Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Further Adventures of Small Ball

Or, the Rise or Demise of Joy Division?

You may recall after Phoenix I reported on a conversation I had about small ball and more specifically GI Milsim's future plans. At that time the North American focus looked to be aimed directly at the mil-sim market--which still seems to be the case.

But Euroland looks a bit different. A new French team Boost Air Rennes joined the SPL--bought their way in--were handed an open spot--whatever--sponsored by Paint Distribution, the French distributor of GI Milsim in order, one presumes, to give 50 cal paint and guns a boost. (Yes, I did that on purpose.) They appear to have played one match and I'm quite certain that short of a podium finish, SPL or not, nobody cares. (Although I suppose it's conceivable that French forums are full of Boost Air Rennes watchers--but I doubt it.)

Which is where Joy comes into play. (I am assuming the Nanos in question are of the small ball variety although I have yet to receive official confirmation. Far as I can tell GI Milsim do not produce a 68 cal version of the Nano.) It's a no-brainer that Joy has the profile to make their use of small ball and the Nano marker a story of interest regardless of results--and they have a history of being one of the CPL's top teams as well. That makes Dark Sports interest obvious and standard operating procedure for a new company intent on promoting its products. On the flip side this could be a make or break situation for tournament small ball. If Joy don't continue with their consistently high results won't small ball get the blame, deserved or undeserved?

Of greater interest (to me) is what it says about Joy (and Angel Paintball Sports) and sponsorship in the present environment. Over the years no team has shown greater brand and sponsor loyalty than Joy in their relationship with Angel but the present realities (at both Angel and Joy) are compelling changes. It's swell to say Joy will continue using Angels in non-MS events but the simple fact is the MS is Joy's showcase series and the majority of fans will only follow those results. And how does a team of Joy's rep and longevity start a season without a paint deal? And how is it Angel allowed things to come to this pass? Doesn't this mean that either they simply aren't able to support Joy the way they once did or that they couldn't justify making that level of commitment?

Tourney ball doesn't need anymore cautionary tales. What we need are some new success stories--which leaves me a little torn when it comes to the future of small ball in the competitive paintball arena.

UPDATE: Sems there's some contradictory info out there. For links and the latest check out the comments.


Jii said...

According to Magued Idris, the sponsorship between GI and Joy covers apparel and air systems this year, and Joy will continue using APS markers and the new goggle system in all tournament series.

A Pic from Malaga that clearly shows the Joy edition Angel in use.

Magued commented on the GI news and offered the clarification of the extent on, a swedish portal.

Jii said...

Oh, and the deal covers "paint distributed by dark sports". Dark sports does distribute .68 as well, so there seems to be no obligation to use .50

Baca Loco said...

Interesting Jii. A Dark Sports rep told me Joy will be shooting Nanos in the MS and that they didn't in Malaga because the a "new" Nano wasn't ready yet but is expected by Bitburg. (That, btw, is what prompted me to ask for confirmation that the Nanos in question are small ball markers.) Along with fact you noted that Dark Sports sells both 68 aND 50.
Regardless of the caliber there seems to be a contradiction between what DS is saying and what Mags said.

Jii said...

Contradiction seems to be the theme of all things GI... :)

anonachris said...

Strange. If I were Magued and Angel I wouldn't be happy about a different sponsor and coming in claiming (lying/misleading/confusing) customers into thinking Dark Sports was supporting Joy with something they aren't.

They're advertising their product using the Joy name in a way they didn't pay for the rights to use it. Not only that, but they're actively harming Joy's most visible and long standing partner in the process. Assuming the reports above are true of course, and Magued just isn't running damage control.


Anonymous said...

It's worthy to note that Joy's new jersey does not include an Angel logo.

Justin@ProPaintball said...

Wow, this is all very interesting.

Looks like the ANGEL logo is much smaller than in years or around the location your harness belt would be worn. Looks like its under NXe, under StyleSupply s/2 (Jersey maker) and on the bottom of the list. Hmm..

Janek said...

Actually there's no Angel logo on that jersey. Only the A-Ball logo which I think is a joint venture between Magued and APS.

Anonymous said...

Tables are turned? Now Magued is jumping all over the toes of his new sponsor by saying he's not using his new sponsors guns/smallballs?

Jii said...

I think that the DS rep may have been just a bit misinformed. At least the original press release on foes clearly state that Joy will continue to support Angel.

Link to the press release:!