Mike Hinman and the West Coast Paintball Players League

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November 16, 2015

561576_558107934206132_1566301748_nHey Mike, how’s everything going?
Things are great. We wrapped Vegas up a few days ago and now it’s time for reflection.

What have you been up to lately?
Just working and being a dad. Now that my kids are getting older, I have a lot more daddy duties to see to.

How long has the WCPPL been around?
7 seasons in the books.

What was it like in the beginning?
It was chaotic. The WCPPL was founded because the NPPL version 1.0 had gone bankrupt in the winter of 2008. The NPPL also owned the XPSL and the subsequently went under to. So like with many other of my paintball endeavors I decided to put my money where my mouth was. And that’s where the WCPPL was started. Naturally with a void in the market many others seized the opportunity also. I believe at one point there was 5-6 leagues around California all going after the same teams. And so began a long war of attrition.

When did you really start to see the light at the end of the tunnel and the hidden potential within what you created?
I think I’ve always saw a light at the end of the tunnel with the WCPPL. That moment happened right when you created a business that’s primary goal isn’t to profit from the players, but instead to build a league that the players can benefit from.  I remember the “old days” of the XPSL having events on dirt fields, charging 1000 dollars a team and giving first place 3-4 guns and some outdated jerseys and pants. Back then we all sat around as players and said “Someone could do this so much better”. So I did.

What were some of the things you were looking to accomplish this year?886024_1726389710914604_2803182973837246872_o
Well I think if you’re running paintball events your first and foremost concern should be are people having fun? If the answer is no then you have a serious issue. Besides that I have always struggled on the social media side of things. I’m the kinda guy that says if I’m going to do something you can bet the farm I’m going to do it. So this season we brought Jerry Van Cleve on board to manage the social media and to help with our communication with the teams. I believe this step has taken a solid product and really pushed it forward as a mainstream household name on the West Coast.

Do you think you hit your mark?
Well the numbers don’t lie. We have continued to grow year after year. And considering I can’t name another league that has done that for 7 years running I think we have.

What were some of the more memorable moments for you from the season?
Ya know I don’t really have specific moments that stand out. I get to watch hundreds of great matches a year. But what does standout to me is seeing new teams win. Seeing teams enjoying playing paintball together. Winning or losing they are having fun. That’s what almost all of us can remember about when we started playing this sport.

Which event was your favorite?
You know Tim, they all are. I always thank the teams and their supporters for supporting the WCPPL, and I truly mean it from the bottom of my heart. Just because we are the largest regional league doesn’t mean that people have to spend their hard earned money with us. As we both know some of the smallest events or rainy days of practice turn out to be the best. So I can’t really say one was better than any other.

What are your plans for the off season?482328_624866614196930_309659783_n
Well we obviously are plotting our 2016 dates and locations. We are looking to announce our expansion into the Midwest. The exact location will be released early in 2016 for the Midwest. And our West Coast dates will be out in two or three weeks at the latest.

Got anything new in the works for WCPPL next year?
As I said above we will be expanding into a new region. We don’t expect the West Coast teams to travel out for these events. We are simply expanding into a new region to promote what we at the WCPPL see as fun and competitive regional events. Hopefully in the future, we will be able to tie the regions together while keeping costs down for the players.

I’d like to thank all of the people that make the WCPPL possible. From the staff, the refs, the field owners, the players, the family members, and everybody in between. And I look forward to many many more years of fun and competitive

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