I wanted to give a little love to the past studs of open ultimate that will take the fields at Sarasota and play for the coveted title of “Team USA Masters”. Yes folks, those older guys buying rounds of shots and car bombs for you and your friends at Daquiri deck/Mr.Big’s on Saturday night also played this weekend, and from the looks of some of these rosters, it should be a very competitive Masters division.
The sexy pick to take the trophy this season is built from the Furious/Jam teams that dominated the 2000’s. The big names are there: Lugsdin, Kubalanza, Namkung, Scott, Savage, Nolan, Eastham-Anderson, Schoettler, etc. Was the first time this team took the field together at Master’s Regionals? As the Miami Heat have shown, perhaps just assembling an all-star roster isn’t enough to win in a team sport (also why their odds aren’t 1:1)… Also, do the Canadians get to play on Team USA if they win?
The defending champs. This team was a step above the rest at last year’s Nationals, and the Michigan/Minnesota combo team is looking hungry for that repeat. This team has their fair share of studs: Ricky, Rook, Tim Murray, Sam Rosenthal, etc. but also lost Kubalanza. Their Regionals’ showing suggests they have not been challenged yet, and their pool play matchup with Wheelchair may be enticing enough to step away from the other divisions….
Last year’s finalists added some firepower in Kevin Kusy, Robbye Brooks, and Kris Bass, but also lost Ray Parrish. It will be interesting to see how the bracket matchups play out. Doesn’t mean Boneyard’s Troy Revell is looking past pool play, “As far as our pool, I think it’ll be harder than we expect.” However, he does give some credit to the format, saying that “straight to quarters is pretty forgiving”.
Parinella and the Count bring back the crew, this time with some added firepower from Canada’s GLUM. Is there enough magic left from this duo to capture the title? The Boneyard/DoG game could be the game with the least turnovers all tournament.
The Dugan factor may be in play here, and we could see them atop the leaderboard come Saturday. The former Condors may draw some extra energy from seeing their namesake in the Open division again.
Photo by Kevin Leclaire (Ultiphotos.com)