ORLANDO, Fla. – Officials say the Orlando Predators have defaulted on their lease with the Amway Center, and that the city is currently negotiating a contract with the new ownership of the Predators.
[VIEW: Default on lease]
Attorneys said the City of Orlando had given a notice in August that the Orlando Predators Sports Group, LLC were in default of the agreement for use of Amway Center at Orlando Venues for falling below the minimum required attendance figures during the Predators' 2013 season.
Authorities said at least 6,000 in attendance is the minimum requirement per home game.
City records show that while 7,453 attended the Preds' final game of the season against the New Orleans Voodoo on July 27, the Preds' June 1 game against the Chicago Rush had only 4,528 in attendance.
Total attendance for the Predators' 2013 season was 52,908.
"The Orlando Predators categorically dispute the accuracy and legitimacy of the turnstile numbers stated in the City of Orlando's letter which allowed them to terminate our lease," the Orlando Predators said in a statement. "With the City of Orlando's termination of the lease, the Predators may now explore other viable venue options although we intend to first try to negotiate a mutually favorable long term lease at the Amway Center."
City Attorney Mayanne Downs said, "It's our venue. We own and operate it, and we do the counts and they don't. I stand by our numbers and staff and I'm confident we can prove it in court if we need to."
The city said its goal is to move forward and continue working together to ensure there is no impact to fans for the 2014 season.
"We want them to be here in the city, we want them to be at the Amway Center, and we feel like we'll be able to make a new arrangement," said Downs.
Local 6's Amaka Ubaka reports the lease will expire on Sept. 11.
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