Free Agency Updates: Preston Lights Fire, Exchange and Den Battle for Bateman

Happy New Years Eve! 2020 is finally coming to a close, and I’m back to deliver my final Free Agency Update of the year. Here’s what I’m hearing from around the league.

Paul Preston Turns Heads After Backstage Apearance

Paul “The Powder Keg” Preston did not have a great season in 2021. After being drafted to The Den with the eleventh overall pick, Preston ended the year a less than stellar 0-3 across all divisions (0-1 SNG, 0-2 TM). Yet, after a passionate appearance on Schmoedown Backstage, The Powder Keg appeared rejuvenated and is beginning to impress quite a few people around the league. This puts him in an interesting position. Many assumed that after a difficult sophomore slump Preston would fall to the 2021 Draft, but now it would appear that The Powder Keg could make a roster in Free Agency. Specifically, I am hearing that a return to Kate Mulligan and The Den is possible, but The Dungeon and the Finstock Exchange are also showing interest in the 2019 Rookie of the Year Nominee. Even still, Preston is keeping his options close to the vest, so do not expect official word until the Free Agency Special on January 22.

Ben Bateman Strongly Considers Exchange while Kate Mulligan Looks to Steal Him Away

Meanwhile, in a follow up to yesterday’s report, Ben “The Boss” Bateman is still strongly considering a return to the Finstock Exchange next season. I’m hearing that the former Singles Champion has at least two options on the table. Bateman could team up with John “The Outlaw” Rocha and create a heel force akin to Team Action’s prime, or he could pair with the Barbarian with the intention to pick up someone like Paul Preston in the Draft to team with The Outlaw. This should not come as much of a surprise to anyone after manager Tom Dagnino declared his intention to sign both Rocha and The Barbarian at Schmoedown Spectacular V. However, nothing says that the pair are officially returning to the Exchange. It seems unlikely that either Rocha or the Barbarian would be open to leaving their Teams Division fate to the 2021 Draft, so it’s possible that signing Bateman means losing one of them. Even still, that’s simply my speculation given the information available at the moment, and no official word has been given regarding the three competitors in question.

On a related note, I am also hearing that despite the conversations between Bateman and the Exchange, manager Kate Mulligan remains hopeful that she can lure The Boss to The Den next season. My source believes that these hopes are contingent upon resigning Paul Preston, trusting that his newfound fire is enough to get Bateman to agree to team with The Powder Keg. Yet, one would also have to assume that that sword cuts both ways. With Preston catching the eye of several factions, Mulligan would need a talent like Bateman to convince The Powder Keg to stay, which makes the maneuver all the more difficult.

Chandru Dhandapani Likes Where He is at

Additionally, following up on early rumors that managers had attempted to draw Chandru “The Chosen” Dhandapani away from S.W.A.G., I have now learned that at least one of the factions in question was the Finstock Exchange. This might lend further credence to the idea that manager Tom Dagnino’s Schmoedown Spectacular announcement is not quite as set in stone as previously believed. Therefore, it is possible that John Rocha, the Barbarian, or Andrew “The Hunter” Dimalanta are all available to be poached by other managers, and it is difficult to tell where Dagnino’s loyalties lie. Nevertheless, I can report that nothing really came of these conversations and The Chosen appears to be very happy with his current home after defending manager Winston Marshall on Twitter a few weeks ago.

JTE Registers on Radars

Finally, I am currently hearing a lot of rumblings about the former Teams Champion, “Little Evil” JTE. JTE was drafted last year by the Roxstars before being dealt to the Burning Droogs midway through the season. The former champion only competed once during the year, at the Horror Free-for-All, where he was the final competitor to enter and lasted two rounds in total. I have no information on which teams are interested in Little Evil, or if JTE has any plans to make a bigger impact during the 2021 season, but it would appear that some managers are looking to take a gamble on him either during Free Agency or the 2021 Draft.

That is all for now. I hope that everyone reading this has a Happy New Year, and as always, as more information is relayed to me, I will keep you posted.

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David Sackrider

David Sackrider is currently a student at the University of Michigan studying Political Science and Communication Studies. He is a member of the 2017 and 2018 Michigan Association of Broadcasters Best Sports Announcing Team and the 2018 National Federation of High Schools Best Live Sports Broadcast. David is a long-time fan of the Movie Trivia Schmoedown, and also loves to run and read comics.