sports nerds

Weekend Recap: Gores beat Betties in ToRD Season Opener

Brim Stone kicked things off jamming for the Gores

Smoke City Betties (58) vs. The Gore Gore Rollergirls (248)

It was a raucous crowd that greeted the Smoke City Betties and the Gore-Gore Rollergirls as they entered the track at The Hangar on Saturday night in a ToRD house league showdown. The two teams fed off this energy, storming out to high-scoring, wide-open jams (12-8 after 2) with neither team taking a firm lead. Eventually, a polished-looking Gores team settled in and began to chip away until Dust Bunny blew the game open with 9 points in the fifth jam that increased the lead to 21. The Gores never looked back from there on their way to a statement-making 248-58 victory.

Gores’ rookie Hurlin’ Wall holds Bettie’s rookie Titmouse in the pack

As she did at the Beast of the East, Brim Stone (last year’s ToRD Award winner for top pivot) got things started at the jam line for the Gores, but instead of settling back into her role at the front of the pack, she joined (almost equally) a solid four-jammer rotation with Lunchbox, Bambi and Dust Bunny. This allowed each of them to play a more consistent role in the pack as well, and they did so to great effect. Memphis Kitty kicked things off for the Betties, but the veteran jammer, along with Pretty Peeved and Lady Scorcher in particular, ended up supplying a steady, experienced presence to the pack. That left the attack up to the rookies led by Sail Her Poon who, in a  game full of rookie standouts, stood out most of all. She jammed more than any other player in the bout (taking 34% of her team’s jams), and fought with the Gores’ more experienced jammers to the end, improving as the game progressed and managing to put up decent  numbers in the process (including a 2.43 points-per-jam average). Poon was backed up by a handful of other rookie jammers but the majority of the load was shouldered by Platinum Bomb and Tropic Thunder; a threesome that could certainly form the core of the Betties’ attack this season.

Lady Gagya had a big night in the Gores’ pack

This refusal to give up seemed to be inherited by all the Betties, and despite the mounting point differential, never looked out of it on the track, and continued to battle jam after jam: the score didn’t reflect the spirit of the bout (acknowledged by a crowd that stayed until the end). Based on flashes of sound pack control early on, and the confidence of the young jammers, the Smoke City Betties looks like a team that knows what it has to do; now it’s just a matter of doing it. Despite also having a number of rookies in their lineup,  the experience of the Gores was the difference in this one, and they ran a much smoother bout. With Brim taking on more of the jamming for the Gores, Junkie Jenny and Molly Boom stepped up and wore the stripe for the majority of jams. Lady Gagya continued her outstanding 2010 with another solid performance, and she and rookie standout Hurlin’ Wall (who was a literal wall at the back of the back) were a big part of the sometimes stifling Gores’ defense.

The team stats tell the story: the Gores’ jammers recorded a 76% lead percentage and scored 6.5 points a jam, remarkable numbers that speak to a consistent, all-around effort. ** Keep an eye on my ToRD Stats Page for updated stats all season. Visit ToRD.TV for highlights, interviews and layer9’s boutcast.

ANOTHER BUSY ROLLER DERBY WEEKEND!

It was another busy weekend for roller derby in eastern Canada with three other cities playing hosts to big bouts. In London, the Thames Fatales played their first home game of the season, hosting the Nickel City Knockouts (QCRG Buffalo) in what by all accounts was an exciting night. After Nickel City tied the game in the final jam of the bout (137-137), Thames Fatales won it in overtime 148-145 (you can watch highlights and skater interviews here). There was yet another double header in Montreal this weekend. For the third consecutive year the Boston Derby Dames sent the B-Party to take on a MTLRD home team, but for the first time, MTLRD won as La Racaille cruised to a 155-54 victory at Arena St Louis. In the other half of the double header, Les Contrabanditas continued an impressive start to 2010  with a 159-82 win over the Tri-City Thunder. And finally, in Nepean the Rideau Valley Roller Girls’ home teams built on strong performance by the Vixens in Montreal last weekend as both teams managed huge victories at home with the Slaughter Daughters defeating the Derby Debutantes (GTAR) 211-48 and the Riot Squad defeating The Rollergettes 132-31.

Weekend Recap: Boston ends Montreal’s winning streak

Boston Massacre (# 3) 111 vs. Montreal (# 9) 58

In a truly extraordinary display of tactical roller derby, the Boston Massacre (one of the original WFTDA leagues) came to Montreal and put an end to a remarkable seven game winning streak by the precocious New Skids on the Block with 111-58 victory at Arena St. Louis on Saturday night in a WFTDA sanctioned, Eastern Region bout.

The first half was a strategic masterpiece as both teams fought  for control of the pack. LCD and Maura Buse led the charge for the Massacre pack, with ample help from Harley Quinn and Ivanna Shankabitch, while Jess Bandit and Cheese Grater led the Skids’ packs. No team could take a clear advantage in the first as the score see-sawed early on, punctuated by neutralizing jammer battles between Georgia W. Tush and Krushpuppy, and especially Montreal’s Iron Wench and Boston’s Claire D. Way who both jammed beautifully (often to stalemates) in the first half. Boston managed to inch ahead just slightly, 46-38 by the break.

Early in the second half Boston’s experience began to make a difference. Their stifling pack (amazingly paced defensive jams, lightening fast recycling up front) slowly began to wear down the Montreal players who, lately, have been more accustomed to being the ones doing the stifling. A few well-orchestrated power jams allowed the Massacre to open up a wider gap and once they’d gained control, were able to maintain it through to the end as rare penalty woes for Montreal kept them from mounting any sort of comeback.

It was clear that as far as the Skids have come in 2010, there is still an experience disadvantage that can only be overcome with time, but this was in no way a demoralizing loss for Montreal. Only eight months ago Montreal lost to this same Boston team by one hundred points; four months ago  they lost by a similar score to Charm City (Baltimore). What this improved result announces is that this is a Skids team that deserves attention, and come the fall and the WFTDA Regionals, a team that cannot be taken lightly.

Rideau Valley Vixens 63 vs. Les Sexpos 136

In the opening bout of the double header at Arena St. Louis, the Rideau Valley Vixens–in their inaugural season–came to Montreal to play in their third bout of 2010. After suffering a one-sided loss to ToRD’s CN Power early in the year, the Vixens made adjustments and began to refine their game leading to a much better result against Steel City’s B team. Les Sexpos also opened up 2010 with consecutive losses, but were coming off of their most definitive victory ever, showing a form that they would bring into this bout as well, controlling things in a 136-63 victory.

Any notion of an overwhelming Sexpos win were put to rest early on as the Vixens showed that they have very clearly learned from their defeats; a renewed focus on positional play and pack control led by the excellent Semi Precious (and aided gamely by Surgical Strike, Screaming Meanie Massacre, Big Block and others). K-Dawg (despite some penalty problems), and Ninja Simone continued their emergence as top pivots, while rookies That’s What She Said (jamming) and Waxey McBush (positional blocking) had solid outings and that speaks to the bright future of this ever-improving Sexpos squad. A key jammer battle all night was between the Vixens’ Soul Rekker and the Sexpos’ Mange Moi El Cul, while Squarrior, Hymen Danger and Hustle Rose all had solid bouts doing double duty in the pack and with the star. Ripper Apart, Sister Disaster and DDT all fought through jams for the Vixens, but the Sexpos were eventually able to wrestle control away from Rideau Valley and cruised in the later stages of the bout to a 73 point victory.

Both bouts were boutcast live on ustream and have been archived here.

AND IN OTHER NEWS…

Hammer City’s Eh! Team continued their 2010 WFTDA season, traveling to Milwaukee to take part in the annual MidWest Brewhaha.  They faced a tough Grand Raggidy team on the opening day falling 160-69, and then followed that with another loss to Ohio 139-61 to fall to 0-4 in their 2010 season. Hammer City has a big schedule lined up for 2010 and are not backing down from any tough bouts, taking the lead, perhaps, from Montreal’s New Skids on the Block who took on (and lost to) any and all comers in their first season leading to a huge leap in ability and an improved 2010. It should be a fascinating season for Hammer City as they continue to develop into a top-tier team.

Coming up: season previews of ToRD’s Gore-Gore Rollergirls and The Smoke City Betties in advance of their May 29th season opener.

The Jammer Quotient: A Look Back at 2008 (1)

Mach Wheels vs. Bambi

ToRD‘s second full season saw the continued dominance of the Chicks Ahoy! (4-1) and the Gore-Gore Rollergirls (4-1). Needless to say, the jammers from these two teams enjoyed successful seasons as well, and the JQs reflect the differing offensive philosophies of the two teams. ToRD continued to be a six-team league, but by 2008 the disparity among the teams was becoming obvious.  It would be the final season for the DVAS (1-4) and the Bay Street Bruisers (0-5), although not for the skaters on the teams. In the end,  the Chicks took The Boot away from the Gores in an exciting, high scoring final(114-97). (*as with the 2007 calculation of the JQ, the plus/minus stats are unavailable, for 2008 meaning the highest possible JQ is 40, but I’ve added an adjusted score based on percentage for the top 5)

ToRD’s 2008 JAMMER QUOTIENT

Jammer Total Points Points Per Jam Plus/ Minus Jam % Lead % JQ
Bambi (GGR) 10 8 N/A 7 9 34 (43)
Dust Bunny (GGR) 9 4 N/A 7 8 28 (35)
Sista Fista (DTD) 8 1 N/A 10 6 25 (32)
Desmond Deck Her (GGR) 5 10 N/A 0 3 18 (23)
Jewel Kicker (SCB) 7 0 N/A 3 7 17 (21)
Mach Wheels (CA!) 0 7 N/A 0 10 17
Candy Crossbones (CA!) 4 5 N/A 1 5 15
Aimee Zing (CA!) 6 9 N/A 0 0 15
Ce Four (BSB) 2 0 N/A 9 0 11
Dolly Destructo (CA!) 0 6 N/A 0 2 8
Shell B Felt (DVAS) 0 0 N/A 8 0 8

Bambi (who skated as Alicia Arsenic in 2007) had an amazing year, scoring a JQ of  34. Dust Bunny built on her success from the 2007 season by putting up strong numbers once again. But it was the Chicks Ahoy, led by Mach Wheels and another impressive year by Candy Crossbones, who put four skaters in the top ten. This reflects the strategies of the two teams that remain today. The Gores had a set line up of jammers (Desmond Deck Her and the emerging Lunchbox were the other two) while the Chicks were more democratic in their use of jammers, choosing to spread the workload over more skaters (a total of six Chicks’ jammers were eligible for JQ points). But it wasn’t all Chicks all the time as all four other teams had jammers in the top ten as well, led by the Death Track Dolls’ amazing west-coast import, Sista Fista. Sista  finished the season with the 3rd highest JQ and helped lead the Dolls to an impressive 4-1 record.

Below is the breakdown by category for rankings of each of the four stats used to determine the 2008 JQ.

TOTAL POINTS

Jammer Total Points
Bambi (GGR) 286 (10)
Dust Bunny (GGR) 227 (9)
Sista Fista (DTD) 218 (8)
Jewel Kicker (SCB) 160 (7)
Aimee Zing (CA!) 157 (6)
Desmond Deck-Her (GGR) 152 (5)
Candy Crossbones (CA!) 142 (4)
Lunchbox (GGR) 128 (3)
Ce Four (BSB) 125 (2)
Miss Tress Nightmare (DTD) 124 (1)

The top five in total points featured skaters from four different teams, with Bambi and Dust Bunny leading the way for the high scoring Gores followed by Sista and the consistent Jewel Kicker of the Smoke City Betties. Aimee Zing rounds out the top five, having completed her transition from blocker to jammer during the 2008 season. This would be the only category that Bambi, the jammer with the highest JQ, would lead. No skater would lead in more than one category.

Points Per Jam

Jammer Points Per Jam
Desmond Deck-Her (GGR) 4.9 (10)
Aimee Zing (CA!) 4.24 (9)
Bambi (GGR) 3.92 (8)
Mach Wheels (CA!) 3.70 (7)
Dolly Destructo (CA!) 3.52 (6)
Candy Crossbones (DVAS) 3.16 (5)
Dust Bunny (GGR) 3.11 (4)
Lunchbox (GGR) 2.844 (3)
Mala Justed (CA!) 2.84 (2)
Sista Fista (DTD) 2.79 (1)

The points-per-jam numbers came down slightly from their stratospheric highs in 2007 with no one averaging more than 5 points per jam (three jammers averaged more than that in ’07). Desmond Deck-Her’s overall average may have dropped (from 5.24 in ’07), but her ranking jumped from third to first. She also had the biggest jam of the season (a monstrous 25 points) which undoubtedly helped her numbers. The Chicks more score-by-committee approach landed three skaters in the top five including Mach Wheels who jammed much more than usual in 2008 with very consistent results.

JAM %

Jammer Jam %
Sista Fista (DTD) 38.42 (10)
Ce Four (BSB) 33.16 (9)
Shell B Felt (DVAS) 32.78 (8)
Bambi (GGR) 32.3 (7)
Dust Bunny (GGR) 32.3 (7)
Sue Saint Marie (BSB) 28.5 (5)
Land Shark (DVAS) 26.67(4)
Jewel Kicker (SCB) 25.75 (3)
Miss Tress Nightmare (DTD) 25.12 (2)
Candy Crossbones (CA!) 22.17 (1)

For the second straight year a Doll led this category, as Sista Fista jammed an astonishing 38.42% of her teams jams. This was the most wide open category with members of all six teams in the top ten. Land Shark, another rookie stand out with a bright future, picks up her first JQ points. The Dolls, Bruisers, Gores, and D-VAS all had multiple skaters in this category. It is interesting to note that aside from Sista’s huge percentage, the average jam % was down from 2007 as more and more skaters become comfortable jamming.

Lead %

Sista Fista gets help scoring against the DVAS

 

Jammer Lead %
Mach Wheels (CA!) 61 (10)
Bambi (GGR) 59 (9)
Dust Bunny (GGR) 58 (8)
Jewel Kicker (SCB) 57 (7)
Sista Fista (DTD) 55 (6)
Candy Crossbones (CA!) 53 (5)
Dyna Hurtcha (SCB) 52.17 (4)
Desmond Deck-Her (GGR) 51.61 (3)
Dolly Destructo (DVAS) 49 (2)
Miss Tress Nightmare (DTD) 47 (1)

Despite being better known now for her amazing assists and her nearly flawless positional blocking, in 2008 Mach Wheels was one of the most efficient jammers in ToRD ranking fourth in points per jam and first in lead %. Dyna Hurtcha, who would go on to win ToRD’s 2009 Triple Threat, was already putting up triple-threat-style numbers in 2008.  Dust Bunny continued to pad her career stats with yet another top three rank.

2008 Blocker stats are coming up tomorrow; next week a two part preview of The Beast of the East.

Quad City Chaos Preview: New Skids on the Block

Montreal’s New Skids on the Block have certainly been the busiest team in Canada in 2010, and just may be the hottest team in WFTDA! Having played in a number of games south of the border this year, the skaters are coming to Toronto in game shape. They’ve just returned from an east coast road trip that saw them go 3-0 making some pretty good competition look pretty bad. According to flattrackstats.com, their current winning streak has them sitting in 8th place in WFTDA’s Eastern Region, a huge leap from 13th where they started the year. Needless to say, this is a very good team with very few weaknesses. To make matters worse for the competition at Quad City, the Skids only carried an 11 person roster on their road trip, meaning they’ll have plenty of fresh faces for the tournament.

NEW SKIDS ON THE BLOCK

Games: Vs. Vancouver’s Terminal City All Stars (6:30pm on the 27th); Vs. ToRD’s CN Power (1pm on the 28th).

The New Skids on the Block are making quite a name for themselves by their ability to handle a pack, and who’s going to argue with players like Smack Daddy, Trash ‘N Smash, Nameless Whorror, Bone Machine, Wrath Poutine, Jess Bandit…well you get the idea. This is not a pack to take lightly. There is power, skill and depth up front and it will take a huge effort by an opposing pivot to wrestle control away from them. Word on the track is that key veteran Beater Pan Tease has been nursing a knee injury that caused her to sit out the recent round trip. Although her name is penciled into the roster, it remains to be seen how much of a role she will have at Quad City. For the fan’s sake, let’s hope she’s healed up and ready to go.

There is no less depth at jammer on this team. Led by the phenomenal Iron Wench, the Skids will undoubtedly rotate Georgia W. Tush, Izzy Skellington,  Ewan Wotarmy, and Romeo at the jam line, but don’t be surprised to see some of the blockers mentioned above (and even some who haven’t been!) get a shot with a star. This is a diverse, well-organized team that can mix it up positionally based on the situation.

THE DERBY NERD THINKS

Their jammer’s ability to neutralize the other team’s jammer will be key.These are jammers who can mix it up with other jammers and even blockers if needs be, but they also have the endurance to out pace a pack. But despite the unbelievable depth at jammer, victory in this tournament will be based on the Skids’ pack control. Their ability to trap blockers and pace packs will be what separates them from the competition.

THE DERBY NERD PREDICTS

The Skids will go undefeated in the tournament and take first over all, but it won’t be easy. While I don’t think the Skids are invincible (and The Eh! Team was within spitting distance in a bout against them last year, losing by only 4 points), they are simply too hot right now. They have burst out of the gates in 2010 and have been playing a lot of games against some solid competition, so I think they are ahead of the other teams in terms of game-readiness.

THE ROSTER

(Jersey number and club team in parentheses)

Beater Pan-Tease (1976 Les Filles du Roi),  Bone Machine (1111 La Racaille), Cheese Grater (289 Contrabanditas), Ewan Wotarmy (7734 Les Contrabanditas), Georgia W Tush (Contrabanditas), Iron Wench (516 La Racaille), Izzy Skellington (182, La Racaille), Jess Bandit (8 Les Filles du Roi), Lady J (86), Lyn-dah Kicks (75 La Racaille), No Holds Bard (2X4 La Racaille), Romeo (222 Les Filles du Roi), Smack Daddy (3X Les Filles du Roi), Trash N’ Smash (1.18 Contrabanditas), Karla Shnikov (AK 47 Contrabanditas), Lil Mama (2 Les Filles du Roi), Nameless Whorror (202 Les Filles du Roi), Rae Volver (38 Les Filles du Roi), Wrath Poutine (30 La Racaille)

Beater Pan-Tease (1976 Les Filles du Roi),  Bone Machine   (1111  ), Cheese Grater (289), (Ewan Wotarmy 7734 Les Contrabanditas), Georgia W Tush (Contrabanditas), Iron Wench (516 La Racaille), Izzy Skellington (182, La Racaille), Jess Bandit (8), Lady J (86), Lyn-dah Kicks (75), No Holds Bard (2X4), Romeo (222 Les Filles du Roi), Smack Daddy (3X Les Filles du Roi), Trash N’ Smash (Contrabanditas), Karla Shnikov (AK 47), Lil Mama (2), Nameless Whorror  (202), Rae Volver (38), Wrath Poutine (30 La Racaille)

Quad City Chaos Preview: CN Power

The Quad City Chaos is a four team round robin style tournament that will be played over the 27th and 28th of March at The Hangar. It will feature four of the best roller derby rosters in Canada, the all star teams from the leagues in Toronto, Hamilton, Montreal and Vancouver. The complete schedule can be found here. I’m going to start my four part Quad City Chaos preview with, who else? The hosts, Toronto’s CN Power.

CN POWER

Games: Vs. Vancouver‘s Terminal City All Stars (2pm on the 27th); Vs. Hamilton’s Eh! Team (4:30pm on the 27th); Vs. Montreal’s New Skids on the Block (1pm on the 28th).

CN Power kicked off 2010 with a lopsided victory over the scrappy Rideau Valley Vixens, exactly the kind of confidence booster that this squad needed after an uneven 2009. The 2010 version of CN Power looks focused and organized, and they’ll need both given the nature of the competition in this tournament.

The key to the victory over the Vixens was an uncontainable early onslaught by three of ToRD‘s top jammers, Lunchbox, Land Shark, and 2009 Jammer of the Year Defecaitlin (AKA: Dust Bunny). I don’t see CN Power veering too much from that strategy this this weekend, and the return of Bambi to the lineup will give them the depth that they will need as the weekend progresses. Over the course of the tournament, keep an eye out for jams from Betty Bomber, Memphis Kitty, 2009 rookie of the year Kari Mia Beere, and Marvel S. Maven, the standout sophomore who had an amazing 100% lead percentage in the bout against the Vixens.

Hit for hit, CN Power can go shoulder to hip with any team in the country. With the likes of Mega Mouth (AKA: Mega Bouche), Nasher the Smasher, Hoff, Lady Gagya and Dolly Destructo throwing hits, there will be no shortage of toughness on this squad. The return to the line up of 2009 Triple Threat winner Dyna Hurtcha will make up for the loss of Seka Destroy, who was excellent in her CN Power debut against the Vixens. Another big hitter, Jubilee, also has returned to ToRD after a year-long hiatus and will be making her 2010 CN Power debut at the tournament.

While they will need top jamming and big hitting to match up against Terminal City and The Eh! Team, in the key Sunday afternoon bout against The New Skids, CN Power will need to wrestle control of the pack from the pack-masters from Montreal; that means pivots Brim Stone, Rebel Rock-It , and Mach Wheels will need to control a tight pack when the stripe’s on their helmets. Also the consistency and calming influence of veteran Demolition Dawn will go a long way over the course of the grueling weekend. Look for sophomore skater Panty Hoser (who was also solid in her CN Power debut) to get some very important experience leading her pack.

THE DERBY NERD THINKS

Laying down the law early will be key for ToRD. It was the quick, efficient rotation of  ToRD’s top three jammers early on in the bout against the Vixens that sealed the deal in the season opener and they will need to establish that presence at Quad City. Also, keeping calm in the pack against the relentless grinding of the Hammer City girls and the shifty play making of the Skids will be key. This is going to be a long two days, so rotating the line up to keep everyone fresh and  limiting opposing power jams by staying out of the penalty box will be keys.

THE DERBY NERD PREDICTS

A close, early win over Terminal City will give CN Power the confidence they’ll need to pull off an upset victory over the WFTDA ranked Eh! Team (giving them some much needed revenge after a tough loss in 2009); unfortunately,  I don’t think things will go as well against the powerhouse Skids on Sunday, leaving the hosts with a second place finish. But let’s hope that CN Power proves me wrong!

ROSTER (with jersey number and club teams in parantheses)

Bambi (33, Gore-Gore Rollergirls), Betty Bomber (23 Death Track Dolls), Brim Stone (21:8 Gore-Gore Rollergirls), Defecaitlin (2 Gore-Gore Rollergirls), Demolition Dawn (36 Death Track Dolls), Dolly Destructo (e^[pii] Chicks Ahoy), Dyna Hurtcha (21, Chicks Ahoy!), Hoff (65 Chicks Ahoy), Jubilee (27 Death Track Dolls), Kari Mia Beere (06 Chicks Ahoy), Lady Gag-ya (212 Gore-Gore Rollergirls), Land Shark (1/3 Death Track Dolls), Lunchbox (7-11 Gore-Gore Rollergirls), Mach Wheels (V12 Chicks Ahoy), Marvel S. Maven (22 Chicks Ahoy), Mega Mouth (26er Chicks Ahoy), Memphis Kitty (56 Smoke City Betties), Nasher the Smasher (2by4 Chicks Ahoy), Panty Hoser (99, Death Track Dolls), Rebel Rock-It (7 Chicks Ahoy).

Bambi (33, Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Betty Bomber (Death Track Dolls)
Brim Stone (21:8 Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Defecaitlin (7 Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Demolition Dawn (36 Death Track Dolls)
Dolly Destructo (e^[pii] Chicks Ahoy)
Dyna Hurtcha (Chicks Ahoy!)
Hoff (65 Chicks Ahoy)
Jubilee (Death Track Dolls)
Kari Mia Beere (06 Chicks Ahoy)
Lady Gag-ya (212 Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Landshark (Death Track Dolls)
Lunchbox (1/3 Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Mach Wheels (V12 Chicks Ahoy)
Marvel S. Maven (22 Chicks Ahoy)
Mega Mouth (26er Chicks Ahoy)
Memphis Kitty (Smoke City Betties)
Nasher the Smasher (2by4 Chicks Ahoy)
Panty Hoser (24, Death Track Dolls)
Rebel Rock-It (7 Chicks Ahoy)

The Jammer Quotient

The JQ is a statistical comparison of jammers based on their rankings in five categories. The maximum JQ a jammer can receive is 50. The table below illustrates the evaluation of a JQ for the February 27th bout between ToRD’s CN Power and the Rideau Valley Vixens (only the top 5 are shown)*.

Jammer Total Points Points Per Jam Plus/ Minus Jam % Lead % JQ
Lunchbox (CNP) 48 (9) 4.36 (9) +36 (9) 23.4 (8) 72.7 (9) 44
Land Shark CNP) 53 (10) 3.78 (7) +45 (10) 29.7 (9) 57.1 (7) 43
Defecaitlin (CNP) 45 (8) 4.5 (10) +29 (8) 21.2 (6) 70 (8) 40
Marvel S. Maven (CNP) 25 (7) 4.16 (8) +20 (7) 12.7 (3) 100 (10) 35
Soul Rekker (RVV) 19 (6) 1.18 (4) -35 (5) 34 (10) 50 (6) 31

CN Power’s Lunchbox received the highest JQ. Interestingly, she didn’t actually lead in any of the five categories but placed second in four and third in the fifth (the numbers in brackets designate the ranking points, 10 for first place, etc). So for this bout, consistency was rewarded, as I imagine it always will be. Overall, all of the CN Power jammers had their way with the Vixens; despite a huge effort by Soul Rekker, the difference was in the jammers. The game was essentially over after the fourth jam when Defecaitlin (that’s Dust Bunny to all you Gore Gore fans) skated to a double grand slam and more than doubled the lead to 19-2.

This particular example doesn’t provide ideal data for a number of reasons. For one, it’s just one game, and there were only eight skaters who jammed a statically significant amount of times (I cut it off at 6 jams). The more data available, the more accurate the JQ, so during ToRD’s regular season, the teams will play enough games and get in enough jams to make a much more accurate judge of the statistical significance a jammer has to her team.

The data in this example are also skewed heavily in CN Power’s favour given the one-sided nature of the bout (199-49). I wouldn’t expect such high JQs over an extended period of time or among a much more even playing field. .

In the next post I’ll look at each category in more detail and justify the decision to include it.

* These stats are unofficial and are based on post bout analysis of video shot by Layer9.

Introducing The Derby Nerd

Lady Gagya makes some space for Land Shark.

Like any other sport, you need to watch a lot of roller derby to really understand it. But it doesn’t take too long for all of that violent frenzy to turn into something a lot more coherent. For me it happened in Montreal during a La Racaille game. I know that because I clearly remember the moment, seeing the extraordinary Iron Wench cutting her way through a pack, grabbing jerseys, accepting assists, dodging shoulders. It was at that moment when I realized that all of the chaos was actually quite orchestrated.

It’s been a few years now since a sudden surge of roller derby in Canada saw teams emerge in Toronto, Montreal, Hamilton, and other cities very soon after. We’ve gotten to the point now where the sport in Canada (at its very best) has developed to nearly the highest levels. It’s an exciting time to be a derby fan, and things just seem to keep looking up.

Almost as soon as I had my moment of derby clarity, my sports brain took over and I started to think of different ways to statistically compare the jammers. After a few false starts, I eventually developed something that I’ve been calling “The Jammer Quotient” or JQ. Its inspiration is varied, but basically it gives points to jammers based on their rankings in five different categories (total points, points per jam, plus/minus, jam %, and lead %). The top jammer in each category gets 10 points, the second 9, the third 8, etc (some fantasy sports players may recognize this points system). It might sound complicated, but it all adds up to one simple number between 10 and 50.

I’m working on a practice JQ comparison based on CN Power’s resounding 199-49 victory over the Rideau Valley Vixens on February 27th. A one game analysis isn’t ideal, especially a bout so one sided, but it’ll make for a good practice run.

I’ll post it shortly.