Derby fans, this Saturday night marks more than one very special occasion in the world of Kansas City roller derby, and even the most casual fans of the sport won’t want to miss this one. Not only is it the 2014 Dead Girl Derby championship games — not only is it the very last house event under the name Dead Girl Derby before they transition over to the Fountain City moniker — but perhaps most importantly, it marks the return of the great Pippi Strongblocking to the flat track after her enormously successful fight against breast cancer.
We will have much more on the return of Pippi Strongblocking later this week. For now, let’s turn our attention to the games themselves.
Deadly Sirens vs. Lovely Lethals
The first contest of the evening is a grudge match between the Deadly Sirens and the Lovely Lethals, two teams with tremendous talent who have struggled to bring things together the last couple of seasons, and that’s really all you can say about it. It’s a phenomenon we affectionately refer to as the Reverse Bumblebee Effect.
For decades, you see, scientists were confounded by the fact that bumblebees were able to fly, given their measly wingspan and wing mass vs. body weight. Physics allegedly told us they shouldn’t be able to get off the ground at all. Although that mystery has since been solved, the Sirens and the Lethals have the exact opposite problem: for all appearances, they have everything in the world going for them, but for the most part, haven’t been able to maintain flight.
The Lovely Lethals, in particular, were only able to muster 19 points against the Royal Pains last month and 14 points against the terrifying Shotgun Sheilas back in February. The Deadly Sirens have come about as of late and nearly took down the Sheilas last month, eventually dropping that one 78-70.
Given the apparent resurgence we’re seeing from the Ladies in Teal, we’re predicting a Deadly Sirens win by about 12 points. Expect that, but don’t expect it to be easy; historically, the Lovely Lethals remain one of the most dangerous teams this young league has ever seen, recent troubles notwithstanding, and they have a tendency to bring it when it really counts. This season’s grudge match should be a fantastic one.
Royal Pains vs. Shotgun Sheilas
No one could have been surprised when the Royal Pains, defending Dead Girl Derby champions, began the season with a bang and a 27-point win over the Deadly Sirens. The Purple Passion has been practically unstoppable the last couple of seasons, and 2014 looks to be more of the same.
Likewise, the Shotgun Sheilas have been terrorizing the flat track in this town since before they were even called the Shotgun Sheilas. They went undefeated for about two calendar years and still haven’t lost a game to anyone other than the Royal Pains since mid-2011. They lost the 2013 championship game to the Pains in a bit of a shocker last season, and you can bet they’ll be looking to change things up as the season comes to a close this weekend.
Things to consider:
- The Royal Pains beat the Shotgun Sheilas in their only match-up this season back on April 19th, final score 39-34.
- Pippi Strongblocking is back for the Sheilas, and she’s always a major factor. The Sheilas are at full strength and have no players out on injury.
- Lone Rager and Lady Killshot, major defensive and offensive powers, respectively, won’t be playing with the Pains this weekend.
- Last month, the Sheilas nearly lost to a Deadly Sirens team that’s only beaten the Lovely Lethals for the last couple of seasons.
Nobody said calling this one would be easy.
All things considered… we’re predicting a Royal Pains win by 4 points. That’s it. It’s hard to imagine the point spread being any greater than that, but it is, on the other hand, quite easy to see this one coming down to the very last jam. These two incredible teams are both poised to become the first ever two-time Dead Girl Derby champion — that’s right, it’s never happened before — and while we’re giving the edge to the Pains, this final game of 2014 could easily be decided by the smallest of factors, given the caliber of teams we’re dealing with. If you’re not excited for this year’s championship game, you just haven’t been paying attention.
Doors at Kemper Arena open at 5:00. First whistle is at 6:00. Tickets are $15 for adults, $7 for kids ages 6-12, and ragamuffins ages 5 and under are admitted free.
As always, you can follow our Twitter feed for scores and highlights as the games progress, as well as our Instagram page for a behind-the-scenes look at Dead Girl Derby on bout night. Whatever you do, don’t miss the 2014 championship games at Kemper this Saturday night. This one is definitely shaping up to be one of the best yet.