Archive for the ‘Game Preview’ Category

WFTDA North Central Playoffs 2011: My Kind of Town

The playoffs? Yeah, I guess they’re worth talking about.

Monumental Mayhem is the last of the four smallish WFTDA Big 5 playoff weekends. Hosted by the Naptown Roller Girls, this event will be the last chance for teams to get their foot in the door at the WFTDA Championships in Denver.

I know a lot of things about Denver (chief among them: it’s cold there), but I don’t know that much about the city of Naptown. However, after some exhaustive research on my part, I have determined that Naptown is not the name of an actual place but is, in fact, a nickname for the city of Indianapolis, Ind. (That would have been much easier to figure out if they were called the Naptown Colts…actually, that would be a lot more appropriate this year, huh?)

Indy is my kind of town. I’m a huge racing fan, and the world knows of no more an iconic racing circuit than the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It’s 100 years old, and still looks as beautiful as the day she was born. One of the things on my bucket list is to travel to this racing mecca and take in ‘The 500’ live and in person; a little roller derby on the side wouldn’t hurt, either.

Racing and roller derby. Two things I love, one town to see them in.

There’s a lot of derby to be played this weekend, and with a lot of teams in the North Central closer to each other in terms of relative skills and abilities, don’t expect an automatic 1-2-3 podium finish for the top three qualifiers heading into the tournament. While one team should get in pretty easily, once you start looking behind the leader you may find another upset run in the making…the question is, who might it come from this year?

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WFTDA West Region Playoffs 2011: Westerns are the New Westerns

Well, that was an uneventful start to The Big 5, wasn’t it? Let’s get this playoff train back on its tracks.

Next stop: The West. Destination: Portland, Oregon.

Woah, woah there, Mr. Conductor! Wait a second. The West? Portland?? That’s not the first place that springs to mind when I think of the Wild Wild West. If we’re going to be previewing the roller derby “westerns,” then we’ve got to talk about the men (and women) that made the west what it is today. I’m talking about cowboys. Real cowboys. Jesse James. Billy the Kid. Wild Bill Hickok. Wyatt Earp. Calamity Jane, too. That’s the west that comes to my mind.

Unfortunately, I don’t know all that much about the history of the “real” west, or real cowboys. But I do know quite a bit about the fake real west: Clint Eastwood, John Wayne, Roy Rodgers, other Hollywood cowboys and the films they starred in contributed much to society. Or at least, enough for me to refer to these fine pieces of historical work in an attempt to preview Bridgetown Brawl, the 2011 WFTDA West Region playoffs.

After all, with how closely matched so many of the top teams in the west are, it’s to be expected that a lot of games will wind up being shootouts. And what self-respecting western wouldn’t have a hell of a great shootout?

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WFTDA East Region Playoffs 2011: The Juggernaut in the Room

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Playoff season, baby!

This weekend marks the first of four regional playoff tournaments to see which three teams from each of the four WFTDA regions will earn the right to compete for the WFTDA championship this November in Denver.

But before we can get to the biggest of the Big 5, we need to start with the first one. Nightmare on 95 (or if you’re from my neck of the woods, Nightmare on the 95) will feature the top ten teams from the WFTDA east region battling in a full-play tournament that will determine the region’s end-of-year rankings. The two finalists and winner of the third-place game will advance to face off against the other nine regional qualifiers for the whole ball o’ wax at championships later this year.

So who’s got the best shot to advance? Where might the surprises come from? (How can I get the edge in my brackets?) Read on to find out…

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Battle on the Bank Brackets

Battle on the Bank IV starts next Friday, June 12, in Phoenix, Ariz. Fourteen games will be played amongst nine teams over three days to declare one banked track roller derby champion. With so much action to take in, you may lose your way in trying to follow it. How are you going to make sense of everything during the weekend? With this, of course:

WRDN’s printable BotB IV brackets are ready to serve you.

Hot off the presses, our printable Battle on the Bank IV Bracket will help you keep track of the action, with the full schedule, game match-ups, and places to pencil in scores and advancing teams throughout the course of the tournament. If you’re headed to Phoenix, it’s an essential tool that you can’t be without. The same goes if you plan on staying at home and watching the action live on DNN. How are you going to know who is going to play who and when without it?

Alas, an empty bracket is no good without game results and scores to populate it with. What if you’re one of those Bracketology nutcases who needs to predict the outcome of every game and score ahead of time? Don’t worry—we’ve also got you covered with our Battle on the Bank Prediction Bracket. This interactive bracket will let you pick which teams you think will wind up where and let you enter scores for each game. Once you fill it out and are certain you’ve got it right, you can print it out and refer to it during tournament weekend. Share it with your friends to mock them for how wrong they are!

For best results, download both brackets. Fill out and print a prediction bracket now, and then print the regular bracket so you can fill it out as the action happens during the weekend. That way, you can find out with stunning accuracy how bad you are at predicting the outcome of sporting events! If you need some help picking the winners, be sure to check out our comprehensive Battle on the Bank IV preview to learn up on the teams vying for the title. Just be sure to remember: Bracketology is an exhibition, not a competition…please, no wagering!

Download the Battle on the Bank IV Bracket

  • Print it out and use it to track the action!
  • Refer to a match-up for game time and info
    • Game times shown in Mountain Daylight Time
  • Pencil in game scores in the grey boxes
  • Use cues to place teams in their next games
  • Compare the finished bracket to your predictions!

Download the Battle on the Bank Prediction Bracket

  • Predict how the tournament will go!
  • Use the menu boxes to select teams
  • Type in the grey boxes to enter scores, and remember:
    • Games 1-12 are 30 minutes long
    • Games 13/14 are 60 minutes long
  • Enter your name to claim the bracket as your own
  • Print out the Prediction Bracket when complete
  • Refer to it and brag about your predictions!

Battle on the Bank IV Preview

It’s the month of June. For banked track roller derby, that means only one thing.

Battle on the Bank IV, the fourth edition of the national banked track roller derby tournament, is set for the weekend of June 10-12 at the Veterans Memorial Colosseum in Phoenix, Ariz. In the event’s biggest field ever, nine teams will face-off for the right to be called the best banked track roller derby team in the country—Rocky Mountain not withstanding.

The 5280 Fight Club won’t be there, but seven permanent banked track leagues will be represented, including two-time defending champs, the San Diego Derby Dolls. The always-dangerous Team Legit and the veteran Tuscon Roller Derby all-star team will also be competing to carry the flag for the flat trackers.

The tournament will feature 14 games over three days. Preliminary games on Friday and Saturday will be half the usual length, or two 15-minute periods totaling 30 minutes of game play. The third place and championship games on Sunday will be the full length, with four 15-minute periods totaling 60 minutes.

While billed as a double-elimination tournament, it’s not truly one, as one loss during the preliminary rounds means the best that a team can do is third place. Before the final BotB schedule was released, a preliminary format contained 16 games and balanced seeding match-ups throughout. However, nine teams does not a fair and balanced bracket make.

To accommodate a fair amount of rest to teams needing to play multiple games on the same day—and to avoid a situation where one team needed to play two full games on Sunday—the hosting Arizona Derby Dames retooled the brackets to allow for four teams to fight for the top three places on championship Sunday.

(Want to see the tournament format and print out your own Battle on the Bank IV bracket? Grab your pencil and click here to grab it.)

Of the nine teams competing in Battle on the Bank this year, seven have previous experience at the tournament. Who has the best chance of winning it all in 2011? Find out in our team-by-team analysis and breakdown, after the jump.

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