opener against Salt Lake Stallions was initially not announced, most likely as it was such a low number, before being officially billed as 15,000.

“I’m so thankful for the people who were here,” Hotshots coach Rick Neuheisel told the Arizona Republic. “This was a hastily put-together deal. In terms of the marketing in the individual cities, that’s a relatively Johnny-come-lately deal. Hopefully, as the old saying goes, they’ll tell a friend.”

The Alliance of American Football has established a series of groundbreaking sports betting initiatives to try to enhance the fan experience and provide an opportunity for gamblers to wager on the sport in the NFL off-season.

As part of a wide-ranging deal with MGM Resorts International, Alliance players will put on wearables – electronic sensory devices that track and analyse athlete biometrics – that will collect second-generation data that will be used to determine odds for in-game betting in real time.

Read this: Alliance of American Football bets on player data to fill off-season NFL void