Dorados suspends ‘all football operations’ at arena

The RGV Dorados’ season has come to an unexpected early end, for a second time now.

Eric Treviño, State Farm Hidalgo Arena general manager, said in a press release that “due to certain factors, Primetime Sports and Entertainment, LLC ‘Owners’ of the Rio Grande Valley Dorados terminated their lease agreements and suspended all football operations as the Rio Grande Valley Dorados at the State Farm Hidalgo Arena.”

On Wednesday night, Treviño went into more detail about the end of operations and the cause.

“Dorados ownership, Prime Time Sports, (led by) Juan Arevalo, decided to not go forward because they could not be spending more money. They owed the arena $31,000 to continue the season,” Treviño told The Monitor.

“We have taken ownership of all the property and the City of Hidalgo and Juan Arevalo came to an agreement and nobody is owed.”

The Monitor could not independently verify the claim by press time Wednesday.

The Arena Football League II team announced in January that it was making a return to the arena, where it called home from 2004 to 2009 to play in the International Arena Football League, a new league that was beginning its inaugural season this year.

The Dorados had a 10-game schedule for the 2019 season — seven of the games at home.

“For fans that purchased tickets, you may seek a refund at the point of purchase,” the press release stated.

“This is something that is going to be great for the community and we are here to win,” Arevalo said at the initial press conference announcing the Dorados’ return. “This is something me and my wife (co-owner Erika Arevalo; Domingo De La Garza is also a co-owner) have prayed about and our team will bring top athletes and quality entertainment to the arena.”

Treviño said the arena tried to help the team and “we went above and beyond, even though we, as an arena, have nothing to do with these teams other than rent it to them.

“The ownership just abandoned this team.”

He also said the shutdown wasn’t because of a lack of attendance. “We had good attendance and people enjoyed the games,” he said.

The Dorados originally began to play in 2004 as an expansion team of Arena Football’s AF2 league. After four successful seasons, including a 10-6 record in 2005 and a 15-1 mark in 2007, the only loss coming to Bossier-Shreveport. In six seasons, the Dorados went 57-45, before the team folded in 2009 after the dissolution of the AF2.

The IAFL will continue its season but the remaining Dorados games have been canceled at the arena, according to State Farm Arena management. Treviño added that the arena had nothing to do with the rights for the Dorados and they were free to play elsewhere. Calls to the league office were not answered. Calls, text messages and voicemails left for Arevalo and De La Garza on Wednesday were not returned or answered.