On Allyce Jones Brilliance, a video about nothing, and my 1st mens pro win.

Nov 10, 2022

Welcome back!

Today’s edition has three parts: 

 

1. A Helpful tip – Be like Allyce Jones. 

2. An Entertaining video – About nothing. 

3. An Update on my Journey to Pro – Results from Dallas, Texas. 


Also, welcome to the 35 people who joined last week and thanks to everyone who referred a friend!

Without further ado, let’s dive into the 48th edition of the newsletter — powered by Selkirk! 


HELPFUL TIP 

 

How does a 5’3” player sit atop a sport that rewards height & length? And why do so many players have such deep respect for this one player — Allyce Jones? 

Well, while many things make her great, I’ll narrow it down to the one thing that, I believe, makes her special.

Grit. 

Angela Duckworth, who wrote the book, Grit, defines it as, 

Passion and perseverance for long-term goalsIt is the ability to persist in something you feel passionate about and persevere when you face obstacles.” 

If you watch Allyce Jones play pickleball for 5 minutes, you get it! 

She plays with heart, perseveres through obstacles, and is the ultimate energy giver. 

She’s a gamer. 

In my basketball days I learned:  it’s not how big you are, it’s how big you play.

And Allyce is a prime example of that in pickleball. 

  • She’s a worker committed to her craft.

  • She rarely misses dinks. 

  • She’s a “resetting” machine. 

  • She’ll lob you when you least expect it. 

  • She’ll dive for a ball like a volleyball player in a championship match. 

And maybe the thing I enjoy most about her game is…

She competes until the last ball is played — no matter what! 

And then after the match is over, she’ll interact with fans and even do interviews with guys like me — wanting to know how I can be a bit more like her! 

So what’s the helpful tip for today!?

Be more like Allyce.

Choose to compete with grit — constantly working to improve and consistently fighting to win! 


Entertaining Video 

 

Just as I talked about Thomas Wilson in last week’s edition... he strikes again!

Last week at the PPA Texas open, Thomas, AJ Koller and I were sitting in the players lounge when…

…well actually, I’m not even sure words can describe what you’re about to watch. 

Basically — inspired by Seinfeld — we made a video about nothing. Absolutely nothing. 

And the only reason I’m showing it is because it got quite the response on social media. 

 
 
 

AN UPDATE ON MY JOURNEY TO PRO 

 

Last weekend’s results at the Dallas Texas Open. 

Mixed Doubles - 0-2

Mens Doubles - 2-2

A quick breakdown of each. 


MIXED DOUBLES

Mixed was tough. The truth is, I gotta be better! 

We lost the first match handily and I learned…

I have to improve my serve returns. 

In fact, I hear people talking about bangers (people who hit the ball as hard as they can as often as they can) at lower levels…

….and how annoying it can be to play against them. 

Well, here’s a hard truth. 

Bangers exist at the top of the game as well. 

In fact, if a team senses you can’t handle the power, they’ll attack you nonstop.  And I kept putting my partner in a bad spot because I didn’t return the ball deep enough. It’s crazy how a good, deep return changes the entire complexion of the point. 

Now, how about our second match?

Well, it was a tough one to swallow because we were up 12 - 4 in a game to 15. Then, we let it slip away.

That’s pickleball amiright? 

I didn’t execute shots as well as I’d like. My serve returns were short. I missed a couple putaway balls. It was a mess. 

But at the end of the day, I have to improve and learn from those two matches, which I did! 


MEN'S DOUBLES 
To me, there’s three types of “pro wins”. And I plan to hit all three before I actually tell people I’m a pro pickleball player.  

The good news is I hit level 1 and 2 this weekend. The other news is…

Level 3 will be the hardest by far.

Level 1 - win your first men's pro match by forfeit. We did that this weekend. 😂

Level 2 - win your first match, against a team in a similar position as me. Trying to play pro, but there’s still a gap between them and the top players. We did that. 

Level 3 - beat a true pro team. We didn’t do that…

…YET

 

In this tournament, we lost to Callan Dawson and Patrick Smith 11-3 & 11-6 in the first round. Then we were ultimately knocked out by John Cincola and Stefan Auvergne. Two teams that I’d say, fall into that level 3 category. 

Overall, I’m pleased though. Got my first men's pro doubles win! And even though it feels small, it’s progress. 

Thanks for following the journey! 

Until next time, 

Kyle 

PS: On Tuesday, I started a series on Instagram - 10 mistakes beginner pickleball players make, and how to avoid them! 10 videos in 10 days. 

If you’re interested in watching the first 2 videos, I linked them below! 

Video 1 

Video 2 

And heads up, because mistake #3 just dropped a little while ago on my IG, and there’s a good chance, if you’re newer to the game, you’re making this mistake. 

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