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NPPL Huntington Beach
April 1-3, 2011
Huntington Beach, California

1st place pro - San Diego Dynasty

For the 9th year in a row, the latest incarnation of the NPPL has launched its season in one of tournament paintball's most impressive and famous venues - the beach at Huntington Beach, California, better known as "Surf City, USA." The Surf City Open puts pro/am tournament paintball in front of thousands of spectators, many of whom are getting a look at paintball, or at least tournament paintball for the first time as they head out to the beach for a day of fun.

The Huntington Beach tournament tradition started after the NPPL, Inc., founded by Chuck Hendsch, split with its then tournament promoter/producer, Paintball Sports Promotions. Pure Promotions, founded by the folks behind WDP (the original manufacturer of the Angel) was a huge success and showed that PP and the NPPL could deliver top quality events. Huntington Beach put the new Super 7 World Series of paintball on the map, and has been an attractor, ever since. Even without the NPPL name, Huntington Beach drew teams when Hendsch formed the US Paintball League to replace the defunct NPPL. Now with the name NPPL back on board, Huntington Beach still draws in record numbers of teams for the season with its unique mystique.

In an exciting first, ESPN Networks came on board to cover this year's Surf City Open - not months later after editing as has been done in the past - but in a live national broadcast.

The revival of 5-man competition into NPPL events has proven a success. Although the 7-man format was designed to give longer an more intense games than 5-man but with reduced cost and logistics for team travel than the previous "top dog" format, 10-man, the attendance of 5-man teams in NPPL competition has shown there is still a place for this lower-budget format. It's simply easier to get a smaller team together for any type of competition. That has helped to fill the fields as the economic downturn has impacted tournament ball.

The 15 teams of the pump division added to the 35 5-man teams showing that there is plenty of life in alternative formats. With 76 amateur teams and a robust showing of 16 professional teams, the NPPL kept the beach packed with paintball competition over the entire weekend. For fans of the blue, this year's Huntington Beach had an extra sweetness - a pro division victory by Dynasty, the first team to ever win the Huntington Beach tournament.


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