Outcomes vs. decisions & a newly named pickleball shot {VIDEO}

Aug 04, 2022

Welcome back! Today’s edition has 3 parts. 

  1. TIP - Decisions vs. Outcomes 

  2. VIDEO - The “De La Rosa” shot (video) with 1 million views on Instagram 

  3. JOURNEY - Upcoming Tournament in Newport, California

I’m restructuring the newsletter and would love your help, so stick around. In the PS at the bottom, there’s a link for you to give feedback. 

And no, it’s not some long boring survey. There’s one question for you to tell me which content you love most. That way, I can give you more of it 😁. It’ll take you 7.87 seconds to do. 

Now, let’s start with the TIP: 


More specifically, a question. 

Where does your focus go after you win a point or make a mistake? Is it on the decision you made or the outcome you got?

In her book, “Thinking in Bets,” Annie Duke says,

“We hold a tight relationship between outcomes and decisions…We often decide whether a decision is good or not based on its outcome.” 

She calls this, “Resulting.”

But as we have all experienced, good outcomes are possible even when we make bad decisions, and vice versa.

For example, if you’re late and decide to run a red light and don’t get caught, it was still a bad decision, you just didn’t get caught. 

In other words, just because you got away with it, doesn’t make it a good decision. 

The same applies to pickleball. 

Think about it like this. 

If you speed up a soft dink and the opponent hits a strong counter to win the point — that doesn’t necessarily mean you were wrong to hit that shot. It means you got one bad outcome on a single shot. 

But what you do in the next 10 seconds following that moment is crucial.

See, most respond to a point with celebration or a miss with frustration. Which is fine. I do the same. And I’m not saying not to. We’re human. 

What I am saying is…

…after two seconds of having that emotional response, most don’t do this one thing next.

GCQ - “Get Curious Quick.”  **say that three times fast.** 

Don’t fall into the trap of “Resulting.”

Instead, respond (internally) with a question. 

“Did I make the correct decision with that shot?” 

And you might wonder, “but how would I even know that?” 

Back to the speed up example. Well…

  • Was their paddle position down?

  • Was the ball high enough to speed up? 

  • Have you ever practiced that shot before? 

  • Does the player standing in front of you have slow hands?

  • Were you aiming at their right shoulder? (a tough place for righty’s to counter). 

If the short answer is yes, it was probably a good decision that just happened to yield a bad outcome (in this example).

See, if you hit that same shot 10 times and win 7, it’s a good decision. 

The problem is, most of us (me included) don’t think about the entire match and the odds of certain shots working. We give too much weight to each shot we hit — whether good or bad. 

And all of the sudden, we operate on an emotional roller coaster — too easily impacted by whatever the outcome is.

And this is hurting your game, and frankly, just pissing you off.  

So here's your one actionable tip for the week. 

Next time you play, re-direct focus to what you can control, rather than the outcome you got. 

Ask yourself, is the decision I made, regardless of the outcome I got, going to win the point 7 out of 10times? 


If the answer is yes, hit it again the next time you see that ball.

If the answer is no, don’t hit it again and improve your chances of winning the point by doing something different. 

And here’s the final thing.

If you make that decision, you’ll free your mind and reduce your anger. 

Because while making a smart decision doesn’t always get you the outcome you want, it will get you better outcomes over the long term. And that’s the goal. 

An Entertaining Video


Pro Pickleball Player Daniel De La Rosa, who also is the #1 racquetball player in the world, is quite the athlete. Also, one of the nicest guys on planet earth. 

During Major league pickleball a few months ago, he hit an absurd shot. So I had to re - enact the shot. When I posted it to Instagram, it received over 1 million views!

After it blew up, I got on FaceTime with Daniel and talked about the shot for a few minutes. Here’s the video. 👇

The Journey to Pro


After a 6 week break from playing tournaments, it’s almost time to get back out there. I just arrived in Newport, California for a tournament. It’s a unique format where this tournament is combined with the Major League Pickleball event at the same venue. I wrote an article about the last major league pickleball event, which you can read by clicking here.

I’m playing only one event tomorrow (men’s doubles), so I’m excited for that. I’m also pumped to be around some of the best players in the world again watching how they play and getting inspired to keep improving! 

Follow along over the course of the weekend on Instagram! I’ll be very active making fun videos throughout the weekend.  @thatpickleballguy

Until next time, 


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