Yes, post mortem. Live with it. (There's a gag in there somewhere.) First, I'd like to commend the PSP for being able to regroup after storms demolished the venue & set-up. I'd like to be the first but I'm already too late as the PSP glowingly commended itself in one of the (I counted ten) email blasts sent out in the last week. (Despite the snarky joke they did do an amazing job with an assist from the CPX folks.) But at what point does the barrage of email (e-messages?) become obnoxious spam despite any informative value individual messages contain? I'm just asking--but if the PSP hasn't crossed that line they are dancing on it like the whole cast of Riverdance.
CPX was an adequate venue with the only real weakness being the walk from the parking lot(s) to the fields unless you were a vendor or lied about being a vendor--and vendor parking was pretty well packed every day. Draw your own conclusions. (It's where I parked every day.)
Prior to the event I expressed the opinion that I expected something of a repeat of Galveston in that I thought a lot of the divisional play in Race 2-X would result in games going to time. A review of the numbers only partially support my expectations. (And while the raw numbers don't measure up to Galveston's data there were lots of very long, drawn out points played in Chicago. Fortunately most of the Sunday webcast matches were also very close contests which made for some real suspense and drama.) In D4 only 8% of prelim matches went to time. That increased to 25% in Sunday play. In D3 22% of the prelims went to time with an increase to 44% on Sunday, In D2 34% went to time in the prelims with the percentages increasing to 50% on Sunday. In D1 36% went to time in the prelims increasing to 83% on Sunday. And in the Pro bracket 10% of the prelims and 66% of Sunday play went to time.
The return of the webcast was (or should have been considered) a great success. With limited cameras and angles Patrick and the crew did their usual outstanding job--and Matty continues to be the Voice of Paintball. The only possible weakness in the webcast is that I haven't yet had an opportunity to bore a video audience into submission. I broached the subject with Matty but alas, nothing came of it. At this point I have to assume everyone is just plain skeered. (I'm a loose cannon you know.) Perhaps next time, hoping there is a next time as the webcasts and YouTube video matches do a first class job of presenting competitive paintball in a very positive way. How much real measurable difference that makes today I don't think anyone can say.
There was, as is always the case, more yammering from the cheap seats about the weather, about going to Chicago in early summer, blah blah blah. Short of CPX building Thunderdome--two teams enter, one team leaves--you guys can have that idea gratis--with only four events on the seasonal schedule these days the Midwest needs an event. Traditionally Chicago has been a strong PSP location and while end of June probably isn't written in stone anywhere, if not Chicago, and if not then, where & when? Of course once the novelty of a New Jersey event wears off, day after tomorrow, I expect we'll hear the same sort of whining about the heat & humidity of Jersey in August too.
Oh, and I'm an official sell out. I took free swag from John of PBN. So the next time--the first time?--I have something positive to say about PBN you lot will know why. John hooked me up with a T-shirt soaked in Ed's tears 'cus VFTD isn't nice to them. The thing is PBN is a perfectly adequate all-encompassing portal for paintball peeps and serves a useful, perhaps even vital community service even if not everyone agrees with their occasional Draconian methods. What can I say, the tears moved me.
The other thing that moved me was missing Sunday play in the PSP for the first time since WC 2008. There are a number of really good teams--as there always are. It's never enough to be good as the finals match between Dynasty and Legion demonstrated. Both teams made mistakes. Neither team was dominating or perfect but both teams were confident and both teams were prepared to give it everything they had to win. It's an old sports cliche that between evenly matched teams the team that wants it more will win. I'm not totally convinced but it does speak to the idea that there is much more to winning than talent & skill.
Lastly, when the videos of the Pro matches go up check out TBD's Saturday matches for some sweet new gear they were sporting. (It's hiding in plain sight.) If you like what you see there's more, much more coming.