Days 63 - 69
The USPL's first entry deadline passed yesterday without any significant bump in teams moving from registered to paid. Registrations stand at 103 with 35 paid including the 16 pro teams (owners) as the OC Bushwackers finally made their participation official. Team registration is scheduled to close on the 25th and final arrangements with sponsors and vendors must fall into that time frame, at the latest, as well.
Is there a must abort date? You know, if things ain't working as expected is there a date where the league is prepared to cancel and re-schedule or does this go off no matter what? I ask because it's not looking great, is it? In terms of the future of the USPL and major league paintball in general would it be better to postpone or roll the dice now? Hey, it could end up being a completely moot point but realistically what happens if the pro teams are expected to pony up for event losses in order to continue?
Over in Euroland the Millennium Series is pleased to announce a full D2 division (32 teams) for Malaga--their first event of the season. What they aren't announcing is that the locked divisions aren't looking quite so positive--so far. The CPL has 9 of 16 teams on board. The SPL has 21 of 32 signed up and D1 has 11 of 32 in place. They have a bigger window given the event is scheduled for the end of April but there have been a number of spots in the locked divisions (CPL, SPL, D1) available for months with few takers.
Paint continues to be a serious concern and there's some interesting news from Euroland. Pharmagel is no longer producing paintballs which has forced Tomahawk to contract with the manufacturers out of Romania. (Which, I am informed, means there are only 2 paint manufacturers left that are based in Europe.) In a possibly related bit of info Tomahawk has yet to sign on as an MS sponsor. Over on this side of the pond word is Procaps has cut employees at both Archon and APS. And rumor has it that Procaps has reduced their production tooling from 12 machines to 6.
It would be interesting to know what current production levels are and what the max capacity of the remaining machines is.
On the international front I have no news on what, if any, advances were made on behalf of the UPBF amid the meetings supposedly taking place on Kish Island, Iran during the recent PALM event.