now about the so-called World Cup


I don’t like it.

First of all, as a promoter/presenter I always check out the environment. Could there be an uglier, ill-lighted, no seat hall than Bunker?

And the pillars in the infield certainly don’t add to the ambiance.

You knew there would be a lot of one-sided games, but it really was ridiculous. I know, it is exciting to see nations getting their best players on a national team and coming to compete.

And you have to admire Toronto Roller Derby and Blood and Thunder magazine for pulling it off, but I have a few suggestions.

First of all, all teams should have been seeded. Let the 7 lower seeds compete in one bracket, the 6 higher seeds in another; then the winner of the lower bracket move into the semifinals with the three survivors from the higher seeds.

Since this is not a WFTDA tournament, why not modify the game slightly to help avoid all the 377 to 8 scores: shorten jam times, limit the amount in the penalty box at one time, whatever.

I really think the venue bothers me the most. If you cannot hold a World Cup in a World Class venue, don’t hold it at all. I just think of it in the 1st Bank Center, Key Arena, UIC Pavilion, etc etc. If it is in Toronto again hold it in the major hockey arena; if you can’t afford it, don’t do it.

I think you all know how I feel about the game, and this to me is such a step backwards, even though the players are obviously thrilled; the USA team is amazing.

Don’t do this again in a dump.

70 comments on “now about the so-called World Cup

  1. Jerry, what do you think of the progress of world wide teams coming together? Of the blood (and thunder), sweat and tears of the women who brought themselves to canada to compete in this historic event? personally, i would skate in a landfill to take part in such an experience!

    • I understand that, and it was great to see how excited New Zealand was to score 8 points! But again, I am not a skater, but a fan and promoter, and I felt the hall denigrated the people who sacrificed so much to come so far…..this is just my opinion of course.

      • jerry, i think you could’ve organized the sh*t out of this massive event! it’s not the stylish venue that could’ve been, but we can always strive for change of venue/location once the world cup games begin receiving the recognition and sponsors it is worthy of!

  2. I disagree. There is no need to change the jam times or limit penalties just because it’s not a WFTDA sanctioned bout. We still want to see it played fully. There are plenty of people out there who wanted to see how well the newer teams stood up to the better teams, even if there were huge point differentials. It happens all of the time in roller derby and it’s no surprise to see it here. The bunker is a classic venue for Toronto roller derby and despite the pillars being obvious downsides for many reasons, it’s not that bad compared to where most teams have to make do with on a regular basis. So stop complaining and enjoy some intense roller derby action!

  3. In all due respect to the many skaters who worked hard to put this event on, this event was put together by a commercial enterprise (Blood & Thunder Magazine) which is a very respectable publication and using the WFTDA or WFTDA inspired ruleset. This is not a world class event. It’s just another tournament, like the Arizona Dust Devil that just happens to have shuffle teams from around the world. Some countries, such as Japan were not allowed to participate because the organizers did not recognize the Status of Forces Agreement or the acknowledgement of Permanent (legal) Residency in Japan.

    Regardless.. Unless the tournament is sanctioned by FIRS (the international governing body of rollersports) and is played with an international ruleset established by the IOC recognized governing body, it should not be called the “World Cup”. That name should be reserved for international level events such as the FIFA World Cup for football/futbol/soccer or the IRB who just recently held the Rugby World Cup.

    There are many changes to the rules and the overall culture of derby to put it at the world class level. I am looking forward to that day.

    =m

    • How exactly does FIRS own the concept of a roller derby world cup, and therefore the name should be preserved for that? FIRS has had NOTHING to do with the development of the sport- being played by WFTDA rules- going on that day. If they organize the event, they can call it whatever they want.

  4. I just read this to my roommates and travel buddies for the weekend and they said, “you and jerry are kindred spirits.”

    I said a lot of the same things on the way back to the hotel.

    I do love the effort. I love the idea. I assume I am simply spoiled being a part of philly.

    • Remember, anyone’s blog is that person’s opinion. I acknowledge all the effort that has gone into the tournament, but to say it is better than where many teams skate in their home sites doesn’t justify this being presented as the first world championship tournament. Just think how the WFTDA Championships are played in beautiful venues that enhance the game. And maybe if this tournament is promoted non-profit in a major city and arena, at least some monies could go to the teams that sacrificed so much to get there.

      I am certain the players and fans who are attending are happy and grateful, and the producers worked hard to make it a successful event. I just don’t think it is a proper platform for a so-called world championship event.

  5. I am blown away by the way you change direction, depending on which way the wind is blowing.

    Perhaps you should change your derby name from “The Commissioner” to “Mitt Romney.”

    Not 48 hours ago, you were complaining about the lack of mainstream coverage & support for this event, now you’re blowing hard about how much it sucks.

    If you don’t like the event, the venue, the lighting, the whatever; why don’t YOU throw some money at it?

    This is the first event of its kind. Sure, it’s not going to be all grandstands & awesome, it’s going to be down & dirty. It’s going to be DIY…

    Be part of the solution, Jerry.

    • He is trying to be a part of the solution but the WFTDA culture is blowing him off. His point is simple, you can’t have two minute jams, blowout victories and sex/beer culture and have mainstream coverage.

      Jerry Seltzer is probably the most qualified of all of us to make opinions and critiques of this sport.

      Until derby sheds “by the skaters and for the skaters” and takes this more seriously from a presentation standpoint, it’s still going to be viagra and weather fluff.

      • I’m not sure what the 2 min Jam has to do with anything ?? Confused. It’s not like it’s 2 min for just one team, it’s 2 min for both and if you’re a jammer stuck in the pack, Yeah…gimme that 2 min to try and get some points in… I appreciate everyone’s opinion, Im just curious as to what changing the jam time will help ?? This is just me being ignorant to the reasoning behind the change of times.

      • Who are you, Michelle??? And what about that tournament failed to speak to roller derby, but instead representing “beer culture”? They produced the event, Canada provided the venue. There’s no money here for anyone who travelled there, so production value fell in favor of skating. Shed “by the skaters”? Who are obviously the most amazing coat tail rider in history. Hang on tight!

      • @marquee the only difference between what went on this weekend and the men’s basketball tournament @ the 1992 Olympics is the NBA garnered a HUGE international following.

        As for the “beer culture”-like the Olympics, where 75% of the participants have NO shot at a medal, derby seems to be mostly focused on the after-party, which is probably making Ann Calvello roll in the grave. Either derby focuses on THE FANS, or they’ll be just like the local bowling league.

    • Not really sure how opinions have changed here. Seems to me like Jerry had said he’d liked to have seen this entire event treated as a mainstream and high end event, from pre-production, to venue, through media focus. Fact of the matter is Michelle B has a spot on point that ties into what Jerry’s talking about here. This isn’t really a ‘World Cup,’ it’s another WFTDA based tournament with some okay sponsorship that almost everyone is pretty stoked about. If this thing is supposed to be seen in World Cup light and by those standards, then a venue of those standards should be pretty high on the list of priorities. Personally, I’d rather skate in the dim hall with the pillars, it gives me more shit to knock people into, but then I’m not trying to skate in a World Cup.

      Lets all be part of the solution. If you’re a part of a derby community that has it’s eyes on a more mainstream audience, push for that community to hold itself in a more mainstream light. And if you’re a part of a derby community that doesn’t give a rats ass about those things, then people on both sides agree to get along and respect all in the sport.

      • i don’t see and take offense to your comment that if a skater does not have an eye on a mainstream audience – in your comment it appears to be aka: the world cup aesthetic – we dont give a rats ass about the future of roller derby. in my opinion, roller derby has been a slow progressive struggle from the ground up and the accomplishments of the world cup are a celebration of the hard work of various members of the derby family.
        i also agree jerry is a sterling figure to offer objective advice and do not disavow any of his opinions.
        the facts are roller derby is still a d.i.y. movement and the accomplishments made thus far are honorable and have my applause and admiration.
        also, i wish japan could’ve been there. onward and upward!

      • Wow… didn’t say that at all… I personally am one of those silly people who couldn’t care any less about a streamlined aesthetic, and I’m madly in love with this sport and care deeply about its future. As a matter of fact, I didn’t reference it’s connection to an individuals care for the future of the sport in any sense, unless you’re referring to someone elses post. What I said was that if you want the sport to be streamlined, you can’t half-ass the streamlining process and chalk it up to being DIY or punk rock. World Cup? Streamlined and mainstream, so put the time and work in to do it right the first time so that the presentation matches the passion. I don’t think anyone’s personal taste on the direction the sport is headed has any bearing on how much they care about it’s future. It does have an influence on how they should work toward the sport being presented, regardless of what that opinion is. If you want it streamlined, then bust ass and don’t settle for anything less when it’s something you’re a part of.

    • I accept your criticism, but I do not accept your getting personal.- keep it on a professional level.

      I expressed my opinion, and it seems a number of others agree. I appreciate the effort in presenting it, but do not feel that this is the proper venue. I have as much right asking you to throw money at it, which makes no sense at all.

      And it is not the first event of its kind, unless you don’t want to count the WFTDA Championships and regionals. The game has progressed in the last ten years; I am just sorry the world has to see it in the Bunker.

  6. the two minute jam, which is what was in Roller Derby until 1959 when it became one minute, allows the dominant team jammer to circle endlessly, scoring 25 or 30 point jams. cutting it to a minute or 90 seconds would help curb that aspect…..I think the USARS rules address this. To me, power jams take away from the strategy and beauty of the game, which is the pack play. Again, my opinion, and I have really no influence on anything.

      • The point of scoring in a jam shouldn’t be to keep going on and on until you’ve scored tons of points. Anyone can do that. The points should be won based on the skills of the jammer and the blockers. If you’re behind in points it means your defensive line wasn’t doing it’s job. If the jammer can keep passing the blockers over and over and over, that’s the sign of weak blocking. In derby everyone had their position they skated acording to their skills. With a few exceptions, the bigger skaters were blockers because they had the power to be a blocker. The smaller, thinner skaters were jammers because they were fast and better at maneuvering around the skaters. If both are doing their jobs you won’t need two minutes to catch up to the other team. There were many jams in derby where only one or two points were scored because everyone did their job. It’s much more exciting seeing a great jammer working hard to get by a tough blocker

    • Jerry – I couldn’t agree with you more. It should be cut to 90 seconds. That would stop the endless circling, which is also a sign of weak defense. Get a really good, smart defender who can move side to side and I’ll bet you would see that jammer sprawled out on the floor. I’ve seen too many games where the defending blocker wasn’t even looking back and the jammer zoomed right by her. For me, that’s very frustrating.

      I also agree with you about seeding the teams. It would make for much closer, more competitive games. There’s nothing more exciting than two teams, skating toe to toe and then one of them pulling out a victory in the last jam or two.

      Again, I agree with you about less people in the penalty box at one time. Penalties should be called and the offending skater should go right to the box. Have a limit of 2 skaters per team in the penalty box also.

      Just my take on it. I’m sure it’ll fall on deaf ears.

  7. jerry, you influence thousands. have no doubt about that. and, personally, i always appreciate your opinions and love reading your blog.

  8. Or…. Buddha Ref’s (Rose City) off-the-cuff suggestion would fix the power jam “problem” (lots of slow/no pack play and huge point swings). Simply release the boxed jammer when the on-track jammer scores the first ghost point on her/him.

  9. SPK – my sincere apologizes if i misinterpreted you. I think we agree on much and appreciate anyone who will engage in a derby discuss. no offense intended.

  10. I’m excited about the tournament and am going to watch as much of it as possible, and I don’t want to be negative, but I have to admit I was disappointed by the venue as well. If I were showing this tournament to an “outsider”, they’d assume derby is something no one cares about. It reminds me of a warehouse I played in one time…Michelle-AZDD vs. Renegades, remember? With the inflatable snakes around the pillars? You can call me stuck up since I skate for a league that has a pretty impressive venue, but if we can do it every month here, it seems for something so huge, they could have done it once. I also think it’s important to take constructive criticism without being so defensive, especially when it’s from Jerry.
    But being a derby fan, I can get past it. Let’s watch some derby!!!

    • I remember AZDD v Renegades very well.. I will be honest, that was one of the most incredible bouts I had ever seen, but we knew the rules going into it. During the time that bout, I was writing about that bout at the time, I positioned it as a chance for the AZDD skaters to let it all out. Remember too, this was during the time, I had a major dispute with the league. If you remember the video I did for that bout, it was in the format of a crosstown rivalry in a 1950’s fashion.

      I was not fazed over the venue here.. I have covered bouts played on tennis courts, parking lots, in warehouses (including the 5th & Madison where they were pillars on BOTH sides of the track lines (ouch!), skate parks, roller hockey arenas and large venues such as where AZDD plays today. But at the same time, I could see Jerry’s concerns here. A major event that is designed to be an “all that ends all” even such as something positioned as a “world cup” should be the best that this sport can offer. This does not just include the skaters (which we can all agree, are definitely each nation’s best) but also includes the presentation. While the venue used has a traditional history, it would be similar to playing the NFL Super Bowl on the field of North High School in Phoenix, AZ. You can play the game there, but it is not a good impression on those who may be watching for the first time. There are many people who do not watch regular season NFL, MLB or NHL games, but they will watch the Super Bowl, World Series and Stanley Cup games. This is the type of audience (as well as the regular derby die-hard audience) that a game positioned as a “world cup” should be attracting.

      If you go back to the early days of resurgence derby when it was a free-for-all (I go back to AZRD’s first bout ever at Surfside) and you look it today.. the game has evolved, but in many cases (and for the right reasons), the venues have not evolved.

      “By the skaters/for the skaters” may support the use of a venue like this and yes, it does have a historical value for those of us on the insides of this sport, but again, you are now trying to present the sport to a worldwide audience and using a name that has a worldwide expectation of the best of the best (e.g. FIFA), you are sending the wrong message by calling this bout a “world cup”.

      Just under a year ago, FIRS has approved roller derby as a discipline for international competition, I would only suggest for future years, we give the name back to the international sports community.

  11. I have to agree with you Jerry. No matter how much I admire the people behind this event and how grateful I am that they work so hard for this sport that I love, I have to admit that I was dissapointed too. I’m sure they wanted a better venue and they probably worked on many different solutions and this ended up being the best, many things taken ito considerations. It’s always easy to have opinion where you are not part of the proces. However, seen in the big picture I think you are 100% right, that if we want the outside world to take this serious, we have to be serious. Very serious.
    The league in Copenhagen where I skate is pretty new (2 years). We were very careful about choice of venue for our first bout. We knew the event would give us a media breakthrough and it was important that the atmosphere around the event was right and that the pictures were really good. So we chose the cool and expensive venue even if a normal sports hall would have been better for the skaters and more convenient in terms of logistics. The respons from our fans was incredible, and many considered it to be one of the best events in Copenhagen. We sold 700 tickets for the first home bout. For the second we sold 940.
    Big sponsors want a return on their investment and they only get that if the events are well presented and able to attract a high number of spectators.
    I’m sure the World Cup organizers will improve the event in many aspects next time around.

  12. well reality is..a lot of great sk8ers quit when TORD decided to take the Hanger…it was a decision made by a few….and has affected them dearly by going for the cheap seats …lots wouldnt commute..lots hated the space…so no suprise really

  13. Also; these are the pre-seed bouts. The team selection was chosen at random, which is how it happens in the Rugby and Soccer World Cups.The outcomes will establish the seeds and then the tournament games will begin after that.

    It might not be an official WFTDA tournament but all of the European, Australian and NZ teams play by WFTDA rules. I can see no logical reason why you’d change them for this. And just because *you* don’t find certain aspects of the game to your taste doesn’t mean everybody else feels the same way. Personally I find the USARS ruleset to be a bit rediculous but I wouldn’t go to a USARS bout and try to get them to change some of the rules to be a bit more WFTDA just to make me happy.

    I’m sorry you aren’t enjoying the experience. There are things that I think could be done a bit better but I’m still loving the bouts, regardless of their score and I’m so excited to be seeing friends and skaters that I admire from all over the world finally getting a chance to skate against each other.

    • Your first point bears repeating, Amanda. All the bouts on Thursday and Friday are pool play to establish rankings for seeding the “real tournament” that starts Saturday morning. These national teams don’t have a regular season and have never competed before, so the only fair way to establish rankings is to make ’em play other randomly selected teams. And that means there are gonna be some blow outs.

      As far as rulesets go, face it: WFTDA is the de-facto standard. On top of all the other logistic nightmares of putting on a tournament like this, do you really want to deal with doing it in a ruleset most of the refs aren’t used to?

  14. ha, try to find a surface without ice in Toronto in mid hockey season..not possible. Which puzzles me why it was chosen now because it may have been possible to find a better venue in the summer, but I am sure a lot of the rinks that could hold this kind of capacity run year round ice. I am thinking they were hoping to piggy back off the nationals momentum.

    As for the rules, if WFTDA rule set is played internationally, I don’t understand how that doesn’t make it a world cup?

  15. Wow, first of all, almost 2000 or you have responded, and I have to admit that a lot of your counter points make sense. I responded viscerally last night to my disappointment in what I saw; certainly not in the concept of the event.

    I have to commend the producers for trying to catch a whale on their first fishing trip. The concept of bringing hundreds of athletes and support groups from around the world is overwhelming. They did it, and got it of without any hitches that anyone could see.

    My comments about different rules is well countered by Todd; you don’t run a tourney like this and change them on everyone.

    I love Canada, and this has nothing to do with that country, but I think we are all aware of what hockey is to them, and the lack of facilities this time of year. (By the way, I headed a group of American Football League owners who tried to by the Oakland Seals NHL team in 1970, but that is another story.)

    Toronto this time of year can be brutal – I have been there a number of times. Maybe next time it could be in the spring or summer.

    Don’t let my comments obscure the fact that I was amazed you were able to pull it off.

    And all Americans: please stand when “Oh Canada” is sung.

  16. So Jerry how long have you played derby? …. Given that this is the first World Cup for RD, there really wasn’t much to gauge it on. This is the first time we get to compete internationally and I’m pretty sure that the organizers had no way of knowing the difference in skill level. As with most things in life, you don’t have success the first time around. You lay it out, play it out and make improvements. That’s what derby is about πŸ˜‰

    • You asked Jerry how long he skated derby What kind of silly question is that? Everybody knows he never skated, but he owned and ran a very succesful keague for many years, I’d say he knows derby much better then anyone in the girl;s leagues. How long have you skated? Derby girls get very defensive when anyone doesn’t gush over them. The girls leagues are basically amatuer teams and you’re getting input from a number of professionals. You should be grateful that people want to help. The girls leagues as they are,are not going to make it in the mainstream world. What’s wrong with making some changes to get you where you want to be?

  17. Jerry, I have to agree with you on the venue point. I was very disappointed with it — dusty, no place to sit if you didn’t have VIP seating, those pillars hid the action every trip around the track., For something billed as “world cup” it reeked of amateur. On the positive side, though, it was very cool to be rubbing shoulders with the players from all over the world, who were stuck standing along the sidelines with the rest of us, watching the bouts they weren’t participating in. They are some very awesome ladies! AND every one I struck up conversation with was absolutely thrilled to be there.

  18. 532-7 — BUT JERRY, COME ON! It’s a LEARNING EXPERIENCE!
    I’ll tell you if my team lost 532-7, all I’d learn is that my team SUX!

    • I dont agree with that. Going into it Scotland KNEW we where in for a royal kicking.

      We went in anyway,

      and the discussion and ideas flying about from that one game have taught even those of us not actually there (all piled into a pub with a flatscreen and a laptop) a fair bit. Let alone the girls that where actually participating

      • Kal, you mean to say you came all the way from Scotland to knowingly play in a game where you knew you would be slaughtered? Maybe you could have saved all the money spent on air fare, food, place to stay, etc. and spent it on hiring a coach or trainer to imrove your girls, then go to the next World Cup with the confidence that your team at least has a fighting chance in a game rather then being trounced the way you were. Sorry but 532 to 7 isn’t a game. It’s an embaressment to derby and a waste of time.

      • DerbyGuy – I agree with you, 100%. Also, just a suggestion, don’t hire speed skaters to be your coach unless it’s your last resort. The problem has been that modern Derby hasn’t really embraced the Derby from the past, dismissing it as only a staged event, so there haven’t been many former PRO’s interested in showing skaters the proper technics in skating. Derby is the sum of all parts. It’s not all about putting your head down and flying through the pack at warp speed scoring points. Once a team learns all of the aspects of the sport, it’s a thing of beauty. But then, what do I know? I’ve only been around the sport for almost 45 years.

      • Well your missing out one thing. the UK dosent have much in the way or pro Derby coaches. the sport like its skaters are still in nappys here. LRG are the oldest team here and thats less then 6 years old.

        You dont get better by playing the same level as you. You aim much higher. (ok that might be a Rugby attitude coming out of me but such is the way of things.) And to counter the “What do you learn from such a slaughtering?” Well Scottish personalities tend to be like Rugby players. We get knocked down then get back up again and do it till we get it right.

        Everyone KNEW that it was going to be a USA slaugherball. The real places for Grabs where 2nd and 3rd..

        Oh and “It’s an embaressment to derby and a waste of time.” Who are you to right off these women and their achievements?
        Trick question because even being “the king of everything” dosent give anyone that right.

      • Well, get me a ticket to fly out there and I’ll stay for a month and whip your butts into shape. I was a trainer and a darn good one and I was a skater. That’s why I can say those things. Whether it’s the old derby or the new the skaters have had to be good atheletes and good at whatever position they skate. Someone said that some girls skate just for fun or to get in shape or build self confidence. That’s all great. What can I say though, I’ve always taken my skating seriously. Finally, nothing anyone says can convince me that being trounced in a game and losing by 350 points is worth it. It wasn’t a training game so I can’t see where much was learned other then to watch the other team skating by you over and over.

      • DerbyGuy and Jersey Joe: Forty-five years ago, it may have been the norm for men to tell women how they think they should feel, to tell women how they should and shouldn’t spend their free time, to tell women what to do with their money, and so on. Today, that’s just offensively patronizing.

        It’s clear that Kal and Team Scotland (and lots of other modern skaters like them) know what they’re doing and are enjoying it. No amount of repeating how YOU would feel in that situation is going to change how THEY feel. So please give it a rest.

      • Todd – here is what I WILL do. I will NOT tell you what to say or when to give it a rest, as long as we live in a free country where people are entitled to their own opinions. Mine happen to be shared by MANY skaters, but they just don’t air them as freely. If enough fans knew the difference between tight competitive games and ridiculous blow-outs, you’d see a lot less in those seats!

      • Joe, I wrote back to Todd saying the exact same thing so I’m glad other perple aren’t afraid to say what they think and aren’t people pleasers who are afraid to be real. Todd’s behavior is typical defensiveness. Keep up the good stuff, Joe.

      • Lert me tell you Toddy, I haven’t said anything I have just because they are women. If this were the exact same situation and it were a men’s league or a co-ed league I’d be saying the same thing. Sorry bunky, but on this one you’re completely wrong and sorry again but just because you don’t like my telling people what I think they should do doesn’t mean I’m going to or should stop. Everybody has the right to express your opinion. Just because you don’t like what I’m saying, telling me to stop is pretty childish. It’s a public forum and if you don’t like what I’m saying, don’t read it.

      • Derby Guy:

        Well once again to use a Rugby example (playing from a young age and coaching to a mid 20’s will do that to you :P) We had a squad play us that lost 108-nil. Now in that game its a soul destroying score! Did this side give up? No they saw what we did and next half of the season for the return leg they countered some things and improved. The next game was 88-5. The following season they improved and the Score was 56-10. By the time we left to graduate to U21 level they where almost as good as us and placed 3rd in that last season. You can imagine where they started (it wasnt 4th) out of 14 teams.

        Or to use a historical example Read the story of Robert the Bruce and the Spider. something that in of itself has become a know saying in the modern world,

        “King Robert the Bruce I was born at Lochmaben Castle in 1274. He was Knight and Overlord of Annandale. In 1306 he was crowned King of Scotland and henceforth tried to free Scotland from the English enemy.

        After being defeated at a battle, Bruce escaped and found a hideout in a cave. Hiding in a cave for three months, Bruce was at the lowest point of his life. He thought about leaving the country and never coming back.

        While waiting, he watched a spider building a web in the cave’s entrance. The spider fell down time after time, but finally he succeeded with his web. So Bruce decided also to retry his fight and told his men: “If at first you don’t succeed, try try and try again”.

        You tell something they wont learn anything about by being beat your encoraging people not to try. Thats not what this or any other sport should be about!! and i’ll bet my last quid that the Team USA skaters would disagree with me!

      • I don’t know of any other real sport where if a team were losing games that badly they wouldn’t continue without numerous and tough changes. But hey, to each their own. If you’re content with the way things are, keep it up.

  19. Jerry, derby doesn’t want a mainstream audience because a mainstream audience will scrutinize the holy hell out of it. And we’ve all seen how well derby takes scrutiny.

    • That comment is a complete contradiction to what most derby teams have said. They want to be recognized as a real sport shown around the world. They tried to get a mainstream sports magazine to write an article about the league which they declined to do. To me that’s trying to go mainstream. There are only so many people who are the current audience for the girl’s leagues. If you want to get bigger you’ll have to appeal to more people or you’ll stay just as you are.

  20. this is in response to Donald Paluga’s post of December 5. I don’t disagree with a lot of what you say, but I think you are under the assumption that Roller Derby will end up with 1 ruling body and 1 group…..with over 1100 leagues it won’t happen…..there are those who skate for the social experience, excitement and after parties, and those who may want to go to a higher level…..some will stay with the WFTDA game, others will go elsewhere. Since WFTDA is by far the dominant ruling body, that is really to whom I am addressing the comments.

  21. At some point the rules have to become ‘THE RULES’ and all bouts are played the same. As much as there may be changes needed (which is happening) the truth of the mater is that international teams are using WFTDA rules.
    Make them standared and anyone playing by different rules are playing a different game.

    • So… there can be no differences in gameplay within the same over all game (such as there are in baseball & “football” depending on what part of the world you’re in)?

      I started thinking of a response to this, pointing out the glaring discrepancies between this opinion and the reality of how sports actually work on a geographic, as well as competitive level (amateur-professional-scholastic-etc).

      Truth be told, now that I think about it, if the current version of “THE RULES” is to be the standard for “our sport,” then you’re absolutely right. I want no part of it. I’ll play something else. I’ll call it something crazy like “fun” or “entertaining.”

      There should OF COURSE be different variations so that people with varying opinions, goals, and desires all have a place to call home. There should definitely be a standard rule set for international play, but that in no way means that a variation there of should be considered an entirely different game.

  22. I am with you on the venue. I warned B&T that this venue would just not do. Same argument World Class Event=World Class Venue. They somehow left it to ToRD to secure a venue and they did the best they could with the resources they had. However, back when this was scheduled there were many amazing venues in Toronto that could have hosted this. By the time I realized the problem there was not a single venue that would not have been booked in December with Trade Shows etc. at that time of year.
    Also, be advised to all the Bunker building is known as a site with asbestos as per movie production companies who use the facilities. It must have down to dollars and cents.

  23. Hee hee..if you think The Bunker is a dump you should see some of the tiny dusty sports halls most of the Scottish leagues have the pleasure of practicing in. πŸ™‚ There generally isn’t even enough room to lay a full size track. My naive self was completely blown away by the venue in Toronto. I can only imagine I’ll end up exploding if I manage to afford a ticket to Nationals someday.

    With regards to the blow out games, I can imagine they are pretty boring for fans to watch. I suppose with the way the seeding worked, until the teams are ranked this time round everything is completely new and it must have been hard for the organisers to tell what level the different countries taking part were going to be at. Well, other than Team USA and Team Canada, I think it was always assumed they would trounce everyone else. πŸ™‚

    I really hope their are more in the future, and that for the next one Team Scotland take away what they learnt from this one. You are no use to anyone if you’re in the blooming penalty box!! πŸ˜€

    • I know what that’s like. A couple of places I’ve practiced in weren’t exactly the best, From the building to small to have a full track to an outdoor one where the track got soaked when the wind blew water from the sprinklers onto the track. Keep going for it.

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