I have been waiting for something substantial to talk about in regards to all the rumors and theories about a new 7 man league. Everyone was talking and hoping for a new 7 man league to replace the NPPL. We had a hint of something in the process when we got a message from Junior Brown asking for support for the 'new league'.
There were other various stories like Camille Lemanski was spotted meeting all the big wigs of the sport- Alex Fraige, Chuck Hench and Rich Telford. And there was a leaked team list for the new league to get everybody excited.(The only missing big name from the team list are the Ironmen)
Well here it is- the big news. The announcement of a new 7 man paintball league called the USPL and headed by Chuck Hench and the big difference is that this time the league is owned by the players and teams. Hopefully this time they don't be tempted to sell out to another business entity.
The swift return of the 7 man format proves that it is one of the most important and popular format among teams and players and for fans. 7 man simply will not die and fade away and I for one am elated that it is back.
Another great news is that the first USPL event is already on the calendar and the USPL season opens in April with one of the best and popular venues in tournament paintball - Huntington Beach. WOW
I am excited. I would like to wish all the best and thank yous everyone who worked so hard in the last 2-3 weeks to set this up. It is indeed a great day for for professional paintball.
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE
U.S. Paintball League (USPL)
(Huntington Beach, CA) – Sixteen Professional Teams have invested heavily in forming the US Paintball League (USPL) – your paintball league. The player-owned league is dedicated to growing the sport of paintball across the United States by offering 7-man play from Division 3 to the Professional level in addition to a division of 5-man.
Season Opener Confirmed: Huntington Beach, CA April 3 - 5 2009
The 2009 season will consist of six events held across the United States. The following teams will be competing in the 2009 Pro Division:
Los Angeles Infamous
San Antonio X-Factor
San Diego Dynasty
San Jose Explicit
St. Louis Avalanche
Tampa Bay Damage
The 16 teams have formed a five-member Board of Directors to oversee the league. The USPL has recruited some of the most experienced promoters in tournament paintball; Chuck Hendsch, Camille Lemanski and Tom Cole.
Hendsch, former president of the National Professional Paintball League (NPPL) has been named Commissioner of the USPL. The Commissioner will handle executive decisions and report to the Board of Directors. Lemanski, former Vice President of Media and Marketing for Pacific Paintball, will be handling the day-to-day operations of the league as the General Manager. Tom Cole, also a former President of the NPPL, will be the Ultimate Official.
Alex Fraige of San Diego Dynasty said “although this league is owned by the pros, the mission is to make it your paintball league.”
The 16 owners have already discussed many changes to satisfy all players interested in playing the 7-man format. Rich Telford of Sacramento Excessive went on to explain that “much emphasis has been placed on catering the events toward the lower divisional teams and making the series as affordable as possible. Highlights include lowering entry fees, adjusting the schedule to reduce time away from school for younger players, streamlining the registration process to make it easier and more enjoyable for teams to check-in and walk the fields, introducing an exciting, faster-paced schedule of games and setting up a Steering Committee with representatives from all divisions so everyone’s voice can be heard.”
Individuals interested in serving as a representative on the Steering Committee should email firstname.lastname@example.org with his/her team name, division and phone number.
More details on the league and the 2009 season, including the registration opening date for Huntington Beach, will be released in the days to come. In the meantime, please email email@example.com for more information.
US Paintball League is a player run organization that governs Paintball tournaments and play. The USPL in conjunction with the Pro Team Association will host 6 events in the US where Paintball teams compete and are awarded points in four divisions Professional, Division I, Division II and Division III to determine an overall Paintball champion in each division. The USPL is committed to setting rules, standards and guidelines for safe, competitive, fair Paintball competitions worldwide. For more information call 714 858 1923.