Over the last couple of days there has been a lot of chatter in the pro paintball smackbox regarding the Palm Beach Vipers. We recently had the opportunity to catch up with team owner Ken Bryson for an official statement of the Palm Beach Vipers concerning the semi pro team, World Cup and future plans.
Palm Beach will not be fielding a team in the semipro division at the 2009 World Cup. This was a difficult decision to make but after looking at our options we felt it was the most reasonable and responsible choice. After Chicago I released some players that were not working out for various reasons. Since then it became more apparent that several the players who remained after Chicago were unhappy and had little or no interest in continuing to play for the Palm Beach semipro squad if they were going to have to pay to support themselves in paintball. This past season dealing with the some of the personalities on the semipro team has been a task and the team has performed poorly. I am not willing to continue to financially support players who put little, if any, effort into the advancement and success of the team. All of the players on the semipro team were paying very little or nothing at all to play paintball for the last 2 seasons, or longer. In return for that financial support some of those same players (who are no longer with the organization) treated the events as nothing more than a vacation. Drunken beer parties, vandalizing hotel rooms, basically anything other than making effort to ensure that the team would have any chance of performing on the field. I’m all about enjoying yourself on trips with friends but there are times to be serious as well. I’m not paying for vacations, nor will I allow other people to sacrifice their money to do so. If those players, who in their defense are probably some of the best players we had and are exceptionally talented, can find someone else willing to provide that same “free ride” with no effort on their part and no expectations of hard work, maturity, commitment, loyalty and performance, I welcome and encourage them to go find it. And harbor no ill will or negative feelings for those that have left.
The players from the semipro squad who have continued to take the program seriously and are committed to the team and myself will remain and will be moved to help to strengthen the Div1 Venom roster for the World Cup event. We still have 5 other teams participating in the World Cup from D1 all the way down through D5 5man. The team continues to be strong in all of the other divisions and we appreciate all the support from our sponsors, supporters, friends and haters alike.
Hopefully, after this season is over and the PSP begins to reveal their plans for 2010 we can rebuild an upper divisional team. In that same thought we will also be refocusing the lower divisional teams in support of the regional and local events and having a smaller presence on the national series.
Keep updated on other team happenings at www.palmbeachvipers.com.
If you have any questions please feel free to email me Ken@palmbeachvipers.com