Over the weekend we all had a lot going on, but when I could, I would try to catch at least a few minutes of the Golden Bowl.
After all, WCR was my first modern Derby home team, and they are just so good at what they do: creating a great home league, training future stars of today and tomorrow, some of the best PR of all the leagues, community service and acknowledged as one of the real positive aspects of Chicago. and of course my Derby wife #1, Val Capone, has been a big part of all of this.
(shirts available through Seltzer/Brand)
We know that I complain a bit (!) about the often lack of action in games and have surmised that may be one of the reasons that many leagues have suffered loss of fan support.
But the WCR is a top ranked team, and the play I say over the weekend for all the teams was fast and furious, great blocking and jamming and all that fans could hope for. And the teams were very equally matched in most cases, and Chicago ably defended its home territory against higher ranked leagues.
But where were the fans!
The UIC Pavilion I rank as one of the best that any league calls home. It is modern, close to downtown, easily accessible by car or public transportation and knowing how great WCR’s PR is, I was surprised to see a virtually empty building every time I turned on the games.
Did this tournament not have any meaning to the fans after the regular season Ivy King Cup championship has been awarded? And how often do you get to see WCR, Denver, BAD, Texas, etc play in one weekend? I would love to get someone’s explanation…….
Now about the 4 regional tournaments coming up. Windyman (www.windymanrd.wordpress.com) has just written the most in-depth analysis of the whole schedule and thought behind it, I won’t even try to summarize or explain it, but I do have the following comments:
The attempt to balance the regions based on somewhat specious rankings has led to a serious geographic issue for many leagues. The average distance a league has to travel to get to Salem, OR is over 1500 miles, with ironically Rose City not being there, but traveling across the country….this is just one example.
Unless I am wrong, three teams out of each regional qualify for the trip to bratwurst town. Regardless of where they are assigned, the cream will rise to the top. Instead of forcing volunteer unpaid players to spend many of thousands of dollars to get the regionals, wouldn’t just putting them in the one closest to them make more sense. (The NCAA did that until a fairly recent time, and remember, these colleges all pay the transportation, lodging and food for their athletes).
And what about the fans? They certainly are not going to travel so far.
Even if the democratic WFTDA members voted for this strange plan, I personally think it imposes an unnecessary hardship on the amazing athletes who sacrifice so much to skate Derby, and are now asking for money on go fund me, Brown Paper Tickets, and other funding sources.
And if they are the top teams in their region, then they do this again for Milwaukee. If the leagues don’t care, then that is all that matters. I personally would rather go to a regional as a fan where the teams I support would be involved.
Hopefully I will see you at Rollercon and at our marketing seminar (Saturday, noon, room 114) we certainly will be discussing how to increase attendance and other fun stuff.
And I will also be at the Roll Model booth #24 in the main arena, with Seltzer brand/gamegear and at the Brown Paper Tickets booth in the West hall. let’s take a picture.