The Major Indoor Soccer League’s Missouri Comets, who call the Independence Events Center home, and the Arena Football League’s Kansas City Command, who play at the Sprint Center in downtown Kansas City, have announced a unique partnership.

The Major Indoor Soccer League’s Missouri Comets, who call the Independence Events Center home, and the Arena Football League’s Kansas City Command, who play at the Sprint Center in downtown Kansas City, have announced a unique partnership.

The teams will mesh their front office staffs, and both parties will be housed in the Comets office space in Independence in the Cliffs.

“Basically, in pro sports, there is the team side and the business side,” Comets president Brian Budzinski said Tuesday night. “We are going to be associated with the business side of the Command – marketing, ticket sales, sponsorships, cheerleaders, mascots, media buying, media relations.

“The ownership groups will remain the same and their ownership will have no say over the Comets, and we will have no say over the on-field business of the Command.”

Command owner Chris Likens is a longtime friend of Budzinski, and is thrilled about the new arrangement between the two professional teams.

“The Kansas City Command is committed to creating the best atmosphere in the AFL at the Sprint Center,” Likens said.

“We believe partnering with the Comets, a proven success story in this market, will allow us to bring back the arena energy AFL fans are used to in Kansas City.”  
Budzinzki agrees.

“The Missouri Comets and the Kansas City Command are two of our city’s premier professional arena sports teams that play in first-class venues,” Budzinski said. “The synergies that are created between the collaboration of the two brands will offer the Kansas City community a truly fan-first experience.”

The merger is bonus for the Independence economy as the Comets will be adding additional staff to handle the new influx of business.

Nick McCabe, an announcer for both the Command and Comets, will become a full-time staff member of the Comets with the title of director of communications.

“Adding someone like Nick, on a full-time basis, is really a big step for our team,” said Comets sports marketing director Jeff Husted. “Nick will be dealing with the media, writing news releases and will be a real addition to our full-time staff.”
Budzinski joked that McCabe will “be kicking Coach out of his office.”

But don’t worry about coach Kim Roentved, after leading the Comets to within a game of the MISL championship game last season, he will be find new accommodations.
“We really are making an impact in Independence with the addition of our new staff,” Budzinski added. “This is really an exciting time for both teams.”

The combo staff will begin the process of selling 2012 Command season tickets. Fans may place orders by calling the new Command ticket hotline at 855-KC-ARENA.

All 2011 Command season ticket holders will be contacted in the coming weeks regarding renewal options.

“We’re also going to contact Kansas City Brigade (the former indoor football team that played at the Sprint Center) season ticket holders and offer special options on tickets to gain their support,” Husted said.

The two teams are working on an extensive marketing plan to enhance fan awareness of the Command’s presence in Kansas City.

This will include traditional media advertising and numerous grassroots community appearances – two approaches that made the Comets and the Central Hockey League’s Missouri Mavericks immediate success stories at the Events Center.

“The Comets organization is full of individuals who have a proven track record with sports franchises in Kansas City,” Likens said.  “We are very excited to add their expertise as a resource to help us make the Kansas City Command an organization the entire area can be proud of.”

The Comets will allow potential business partners to have the option of sponsoring both teams at a discounted rate.

“We intend to conduct business in a way that not only meets but exceeds the expectations of our fans and business partners as well as the greater Kansas City metro as a whole,” Budzinski said.