First and foremost, THANK YOU to @Evan, @chaos and @MikeGartner22 for putting together a successful tournament! In case you didn't know, these buds are awesome and everyone contributed to the success of this tournament in different ways!
Special thanks to @corbettkb, who took the time to show @CoachMac around NYC, help out in any way he could, and just being completely selfless all the time. He even picked up the food tab Friday! An amazing asset to the '94 community and amazing competitor as well! Glad we were able to hang out for a couple days!
Speaking of Coach, I am a fan and was very happy that he could make it to the tournament. I hope you had a great time, and that your trip was worthwhile. I promise to do the trip out to Nevada one day to hang out in your neck of the woods (mountains?) when I can score some cheap flights!
As I reflect upon the weekend, it always comes down to the same thing -- enjoying spending time with the 94 community, both known and all the new buds I got to meet!
So happy that @IAmFleury'sHipCheck was able to make it from Chicago and @kylewat took the Amtrack from Baltimore! I haven't seen Zep since Toronto; it was great to hang out and for him to show how strong of a '94 player he truly is! IMO, he is usually underrated because of his play style. EA, as usual, is great to talk to all day and I thought he played better than I have seen in some time! So appreciative that you come down and I cherish the signed '94 box that has become your calling card. Many many thanks!
Great to see @skoolyardpuck again, great to hang/chat and play '94 with this guy. Hope to continue to see you around!
@eggink444 and @da94wookiee came back from the '94 graveyard, and also hopped on for some great color commentary on the stream! Cheers to you guys!
@aepurniet was a pleasure to meet you in person, and I think you officially ordered the first drink! Hope you had a great time bud!
@Sdogg made the trip into the city and he brought the great energy, and was close to convincing his lovely wife to play!
@crazygoalie33 hasn't missed any tournaments and seems to get some rough draws, this one included, playing wookie, Tex and eggink in the RR, only to meet eggink in the opening bracket losing a close 3 game set!
@Bad Moon Rison , always appreciate the kind words and insights. You have run many Tecmo tournaments, from which we have taken ideas from, and love to see you continue to enter and play '94 tournies! (sorry to have knocked you out of the tourney bud).
@banditra101801 (George) - happy you were able to make the tournament and even play in place of a no-show! Hope you had a great time!
Finally, all the buds like @superfan99, Chris O. Matt, Ron D, and anyone who made the tournament that I may have missed, I hope you all had a great time! I encourage any/all feedback. At the end of the day we (whether us who ran NYC, or others like @halifax and @Edge of 94' WI) just want to make sure we're doing the best we can to make it enjoyable for all.
* Random starting order vs pre-ranking
* Modified swiss style round robin format, followed by elimination game. The swiss style led to some amazing round 3,4,5 games!
* Buds who jumped on for streaming commentary. I will be making a highlight reel from the day to share in the near future!
* Overall community, everyone is so cool, which makes running a tournament much smoother than I think. I'm constantly worried about things and I shouldn't underestimate you guys (all of you).
* Handling of no-shows. Expected 1-2, did not expect 4. Also expected more guests.
* Streaming set up. In short, I think a longer RCA cable will allow me to have the streaming/commentators a little further from the players. I also want the output to be broadcast for a larger crowd to see.
* Add team and home/away to data capture for future analytics. While I fear over-complicating score entry, this has run very smooth for us in the past few tournies. Small tweaks to the scoresheets.
Finally, on my own personal play, I am happy to have come out on top this tournament. My final opponents were Lupz, Tex and Zep, who, I feel, each could have won this tournament themselves. I got Lupz in game 01 early, and I knew he was not playing up to speed. It's almost like a sucker punch to the gut to start a fight, I was lucky to get one so quick. Game 02 went down to the wire, and 8-7 OT victory for me. Given our history, that was more of what we should have expected. Lupz played well and had about 2 instances when his player didn't shoot the puck! Easily could have been a game 03. Tex had just beat EA in two close ones, and I knew EA was playing well. Tex also beat me in the RR with an amazing comeback during our 4-0 vs 4-0 match. I picked VAN-DET and Tex was nice enough to give me Vancouver, a team he knew l liked (Detroit isn't bad either, lol). Second game was another speed session with DAL and WPG. Looking back, I was locked in, holding Tex to 1 goal for both games, not an easy task with those teams and his caliber of play. Finally, Zep was busting people all day, I had called his earlier matches against MikeGartner22. Game 01 was a disaster for me, Zep kept putting on the pressure and I couldn't get my Rangers to shape up. Game 02 was the opposite, where I was able to go up quick with Philly over Zep's Blues. So both of us had lopsided games to start, leaving a game 03. It was my turn to pick teams, and I went with Chicago / Buffalo, a high powered matchup that I like either way. In hindsight, that may have been a mistake since both teams have amazing home ice and Zep was home. Zep chose Buffalo and I had Chicago. If I lost this tournament with JR & Belfour, I had no excuses! Well, the game unfolded with JR on a mission! He single handily took over the game, scoring all my goals. I felt in control of the entire game and having Eddie in net was the ultimate security blanket.
Proud of the victory, and though I felt like a boob for winning a tournament that I helped organize, everyone I played told me otherwise, so I feel better,
Until next time (LI Retro Expo Aug 10-11th!)