Some pestering from the masses has seen us pull out the giant gold key, and reenter the stately (and toasty warm ... ahhh) Brisbane Ultimate Blog mansion to provide a preview of tonight's BUML Grand Finals. Perhaps the masses just want something to comment on, in which case, go for it, lines are open.
Anyway, its been the BEST SEASON EVER for BUML. Seriously, it has - its the biggest ever, there's been very little rain, teams have been well coordinated, games have been close, and the League Directors have all their hair (or at least, pretty much the same amount as at the start of the season).
But tonight it comes to an end. Some of us are gutted that there's no live internet telecast of the games (we blame tech-guru DanB and AndyL's assumptions that they'd actually be in the games) but we'll have the bottle ready to toast some champagne Ultimate anyway. Who will add their names to the mighty roll of honour? Let's check out the games and of course book your seats at Easts Leagues now.
DIVISION 3 - Griffith Go-Go's vs Mellow Yellow
The unrated Division 3 has certainly thrown up a lot of excitement this season, as teams that have in the past been relegated to 'newbies and/or pissheads and/or cheap meat' status have had something to really fight for in the inaugural Division 3 title. It certainly showed in the Semi Finals, both of which were decided by one point. Props to both the Ultimate Apostles and the Griffith Oh Yeahs for very nearly making it.
Griffith are now in their fifth season and have certainly grown in quality as well as quantity, winning a lot of games. But in the back of their minds will be that early season draw against Mellow Yellow, and all those times Mellow Yellow beat them in 2010 and 2011. But maybe, just maybe, those scars have calloused over and the Go-Go's will have the mental toughness to take the win tonight and put a medal into the mail to postcode 2600 tomorrow morning.
Mellow Yellow ... well, what can be said about this Oliver Reed of an Ultimate team that hasn't been said before? Now in their amazing 16th season and with a much loved BUML12 trophy in the pool room ... and they smile the whole game! Seriously, watch them any time, they'll be grinning. That's the confidence they'll have as they march proudly onto the field tonight.
The question will be whether the slightly aging but well experienced Yellow bones can handle the youthful exhuberance of the Red blooded Griffith Go-Go's. Very hard to tip, and I think the bookies are only taking bets on whether or not the winning point will come from a hammer or not. Expect entertainment.
What should be fun though is the Spirit you can expect to see in this game ... something all them hotly competitive folk at Worlds could take note of. Between them, Griffith and Mellow Yellow have won 8 of the last 18 BUML Spirit Prizes.
DIVISION 2 - Bermuda Triangle vs What the Huck?
This one is straight out of the text-book. The two teams who were clearly the best in the Division have smashed their way through their Semi Final opponents and into the Final.
Bermuda Triangle go into this match undefeated and all smiles this season, after a very tough 2011 when they soldiered hard and grimaced firmly at the bottom of the Division 1 table. Last week they cleaned up a determined Discheads 13-8, in a display that showed off their offensive power. Bermuda are on of the oldest teams in the Monday night competition, with this their 17th season, and having not featured in a League Final since their three losses back in 2006-7, will they finally take a title? All we know is that key play Geoff will be completely fanging for disc.
What the Huck? meanwhile easily took care of the slightly disappointing Tsunami last week 15-4, and have only had two defeated this season, going down to Bermuda 13-7 in March and 13-8 in May. The Huckers first appeared in their current form back at the start of 2011, but can trace their lineage and winning ways back to the former Kelvin Grove Cougars, who took three consecutive Division 2 titles in 2009-10. The big question tonight will be whether they can contain their desire for speed-speed-speed and avoid the unforced errors the Triangle have been able to put on them in the past.
This game will be titanic. Bermuda go in as the deserved favourites, but how will they carry the weight of expectation? What the Huck seem to have the wood over the rest of the competition, but they haven't yet given the Triangles a hard run. Who's cuisine will reign supreme? Internet bookies www.andrewmansaucehouse.com.au are offering $1.20 on Bermuda to win, and $2.80 on What the Huck.
DIVISION 1 - UQ Lovers vs Drop Bears
The fat one - the El Gordo of Brisbane Ultimate 2012. Forget your BPL, forget your Halibut, forget your Mayan apocalypse scenario. This may well be the flying disc battle of the year for this city.
What's exciting here is that while Division 1 finals of reason seasons have sadly been dull, one sided affairs, this game includes Dusty, the most exciting player in sports Ultimate entertainment ... er ... I mean, this game is going to be both loose and close. It'll be close in that these teams have matched up tightly this season, and loose in that ... well, up until last week they both looked like middle-of-the-table teams.
Some folks with an eye for history will be betting against newish team the Drop Bears (despite the age of some of the connections within the team). They didn't even have a proper name at the start of the season, after all. Then they only won six games during the season, losing to UQ 9-11 back in April, but then rolling them easily 17-7 in more recent times. Indeed, that was the start of the Bears 'hayne-train', only losing one game (and that by a single point) since then). So the Drop Bears are in the final because they have some massive momentum, and defeating the much fancied but ultimately challenged Dyspnoeics last week 13-10 (not sure what happened there, but I'm sure we'll get an explanation in the commments).
Given their age and reputation as one of the 'name' clubs in Brisbane, a lot of punters will be jumping on the Loving bandwagon. But remember that UQ have not won a BUML since 2008 or a BPL since about then (sorry, can't be arsed firing up the records machine). Sure they seem to do ok in Division 2 at Uni Games ... but there will be big questions asked and answered tonight. Internet bookies www.andrewmansaucehouse.com.au seem to have suspended betting on this match, while players on both teams face allegations of fantastic drug use over the weekend.
And for those looking ahead to next season of BUML and wanting to comment in the comments ... when last we heard fixtures were due to commence on Monday 6 August (with a few weeks of learn to play and pickup beforehand) so mark your calendar and keep an eye on the buml.quda.org website and Facebook. Colmslie will be added as a new venue to further the growth of the competition, and the League Organising Committee as always are looking for more helpers.
Gossip will also be turning towards the makeup of Divisions next season. Its a perennial toughie for the organisers. It seems the winner of Division 3 will be ready to move up into Division 2, to make room for new teams in Division 3, but then the Ghost Who Walks will certainly be seeking to drop into Division 2. So whether Griffith or Mellow get to make the jump will probably come down to the level of interest in new teams entering Division 3 ... maybe if 24 teams are in the mix then BUMLOC will try for four divisions of six. We shall see. After three seasons now, the jump from Division 2 to Division 1 still seems to remain very large - Bermuda still bares the scars from last year and won't be keen to go back. Perhaps the only way is for BUMLOC to apply some roster restrictions on the other five Division 1 teams, so see if a competitive sixth team can be formed? On the other hand, someone's got to come at the bottom of the table ...
Anyway, that's it from us here on the BUML Show at the stately Brisbane Ultimate Blog mansion. Tune in next season if someone feels like doing it.