Thursday, December 4, 2008

Call Me Mr. Curious

Yeah. That's right, I'm ripping off Letterman for the Mr. Curious gimmick and I'm not too proud to admit it. But he doesn't do it anymore so where's the harm? And if I hadn't told you most of you wouldn't have known--kinda like most of the tourney players out there seem oblivious to the fact that the latest incarnation of the NPPL had a grand SIX year run. OMG! What will we do? What will become of paintball?!
I'm curious about a couple of things today. I'm still clinging to the curious timing of the Pacific bankruptcy announcement--at least with respect to the Vegas meeting and the prior (and at the time ongoing) PSP/NPPL dialogue--and I'm also wondering how long it takes to actually file the necessary paperwork with the state of Cali 'cus it doesn't seem to have happened yet.
I'm also curious about the timing of the "leaked" word that some new league is in the works behind the scenes and may involve some well-known faces. I'm struggling here for the right word--but it seems almost "unprofessional." Maybe I just don't get it but at best this venture is months out and doesn't it take some of the wind out of the sails of any official future announcement? I'd want to spring this on an unsuspecting paintball world and make the biggest splash possible. Unless of course I was hoping to encourage ex-NPPL teams without a home to wait a while before deciding what to do next. Could also simply be that nobody in paintball can keep their mouth shut about anything.
And that's just the way the VFTD likes it. Here's where you jump in with the latest gossip and speculation.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Walker has been working on the "alternative" league from the moment he was fired from the NPPL/XPSL. Remember, he SOLD PPP the NPPL/XPSL, so he has money to buy it back again. And he'll do it at rock bottom prices.

Anonymous said...

Actually, he only sold the XPSL to PP, and the XPSL had outstanding debt to be paid off so there really wasnt a lot of money passing hands in that transaction.

Joe R said...

I think if anything the lack of filing of the Chapter 7 papers is just a legal delay in doing so. Close to two months ago there were rumors going around that the NPPL was in serious trouble. Walker had been fired well before Commander Cup, and for good reasons. Although the stealing was some news, his mismanagement of the NPPL had shown through for some time already. More significantly, there were preliminary talks (read: rumors, but from people actually in the know, not random persons on the Internet) that the NPPL was either going bankrupt or finally working with the PSP in some capacity. I think the reason for the filing is that NPPL management sans-Walker realized how big of a hole they were in, and accordingly determined that there wasn't a way to climb out of that hole in a timeframe that wouldn't leave them even deeper in debt.

This supposed 'new league with well-known faces' seems to be from faces that have caused many of the problems for the NPPL. Even before the NPPL declared bankruptcy, it was pretty well accepted that Walker most likely wouldn't be employed by anyone currently in tournament paintball. Accordingly, because professional paintball is the size that it is, do you really think that any team that has been playing in either league for a year or more would partake in a league run by people known for not being able to effectively manage their league?

Baca Loco said...

Part of the answer may be the "extras" that Pacific held (holds) like the mag, the website, the redundant equipment--at least insofar as the PSP was concerned.

raehl said...

Pacific Paintball spent a LOT of money. And they owned NPPL, XPSL, a paintball field, and PB2X. Of all of those, only the paintball field could have any positive cash flow.

They simply ran out of money. When the bank account balance is near-zero, there's no immediate hope of money coming in, and no more capital to be raised, bankruptcy is the only alternative. And I doubt even Pacific Paintball knew where they were at until just recently - they had two years of Shawn obfuscating what was going on to undo.

Also, heard today that Huntington Beach has banned paintball from the beach for environmental reasons. If that was the case, it would have made NPPL sponsorship a near impossible sell.

raehl said...

I did find some news coverage where it sounds more like PP canceled and then they talked about the ongoing environmental concerns.

OA said...

Nobody could have predicted the economic downturn we are in, not even a venture fund like the one behind pacific paintball. My guess, this is strictly a bet that the economy is going to get much worse, and paintball is going to slip even farther out of the top of peoples mind, even for dedicated players. Why wouldn't have filed chapter 11 and tried to restructure otherwise? Because, the road to profitability has no end in sight right now.

The sad part is, they are probably right. said...

For what its worth, we have known for years that this downturn was coming. Any financial analyst worth his salt has said that the growing gap between the credit to earnings ratio would create a MAJOR problem. Add in several derivatives management firms outright FAILING (1 dollar becomes 10, derivatives exponentially increasing that by a factor of 100), decreased consumer spending, a collapse in the home loan sector and most importantly, people living WELL beyond their means...etc. etc. etc. I could go on for days, but the fact is we are going to feel enjoy our "consumer winter" for years to come.

Ron Paul & Warren Buffet have been warning us about this for nearly a DECADE. The fact that the PB Industry decided to suck down the blue pills by the bottle is no ones fault but our own. Or hey, maybe this just goes back to the argument that having people with degrees in PAINTBALL running this shit show lead us down the wrong path. Not that it really matters though, it seems that every sector, globally, is hurting (with the exception of the locksmithing/security sector and foreclosure law firms) across the board.

The reality of the situation is that paintball is an enjoyable hobby, much like that of f1 racing.

We need to stop focusing on "selling out" and just focus on running enjoyable events. The powers that be keep chasing the proverbial holy grail (TV) and its done nothing but split the industry and cause harm to our sport.


Anonymous said...

What the hell does a degree have to do with it?

Lawrence said...

im pretty sure he means just people who know paintball inside and out, and i have to agree. i wouldnt want the head of McDonalds running the show for the american auto industry -- it just doesnt make sense.

Chris said...


McDonalds stock is at/near all time highs for its entire history. GM stock is at/near all time lows for its entire history.

I am willing to bet that McDonalds corporate leadership is not comparatively better at burger flipping than GM leadership is at car building. In other words having a good leader at the helm does not mean the leader has to be an expert as long as he is a good leader.

I don't care if the manager of the manager of the manager of the managers of the people who build cars knows about car building inside and out.

Now back to paintball, we don't exactly have organizational structures like that, but your burgers to cars analogy is flawed. I would hope GM's investors would be happy to have the CEO of McDonalds take over.

The "degrees" have nothing to do with an investor wanting to buy a losing league/website/magazine and try to make money by combining them and selling advertising.

Lawrence said...

haha, ok, ok, fair enough -- it was the most contrasting thing i could think of ;)