February 21, 2013 by Charlie Eisenhood in News with 18 comments
Both professional leagues continue their player acquisitions and big announcements as the clock ticks towards their April opening pulls. We’re starting to get some clarity on the leagues’ makeup — something I’ll explore in a piece later today. Here’s a look at what they’ve been working on in the past week:
Last night, the MLU made some big West Coast player signing announcements. The Seattle Rainmakers signed handler Adam Holt (formerly of Seattle Sockeye), the Vancouver Nighthawks signed long-time Canadian star Kirk “Savvy” Savage (formerly of Vancouver Furious George), and, in the biggest announcement of all, the San Francisco Dogfish signed Beau Kittredge (Revolver), one of Ultimate’s most recognizable names.
As the sole professional ultimate presence in the West, the MLU appears to be easily landing the coast’s biggest stars.
In other coaching news, the Nighthawks signed Andrew Lugsdin, who played for Furious George for over a decade. Lugsdin will also serve as General Manager.
The league also announced some slight changes to the rulebook, notably updating the rules for tipping a disc. The disc must now be clearly spinning for tipping (including self-tipping) to be legal. As previously written, the rules would have allowed someone to merely bobble the disc while advancing down the field.
The AUDL’s big announcement so far in February was a playoff format change; they will now hold a “final four” style playoff. This will help to avoid a July 20th conflict with USA Ultimate’s Pro-Elite Flight Challenge, one of the required tournaments in the Triple Crown Tour.
The new format will match up the #2 and #3 seeds from each conference in a quarterfinals play-in. The one seeds will then join the winners “at a pre-selected site the weekend of August 3rd and 4th and play for the whole Championship Prize.”
Teams continue to announce player acquisitions, but perhaps the most exciting individual team announcement is the menu on hand for the Madison Radicals games: “Great Dane Beer, Pulled-pork sandwiches, belgian style fries in a cone, brats, sweet corn, bacon on a stick, root-beer floats.”