- The Dink Newsletter
- These states want MORE pickleball
These states want MORE pickleball
MLP wrap. Pickleballtournaments.com update.
Have you ever encountered this precarious situation before?
“It’s Jake from State Farm” is outdated. The new routine is: “It’s Sharon, from pickleball.”
Ever had a awkward pickleball situation? Leave your comment here for other readers to see and interact with.
In today's issue:
Shot selection vs shot creation
These states are hungry for more pickleball
Error Minimization Drill - No Attacks
This is a new one for most. We’ve only heard of a few people that utilize this…but man, is it effective.
The gist: you don’t hit ANY attacking shots for an entire game, at least.
No speedups. No overheads. No nothin’.
You can only hit third shots, resets, or dinks. Think you can do it?
The goal is to outlast your opponent and minimize errors. Consistency above all else. This is an extremely effective way to harness patience, improve consistency and force you to think analytically about shot selection; and just as importantly, shot creation.
Shot Creation: strategic shot placement that forces your opponent into playing certain balls to you.
Think of a third shot that lands at your opponent’s foot on the backhand side. Often, you’ll earn yourself a pop up. Identifying these patterns is like learning cheat codes.
By contrast, you’ll also begin to better read your opponent’s shots and tendencies. You’ll develop an acumen for identifying smart vs not-so-smart shot selection. Perhaps you’ll notice the same patterns in your own game.
Can you win a game, or even a match, if you never hit an attacking shot?
We bet you can. In fact, we’d be willing to bet that this strategy is not only great for training, but can also win you most matches, particularly if you’re under 4.5.
A Paddle Designed By Women, For Women
ProXR Pickleball’s new Diamond Series paddle received input from one of pickleball’s most dominant athletes, Beth Bellamy.
The design comes in a 14 millimeter Continental Slim and 16 Millimeter Eastern Slim version and features a fiberglass face for maximum power.
Achieve your best pickleball -- learn more here.
Wrapping Up MLP Daytona
One adage in professional pickleball appears to hold true. If you give Ben Johns a little bit of time to figure out the competition, he's going to win.
He did exactly that at the second MLP event of 2023. Johns and the Seattle Pioneers captured the title in front of a packed house in Daytona.
The Pioneers drafted players on the rise back in December. Etta Wright and event MVP Meghan Sheehan-Dizon both made massive strides between MLP Mesa and last weekend's competition.
Combine that with the highlight plays from "Erne King" Tyler Loong, and this team was prime for a championship run.
Two goosebump-inducing moments from the event include:
A 25-23 victory for the BLQK Bears in the women’s doubles semifinal game. The standing-room-only crowd was hanging on every shot. Firefight after firefight decided each point as the Bears squeaked out the win.
The hometown Florida Smash crowd chanting “JESSIE, JESSIE” to help push Jessie Irvine and the Smash to a dream breaker on Friday night.
Riley Newman balled out in his return to MLP. He led all players in point differential despite the SoCal Hard Eights missing the knockout stage.
There was another MLP return that outshined Newman's. Maggie Brascia rejoined the California BLQK Bears, and propelled them to an undefeated group stage performance along with a trip to the finals.
MLP Mesa Champs, the LA Mad Drops, lost Thomas Wilson due to injury and their hopes of back-to-back championships died in semi-finals. Tyson McGuffin was also bit by the injury bug. Brendon Long filled in for McGuffin on the NY Hustlers and Hunter Johnson subbed in for Wilson.
The first ever MLP blue card was issued to Pablo Tellez for excessive foul language (What's a blue card? Brush up on MLP's new card system and newly introduced rules here). Tellez exchanged "pleasantries" with a spectator who was then asked to leave.
At the Challenger Level, the Bay Area Breakers dynasty has begun. They were able to repeat as champions and now lead all teams in the standings to reach the Premier Level for 2024.
The season 1 championships are only 80 days away. Get ready, San Clemente, CA. MLP is coming to town June 15.
The States That Want Pickleball Most
If we told you that demand for pickleball in Florida grew by 50% last year, we’re guessing you’d believe us. What if we said 75%? Would you believe 100%?
If you’re about to throw your bet down, keep your eyes to the sky: the real answer is 236%.
That’s according to the World Sports Network, an independent online sport and betting guide that recently used places2play.org & online search data to determine the “Top 20 states with the biggest demand for pickleball.”
Their research found that while Florida has at least 633 courts, in terms of the ratio of courts per capita, the Sunshine State only ranks 33rd…meaning they’re definitely in need of more courts to keep up with Floridians’ interest level.
We’ll hold back on revealing number 2 (check out our blog for the full list), but we can’t help mentioning the number 3 most pickleball-hungry state. What’s your guess?
Was it Rhode Island? It should have been, but we know many outside of New England forget the state even exists.
With only 33 courts in the entire state (albeit the smallest in the country), Rhode Island has a long way to go to meet its skyrocketing demand for pickleball.
Tournament Site Transitions
A few months ago, Pickleballtournaments.com announced its merger with Pickleballbrackets.com. Now, they want to clear up some confusion about the future of both websites.
According to a statement, Pickleballtournaments.com is not going away.
“We are in transition to a brand-new tournament management platform with new features and services to bring to the pickleball competition community,” they said.
This process will take feedback the website has received from tournament directors and players to develop new capabilities for Pickleballtournaments.com, including:
The moving of all tournaments on the site into Pickleballbrackets.com’s tournament management platform
Updated player profiles
Customizable search options
Simplified registration process
A robust tournament desk operations engine
Pickleballtournaments.com called this a “short update process” currently taking place.
Easy, Safe, Fun: Lectric
Forget the hassle of finding parking at pickleball courts.
The XP Lite is a unique eBike with easy maneuverability, a twist grip throttle option, a basket to hold your things, and five levels of pedal assist.
Learn more about this fun transportation option here.
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