Sunday, May 19, 2013

Au Revoir AY879: Paris A Vs. Kallio R. Rainbow

Paris All Stars (182-243) Kallio Rolling Rainbow A-Team
May 18th, 2013 / Helsinki (FIN)
A responsive gameplay despite an outnumbered Parisian team (10 players only). We held on, trying to manage both the benching and the strategy by ourselves, hopefully --and at the same time unfortunately-- helped by our injured jammer Joan Get27 at the coach benching.

Due to the number of players, the auto-lineup was messier than for our previous experience against Leeds Hot Wheels: doing rotations with 10 players was more complex and a bit more tiring (though surprisingly not that much) than with 12.
It led to a couple of mistakes that could have been avoided... Which did not help us catch up the scores...
We had 8 blockers rotating in two packs and 2 jammers alternating at each jam, helped from time to time by Hooligan (mainly) who had to combine blocking and jamming!
Our teamwork was not as good as our last game against Ruhrpott -- less easy to take a global view when you lack players and benches. That's one of the reasons, anyway.

High Wheels won a new tattoo. The classic fishnet bruise print. I lost my jaw on a high block. Again. The white collar of Hooligan's brand-new blue jersey turned pink with hair dye. Atomatrix and Bonnie Thunders could not make it to Finland on time. They are to blame for our reduced number! (lame selector coaches joke... carried on by the program designer. Surprise!) And jammer Bully Bunker treated herself (and consequently us) to a double fright:
  1. Breaking her plate during training. A nice and clean break ejecting the toe stop device and the front part of the plate! Got replacement skates on time (thanks to a player of the opening game) -- with shorter plates set-up on the front. Rock'n Roll. You win.
  2. Falling badly on her hip, and staying on the ground at the very beginning of the game. Leading to two existential questions: Are we going to be 9 players for the rest of the game? And is she really hurt? (note the priority) Nothing serious, an icepack and here she jams again.


A wooden floor with a good layer of varnish for a very good rolling and an unbeatable grip. Most of us finally chose to skate with our usual hybrid wheels although we had some difficulties to brake doing plow stops.
I'd rather keep my 84A, in order to grip to the max in the bends and to counter-push the opposing blockers, even if it means not plowing and doing a couple of right-left pivots to slow down instead! It's all a question of habits...

Note: seen from my jammer point of view!!

First jam: I'm getting an inner idea of the situation, far bigger built skaters facing me, a physical game in perspective. Bully's turn, first try with borrowed skates, and unfortunate fall that leaves her high and dry (not for long, we're warriors). I manage to catch up the score with the next pack. 20-23, back to start. Then follows an imbroglio of jammers in the box for both teams, and a heavy 2min jammer penalty at our expense enables Kallio to outdistance us. 83-55.
That was the introduction of the game. Their clockwork precision in teamwork offence is impressive. But now we know what to expect and we gain confidence. And things accelerate. We hold on and fight, playing 1 jam out of 2 in average. They manage to widen the gap and insure a comfortable (but not undefeatable) lead, and the first period ends up with a 60 point difference. 144-83.

We switch benches. We innocently think that, being closer to the jammer line, we would own the back of the pack for the 2nd period starts. We had forgotten our opponnents' reactivity and organization. Finally, the front is not that bad, uh! Let's save our energy, it's too precious today to be wasted. Ready to roll! Hardly 5 minutes after the second start, we had that MIA jammer episode that was indeed regrettable but understandable (could I venture saying 'forgivable'?) given the hectic rotation we were subjected to.
Yet, although they still control the front, although they take the back on the jammer line, although they break our walls, we give them a hard time too and never give up, always on the track, answering back, counter attacking, and defending ourselves. By the way, I want to thank the Parisian blockers to have protected and spared us jammers to the max, forming effective buffers with their own selves! A couple of energetic jams, a couple of powerjams for both teams too (incl. the end of a jam with two jammers in the box), and the last whistle blows. 243-182.


Despite our defeat and a few organizational blunders, we made a strong impression on the public (who supported us with the cutest 'Allez les bleues' ever -- pronounce with a Finnish accent) as well as on the opposing team and coach, who were apparently impressed by our endurance skills. Tired? NEVER. 10 players? WHATEVER. And by our individual agility skills "You've got great skaters in Paris". Indeed.

- Best Blocker: Butch Shan #3 (PRG) and Only #1 (KRR)
- Best Jammer: Kozmic Bruise #B612 (PRG) and Pygmi #101 (KRR)
- MPV: Meryl Strip-Her #00 (PRG) and T-Bag #9 (KRR)


  1. Fresh Meat question : What's an MIA jammer episode?

    1. Oh, it's just a "Missing in Action" Jammer episode! We failed to supply a jammer on time for the jam. Sh*t happens...