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Waters Selected First Overall in MLP Draft

by The Dink Media Team on

The picks are in. PB weekend in Vegas. APP Tour answers.

Ok nerds, we've got some numbers for ya. In analyzing 9 pro matches, Pro Pickleball Stats' Jim Ramsey counted 563 total third shot drops.

  • 54.3% were returned with a volley (slightly overhit, live to fight another day)
  • 41.5% bounced in the kitchen (success)
  • 4% went into the net (failure)

What do those numbers tell us? They tell us that of the 563, 541 were kept in play. While hitting the perfect third is ideal, it's much more important to keep the rally alive. A ball in the net is much worse than a ball that's slightly overhit. If you're going to miss, miss long.

Finally, we have some kind of clarity as to the state of pro pickleball. All 48 of MLP's Premier League players were assigned to their teams in last night's draft. And the players weren't the only ones divvied up: we learned that each team now has a host city.

LA, you can officially start repping the Mad Drops. NYC, you've got the Hustlers. Milwaukee? You landed an alliteration with the Mashers, and we aren't talking about potatoes...

It's pickleball weekend in Las Vegas. Today, the Bubly PPA Team Championships kick off for three days of exciting team pickleball.

It doesn't stop there. In this issue, we also cover:

  • The APP Tour strikes back with an open letter
  • A lesson in pickleball physics

Let's go!

Pickleball Physics - Shorten That Backswing

Newton's Second Law: the acceleration of an object depends on the mass of the object and the amount of force applied. It's important to keep this top of mind when switching from tennis to pickleball.

A pickleball is less than half the mass of a tennis ball. According to Sir Issac, that means half the force is required to accelerate the ball to the same speed. So why are you winding up like you're Rafa Nadal on your forehand drive?

Former tennis pro Travis Rettenmaier explains how he shortened his backswing to make the adjustment from fuzz to plastic. In this video, he instructs a student that a backswing 25% the size of their tennis stroke can be more effective than a full tennis backswing.

This accomplishes two things:

Consistency - A shorter swing is more consistent. As Rettenmaier says, "The bigger the swing, the more variables there are."

Quicker Load Time - Because of the smaller court, there is less time in between shots in pickleball. A shorter backswing helps you prepare for the next shot.

Keep the swing compact and focus on the trajectory of your drive instead of trying to power through opponents.

Selkirk's Tour bag, one of the most popular in the game, now looks a little different.

An insulated food/drink pouch, ventilated shoe compartment, easy access through the top and the front, a laptop sleeve, larger mesh bottle pockets, room for two paddles, and a hard EVA top which stores your cell phone...all wrapped in a new polyfiber performance material.

Click here to learn more about the Selkirk Regal series: pickleball bags with no compromise.

The Picks Are In

Last night, Major League Pickleball revealed the 48 players selected to the Premier League for the first three events of 2023. Live from Mandalay Bay on the Las Vegas strip, commissioner Brooks Wiley announced the picks.

Gary Vee and the New Jersey 5's won the draft lottery and received the first overall pick. With it, they selected one of pickleball's biggest stars, Anna Leigh Waters.

In true Gary Vee fashion, he proclaimed "The delta between her and everyone else is substantial."

The Seattle Pioneers drafted second and landed pickleball GOAT, Ben Johns. Possibly the most shocking development in the draft was that Collin Johns was not paired up with his baby bro despite being available for the Pioneers' last pick. Instead, they opted to take Tyler Loong as the 40th selection overall.

New to the league for 2023, each team will select a host city. So last year's Mad Drops are now the LA Mad Drops; Team BLQK is now the California BLQK Bears. Four completely new franchises were introduced to the league, including Lebron James' New York Hustlers and Tom Brady's Las Vegas Night Owls.

See the full list of 48 Premier League players & their teams here.

Custom Pickleball Athletic Wear for On AND Off Court

AVI focuses on one simple but important principle: elevating Pickleball by creating exceptional apparel.

They believe everyone — from professional athletes to casual enthusiasts — deserves well-constructed, expertly designed clothing made just for their sport.

APP: We're Still Here!

We recently reported that the APP was 'hitting pause' and dropping any new player negotiations for the time being. But that doesn’t mean they’re fading away.

“The APP is here to stay," they said in yesterday’s open letter to the community. “Whatever people who want us out of the way are saying…”

Loud and clear, APP. And that’s not the only subtext in their letter:

“We believe that inclusivity beats exclusivity, every single time…We believe that people should be able to compete where they want, when they want.

Without explicitly saying as much, this is almost assuredly a dig at the MLP & PPA’s penchant for competing with each other through player exclusivity contracts.

Throughout the Tour Wars, the APP was often pegged as the 'nice guy,' and many of their staff are known by name throughout the picklesphere, particularly Founder Ken Hermann.

As usual, our stance is: the more pickleball, the better. You do you, APP. Read the full letter & our analysis here.

The World Pickleball Tour is bringing the camp experience to a whole new level.

From February 13-16, 2023, celebrity coach Matt Manasse and the WPT team are inviting guests to the coast of Mexico for the first in a series of extraordinary experiences that have been meticulously designed for those who share our love for the sport.

This luxury tourism opportunity features a 4 day, 3 night stay hosted at the Esperanza, a seaside resort nestled into Cabo’s Punta Ballena coastline in Los Cabos, Mexico, and will be jam-packed with a top-class Pickleball camp, excursion opportunities, beach lounging, fine dining, private happy hours, and more.

Registration is now open and will fill quickly. Reserve your spot now.

Your Weekend Plans

The lines between pickleball and tennis are more blurred than ever. At the PPA Team Championships, each of the four teams will be captained by an American tennis icon.

The teams will play a series of doubles matches Friday and Saturday leading to the championship on Sunday, where the final match will be broadcasted on ABC starting at 1 pm ET.

Headlines & Quick Hits


Homecourt Havens

Yeah, I could get used to that. Don't think you'll be hearing any noise complaints here. Just dinks drives and views for days.

A review from the Dink Fam...

The Dink Media Team

The Dink Media Team

We're the premier pickleball media outlet featuring news, tips, reviews, and highlights with over 1 million subscribers, followers, and listeners.

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