Fall League Seasons have begun!

What a start to the Season. Who says drama doesn’t exist outside pro leagues? There is so much to say in so little time. I’ll try to summarize in 5 fat points:

  1. NYC has started off with a bang. We got – check it – 50 players that have played a match in Season 3. It’s official, the thing down in New York is catching on.
  2. I’m giving the best name and avatar between both cities to the hands down winner…. the ‘Knee of Justice’ (NYC). See what I mean?Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 11.08.28 PM
  3. And just like that the Denier Streak (from Toronto) is over. I made a BIG DEAL about his streak in a previous post. After going 60-0 in Season 4 and 72-0 in Season 5, his win streak was snapped by newcomer GeorgeBor in his 2nd match. It’s no surprise that GeorgeBor leads the division after Day1.Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 11.14.29 PM
  4. Like the beginning of S5, we had Div2 graduates begin S6 in Div1 and boy was it fun watching their progress. Ivan took no time producing the first upset of the day with a scorcher over League vet and S1 winner, Craig M. He sits in 11th tied with that guy from Northern Ireland. Just so everyone knows: Ivan barely beat me in 3 last year. Just saying.Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 11.20.39 PM
  5. We had some old crew back and THAT was nice to see. Steph by Steph. The Eye of Soren. The Thunderbolt (ponytail or short this year?). It’s also REAL nice to see Broxterman in top spot. He had it last year. I don’t think he’ll let it slip like John Elway. Right.

And finally one sad observation: It was hard not seeing Queen Talbot among active players. Have we lost her to career-ending wrist ailments? Tell me it ain’t so. Juan Del Potro you’ve got company.

Set Winning Percentage. Does it matter?

During SPiN’s Season 3 League session, questions were asked about the ‘Set Win Percentage’ (# Sets Won / # Sets Played). Here’s the ranking of the Div1 players at the time by set win %:

Rank by Set Win % Div1 Player List Set Win %
1 The Denier 93.8%
2 Vivian 79.5%
3 Danilo 76.5%
4 Roman 75.0%
5 Klaus 73.3%
6 William 71.3%
7 Craig M 71.1%

Vivian was officially ranked 8th, Roman 10th, and Klaus 9th on SPiN’s League ladder. Roman has beaten The Denier before and Vivian, Gideon and the Aussie has taken him deep into matches. What gives?

A similar story can be seen with Div2:

Rank Div2 Player List Set Win %
1 Gord 85.2%
2 Kyle Robinson 81.6%
3 John B 79.5%
4 Adam B 75.5%
5 The Thunderbolt 74.4%
6 Emily Talbot 73.4%
7 Irmina 72.7%

At the time Gord ranked 6th, The ThunderBolt 13th, and Irmina 9th.

So how is it they lag in ranking points? 

In all cases, each of these players played a handful of weeks, ‘robbing’ them of precious points in the leaderboard race:

Player Number of wks played (of 8)
Gord 4 wks (50%)
Irmina 4 wks (50%)
The Thunderbolt 4 wks (50%)
Roman 3 wks (38%)
Vivian 3 wks (38%)
Craig M 3 wks (38%)
Klaus 2 wks (25%)

(it is worth mentioning that set win % does become the tie-breaker when players have an equal number of ranking points)

So what does this all mean? 

In some leagues, the Set Win % defines a player’s ranking. In some circles this is the best way to determine a higher ranked player –  there’s no question that set win % is a serious indicator of pong power.

But our goal was never to find the best player in the city. They have pro leagues for that. This format was designed for Joes… Joes that have busy schedules, things that come up, and other activities to conquer. That’s the beauty of a ‘pay-as-you-play’ League.

Traditional leagues punish everyday Joes but this format allows them to still participate, and if played enough, can still have a shot at winning (not to mention the opportunity to fill their trash bucket to dish some serious insults, brags, and boasting techniques)

For more info on the scoring system, read a previous post, ‘The Scoring system – the format that cares‘. I assure you that you’ll feel more loved after reading it.

A salute to the League Sheriffs

I can’t tell you how lucky I’ve been to be given the opportunity to work with the people behind the League.

The original League Sheriffs, Mark Buck, Lindsey and Mike Young, and most recently, Kate Demay in NY and Emma Greig for TO, are simply amazing to work with.

It’s never easy to run a league. You have to remember names. You gotta think on your feet when things go wrong (internet? music?  ah, dude, app? 🙂 And most of all, you need to add just a little spice to keep it fun and engaging.

The smoothest run events are a reflection of the staff behind it that put the hard work, thought, and commitment to make it look easy.

I am truly thankful for the organizers of the League. Without them – app or no app – we would be no where near the level of success we are today.