Friday, July 10, 2009

So Last Millennium

On days when you are frustrated with the tournament series you play be grateful it isn't the Millennium Series. Unless, you know, it is--the Millennium Series, in which case, I feel your pain. The Mil kids are working on twofer right now and since they say bad luck comes in threes I'm waiting for another shoe to drop. (How's that for some brutally mixed metaphors? Trust me, it takes a rare talent.)
The MS recently announced the location of the final leg of this year's series (in July for those keeping score at home and, I must say, not unlike a couple of U.S. leagues.) It will be held in a resort area of Turkey. Rumor has it the league is getting a "good deal" for bringing a series event in. One problem is it will apparently be considerably more expensive for some percentage of the players and teams than a typical-from-past-experience Euro location. For some others it won't. Adding to this complication is the locked division issue which obligates the CPL, SPL and D1 teams to show up. Of course they signed on to that deal without knowing the details in advance. But, what choice did they have if they wanted to compete this season? (A circumstance the league regularly takes advantage of--and the teams and players continue to take.) At a minimum the Turkey decision is proving "controversial" but the MS is used to riding out these sorts of storms.
The Paris Open has also produced some interesting fallout. Apparently the original contracts signed by the locked division teams identified the Paris event as an "open" meaning non-mandatory event. That was later amended to being an open format event that was mandatory even though the results wouldn't count toward series points. Got that? Unless you happened to ref it, as it turns out. It seems the D1 teams that reffed Paris have had their lowest event scores replaced with 100 reffing points which has altered the season standings in D1 and put all the non-reffing teams at a disadvantage. (The MS still uses D1 teams to fill their reffing staffs which both reduces the league's expenses and adds to the coffers because 3 "extra" teams pay for a D1 slot.) The upshot is that a mandatory open event where the actual scores don't count has given max points to the reffing teams to be counted toward the final series points standings. And--and, this just gets better and better--the one locked division team that didn't show up got banned for the rest of the season for trashing their hotel room at the prior event. Except they cleaned up the room and paid for the carpet cleaning and the ban wasn't announced until after they didn't show up for the Paris event.
And you were upset 'cus the pit you had to play in was muddy last event? Count your blessings.


Chris Urbanczyk said...

Touching only on the Turkey event and not the Paris event, I feel it may be the right move but at the wrong time.

I know the goal is to spread paintball and expand the league faster than the E.U. expands membership, but given the current economic climate a move this risky would've been better saved for better times.

I know it's a tough sell to tell players to play in Turkey given the general European attitude towards the country, but it does help to both foster a larger tournament scene there and reward loyal fans. The only way to sell Turkey is obligate teams to compete in it by forcing them to participate in the whole series. I just feel the MS could've chosen a better time, like when the economy is on the upswing.

anonachris said...

The banned-for-not-showing-up-but-we'll-drag-your-team-through-the-mud story is a great one that's worthy of any full time politician. Talk about using a sensitive issue "respect for the sport, blah blah" as an excuse for big time payback for pissing off the league because you didn't show up. It's good to see the say one thing do another rule is spreading to the rest of society. Thanks leaders!

Anyway, while I do count my blessings that we have a down to earth guy in charge of the PSP who tries to play fair at every opportunity, I also recognize he's just one man and counting on a benevolent dictator to make nice only works as long as that benevolent dictator is still around. Some day Lane won't be there and it's probably likely we'll end up with politics and chronyism as usual like in the millennium (instead of being muttered about on a small scale in the background now).

Count your blessings indeed...for now.

anonachris said...

"like when the economy is on the upswing"

It should be obvious to everyone the league is making this decision for them specifically because the economy is on the downswing, they are hurting for money, and they got an exceptional deal that couldn't be matched anywhere else.

If the league wanted to play it right they could have quickly polled the teams, offered them to hold the event in a traditional location for a $75 per player surcharge or hold it in Turkey for the normal price.

Then everyone would be happy they were getting such a good value in Turkey... maybe. They'd probably complain anyway, for good reason.

Baca Loco said...

Actually Chris I think the goal was to secure a more secure bottom line for the MS and all the rest the old two or three birds with one stone upside if it works out.

My count your blessings was a po-mo self-referentially ironic count your blessings. Kinda.
I also think Lane is pretty terrific in part because he usually doesn't run away when he sees me coming. I'm less concerned about a post-Lane PSP mostly becuase I don't think the current national series structure will survive it.

raehl said...

I'm not sure I see the problem with the reffing points - if some teams get to ref once for 100 points, and some teams don't get to ref at all for 100 points, who cares if 15 of the 33 teams get ref points instead of 12 of 33?

Lack of competitive fairness was introduced with the ref points - the only thing that changes is three less teams have the disadvantage of actually having to play for all their points.

Actually, Millennium may be on to something here....

5 event season with 25 teams. Each team only gets to play 4 of the events. Each team has to ref one event. 15 of them ref Millennium events, and the other 10 have to ref events in their home country, which the national league pays Millennium for.

raehl said...

Nevermind, I see the problem with the Paris situation. The Paris teams get to drop their lowest of their four scores, while the other reffing teams have to keep the three scores from the events they get to play.

Baca Loco said...

Yeah, that's the problem, Faction.

Anonymous said...

Well Baca, I´d like to give u some info on he team that got banned. I´m guessing you got the info on how they cleaned up the hotel etc from p8ntballer (actually it doesnt matter where u got it from) but thats just one side of the story. The team has been a constant pain in the arse for the series, having been in fights and cousing troubles over the years. They are NOT as innocent as it may seem over at p8ntballer, and I think their track record was taken in consideration by the MS when banning them. Why im posting this? Cus what you wrote about the MS isnt fair, this team should have been banned long ago in my opinion (have witnessed one stupid fight myself with the team involved).

anonachris said...

If they were banned for this reason perhaps it should have been publically stated as such? As it is now one reason was given, when it was pointed out the reason was perhaps not so good, suddenly other reasons pop-up. Once again we see the political slight of hands at play. I know nothing of the team, maybe they are a bunch of jerks....but there definitely appears to be a hint of payback in this. Had they shown up to Paris would they have been banned? If so, why wasn't the team banned before Paris, as they might have actually shown up in the first place.

Baca Loco said...

Thanks, Anon. NK have at best a mixed history. And everything I've heard is consistent with your version, but--
This really isn't about one team of wannabe bad boys and I think you're missing an important element by focusing on the team. That's why I left that stuff out. What matters here is how the MS conducts its business; ham-fistedly and inconsistently.

Anonymous said...

Totally agree Baca and anonachris! The MS have a long history of bad decisions but just wanted to point out that the team is not a group of innocent angels, your post Baca looked a bit like that to me at least. As you both said, the series has serious problems in how they hadle business like this and I agree with NK that the banning has been hadled poorly, but they sure deserve it in my eyes. Hopefully the kids on the team will learn a lesson from all of this and come back next year hungry and with a more grown up attitude cus they are sure a talented and fun team to watch!

Baca Loco said...

Time for a prediction. NK will NOT change in any substantial way because of this for the simple reason teams take their cues from their leadership.