New England Cavalry owner Kevin James has his experience with owning a team. He is currently owner of the arena football team, a semi-pro outdoor team, an Eastern Football League affiliate team, a youth sports organization and is starting a hockey team the beginning of next year.
James told Inside the Arena that he came up with the idea of starting an arena football team last summer. He said he “wanted to offer more to the players and area.” All of his organizations share the same name, the New England Cavalry.
“I am building a brand. So its important that we keep the brand and logo the same,” James said on why he has all his teams sharing the name. “We are focused on building the brand and projecting the players where the want to go in the career and life.”
Before any of this came to be, James was under fire. A tabloid called Turtle Boy [yes, really] wrote a story that James had been arrested, then threw feces at a video camera and window in his jail cell. While he was arrested, James says he didn’t throw feces, but wet toilet paper. “The light was bright and there was an air vent blowing cold air.
“Nonetheless, the article was satire,” he continued, “don’t believe everything you read.
“Everyone has a past. This program isnt about me or my past. Its about the hard working players and staff we have that are creating our future,” James continued. “They are our first ever alumni, and they are paving the way for the Cavalry.”
After building the arena football team, it was time to choose which league they would play in in 2018. James said he reached out to the American Arena League with “lots of questions.”
“We got most of our questions answered and quickly moved in to arena from there,” James said. “We decided to make it official with the AAL because of the image and brand were were “sold on” we support the league and we beleived in their success and branding. Also, we had some familiarlarity with Can-Am teams and players.”
The Cavalry were to play their first season of arena football as an affiliate team, which meant they would only play a couple games during the season. Their first ever game came against the Richmond Roughriders on April 28.
“We were amped. All of us were ready. It was a great way to start,” James said on the team’s first game. “We came out slow, but the stage was a perfect start. Gregg Fornario and the Roughriders were great hosts. Truely a class act.
“It was great all around. Richmond had guys in the same hotel as us, so we got introduced fast and [Keontae] Hollis and I became friendly before and after the game,” he went on. “He’s a great player and he’s as passionate about football as I am, so he and I got things exciting right away.
“End of the day, though, it was all about football and was a very exciting experience. Cant say enough about him, Gregg or Richmond. We are grateful.”
The Cavalry would go on to lose to Richmond by a final score of 61-14. They also lost to the Jersey Flight and will play them again tomorrow night. They were also supposed to play the Rochester Kings, but that game was cancelled.
With the league’s problems, many are expecting the league to fold following the championship game on June 30. James is aware of that, and is planning for any type of catastrophe.
“My first step or action would be to contact Gregg Fornario. I will rock with him. If he starts his own league we would love to be apart of it,” James said. “Other [Elite Indoor Football League] teams have reached out asking if we would consider the EIF, and my answer is always no.
“My vision was always to offer more than semi pro. So that will always be my focus,” James continued. “I simply dont view the EIF as a pro league. I see it as a semi pro league with a lot of pro talent.
The [New England] Bobcats are located real close to us. I know most of their players and staff – all great players and people. They have the talent to compete in the AAL. They do and we do. If we ever combined forces, teams like Carolina [Energy] and Richmond may have their hands full quickly.
“But its far to early to talk about IFs,” James went on. “Between us, the Bobcats and [Maine] Mammoths and [Massachusetts] Pirates…lots of arena talent right next to each other in New England. If we could funnel all that talent into one program, that program would be dominant.”
James also mentioned that the Cavalry are part of a development group that is building an arena, as well as an indoor and outdoor sports complex in Hooksett, NH. With all these teams, including the arena team, James will find success in one or the other, if not all.