We’ve had an eye on the PLL’s progress for a while now, and the league made its official debut last Saturday (you know, the one about 9 days ago), with the Charlotte Copperheads beating the Jacksonville Bullies 19-14. This past Saturday, the Bullies got revenge and topped the Charlotte franchise 12-9. Now that the PLL is officially here, A few questions quickly come to mind:
Will this be a full, official season?
Well, here’s the deal: The schedules on the Reading Rockets and Jacksonville Bullies websites recently still listed games against the (now dormant until 2013) Jersey Rascals, so chances are, those aren’t necessarily up to date. The league’s official website now has dates past this Saturday’s Jacksonville-Charlotte game, which is good to see.
The Copperheads has had a full schedule (with seven games remaining) on their site for a while, and that has to have been a relief to fans and season ticket holders across the league. No word on a playoff set up, but a regular season schedule is a good start.
Will we get to see the games?
The Jacksonville Bullies broadcasted their first game via internet radio, and the Copperheads tweeted on Friday that their home game this Saturday night against the Bullies would be broadcast online at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/charlottecopperheads. The LXM pro tour seems to have found success running a live broadcast of their games online; we’ll have to see if future PLL games are shown the same way.
Is (box) lacrosse huge in Charlotte?
In their inaugural season, the Charlotte Hounds had the fourth-highest attendance in Major League Lacrosse. Will that enthusiasm carry over into the box game? The team posted their intro video online, gave each of their players team twitter accounts, and they’ve already got an independent fan group that calls themselves “The Snakepit,” so things could be headed in a positive direction.
Will there be a face of the league?
When Major League Lacrosse started up, guys like Casey Powell and Mark Millon were all over their publications and promotional campaigns, using every opportunity they had to spread the word about their using the league. Will the PLL follow their lead, relying on an established player or two to represent the league? Most importantly, do they have someone who can pull it off?
If we’re looking for nominees, let’s start with Jacksonville’s Kyle Hartzell. Yeah, that Kyle Hartzell: MLL All-Star, JuCo champ, NCAA champ, MLL Champ and co-owner of the fastest shot in the history of humanity. Did you know he was playing in this league? If you’re running the PLL, that seems like something you’ll want everyone to know, doesn’t it? Who will be the poster boy for the PLL?
Are you interested?
Without a doubt, this is the question that matters most. Do you want to watch the PLL? Are you willing to give another box league a chance? Say you live in Philadelphia, are you going to make the hour drive to catch a Rockets game in Reading? If you answered “no” to all of these, that’s bad news for the league’s future.
If all goes according to their website, the PLL will double in size next year, which is a pretty lofty ambition. This first season, however it turns out, could be a big step in making that ambition a reality. Will the PLL become America’s premier indoor lacrosse league? This, and all other questions, will be answered soon enough.