Saturday, November 22, 2008

Last Word on Relegation

However the final decision from the NPPL shakes out it may not matter much in the larger scheme of things. Be it relegation and promotion or just promotion with no relegation or some one time only expansion to an even number of teams ('cus 18 + 3 = 21) or perhaps the NPPL might say that Philly abandoned their spot and consider them out while choosing not to relegate Dogs and Rage which would put the division at an even 20. And since nobody actually "owns" their spot (and the NPPL can, as a practical matter, do whatever they want) that would leave only one guy unhappy and solve a host of other problems. Admittedly that option would also leave a bunch of team owners more nervous than they already are (or ought to be.) Or who knows, they could opt for some absurd variant involving a clown car, a bunch of rubber noses and calliope music.
I find myself in substantial agreement with be smart's comments from the previous relegation post with regards what's coming. I doubt there will be any relegation though if they are gonna promote I think the pro division is better off also relegating and not being diluted with the addition of more teams (with the greater likelihood of drop-outs.) And for those who like predictions I'm predicting a pro division of 24 teams that never has 24 teams competing in any single event and ends the season around the old 18 teams mark, plus or minus 1 or 2.
The sponsorship issues are even worse in some respects than portrayed--there is little doubt with no direct league involvement in deals--that paint will be a critical issue next season for virtually all the pro teams. Beyond that a lot of the sponsors will delay committing themselves to new deals. The old window of time these things used to happen in no longer applies and teams will occasionally find themselves lowballed at the last minute with few, if any, alternatives but to accept. Beyond that some pro teams are gonna find themselves out in the cold.
In a related prediction: At Commander's Cup (Did the NPPL downplay the whole Cup thing compared to the Pure Promotions days?) there were 8 teams competing pro that are also NXL teams. (At the start of the year it was eleven.) I'm not seeing all eight in both leagues to start next year. Something between 3 and 6 teams competing in both is about right and if you want to pin me down I'm gonna be optimistic and say 5.
As for other decisions that will be made I expect four events but I have doubts about no entry, no prize package [in the pro division] (though it's been talked around) and I see some real problems trying to integrate Semi & D1 mostly related to classifying eligible players and dealing with relegated pros. It might however provide a rationale for restricting (or eliminating) future relegation. Not saying either one won't happen but the teams are ambivalent about aspects of the former and the later will be a problem. Largely because there's already resistance to moving up on the part of a fair number of teams for whatever reasons and top loading a *new* D1 with relegated pros won't be encouraging to most. Of course participation in the lower divisions is already soft.

*Here's a slightly o/t question: How many relegated pro teams competed the following season in semi-pro while maintaining a core roster?*

On the plus side that's not really the worst of it. One of these days I'll screw up my courage, put on my big boy pants and tell you what the NPPL is really all about. I won't be needing my Magic 8-ball (Try again later) nor will I be staring deeply into Mama Lambini's crystal ball. Call it a prediction. Call it a prognostication. Call it an outrage. Call it unbelievable.


Anonymous said...

#1: One pro team was relegated and continued to compete with its core roster (Bushwackers). And, as you know, they were subsequently promoted the next year.

#2: I think the NPPL starts next year with fewer than 18 pro teams regardless of promotion and relegation. I think some teams will find their seasons disappear all at once when the paint sponsorships come out.

Baca Loco said...

#1 I wasn't sure about the roster. There's more Wackers in the NPPL than cockroaches in a NY apartment when the lights are turned on.(No, I'm not calling Wackers roaches.)

Anonymous said...

When I say "core roster" I meant the larger Bushwacker organization. I don't know if the guys who were relegated where the same as the ones who were promoted.