Saturday, December 4, 2021

Know the Pros

Coach Wayne’s Corner

Submitted Photos


Throughout my entire life, I have spent countless hours watching all kinds of sports on television as well as attending a variety of games and tournaments in person. Sports on television has always provided an easy format from which we as spectators, (aka, sports fans), get to know, (and have) our favorite players in every sport.

Photo by Jonny Pickleball Andrews

In most sports my favorite players are usually associated with my favorite teams, but the sports of tennis, golf and pickleball are different. Like tennis and golf, pickleball is an individual competitor sport and the top players are not associated with a team. Even though the sport of pickleball was invented in 1965, it has only recently boomed in popularity and is just beginning to be played as a professional tour event.

The sports of tennis and golf have been televised for so long, that even if you are just an “average Joe” sports fan, having knowledge of who the players are is a part of life. Even if you don’t follow and watch the two sports as a devoted fan, chances are you still know and can identify with – both past and present – legends and icons of the game. 

For instance, in tennis you have Borg and McEnroe as legends and now, Federer and Nadal as current icons. In golf you have Palmer and Nicklaus as legends and now players like McIlroy and Spieth as current icons.

We all know the top players with recognizable names in professional sports because they have been around for our entire lives. But the sport of professional pickleball is virtually brand new and while there are a lot of spectacular, iconic players competing in the newly formed APP Tour, there really aren’t many names that come to mind when you ask, “name one of the top professional pickleball players in the world.”

With all of that understood, the format of how fans are viewing all sports is changing, and yes, even old school “boob tubers” like myself are now streaming what we are watching. This is especially true with the sport of pickleball because it is (not yet) carried by any of the traditional cable TV networks. Therefore, if I want to watch some professional pickleball, I need to stream it.

There are several advantages to streaming sports over traditional network television broadcasting:

* I can select to watch an event at the convenience of my own choosing, as opposed to having to wait until it is scheduled to run at a specific time on a major TV network.

* I can watch on a multitude of different devices, virtually anywhere I want. If I have a smart TV, I can stream it from my device to my big screen and watch it in my den.

* If I am not watching a live broadcast, I can pause, fast forward or rewind and I don’t have to sit through a bunch of commercials trying to sell me stuff that I have no interest in buying. 

Even if I am watching a live match and there are commercials, at least they are usually directly informationally related to the sport of pickleball. and, provide access through YouTube and Facebook, providing match coverage and highlights of APP Tour matches on a year-round basis.

Rusty Hewes of and his team of commentators did a great job providing live streaming of matches all week long at this years Minto U. S. Open Championships.

In addition to watching APP Tour match play, I personally recommend becoming a follower of our own local legend, Jonny Pickleball Andrews, and the weekly streaming of his show called “Around The Post”, also accessible on YouTube and Facebook.

So, join the future of the new way of viewing sports, and if needed (like me) get your kids or grandkids to show you how to start streaming so you can start to get to “Know The Pro’s”, by watching some APP Tour events.


Submitted Photos

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