Thursday, June 21, 2007

Nationals - Early Bathurst Odds in the Open Division

Yes, this is a double post day. I've taken this from a post I made on the TUC bbs. I'll try and keep up the reviews as we get closer to the August tournament. Also, checkout the CUC website. Hilary, myself, and the committee have added some content and design to the webpage.

Pictured Above: A beauty photo by Marc Hodges. Let's just hope Nationals looks as nice as this.

So the 20 teams have been announced for Open Canadian Nationals and I might as well have my first crack at the odds. This is all in good fun, and I'll try to spice it up.

Furious George - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 2
You have to give Furious the best chance at winning it all. They've been there and there is the biggest stages of all in Ultimate. Last year losing to Sockeye in the UPA finals was a tough loss. They'll argue that they win that tournament if it is slightly windier. I'll argue that they're damn good and I root for them on any stage like the UPAs and Worlds except this one.

Goat - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 4
Next on the list is Goat. Goat has started off with 2 wins over Furious at Flowerbowl and a tight game against Boston. With the new found confidence a win at Boston Invitational would really put a stamp on a shot at worlds. These guys have brought in the trees and they're going to give us all an exciting final that is almost worth the C-note some of us pay to play in at Nationals.

Invictus - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 90
I saw Invictus at Flowerbowl (played against them). They, currently, play a one dimensional game of handler resets, huck, hope, and play intense D. The thing is, it's not easy to play against that style of ultimate unless you have the offensive composure to make them pay, or you have the defensive intensity to fight back and forth. In the quarters at Flowerbowl EMU showed them equivalent intensity and equally poor disc skills. These guys are good, but it will depend on who they bring to TO.

Mephisto - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 100
Mephisto lost some big players this year. Kennedy has joined Goat and rumors have it that Shaki isn't handling for them (but I see him on their roster). Does this mean they're out. Not a chance, but can the vets pull off some more unbelievable wins at CUC. I think young legs will challenge this team and 2nd in the east is up for grabs.

Phoenix - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 200
The battle of lesser Ontario will continue with Phoenix and GT looking to break into the semis and give Goat or Furious a legitimate run for their money. Phoenix has seen a big flux in their roster this year, which many of us think is the healthiest thing for the team. It is Phoenix after all. The youth could go either way and with the stability of Firebird over the last few years the talent and physical abilities are there. Boston will start to tell us where these guys are going to finish, but their early results at CUT indicate these guys are going to battle anybody.

Grand Trunk - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 200
Another team with a huge influx of talent. I should know; I picked them. This team is going places and looks to match or better last years 3rd place performance at Nationals, but this time with the West in the mix. The thing about GT this year is they are at least as deep as their inaugural season when half the team got taken up into Goat. Whether they can become a team that understands how to battle and win tough games is yet to be shown.

Bathurst Odds - 1 in 225
There's something to be said about a team playing with each other year after year. Quebec seems to have that stability and Q has grown into a contender over the years. They won Jazzfest last year and they're on the prowl again. These boys are fast and are now just coming into a time where they have the disc skills. The biggest problem is where is the development coming from?

Blackfish - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 300
GT of the West (actually 4 GT alumni) with a good backbone of UBC makes for a team with potential. They'll be better than last year by a long shot. The trick in the west is getting experience. You have to travel to get tournaments and it's a long time until Nationals. They had a rough start at Flowerbowl, but they have the brains and the talent to leap up this ladder. Expect a quarters appearance.

Nads - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 300
It's hard to read this team. There were rumors of a masters or coed team, but these boys like to play and Open is where it's at. Now we all have to figure out who will be on the roster. With the right people this team moves from a quarters appearance to 4th place all while potentially smoking on the sideline. Their alumni players are on the likes of Goat, Invictus, and I think even Furious so they might do something right.

Magma - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 500
I'm guessing Magma is ranked too low at this point. Last year was a rebuilding year as Mephisto pulled some of their best players, and one year is big for experience. At TUF they pulled off a win against a Goat League team and they made it to the semis losing to Tombstone. I'd guess these hard running and tall boys will once again be knocking on the door to quarters.

Too Bad - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 750
Another team that has a roster that can morph from weak to strong from one tournament to the next. I won't even make a guess of who Harry can pull out of his hat, but I'm sure he has a cloning machine. The longest existing Open team to go to Nationals. I'm betting right now they won't get in the quarters, but we'll see. They only brought 10 to No Surf, but with good talent they'll suprise some teams.

Winnipeg General Strike - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 900
I'm surprised to see this team in the listings. I expected the best men to help shore up Winni coed. Maybe they did and that's a bad sign for the Open team. These guys will be the number one team out of the prairies, but that's all.

Mangina - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 1000
I could make up some stuff about these guys, but all I can remember is them living in a rental truck at Nationals in Montreal. That's a sign of wanting to play Ultimate and they've always been mid pack. Let's put them here for now.

Red Circus - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 1500
The best from the East is the best in the East. Other than that I can't see much than fighting in the 9 through 16 bracket. They've got some experienced veterans, but I'm leaving them low for now. We'll see how they do in Boston with an early match up against Grand Trunk.

Sherbrooke Open - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 1750
I've played some of these guys on different versions of teams. It looks like the University programs in the region have found some stability and that means young talent will be filling their roster. Also, I've always been impressed with Quebec athletics, so I expect this team could surprise. Hopefully, we can get a feel for their talent at Jazzfest (if they come).

Firebird - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 2000
With the Phoenix changes Firebird lost some of their top end, but they've got a great leader and they'll tell you every time they score (does every team break their name up? I yell "Fire" you yell "Bird". I think 4 teams did this at No Surf). That's a sign of a team that's going to play you hard and you never know what's going to happen if they get the jump on you. Ontario is the place to be for Ultimate and Firebird is part of that reason. Expect these guys to fight in the 9 to 16 range and push Phoenix.

Roy - RRI
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 2000
Roys back and they've got numbers this time. Last year was short on numbers, but once again Toronto shows that population can lead to numbers and numbers lead to talent if trained properly. I'm sure they have Too Bad and Firebird on the radar, and the 9 to 16 bracket is completely in their grasp. UofT and some veterans will fuel this team to possibly some big wins. They had a good showing at No Surf that should start a good season run. We'll see them at Jazzfest for a second look.

Bathurst Odds - 1 in 5000
Second in the east. Last of the legitimate touring teams. That's what I'll say for now.

Bathurst Odds - 1 in 1000000
You guys can take second last because you have a better name than last place. We'll see if the name results in better play. It's good to see Barrie with a team, but I expect you'll feel like the early days of Pong. This tournament is tough.

Hootenanni Pussywillows
Bathurst Odds - 1 in 1000001
Last or second last. It's all in the name. Thursday = hell, Friday = hell, Saturday - hell, Saturday night = Party!!! Aurora represents and that's great.