Friday, August 1, 2008

New York Knights Announce Their Roster

2008 Team Roster: (New York is using the Apr 08 Rating List)

1. GM Alex Shabalov: 2711
2. GM John Fedorowicz: 2514
3. GM Pascal Charbonneau: 2515
4. IM Irina Krush: 2515
5. SM Gregory Braylovsky: 2415
6. IM Jay Bonin: 2383
7. NM Matthew Herman: 2187
8. NM Iryna Zenyuk: 2180


1. IM Justin Sarkar: 2440
2. NM Evan Rosenberg: 2201

As the first team to announce their full roster* the New York Knights have set the bar high for other teams to measure up to as they come bearing the first triple GM roster in league history. The middle of their roster also serves to provide strong support with the always solid IM Krush, the returning 2005 All Star SM Braylovsky, and 2007 All Star IM Jay Bonin. With this strong cast along with the underrated NMs Herman and 2007 All Star Zenyuk to hold down fourth board, this could well be the year where the always playoff bound Knights overcome their post-season demons to capture their first USCL Championship.

I'm sure all of you are dying to know what I personally think will happen this season, but you'll have to wait until all rosters are complete for my pre-season article which will delve into that. There are however a couple of initial impressions I'm happy to share with you readers at this point.

(1) With the first three seasons of the league unequivocally proving that having a GM on the roster guarantees that you cannot win the league, one must question the sanity of a team having not only one but three GMs on the roster!

(2) As GM Shabalov has made the transition from Game of the Year Judge to a league participant, we can definitely expect to see many more high quality games this season as no player will be afraid to play a good game in fear of the nickname Shabalov will brand them with in the Game of the Year Contest.

Ok, Ok so maybe those aren't very helpful impressions. But again, once all of the rosters are announced, hopefully I'll be able to come up with some ideas which will at least tread above the boundary of being complete nonsense. Until then, be sure to keep checking the USCL Website for many updates before the action kicks off in three weeks!

*Although this roster has been 'submitted', teams are permitted to make any changes they want (with no penalty) until their first match begins (as has happened to many teams in previous years).

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