Monday, January 10, 2011

The Monday Poll

The pieces of the 2011 major league season are beginning to fall into place. Sure, there's a few pieces still missing but with the most recent PSP and Millennium announcements it certainly feels more like something is happening. In trying to keep track of the pro divisions for 2011 the numbers are uncertain--last I heard the NPPL was hoping for a baker's dozen while the PSP wonders where 8 teams, 10 would be better, are going to come from and CPL losses continue to mount. Even if the MS doesn't relegate the two lowest ranked teams the shake-up will be profound with perhaps upwards of 40% of the 2011 division being new teams or else a reduced division. Bullets are out. Menace is done. Joy are finished. The league has scheduled the second event on top of the previously announced second NPPL event which presents Dynasty a real rostering challenge at best. (It's almost like the MS wanted to handicap Dynasty or something.) And yesterday rumors leak that Chilli Peppers Riga may also call it quits and that Syndicate have suffered a severe roster shake-up. As the pro ranks everywhere continue to dwindle it brings us to this week's Monday Poll question about the merits of a pro divisions and what makes a major league series major league.

UPDATE: What we have here is my failure to communicate. When the set-up question proposes no pro divisions in the current major league series I didn't mean there were no pro divisions period, only that they were no longer a part of the current major leagues, ie; PSP, NPPL & MS. Does that clarification alter your response?

Imagine there are no pro divisions left in any of the major league series (PSP, NPPL & MS) Would you be ...
More inclined to compete in a major league series?
Less inclined?
Wouldn't make any difference.

I'll be very interested in the reasons why you voted the way you did if any of you can bothered to respond in the comments. What is a major league series if it isn't about the pros and representing the best the game can be? Or is the value enhanced if the focus of attention spreads further down the am divisions?

Monday Poll in Review
Last week's Monday Poll wanted to know how much tournament paintball respondents intended to play in 2011. I don't know that the responses were either encouraging or discouraging but the way the concentrations of votes spread out didn't suggest any particular trends--like a strong move towards regional play, for example. The largest vote getter at 27% was the somewhat non-committal "as much as I can but probably not as much as I'd like." It would be interesting to follow-up on that in comments and see what people think will be the major factor in playing less events than they would like. The second most votes (20%) went to "will be taking some time off." Likewise, why will you be taking some time off? 9% said they would be getting back into tourney play this year after some time out of the game. Is that due to PSP changes perhaps or is it more likely those returnees will be playing local or regional instead? 13% specifically identified their regional series as the one they wanted to compete in while local series (or events) pulled only 3%. 7% expect to play some local events plus one major league event and a comparable 7% intend to play in both major leagues without committing to each complete series. Another 7% will play some local events plus World Cup. 1% will do more reffing. 3% are going to switch formats though from what to what is unspecified. And lastly (in something of a surprise to me) nobody voted for playing NCPA with their college team.

17 comments:

Don Saavedra said...

The only division I would care about being present in any series in which I consider playing is the one I qualify for. That's if I were to play...

Were I just a spectator (and so far, that's all I've ever been), then I only care about the Pro field. I couldn't be bothered to watch any other division, much like I don't care a lick about college sports. I want to see the best and I tend to get frustrated watching sloppy play.

Reiner Schafer said...

Don, I'm with you there, but isn't that the case for just about every spectator in every sport? Unless you've got a kid playing in something other than pro, why would anyone want to watch anything but the top level?

Baca, the reason that there were 0 votes from the college crowd is obviously that the well read college students don't hang out here. ;-)

Don Saavedra said...

Bowl Games wouldn't be worth millions to colleges if everybody just watched the NFL.

So, no, not in every sport.

Kyle said...

If there were no pro teams, then D1 (or whatever it was called in this hypothetical world) would be "best of the best". I'm nowhere near a pro level, so I don't know the numbers, but I would have to think that at least some would continue to play if a pro structure did not exist and that talent would move to whatever is the new top division.

Personally, it doesn't affect what I will do either way. Like first response, as long as my division is there, I'll try to face competition beyond my regional area.

raehl said...

Lots of kids went to high school football games who didn't play football. Although one wonders how many would go to the football games instead of the soccer games if suddenly the two sports popularity at the Pro level mirrored Europe.

Reiner Schafer said...

"Bowl Games wouldn't be worth millions to colleges if everybody just watched the NFL."

Ah yes. I forgot about the American's enthusiasm for College sports. We don't have that here in Canada.

Volkan said...

I think that it would be equally interesting to think that what would happend if none of the current pro players played any more. That could be potensially a positive thing.:) I can imagine there are lots of potensially new and young pro players in the market, and it must be very difficult for them to be visible, get noticed and so on as long as those already known names exists in rosters ;)

Back to your question:
If no pro division existed, it would be recreated after some time because the human nature is competetive, and will try to be the best. And the goal will always be to play a pro division/pro team, call it whatever you guys want :)

If it is true about the Chilli Pepper, it looks like maybe 1/3 of the CPL will be french ... im not sure if it is such a cool thing :)

Missy Q said...

I think there are fewer and fewer people bothered about the Pro teams these days. I see this as a result of diminishing industry participation within the pro ranks. The teams are not getting marketed by their sponsors. I feel this is because more and more of the sponsors are veiwing the teams as an expense rather than an asset, which is to be understood. The shine has gone, almost altogether, from the pro-teams, and now only those that market themselves are maintaining any kind of profile at all. Some of this may be down to the cocky air of entitlement some Pro teams have adopted - if they feel they need to do nothing for their sponsors, then isn't it natural for the sponsor to eventually feel the same way about them?
I mean, who is the most marketable team right now? Who is the team that the industry are clamouring to sponsor? I really have no idea. It doesn't seem like there is a great option out there for a marketing guy to work with.

Reiner Schafer said...

Who is there to market a team to? There is virtually zero interest outside of paintball players. 90% of those that do call themselves paintball players care very little about competitive paintball and could care less about who is winning, who is losing, who is playing, and who is on the team. Therefore the "market" is very small. If I were a marketing guy I'd probably choose a scenario team to bring into focus even if most of them are out of shape and accompishing very little other than playing for fun. It would be fiscally more responsible.

Reiner Schafer said...

Baca, just read your update. Are you suggesting that the pro teams would be in a separate league of their own, much like major leagues in other sports and the current major leagues would be less "major", more like national minor leagues?

Baca Loco said...

Reiner
Sure, if that's how you choose to look at it. I'm more interested in this as a thought experiment so in a sense it doesn't matter where the pro teams are, just that they are no longer part of the so-called major league series.
I suspect most respondents won't really be able to separate their perception of the major leagues from the pro presence.
It is also interesting to note how commenters are reading this. Some from a players perspective, some from an industry perspective but so far none from an historical perspective. It wasn't too many years ago when a large part of the appeal of playing a national series was a chance to compete against the pros. :-)

Anonymous said...

Baca, I can distinctly remember the desire to play a national tourney just to measure up against the pros. The nervousness at 10 seconds before facing off against Bad Company during my first AmB outing. Never forget that. Nor later that year going head to head with Strange on the Badlands Zipper field or putting it to Avalanche at Cup then suddenly losing out of nowhere (a few games prior to the 'sniper' incident).

Point being, I don't remember a single game I ever played that year unless it was against a pro team. Can't imagine paying tons of cash to play forgettable paintball. I can do that for less at the regional level.

Don Saavedra said...

Does anybody non-Pro face up against the Pro teams now?

Baca Loco said...

Only if you count the tiny D1 divisions of late in NPPL 3.0. The league has plugged them into Pro prelims round in the last three events of last year. I think. Don't remember it happening at HB last year. But otherwise, no, not in years.

big_murph1986 said...

If there is no Pro Division, then most teams would play their local/regional series. There's no reason to travel to national events if they don't feature the pinnacle of the sport. D1 teams would have to figure something out (maybe they could be the "undercard" wherever your pro teams are playing).

Dan said...

I don't know if that's true. There will always be the teams that are always on the podium locally. I'd get sick of always beating the same kids into the ground. I'd become stagnant in terms of skill. The national event give me a chance to continue to improve, a goal to reach.
The pros mean very little to me. I go to events to play, not watch. I may watch a few games if I'm bored, or to see what successful teams are doing to win, but for the most part its just another division to me.
To answer succinctly, Pros or not, I'm still in national tournaments.

Dan said...

I also voted in the most popular category. I will play all 4 PSP's, 1-3 NPPL's. After that I try to swing as many local events as possible. The local events are the ones that are tricky to play. since national events are my teams focus, most of the guys end up saving their money for only those, and gathering 5 guys to play a local and be competitive can be tricky.