I don't know that I can offer much insightful analysis on the two bouts that opened GnR's 2010 world tour, but I'll try.
GnR's obvious strength this season is blocking.
High Roller Hurricane Skatrina is one of the smartest blockers in the league, and her team mate Heidi Go Seek isn't far behind her, but I think GnR blockers Smack Ya Sideways, Napalm Beth, and Mercyful Kate stood right up to them in the night's first bout.
Plus there's the always solid Axl Blows, all healed up Hard Knox, and Maui transplant Suki Hana.
Smack Ya and Beth are two of the skaters who, I think, improved most over last season, and I'm excited to see what they'll bring this year.
As far as jammers go, that's where losses like Aurora Brutalis, Wrench, and Guts & Bolts have left GnR a little short (no, that's not a Punchkin joke).
It's why Cadillac was shamelessly poached from the Betties (no doubt with promises of many tawdry animal print underpants, hooker-red lipsticks, and doting boys muscular, dim-witted, and young—but legal!) and why skaters like Cher The Pain and Hard Knox, who had until now been almost exclusively blockers, were also wearing the jammer cap.
But while Cadi does look so much better in black (doesn't she?), I'm most excited by Fist O' Fury who didn't see much play after she was drafted during last season, but has clearly worked herself hard since then and showed up big during the opening bouts.
Add in Mel Mangles (another skater moved from Rainy City, which is starting to look like the GnR farm league) alongside veterans Punchkin and Blood Clottia, and Mullet, November Pain, and GnR will have lots of options at the jammer line this season.
Speaking of Blood Clottia, it's been reported that Way To Blood's Heart #3 is to try on clothes at Forever 21. Just a bit of advice here: remember to send her the pictures. Otherwise you'll just end up in a dressing room in some mall wearing this while some seventeen-year-old is asking you through the door if you need any help. And if you're like me at all, that's just uncomfortable.
Also, I love seeing Itzo EZ back on skates as a ref, but her lack of loyalty disappoints me. Sure I expect a ref like Sephra So to be
hot fair, but I expect GnR-4-Life EZ to be more than hot fair—I expect her to be just.
And for the twenty bucks I slipped her before the bout, I expect that justice to be tightly focused on GnR's opponents. Is that too much to ask?
The Betties have announced themselves as the team to beat this season, but all four league teams look pretty well balanced against each other to me, and that should make for excellent derby this season.