2012 MRDA Championships Preview: #7 Dallas Deception
By James Brains
Despite finishing #5 at last year’s tournament, the Dallas Deception traveled a difficult road qualifying for this year’s MRDA Championships. The Deception earned a trip to St. Louis, Missouri due in large part to a convincing 237-130 win against then -#9 Twin Cities Terrors. The most remarkable part about this victory is that the Deception experienced a league split over the off season yet were able to rebuild and remain a championships-level league.
“We suffered major jammer loss in the off season and it amazes me how fast we picked up the pieces,” Dallas Deception skater Ugotta Be Rad said.
The league split has helped the Dallas Deception, 3-1 in 2012, come together as a team: “Unless they are jamming, my guys and I probably don’t stand out much. We stand together,” Deception skater Uncle Jesse McNasty added. “This past year we have done much to lose the egos and the individual play. An all-star team can beat a team of all-stars.”
Uncle Jesse McNasty is trying to keep his team focused in their training leading up to Champs: “We are training until what we want to do is second nature, but we’re also trying to keep it interesting. It is incredibly difficult to jam against twelve blockers working in unison, but it is also incredibly difficult to work in unison with eleven other blockers. If you can accomplish a task at its most simple as and most difficult, then anything in between should bring no unexpected hurdles.” The Deception have also been working with sister leagues Dallas Derby Devils and Assassination City for symbiotic training opportunities in preparation for Championships.
Both Ugotta Be Rad and Uncle Jesse McNasty want a shot at #3 New York Shock Exchange at Championships. “I missed out playing against New York at Spring Roll 2011 (New York won 182-46) due to injury,” Ugotta Be Rad said. “Playing them is playing the rule book, so you have to bring your skating skills and smarts against them.”
The Dallas Deception will have to defeat their first-round opponent the #2-ranked host league, the St. Louis GateKeepers, before they can get a shot at the defending champs. The Deception took a pounding against the GateKeepers in June, 340-83, for their only loss of the season. But, despite the seemingly lopsided score, Uncle Jesse McNasty felt his team learned a lot from the experience: “Though we lost, it was a defining moment for the Deception. We took a very short roster into the lion’s den and found the true measure of ourselves and our team. We got our butts kicked and came home with a renewed sense of what we needed to do and how to apply what we had been working on.”
No matter the outcome, Uncle Jesse McNasty expects a positive experience for all involved. “When the smoke clears and the dust settles, Dallas Deception will accomplish the goals we set for ourselves for MRDA Championships. Win or lose, we will represent what Texas men’s roller derby has to offer. And, we will do it with dignity and respect. My children started junior derby recently. The torch has been passed. In St. Louis, that same torch will burn brighter than ever, held high by eight teams. After the last bout has been played, and the trophy has been awarded, it will be the fans who will take that torch home.”