Tide Out: The Oceanics’ State of Affairs in the 2019 MarbleLympics
Dearest Oceanics Fans,
First of all, we acknowledge and sympathize with your disappointment by the Oceanics’ performance in the 2019 MarbleLympics. We oversaw their training in the Seven Seas Stadium as its construction neared completion, and can confirm that the team trained well enough for the events that would be offered. The Oceanics took on an immense challenge this season by offering water events in the tournament—these being types of events that the team typically does not fare well in. Unfortunately, as demonstrated by the results of this year’s MarbleLympics, it seems that their endeavors were anything but successful.
The Royal Family of Dunduei has treasured the spirit that the Oceanics have brought to Oceania, and we desire to reinvigorate the determination and morale of the team, as well as you, the fans, who were heartbroken this season. In order to preserve this spirit, and perhaps better it, the Royal Family has agreed to purchase the Oceanics from Tide, who was not only the team’s coach, but the team’s owner. We will retain the team’s manager, Reef, and the team’s new coach, Lagoon, as a part of this acquisition. Additionally, this purchase includes ownership of the Seven Seas Stadium, which will now operate under the Royal Seal of Dunduei, and be protected under such securities.
This was not an easy decision for the Royal Family to make. We have been struggling during the past few months due to the previously unannounced sickness of Queen Marina, who, as you may have noticed, has not appeared at the proper 2019 MarbleLympics events and ceremonies. In the interim, King Triton has been ruling over the region alone, with no desire to replace his wife, regardless of the strain that ruling alone has placed on him. In witnessing the Oceanics continue to perform poorly in the 2019 MarbleLympics, Her Majesty, distraught, has urged the King to act. In this manner, His Majesty shall do so, honoring his wife’s wishes as well as the wishes of the region, and perhaps of the world.
The Royal Family of Dunduei
Hey guys! Stynth reporting. The JMRC received an important letter from the Royal Family of Dunduei today…and wow, does it seem to be a doozy. After months of witnessing the Oceanics’ fall from grace during the 2019 MarbleLympics, it seems that even the Royal Family has gotten involved. In fact, they’ve worked out an agreement with the team’s former coach, Tide, to purchase the team from him entirely. How did this come to be, you ask? We interviewed the Oceanics themselves to discuss this recent development in marble sports news.
“We knew that we were taking on a big risk,” Reef, the team’s manager, echoed from the letter. “However, in consulting with MarbleLympics officials, we realized that only by offering water events could we offer our greatest potential as hosts for the 2019 MarbleLympics. That opportunity was there for us, and we took it.”
“I was brought on to the team in late 2018,” recalled Bay. “The Oceanics got wind from the officials that it was a conflict of interest if the coach of a team was also an active member of a team, and Tide stepped away from his reserve position. I was already being sponsored by Tide in the Oceania Surfing League, so he brought me on to support the team in the 2019 MarbleLympics.”
Things were looking good for the Oceanics prior to the 2019 MarbleLympics. The team won the Friendly Round before it was even over, having secured enough points to win in the first three events and being able to afford a finish in dead last for the final event, the Underwater Race. Fans were optimistic that the team’s success in the Friendly Round would translate to high results in the main tournament, at least for regular events. The call for #TidePride had never been louder.
“It’s not like we didn’t train,” Ocean explained. “We were a little conflicted when the stadium was under construction, but once it was completed, we dove in. I’d be lying if I said that everything was okay, though. That something didn’t feel off.”
“The team didn’t feel the same. Our mojo was thrown off because Tide wasn’t competing on the team anymore, and not only that. He didn’t coach as well when we wasn’t competing on the team. He didn’t see where we were struggling,” said Sea.
“He didn’t see that we were struggling,” Shore assured.
The first blow to the Oceanics’ morale came in the first event of the main tournament, when Ocean came last in her heat, in front of His Majesty King Triton and over the commentary of Greg Woods, exclaiming “Oceanics, ah, they’re going to finish last again in an underwater event. They will not move on.” The team began the 2019 MarbleLympics with three points, and over the course of the next five events, secured bottom-half finishes in four of those five in order to sit at the bottom of the standings at the end of the sixth event, Relay Race. One of those finishes included a dead-last performance in the fourth event, Gravitrax Slalom.
Although Tide declined to comment for this feature, we were able to interview him shortly after the Relay Race, an event in which the Oceanics won in the Friendly Round. He had this to say to us:
“You know, the way we see it, this would look worse on the team if this year’s season was only twelve events long. We’re not at the halfway point yet, and we still have a chance to bring this home—literally.”
Unfortunately, the team was still in a bad place by the time the tenth event, Maze, rolled around. Although the Oceanics managed to keep out of last place, they were still in second-to-last place, only above the Pinkies, a team which is notorious in the MarbleLympics for being in last place at the end of two of the tournaments.
“Suffice it to say that we were not impressed with the team’s performance,” Reef stated. “We didn’t consider being better than the Pinkies much of an accomplishment…until we weren’t.”
Although the Oceanics reached the finals in the Maze, the team squandered their high odds of medaling when they finished in fourth place. In the next event, Dirt Race, Shore made it to the final race, but bounced off the course, finishing in seventh and returning the Oceanics to last place overall.
The Pinkies medaled in both events.
“Morale was at an all-time low for us…or in hindsight, it wasn’t even as low as it was at the end of the season,” Aqua said, dismally. “We tried to muster up what we had left during Rafting. We thought we did well, until ten other teams ended up doing better than us.”
That cemented the Oceanics’ fate in the season. “The Oceanics in the meantime, cruelly, they become the first team who will not be able to win the MarbleLympics,” noted Greg Woods as the updated standings appeared on the scoreboard.
The next event, the Elimination Race, appropriately saw two of the Oceanics get eliminated—the team member who participated in the event, Sea, and the coach of the team, Tide.
“I was sitting near Coach Tide when he was removed from the grandstands. Reef and Alvin rolled over to us with a bunch of stadium security marbles, and Reef fired him on the spot. It seemed as if he had been planning to fire him for a time, at least for a few weeks,” one of the other team’s coaches, who asked to remain anonymous, reported. “What made it particularly awkward is that Tide owned the team, but Reef was the manager, and thus had the authority to relieve Tide of his coach duties.”
“I had to do what was best for the team,” Reef added. “Tide was our weakest link, especially when it came to training for the water events. We were going to wait until the season was over to make an action, but after the first heat of the Elimination Race, I lost my cool.”
From there, Reef brought Lagoon in as the new coach of the Oceanics, while Tide’s hands were figuratively tied. He tried to fire Reef as manager, but this proved futile when the Royal Family got involved. Regardless, the Oceanics’ performance in the 2019 MarbleLympics did not improve, and the team finished the season with the worst points average of any team in MarbleLympics history. When asked about this, Reef had this to say:
“This season has been one of the most difficult seasons that any team has had to experience. You need to have a clear and positive mindset in order to compete in a tournament as demanding as the MarbleLympics, and between their stress in hosting, changes in coaching, and the loss of support from their fans, the Oceanics couldn’t do as well as they wanted to. It’s sad. And it’s even more sad that we let down our fans on our home turf. They had every right to be disappointed in us.”
“I still believe in our team, though,” said Sea, after a long pause from the team. “We hit rock bottom this year—there’s no denying that. But it was still an honor to host and to be a part of the MarbleLympics for another year. That’s what matters above all, and in order to continue that, we’re going to work hard next year on ourselves—mentally, emotionally, and physically— to qualify and to prove our worth again in competition.”
We thank the Oceanics for participating in this interview and hold the utmost respect for them for holding their heads high during this difficult time. Upon further investigation, it seems that the Royal Family has offered Tide a hefty sum for the rights to the Oceanics and their stadium— apparently an offer that he could not refuse. It would be foolish to assume that we have seen the last of Tide’s influence in marble sports, and it would be even more foolish to assume that Tide is not salty about letting the Oceanics go, even for the amount of money he got for them. After all, it was his influence on the team that led to their best performance yet in the MarbleLympics…along with their worst.
Tide is out, and royalty is in…where will this lead the Oceanics in 2020? We’ll just have to wait and sea. Thank you for reading this Marble Sports Blog feature, and keep on rolling!