Spokane Shock

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Spokane Shock
Established 2005
Folded 2015
Played in Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena
in Spokane, Washington
League/conference affiliations
af2 (20062009)
  • National Conference (2006–2009)
    • Western Division (2006–2009)

Arena Football League (20102015)

Team colorsBlue, orange, gold, white
MascotShox the Fox
Owner(s)Nader Naini
Head coachAndy Olson
Team history
  • Spokane Shock (2006–2015)
League championships (3)
Conference championships (1)
Division championships (8)
Playoff appearances (9)
Home arena(s)

The Spokane Shock were a professional arena football team based in Spokane, Washington, playing their home games at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena. The team was part of the National Conference Pacific Division of the Arena Football League; the franchise folded in October 2015. A reorganized ownership group applied for a franchise in the Indoor Football League, known as the Spokane Empire, as the rights to the Shock name belonged to the AFL.[1]

Formerly a member of arenafootball2 (af2), the Shock won division titles in all four seasons and ArenaCups in 2006 and 2009 before they joined the Arena Football League (AFL) in its 2010 relaunch; the team advanced to the playoffs three times after joining the AFL, winning ArenaBowl XXIII in their first season, making them the first (and as of 2019, the only) arena football franchise to win both the ArenaCup and the ArenaBowl.

Franchise history[edit]


For many years, there were proposals to bring an arena football team to Spokane. In summer 2005, owner Brady Nelson teamed up with two additional partners to bring a team to Spokane.[2] On August 26, 2005, during af2 league meetings in Bossier City, Louisiana, league commissioner Jerry Kurz accepted Nelson's proposal for a Spokane af2 team;[3] the Shock was one of three expansion teams to begin playing in 2006. The other two were the Everett Hawks, and the Stockton Lightning.

2006: The Cinderella Story[edit]

On October 12, 2005, the Shock announced that Chris Siegfried would be the franchise's inaugural coach.[4] By the end of 2005, 13 players had been signed. On February 28, 2006, the Spokane Shock sold their 2,000th season ticket. On March 22, 2006, 3,000 season tickets had been sold. On March 30, 2006, the Spokane Shock played their inaugural game against the Stockton Lightning and won 41–40.

The Shock put together a significant inaugural season, posting a 14–2 regular-season record and a first-place finish in the National Conference Western Division. During the af2 playoffs, the Shock defeated the Bakersfield Blitz and the Arkansas Twisters en route to winning the af2 National Conference championship and a berth in ArenaCup VII against the Green Bay Blizzard in San Juan, Puerto Rico. On August 26, the Shock defeated the Blizzard by a score of 57–34 to win ArenaCup VII; the Spokane Shock became the first expansion team in af2 history to advance to, and win, the ArenaCup. The Shock led the league in attendance with an average of 10,313 fans per home game.

As a result of the team's excellent play, head coach Chris Siegfried was named the af2 Head Coach of the Year for the 2006 season. Four Shock players also earned All-af2 National Conference honors as well. WR/LB Charles Frederick, OLS Ed Ta'amu and DS Rob Keefe earned first-team honors while OL/DL Jerome Stevens earned second-team accolades.


On September 4, 2006, Spokane Head Coach Chris Siegfried accepted the offensive coordinator position for the AFL's Kansas City Brigade.[5] On September 20, 2006 The Spokane Shock announced that former Louisville Fire Offensive Coordinator Adam Shackleford would become their new head coach;[6] the 2007 Shock would win their second consecutive division title with a 12–4 record. The Shock would eventually fall in the first round of the af2 playoffs to the Louisville Fire.


In 2008 the Shock fielded another highly talented team, they opened the season with eleven straight wins before losing to the South Georgia Wildcats on a last second field goal. It was the only Shock loss during the regular season, qualifying them for the playoffs and clinching home field advantage until the ArenaCup; the Shock matched up with the Tennessee Valley Vipers on August 25, 2008 in ArenaCup IX. Tennessee Valley was forced to play with its backup quarterback for most of the game after their starter was injured during the first drive; the game was close throughout, and regulation ended with a tie to send the ArenaCup into its first ever overtime. After the Shock scored a touchdown and a successful extra point, Tennessee Valley matched them with a touchdown, but went for a two-point conversion and succeeded, to capture their first ArenaCup championship.

2009: Another ArenaCup victory[edit]

The Shock put together another 15–1 regular season in 2009; the Shock advanced all the way to the ArenaCup, defeating the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Pioneers 74–27 in Las Vegas, Nevada.[7]

2010: ArenaBowl Champions[edit]

The Shock playing the Utah Blaze on April 9, 2010

On September 27, 2009, the Spokane Shock became part of the Arena Football 1, which was a rebirth of the Arena Football League, mixed with former af2 teams that were successful; the Shock instantly proved they belong in the league, finishing the regular season with a 16–3 record, claiming the first seed in the playoffs. The Shock advanced to ArenaBowl XXIII against the 13–6 Tampa Bay Storm. In front of a franchise record crowd of 11,017, the Shock defeated the Storm 69–57 behind 9 touchdown passes from Kyle Rowley.[8]


On July 9, 2011, the Shock hosted an outdoor game at Spokane's Joe Albi Stadium; the Shock fired head coach Rob Keefe following the season.


The Shock promoted offensive coordinator, Andy Olson to head coach.


The Shock put together an outstanding offensive season, despite losing quarterback Kyle Rowley in free agency. Quarterback Erik Meyer put together an MVP season, also winning Offensive Player of the Year. Wide Receiver Adron Tennell won Receiver of the Year.


In January 2014, it was announced that Brady Nelson had sold the Shock to Arena Football Partners, LLC.[9]


The Shock had an uphill battle in 2015, after losing former MVP and Offensive Player of the Year, Erik Meyer and former Wide Receiver of the Year Adron Tennell to division rival, San Jose; the Shock made the playoffs, but lost to the Arizona Rattlers 72-41. Following the season, Olson announced that he would not be returning to coach the Shock in 2016, and the Shock hired Adam Shackleford away from the Tri-Cities Fever.[10]

2016: Move to IFL and loss of trademarks[edit]

Beginning on August 10, 2015, talk began surfacing about a possible move to the Indoor Football League by Shock owner Nader Naini, who was heavily involved with bringing Scott Butera to the AFL as its new commissioner, he accused the AFL and some of its teams of cheating, favoring the more established franchises and not fulfilling obligations to improve the product, forcing him to weigh options for the team's future which includes dropping to the IFL, a move that some players expressed unhappiness and disappointment about.[11][12] However, IFL commissioner Mike Allshouse was quick to point out, "At this point, it would be improper to comment about any team that is associated with another league."[13]

The move was officially confirmed on September 1, 2015.[14] However, the Spokane franchise had to operate under a different identity, as the Arena Football League announced on October 12 that the team and league could not reach an agreement for the team's trademark and logos, which are owned by the AFL. A press release from the AFL indicated that the league would retain the rights to the Shock name and logos.[15] However, the team retained the Shock's history and went by a new name for the 2016 season.[16] A name-the-team contest ran until Friday, October 23;[17] the franchise soon became known as the Spokane Empire weeks later.

This made 2016 the second straight year that an established AFL franchise moved to the IFL. In the previous year, the Iowa Barnstormers left to join the IFL after 20 years in the AFL system; the following year saw the Arizona Rattlers also leave for the IFL, making it three straight years that a former AFL franchise joined the IFL.

Attendance history[edit]

af2 (2006–2009)[edit]

Arena: Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (10,471 football capacity).

Spokane Shock Arena Football attendance records show the largest crowds: 10,662 vs. Tennessee Valley (Arena Cup 9 - Aug. 25th 2008); 10,659 twice during 2008 regular season, and smallest crowds: 7,267 vs. Stockton 2009 Playoffs (Aug. 1st, 2009); 9,387 vs. Stockton on March 30, 2006 (inaugural game).

Regular Season Average Attendance:

Year Total Att Average League Rank Sellouts / Games
2006 (af2) 79,213 9,902 1st 4 of 8
2007 (af2) 84,556 10,570 1st 8 of 8
2008 (af2) 84,705 10,588 1st 8 of 8
2009 (af2) 83,306 10,413 1st 5 of 8
Total 331,780 10,368 - 25 of 32

Total all-time attendance, including playoff games while part of the af2 (2006–2009): 422,584

Total all-time sellouts including playoff games: 27

Regular Season Sellout streak:

The Spokane Shock sold out the Spokane Arena for 19 consecutive regular season games starting with the regular season finale in 2006, and continuing to the second game in 2009; the last non-sellout regular season game was on June 26, 2009.

Playoff Attendance History (af2):

2006: (20,242) 1st round bye, 2nd round 9,692 vs Bakersfield, 3rd round 10,550 vs Arkansas, Arena Cup VII in Puerto Rico

2007: (8,272) 1st round 8,272 vs. Louisville

2008: (37,735) 1st round 8,872 vs. Austin, 2nd round 8,923 vs. Central Valley, 3rd round 9,278 vs. Amarillo, Arena Cup VIII at Spokane Arena 10,662 vs. Tennessee Valley.

2009: (24,555) 1st round 7,267 vs. Stockton, 2nd round 8,041 vs. Boise, 3rd round 9,247 vs. Tulsa, Arena Cup X in Las Vegas

Other af2 Attendance Records:

1. 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 5th highest total regular season attendance in af2 history: 83,306 (2009), 84,705 (2008), 84,556 (2007), 79,213 (2006).

2. Largest crowd in Arena Cup History (10,662 – Arena Cup IX) Spokane vs. Tennessee Valley on Aug. 25th, 2008.

3. Longest regular season sell-out streak in af2 history, 19 games.

4. af2 season ticket sales record – 2007, almost 8,000.

AFL (2010–2015)[edit]

Arena: Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (10,244 current football capacity, according to the Spokane Shock.)

Spokane Shock AFL Attendance Records:

Regular Season

Largest crowd (outdoor): 16,233 vs. Utah Blaze (July 9, 2011 Joe Albi Outdoor Classic)
Largest crowd (indoor): 10,775 vs. Chicago Rush (July 23, 2010)

Smallest crowd: 7,497 vs. Las Vegas Outlaws (June 13, 2015)

Post season

Largest crowd: 11,017 vs. Tampa Bay Storm ArenaBowl XXIII (August 20, 2010)

Smallest crowd: 6,916 vs. Chicago Rush 1st Round (August 1, 2013)

Regular Season Average Attendance:

Year Total Att Average League Rank Sellouts / Games
2010 (AFL) - 8 Games 82,509 10,313 5th 1 of 8
2011 (AFL) - 9 Games 92,497 10,277 3rd 0 of 9*
2012 (AFL) - 9 Games 81,206 9,023 6th 0 of 9
2013 (AFL) - 9 Games 83,669 9,296 3rd 1 of 9
2014 (AFL) - 9 Games 80,814 8,979 6th 1 of 9
2015 (AFL) - 9 Games 72,314 8,034 8th 0 of 9
Total 493,009 9,302 - 3 of 53

*Includes one outdoor game

Playoff Attendance History (AFL):

2010: (8,236) 1st round 8,236 vs. Arizona Rattlers August 6, 2010

2010: (8,151) Conference Championship 8,151 vs. Milwaukee Iron August 12, 2010

2010: (11,017) ArenaBowl XXII 11,017 vs. Tampa Bay Storm August 20, 2010

2013: (6,916) 1st round 6,916 vs. Chicago Rush August 1, 2013

Outdoor Summer Classic Game at Joe Albi Stadium

The Spokane Shock played the first-ever outdoor arena football game on Saturday, July 9, 2011; the game took place at Joe Albi Stadium in Spokane. A Spokane Shock record crowd of 16,233 watched the Shock beat the Utah Blaze 76-49. Joe Albi Stadium holds between 20,000-24,000 for football; the shaded side of the stadium was filled to capacity, while the sunny side was about half full. Daytime temperatures reached over 90 degrees (F) that day, and game time was pushed back to 6:00 PM PDT as a result.

Notable players[edit]

Individual awards[edit]

All-Arena players[edit]

The following Shock players were named to All-Arena Teams:

All-Ironman players[edit]

The following Shock players were named to All-Ironman Teams:

Notable coaches[edit]

Head coaches[edit]

Note: Statistics are correct through the end of the 2015 Arena Football League season.

Name Term Regular Season Playoffs Awards
W L T Win% W L
Chris Siegfried 2006 14 2 0 .875 3 0 af2 Coach of the Year
Adam Shackleford 20072009 42 6 0 .875 7 2
Rob Keefe 20102011 22 12 0 .647 3 1
Andy Olson 20122015 42 30 0 .583 1 3


See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://spokanefootball.com/news/?article_id=1668
  2. ^ Jim Meehan (August 10, 2005). "Spokane closing in on arenafootball2 team". www.spokesman.com. The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  3. ^ Dave Trimmer (August 27, 2005). "Spokane awarded arenafootball2 franchise". www.spokesman.com. The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  4. ^ "Spokane Shock Name Siegfried Head Coach". www.oursportscentral.com. OurSports Central. October 12, 2005. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  5. ^ "Siegfried accepts AFL position". www.arenafan.com. ArenaFan. September 4, 2006. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  6. ^ "Shock Name New Head Coach". www.oursportscentral.com. OurSports Central. September 20, 2006. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  7. ^ "af2: Spokane Shock rout Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to win ArenaCup". www.naplesnews.com. Scripps Newspaper Group — Online. August 23, 2009. Retrieved August 20, 2013.
  8. ^ Jim Meehan (August 20, 2010). "Spokane Shock are AFL champions". www.spokesman.com. The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
  9. ^ Jim Meehan (January 15, 2014). "Brady Nelson sells Spokane Shock football team". www.spokesman.com. The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
  10. ^ Jim Meehan (August 18, 2015). "Shock: Andy Olson out, Adam Shackleford in". www.spokesman.com. The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved August 19, 2015.
  11. ^ Shock weighing options for future league affiliation, Jim Meehan, The Spokesman-Review, August 10, 2015
  12. ^ Shock moves closer to IFL, but players not happy with potential move, Jim Meehan, The Spokesman-Review, August 17, 2015
  13. ^ Shock players go to social media to lament possible move to the IFL, Jim Meehan, The Spokesman-Review, August 18, 2015
  14. ^ "IFL Announces Addition of Spokane Shock". Indoor Football League. September 1, 2015. Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  15. ^ http://www.arenafootball.com/sports/a-footbl/spec-rel/101215aag.html
  16. ^ http://spokanefootball.com/news/?article_id=1668
  17. ^ http://spokanefootball.com/news/?article_id=1669

External links[edit]