Time for you kids to learn to read between the lines. The proverbial little bird has tweeted in Mr. Curious's good ear--he's deaf as a post in the other--and passed along some intriguing info. VFTD is not however gonna pass it along to you--hence why you need to learn to read between the lines.
There is no united PBIndustry front but active elements are once again pushing for the one league solution. As noted before without cooperation amongst the paint manufacturers each in turn is afraid to act unilaterally. Which is why NPPL 3.0 wasn't strangled in the cradle and why past leverage was applied to try and compel the leagues to sort things out amongst themselves. (Which they did once. Just before Pacific Paintball declared bankruptcy. General terms were agreed to over a weekend. On Monday Pacific called it quits. Or something quite like that.)
Assuming there's renewed dialogue what are the pros and cons of the leagues making some sort of deal. (Btw, VFTD is assuming the future one league would be the PSP with the NPPL merging and not the other way round.)
The NPPL owners, however many of them there are now--is it over 20?--get a piece of a viable national tournament series with the world's most prestigious event in a format played virtually everywhere else in the paintball world. But only a piece. Certainly a non-controlling piece at that but one that is likely to include the so-called place (or places) at the table as might be agreed upon. So they get a real stake and a real voice.
What do the NPPL owners lose? Control over their own tournament series.
What do NPPL owners bring to the table? They are going to claim they bring years of experience in dealing with potential outside sponsors, lots of contacts, the HB venue and a significant number of pro teams. They in fact bring the pro teams--a number of whom do not play the format. As to the rest what value does one assign years of failure? And as for the beach venue if there is no NPPL the date is open. If there is a NPPL the lack doesn't seem to have been too difficult for the PSP to overcome in the past.
What does the PSP bring to the table? The more popular format. The larger series. The World Cup. Superior leadership and staff with a history of getting the job done. General organization from Raehl's APPA to Tim's reffing program. A viable tournament series.
What does the PSP lose? Current owners may lose some of the value of their share(s). Take on new partners who may prove to be divisive. (Too many chefs and all that.)
What does the PSP gain? Unified industry support and at least a temporary monopoly on national events. A significant number of pro teams highly motivated to help make the league succeed.
That's a major over-simplification but you get the idea. There could be something in it for both sides if rational and appropriate terms can be agreed to. (I figure it's ten to one against.)
Is a merger the be all, end all that fixes all competitive paintball's ills? No, but it could be the move that gets us a little closer.
And just to show y'all my heart is in the right place I'ma tell you how to make this work. (Which is probably the kiss of death.) There are seven shares split among the PSP owners today. One of those belongs to a giant of the PBIndustry. That industry member "sells" its share to the NPPL. The result A) gets a major industry player out of the tournament business, and B) doesn't dilute the value of the existing shares. The "cost" is nominal, the industry player favors the merge and buys a lot of general goodwill in the process. The PSP then restores HB as the season's lead off event but with a twist. The logistics of trying to put on a full fledged PSP event on a prestige beach are (almost) certainly a losing proposition. However, retaining the showcase value of the event would be the perfect bookend to WC. So split the difference and offer a capped event designed to showcase world class competitive paintball. And return to five seasonal events. Maybe it's just the pros, D1 & D2 in limited numbers. Whatever works. But if it is restricted that's all the more motivation for up and coming teams to meet the requirements and be included.
One league supported by a united industry is far better positioned to weather the current tough times than two leagues with split support.