If you want the official story click on the title for a link to the NPPL's press release. I'm cranking this out in a hurry as I've put a bug in a few ears hoping to hear back on some of the details of this appointment--and perhaps some more merger talk rumors. And I want to get this written and posted before that information comes in--if it does--especially if any of it carries the caveat that it can't be discussed on VFTD.
First, the timing is exquisite--and leads me to believe a couple of things have happened recently. More when I can confirm. (I know, you hate the cryptic stuff, but it is what it is. You hate that expression, too. I know.)
Through some process that didn't include all the owners or their reps somebody at the NPPL added Rick Alessandri to the Board of Directors. Mr. Alessandri, who currently works for Univision, was a past VP at ESPN and Managing Director of the X Games though exactly when to when is unstated. Included are a couple of made up, crafted "quotes" about how Mr. Alessandri was instrumental in getting HB 2011 on ESPN3 and how excited Mr. Alessandri is to be in a position to assist the league to "new heights." Which, admittedly, sounds swell but what exactly does it mean?
Was Mr. Alessandri also instrumental in blowing off ESPN3 afterwards when they wouldn't pony up cash for more ESPN3 broadcasts? Is he in a position to help repair that decision? No doubt he knows a bunch of other peeps in the extreme sports biz and that's surely a plus and I'm glad he seems to have enough free time from his other jobs to help out--but help out exactly how? There's talk of being on the cusp of major growth and expanding the game of Paintball to new levels while taking it to new heights but for the life of me I can't make heads or tails out of that gibberish. But it sounds promising, doesn't it?
Could this be a good thing? Sure, but without any concrete details it's just a variation on the same old story. Fingers crossed and hope for the best, I guess.
And of course I can't help wondering what's in it for Mr. Alessandri. Is he just motivated by his love of paintball or is there something else? And if there's a payoff at the end of the rainbow why align with the NPPL? 'Cus those are the guys he knows?
I know, none of my cynicism matters if he comes through--whatever that hell that's supposed to mean--and it's true--but I can't help being curious particularly in light of other events this week.
[Disclaimer: first I heard of this was in today's press release email & and I know nothing about it other than was in the email. As noted above I hope to learn more and if I do I will update this post.]
UPDATE: The word is Mr. Alessandri approached the NPPL expressing an interest in continuing to work with the league and given his contacts it seemed a win, win sort of situation. I am informed Mr. Alessandri is not an owner and will function something like a headhunter, earning a piece of any deals he brokers. Which really would be a win, win for the NPPL if Mr. Alessandri has any success.
Btw, I still despise the practice of using press releases to say as little as possible while trying to blow smoke up my skirt, er, kilt. (Real men wear kilts.) I try not to take it personally but would really have been so difficult to simply tell the truth--gussied up a bit, of course. Oh, well.