I don't mind the idea of being more aggressive with bumping players that go to sectionals/nationals, my issue is with the locking them in. With the young guns that you are after, this probably works. But there are a host of others that aren't so young and may be peaking to get to nationals and if they simply get a bit older or don't play quite as much their play declines, but you have them locked in at a level up now. Is it really fair to have a 54 year old on a 40+ team that goes to nationals at 3.5 locked in at 4.0 for 3 years as his skills decline? Yes, you could vary the lock-in period based on the age division, but then you are just starting to add more and more exceptions and rules, and IMHO, a good system doesn't require a bunch of exceptions like this. Well, this is what the benchmark calculation is supposed to address, giving more weight (50% of your year-end rating) to those matches played against benchmark players. And since everyone in playoffs is benchmark, 50% of your rating comes from your post-season results. This benchmark calculation is also how the system today provides for being more aggressive with bump ups for those that play post-season play. But if you get to the post-season and don't do well, that factors in too and is part of the reason why some that go to nationals don't get bumped. Someone does lose there, and sometimes pretty bad.