With the economy in the tanks, and sporting events being a luxury some might not be able to afford in the coming weeks and months, the Arena Football League might be shutting down it’s doors. The AFL has already postponed their annual draft, as well as free agency, and the league has issued an official statement going forward. Via AFL.com….

“The AFL is working on long-term structural improvements which have unfortunately delayed some important events, such as the release of the 2009 schedule, the Dispersal Draft, and the beginning of free agency,” said Acting Commissioner ED POLICY. “We thank our fans for their enthusiasm for these events and ask them to be patient a little longer while we finalize our long-term improvements. All AFL teams are working towards winning ArenaBowl XXIII.”

While they obviously want to keep the gates open next season, it’s looking more and more like they will be canceling the upcoming, and possibly future seasons. The Denver Post is even reporting that Arena Football could shut its doors if they don’t receiving aid by December 19th. While there are still a few franchises that are claiming a solid financial standing, the league has been in trouble for most of the past year. Their deal with ESPN in 2006 was supposed to set them up for the future, but it seems as if even the “Leader” can’t save them now.

League’s official statement (Arena Football)