There has been a lot of discussion about the future of Roller Derby.
I think it is time for everyone to realize it is not a monolith and therefore it will not follow one course. It seems like the only thing many of the different organizations have in common is the name of the game. Many of the players see it as their possession, their thing, unifying their leagues and their sisters in the fact the revival occurred almost spontaneously and, no matter how big it becomes or how many people know about it, just leave them alone. I certainly respect them.
And I don’t even think I could count how many different styles, leagues and games there are. Even though the WFTDA is the central body for a large number of leagues, particularly flat track, there are so many different rules and styles out there.
Some leagues have proven they could become successful with the ability to operate very professionally, even though they are still amateur leagues. That would include Los Angeles, Seattle, Denver (2 leagues), Chicago, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia and about a dozen others. (I am sorry if I didn’t include you…..I am sure you will let me know). And I am talking about your present rules with a legitimate game.
As a long-time promoter (in the good sense; the most recent events I have promoted have all been benefits for non profits and charities), I know that a collection of the better leagues could set up a circuit to play in major arenas across the country (I am not even including Europe, Australia, Canada, Asia, etc) to perhaps finally contributing to the cost of the individual players. This would be a different path and schedule than is currently being utilized.
This level of the game could become a very profitable enterprise for all concerned. There are definitely business applications that would work here, including promotion packages, larger sponsorships and access to larger arenas on a consistent basis. I am going to see the B.A.D birls All Stars play the Rocky Mountain Roller Girls at Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, a very comfortable building with no fixed seating. Here in the Bay Area I would love to see this game at Oracle Arena in Oakland. And we have 17,000 seat arenas in Sacramento and San Jose, and a great 6000 seat venue in Civic Center in San Francisco.
Obviously, this kind of schedule could be implemented around all major metropolitan areas with teams of equal skills competing. And it could be done soon before the opportunistic promoters move in on the game.
This plan would raise the public image and help all leagues. There are a number of people all ready in place in the various leagues who could make this occur. It all depends on if you really want it to happen.
On the highest level, this game is a business whether you approve or not, and it should be operated in a business-like manner with as much expertise as possible.