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    Team SEWA :: View topic - Why has an American Pro Contender not emerged?
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    Why has an American Pro Contender not emerged?
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    Dart_talker
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 10:42 am    Post subject: Why has an American Pro Contender not emerged? Reply with quote

    Quote:

    In the BullsEye News column by Dick Allix, he summarizes how the PDC has spent a total of 9 years trying to grow darts in America to no avail. He says there are no defined reasons why this has not happened. Why has an American Pro Contender not emerged? He asks who organizes darts in America. What do the governing bodies do to further the game and improve the lot of the best players? He goes on to further state how for every sport to exist, it has to make a profit.


    A reply is posted at:
    http://www.sleepykramer.com/ben_article_reply
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    delfam
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

    the main reason is youth darts, I myself become frustrated cause I'm not allowed to join a league until 21 and there are no youth leagues.

    The second reason is just experience, to become good you have to play the best, but the best are in England and travel and board is very expensive, and most people play darts more for fun than as a job.
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    delfam wrote:
    the main reason is youth darts, I myself become frustrated cause I'm not allowed to join a league until 21 and there are no youth leagues.

    The second reason is just experience, to become good you have to play the best, but the best are in England and travel and board is very expensive, and most people play darts more for fun than as a job.


    I've always thought that there is not enough focus on youth darts here in the states. There seems to be a mindset that darts are unsafe and promote a bad lifestyle.
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    AmericanBadAss
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    I haven't read the whole article yet, but my thoughts:

    First, agreed with youth darts. I have relatives in Canada and those who play have picked the game up before they were 8-9 years old. It's not like the US where it's Little League baseball, Pop Warner football, etc for the kiddies. I had the paper board setup when I was about 10 and didn't really spend much time with it..I really picked up the game at age 26. My cousin from the Great White North had 18 years under his belt already by that age.

    Second, the vast majority of darters in our large league (MMDL) are not what I would consider "serious" about the game outside of league night..and some aren't even on that night.

    I consider myself a middle of the road player. I might hit a 140 one turn but can easily hit an 11 the next. If I attend a tournament it's for a good time and some dart lessons. I know I am not going to win it all but I enjoy the experience. Unfortunately quite a few good players I know view it as if they can't win why bother.
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Size and Money.

    It's just too easy.

    Think about this: when Kevin 'Rainman' Luke wants to compete for $$$ he has to fly 1000 miles to a tournament.

    When I was trying to compete seriously I flew to Camellia (others here have also) and as many of you know who've been around a while Craig and I placed in the top 8 in a mens doubles event and were given $25 each.....I'd made TWICE that in Truckee with Roger Crystal and with another player from Cali (I'm having a hard time remembering his name but he was an Irishman from Sacremento I think)....twice being all of $50.

    So let's compare worlds a little:

    The UK is about 50,000 square miles....Vancouver Island, which is just an island mind you, is over 12,000 square miles....Canada is what? Almost 4 MILLION square miles or 80 times larger then the UK and the USA is about 3.5 MILLION square miles.....

    So let me get this right, with something like 8 MILLION square miles of land to travel across, about, around the north American dart players would have to earn CONSIDERABLY MORE cash at tournaments before being able to 'go pro' for real.

    And that is only the starters!

    Now consider that the big sponsors of darts haven't really considered tapping into the US market. After all, if they did they would stick around long enough to make something of it.

    Maybe I'm a little cynical but it seems to me that if the PDC wanted to make darts really big they would first do what Lucky Lites did 30 years ago and start pumping money into big events.

    Put up or shut up is what I say. With 50 states you would need 50 $50,000 dart tournaments in a year. So for $2.5 MILLION dollars in purse money you would get every darn semi conscious dart player practicing....and you'd have news all over the place about it...and folks like Johnny K would be making some real money for a change...and someone like me might even be inspired to step up his game.

    I'm very certain you'd have the best of the best in every state competing for that money and traveling to ever neighboring state for a piece of that pie....

    Just my 2c
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    GeorgeCostanza
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    1000% right Erik ! (i's really a " No Brainer " ) Cool Size and Money
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    "Size and Money"

    Correct....

    so maybe someone needs to start to look at the country differently
    Wink Wink Cool
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    maybe it's 'potential' and 'love'.... Very Happy
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 10:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Thorn wrote:
    maybe it's 'potential' and 'love'.... Very Happy


    not this time thorn Wink
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    PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    I think the main reason is that we, as a nation, just get too easily distracted by
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    PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Another reason is because in my opinion ...and I'm not alone...the ADO dart circuit is setup for Amateurs (A person who engages in an art, science, study, or athletic activity as a pastime rather than as a profession). For 4 or 5 years I went to about 25+ tournaments a year chasing ADO points. Of course points are only awarded in singles events and I never liked the fact that 98% of tournaments are best of 3. Anybody has a chance in a best of 3. Often there were tournaments on the East coast that I would have like to have been at but I'm gambling travel expenses on a best of 3. If it were best of 5, best of 7 . . . How about best of 3 sets of best of 5 where it will reflects the players skill set more, rather than the game of chance that best of 3 is. . . . Does this make sense?
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    PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Erik is right on it! Cool
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    PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    This is a discussion we have had many times and I think it is an interesting one. Personally I think part of the problem that people don't like to admit but I think is obvious is we just don't have the standard of play in this country. I know many will disagree because it just irritates our American ego that we are not as good at something as some other country. I am not saying size and money are not problems; they are and in fact have a relation to the problem of not having the standard of play they do in the UK. And the effect goes the other way standard of play effects the money coming into the game. But I think that to say that it simply is size and money is just a little myopic. If we solved those problems it is not going to magically raise the standard of play. And vice a versa raising the standard of play isn't going to solve the size and money problems either.

    Because these problems have direct effects on each other the solution should deal with all the problems simultaneously.

    One step in the process of solving these problems is being offered by Foto and Major league darts he is trying to get going. But IMHO if those who are trying to make a living at darts or want to raise their standard of play don't get behind it then it won't be a solution to the problem. The thing is for them they are the ones that should be promoting it, making the calls, finding venues, sponsors etc...Isn't this what happened when the PDPA started a bunch of players got together created what they needed.

    Really sick of hearing size and money as an excuse, lot of belly aching in darts in general. Very little productive comes out of these discussion unfortunately, I will say its nice to see people like Foto and Ae take some chances and start something. Me I am a crappy pub shooter and I do what I can to help better shooters in my area and those who want to improve by giving them opportunity to play in the most competitive format and put money in their pockets. If an event comes to my area I help out show up and chalk, set up, tear down, hand out flyers whatever I can contribute etc....But if those who it benefits the most don't put up then it will go away just like the other opportunites that came along.
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    PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    cannibal wrote:

    One step in the process of solving these problems is being offered by Foto and Major league darts he is trying to get going. But IMHO if those who are trying to make a living at darts or want to raise their standard of play don't get behind it then it won't be a solution to the problem. The thing is for them they are the ones that should be promoting it, making the calls, finding venues, sponsors etc...Isn't this what happened when the PDPA started a bunch of players got together created what they needed.

    ... I will say its nice to see people like Foto and Ae take some chances and start something. Me I am a crappy pub shooter and I do what I can to help better shooters in my area and those who want to improve by giving them opportunity to play in the most competitive format and put money in their pockets. If an event comes to my area I help out show up and chalk, set up, tear down, hand out flyers whatever I can contribute etc....But if those who it benefits the most don't put up then it will go away just like the other opportunites that came along.



    Agreed! This could be a good chance to promote efforts to grow North American Dart groups like Major League Darts http://www.mlddarts.com/ and Pro Developmental Singles League (PDSL) http://www.doublecork.com/
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    PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    I would like to thank Anne for getting the public ball rolling on this topic. I have a reply that I have laid out on my website for all to see. Being a PDC member and 2011 Tour Card holder means a lot to me, but not if we will have cheap shots taken at us as Americans trying to figure out ways to get to these events and play.

    I ask you please read my response and feel free to comment.

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    PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2010 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Shocking, but I'm not here to promote Major League Darts...

    I think what delfam said is right on. Youth Darts!!

    My wife teaches Jr High (I know, I offer her a gun every year!). Anyway, her math team member said she would offer extra credit to any kid who played in a darts league. Now I need to get the youth program in the US kick started as well...

    Could you imagine what darts in the US would be like in 10 years if every town had 50-100 kids playing darts for math extra credit??

    I bowled from 2nd grade through my sophomore year in college. I haven't bowled in like 3 years, but could probably still head out and roll in the 180s (ha, just noticed the dart cross over number there...). It was offered to me. If a sport isn't accessible, then how are people to know they can be any good at it? Even if the majority of kids playing don't make it to the 'pro' circuit, at least they could still attend the ADO events, or better yet, the local leagues would surge!

    Ok, so, not to make this into an ADO bash thread, but other than hosting nationals for youth, what does the ADO do to promote the youth game? They're bringing in a ton of cash; I would assume they are attending every tradeshow for youth athletics/activities in the country, trying to promote darts.
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    PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

    I also agree with the best of 3 legs theory. Anyone can win in best of 3 and traveling across the country is a big gamble money wise if you have say 2 bad legs, and your out.
    I think best of 7 would be ideal, the only thing is the time constraint.
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    PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Another part of the issue is that we in the states have not developed league players into darts fans. Very few folks know much about the the PDC World Championships, some know about the BDO World Championships. If fans show interest in the sport, sponsors will show interest.
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    PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    I think it is not impossible for an american to be good enough, travel enough and live and work as a professional darts player. if a canadian can do it (John Part world champion mind you) why can't an american?

    more american's seem to have played overseas than ever before in the last 10 years. the pdc doesn't seem to want them though with the new tour card nonsense.

    are players like colin osbourn, terry jenkins, and kevin painter better than darin young and any one else that goes over there? maybe/maybe not. but they have Unicorn money thrown at them and haven't won much/anything.

    i don't hear dick allix complaining that those guys aren't practicing enough. or don't have the nerves enough to overtake Phil Taylor. but then he can't actually rip on the european players.
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    PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Dart_talker wrote:
    delfam wrote:
    the main reason is youth darts, I myself become frustrated cause I'm not allowed to join a league until 21 and there are no youth leagues.

    The second reason is just experience, to become good you have to play the best, but the best are in England and travel and board is very expensive, and most people play darts more for fun than as a job.


    I've always thought that there is not enough focus on youth darts here in the states. There seems to be a mindset that darts are unsafe and promote a bad lifestyle.


    From someone who is a huge advocate for youth darts here are a few of my thoughts related to this topic…….
    I go to a great many tournaments every year. Dart players are as a demographic “child rich” so to speak. I won’t say a BABY factory…..but you're picking up what I’m putting down…….Yet you see very few kids at the events. The events that do have a youth component to the weekend’s festivities are generally poorly attended. Dart players have to ask themselves WHY this is so? It all starts with the parents. To grow the game among children you have to START with a cadre of youth players…..these youth players are NOT going to walk in off the street. They are going to be the children of adult dart players. Full Stop. My son for example is running a dart clinic this year at his high school. We hope to grow this into a youth league. Without my son the clinic would have NEVER happened. Without the clinic the student body most likely will not have been exposed to the game of darts. Without ME teaching my son and exposing him to the game and many of this country’s best players he would have never thought to do such a thing. It all starts at home folks. You eat an elephant only one way……. One bite at a time. Without the dart playing community growing their own youth cadre there is little hope for it to catch on with other kids outside our little world. There are great players in our little world that LOVE to help the youths along. Tom Sawyer….Johnny K…..Bill Davis…..Chris White…..Stacy Bromberg……Darin Young…..and list goes on and on. Bring your kids out and they will be welcomed. They are the future. But without YOU there is no hope for a strong youth system.
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    PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    ^ my parents actually don't play and I still picked it up, but I do think that's a big reason.
    The reason I started playing was when they showed the PDC Worlds on ESPN that one year. The only thing is that lasted one year. TV coverage would be great but I'm not sure if any TV stations would pick it up.
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    PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Quote:
    In the BullsEye News column by Dick Allix, he summarizes how the PDC has spent a total of 9 years trying to grow darts in America to no avail. He says there are no defined reasons why this has not happened.

    Here is my $.02.
    Quote:
    Why has an American Pro Contender not emerged?

    Because holding a couple of PDC Pro events in North America each of those 9 years does not a make an American Pro Contender. PDC’s hosting of a few Pro events each year and bringing over the best in the world to feast on North American players, who mostly are not experienced in the Pro game, does not make a Pro Contender.

    The primary reason that an American Pro Contender has not emerged is because North America does not have a national Pro circuit/tournament series to develop its players for the PDC professional game. Without a Pro style circuit, where ONLY 501 is played in long formats, we will always be mediocre darters relative to the PDC standard of play. North America will never develop a Pro Contender from the current style of tournaments (11-13 events) and formats (best of 3).

    Quote:
    He asks who organizes darts in America.

    The first organization that comes to mind is the ADO. One of the benefits of ADO is to sanction play across the USA under the ADO banner. It also provides an avenue for its players to qualify for the US National teams and compete with players from other countries in amateur style events around the world. Many people enjoy this opportunity but most will agree that this type of program does not develop a Pro Contender.

    IMO, the bulk of the organization and hard work comes from the local tournament directors and volunteers who spend countless hours organizing, promoting, and running their tournaments. The tournament directors and their staff assume all risks and responsibilities in running and managing tournaments. Without all of their hard work in organizing and hosting their events, we'd literally have nothing.

    Quote:
    What do the governing bodies do to further the game and improve the lot of the best players?

    The ADO is not designed to further the game beyond the amateur ranks nor is it trying to develop its best players into Pro Contenders. The ADO is mostly a 'sanctioning' body. It is not a 'governing' body IMO. When it comes to tournaments, the role of governance lies primarily in the hands of the local tournament directors.

    A glimmer of hope lies in the development of the new Major League Darts series. The MLD has a format that is more conducive to player development for long format 501 games. Brian Jackson has put a lot of time and effort in this MLD initiative. The MLD is directed at helping further the game and improve the lot of the best players in North America.

    The question is....are there enough serious players out there who are both ready and willing to participate in this type of event?
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Simple answer is "you don't have anyone good enough"
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    podge wrote:
    Simple answer is "you don't have anyone good enough"


    Total bunk.

    Seems to me John Part has proven that wrong as well as Darin Young, Johnny K, Paul Lim and so many others.

    We have the talent and could probably amass ten times the pro players that the UK has if we actually had a pro circuit where a dart player could actually earn a living.

    Competition makes the pro, without it you simply won't get any. To get competition you have payouts that draw out the best, always, and causes them to work harder to succeed....hold 50 $50,000 tournaments in a year and you will see the darts fly in anger!
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

    Erik wrote:
    podge wrote:
    Simple answer is "you don't have anyone good enough"


    Total bunk I don't think so John Part isn't American he's Canadian. Darin Young 65th on the order of merit hardly a contender, Gary Mawson 77th dito, Bill Davis 152 it gets worse, Johnny K and Paul Lim 182, you brought those up. Need I say more?

    Total bunk.

    Seems to me John Part has proven that wrong as well as Darin Young, Johnny K, Paul Lim and so many others.

    We have the talent and could probably amass ten times the pro players that the UK has if we actually had a pro circuit where a dart player could actually earn a living.

    Competition makes the pro, without it you simply won't get any. To get competition you have payouts that draw out the best, always, and causes them to work harder to succeed....hold 50 $50,000 tournaments in a year and you will see the darts fly in anger!
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