DNN Best of 2010 Reader Poll: Results
The winner of the 2010 DNN Reader's Poll Best Photo category. Subject: Carmen Getsome, Rat City. Photo: Axle Adams.
Second place in the 2010 DNN Reader's Poll Best Photo category. Subjects: Urrk'n Jerk'n As Booty Blockya (Rocky Mountain) and Athena (Steel City). Photo: Dave Wood.
Third place in the 2010 DNN Reader's Poll Best Photo category. Subjects: Bonnie Thunders (Gotham) and Frida Beater (Rocky Mountain). Photo: Gil Leora.
Most Underrated Player
Winner: Assaultin' Pepa, Rocky Mountain (50 votes, 9%)
Second Place: Maura Buse, Boston (25 votes, 4%)
Third Place: Juliet Bravo, Rat City (15 votes, 2%)
This category was write-in only, and just like last year, it looks like a lot of poll respondents don't do well with open-ended questions -- we had 512 voters participating in this category (slightly less than 1/3 of the 1569 voters who voted in the rest of the poll). Nonetheless, yet another award goes to the champs from Rocky Mountain, as longtime pack brutalizer Assaultin' Pepa takes honors for most underrated.
Rookie of the Year
Winner: Urrk'n Jerkin As Booty Blockya, Rocky Mountain (546 votes, 34%)
Second Place: OMG WTF, Gotham (180 votes, 11%)
Third Place: Lil' Paine, Boston (116 votes, 7%)
Urrk'n made her debut as a RMRG all-star in August when Rocky Mountain went to Chicago and defeated Windy City 151-56, but it wasn't until a couple of months later at Western Regionals that most of the derby world got a look at what RMRG had added to their roster. Unbelievable footwork and agility (well illustrated in this highlight clip from the Westerns championship match against Oly) made her practically a shoo-in for this year's ROTY award. It marks the second year in a row that a Rocky Mountain player picked up that award, as Whipity Pow took it in 2009.
Most Valuable Blocker
Winner: Psycho Babble, Rocky Mountain (270 votes, 17%)
Second Place: Amanda Jamitinya, Rocky Mountain (209 votes, 13%)
Third Place: Sassy, Oly (201 votes, 7%)
Intimidating, fiery Psycho Babble proved a major thorn in the side of opposing jammers all across the nation this year, but an already exceptional year peaked at the end of the Championships when she helped RMRG short-circuit Gotham's normally overwhelming jammer attack for a critical first-half that gave Rocky Mountain the lead and momentum they'd ride through the second half and into the championship.
Winner: Suzy Hotrod, Gotham (338 votes, 21%)
Second Place: Joy Collision, Charm City (207 votes, 13%)
Third Place: Jackie Daniels, Windy City (204 votes, 13%)
Although she makes her most visual impact with the jam star, Suzy's victory here for the double-threat category reflects the respect she has when let loose in the pack -- that same footwork, acceleration and agility that makes her so hard to stop on offense also makes her extremely hard to keep away from an opposing jammer. Time after time this year, Gotham slotted her in for increased second-half blocking duties against a tiring opponent, and almost every time it contributed to one of Gotham's many lopsided wins.
Most Valuable Jammer
Winner: Bonnie Thunders, Gotham (416 votes, 26%)
Second Place: DeRanged, Rocky Mountain (296 votes,18%)
Third Place: Urrk'n Jerkin As Booty Blockya, Rocky Mountain (213 votes, 13%)
When the flat-track game started to get rolling, skaters usually fell into two categories -- tiny fast jammers and big scary blockers. As the game evolves, we're starting to see teams draw success from larger, more physical jammers who fall in between those two extremes, can smash their own way through a pack and are hard to move off their lines. The slender Bonnie Thunders is a bit of a throwback -- as much as any sport this young can have a throwback, anyway. Her jukes and timing make her the human equivalent of a knuckleball coming through the pack, leaving opposing blockers either to wait too long to engage or miss with a poorly-timed hit -- she's one of the very few jammers who can separate an opposing wall without actually touching it. Along with fellow winner Suzy Hotrod, she's a big part of the reason Gotham has been a serious threat to win it all every year since 2007.