The APP has set up their schedule to have an Atlanta event the weekend after MLP. The fields are relatively deep for this APP and these are big opportunities for some of the undrafted players to make some noise before the next MLP event. There will be another Challenger Shuffle Draft before the second event and there are definitely going to be some teams looking to make changes based on their results in Atlanta. For the players coming from MLP, one thing to watch for is that this is a classic let down spot. To go from MLP to an APP is not easy mentally, and we could see some more surprise upsets as a result.
Slim is 1 up on the year for those of you have forgotten. Gritty won the toss and elected to pick first.
Also, we have heard your feedback on the audio with the most recent podcast we released. We rushed the recording due to some time constraints and should have taken more time before the recording to properly test the sound with it being our first video podcast without a guest. We did our best to fix the audio as much as we could and we really appreciate everyone still listening and taking the time to provide feedback. We’ll do what we can to make sure the next one is better!
(1) Simone Jardim / Parris Todd (Gritty)
(2) Andrei Daescu / Rob Nunnery (Slim)
(3) Susannah Barr / Andrei Daescu (Slim)
(4) Yates Johnson (Gritty)
(5) Judit Castillo (Gritty)
Gritty – I took the first pick because I think the closest thing to a sure bet in this field is Simone/Parris. I worry about all these top teams coming off a raucous MLP event, especially two more established players like Simone/Parris. Yates Johnson is a streaky man, but he is the cream of the singles crop in Atlanta. I liked Judit Castillo over Dominique Schaefer by a hair this week so we’ll see how this pans out. I’ll take the grinder over the raw talent.
Slim – Andrei Daescu coming off of his Major League Pickleball win remains the most consistent doubles player on the APP Tour. I wanted him in both men’s and mixed.
(6) Dominique Schaefer (Slim)
(7) Susannah Barr / Megan Fudge (Slim)
(8) Alix Truong / Vivian Glozman (Gritty)
(9) Salome Devidze (Gritty)
(10) Parris Todd / Hunter Johnson (Slim)
(11) Jhonnatan Medina Alvarez (Slim)
Gritty – I had Truong/Glozman over Barr/Fudge by a hair as well, which makes me happy to pick them up at this spot. On the other hand, I would probably trust Barr and Fudge to be the team to avoid a post-MLP mental let down versus the young up and comers. I reached for Salome at this spot because I felt that there were 3 clear podium players in this women’s singles field, which is likely too much disrespect to Megan Fudge.
Slim – Dominique Schaefer has won a couple straight women’s singles titles on the APP Tour, so to get her with the sixth pick seems like good value. I went with the track record of Susannah and Megan with the seventh pick, but I may end up regretting not going with the upside of Alix and Vivian, who have beaten them recently. It will be interesting to see how Parris Todd and Hunter Johnson do this weekend after the success that Hunter had with Allison Harris last time out. It is also interesting that Hunter is choosing not to play singles, which is still his best event.
(12) Stefan Auvergne / Brendon Long (Gritty)
(13) Allison Harris / Brendon Long (Gritty)
(14) Megan Fudge (Slim)
(15) William Sobek / Martin Emmrich (Slim)
(16) Hunter Johnson / Yates Johnson (Gritty)
(17) William Sobek (Gritty)
Gritty – Is it time for Auvergne/Long to get a good result together? Auvergne is coming off another strong Challenger performance whereas Long still has more to prove at that level. I really like Harris/Long this weekend. Harris is likely just better than a lot of these women and Long has gotten results in APP mixed fields. It’s kind of incredible to watch Yates Johnson make a zillion bonehead plays in doubles but he and Hunter are coming off a silver medal in New Jersey together. It’s hard to know what the heck goes on at the Sobek Pickleball Academy and why it took the Tour Wars signing frenzy for William to put his name in the MLP hat. William has not had good singles results lately. Still, I can’t pass on him at this spot with this singles field.
Slim – Getting Megan Fudge who is capable of winning this singles field with the 14th pick, seems like a bit of a steal, and you can count on her to bring a high level of compete. I remain high on the potential of the William Sobek and Martin Emmrich partnership, despite them not making a podium yet.
(18) Vivian Glozman / Rob Nunnery (Slim)
(19) Ewa Radzikowska / Heather Nobler (Slim)
(20) Ryler DeHeart (Gritty)
(21) Milan Rane / Tammy Emmrich (Gritty)
(22) Jessica Warren (Slim)
(23) Greg Dow / Anderson Scarpa (Slim)
Gritty – Ryler DeHeart is usually right in the mix in these APP singles fields and it’s actually kind of impressive that he keeps grinding them out at his age. Milan Rane and Tammy Emmrich had a rough weekend playing for the Austin Pickleballers at MLP. I’m hoping they can flip the script and come in with a surprise podium here.
Slim – Vivian Glozman’s mixed game remains disappointing and Rob Nunnery hasn’t exactly been a regular force in mixed on the APP Tour, but I like their upside here if they can figure it out. The top three women’s team seem pretty set, but if a team is going to sneak onto the podium I like it to be Ewa and Heather. Jessica Warren has shown she can make the podium in singles, but it is a deeper field this weekend so she will have her work cut out for her. Dow and Scarpa are one of the steadiest men’s doubles teams in this field so it would not be that surprising to see them on a podium.
(24) Alli Phillips / Stefan Auvergne (Gritty)
(25) Ryler DeHeart / Marshall Brown (Gritty)
(26) Jayden Broderick (Slim)
(27) Marshall Brown (Slim)
(28) Ewa Radzikowska / Marshall Brown (Gritty)
(29) Taylor Garcia (Gritty)
(30) Martina Frantova / Judit Castillo (Slim)
Gritty – Phillips/Auvergne are a frisky mixed team this weekend. They are on the same MLP team but didn’t play together in Atlanta. Phillips looked solid last week for her 4th round draft slot and Auvergne is generally a mixed beast at this level. I had DeHeart/Brown slightly ahead of Scarpa/Dow because I think there is just a little bit more juice on the offensive side of the game from the lefty/righty pair. Poor Marshall Brown. We keep forgetting about him. We made a comment on our most recent podcast as to whether Ewa Radzikowska can play the right in mixed, but we forgot until we saw this partnership in the draw that he has played a good chunk with Ewa on the pro scene (starting last year at the APP Alabama Open). I like the Radzikowska/Brown partnership to scare some teams. Taylor Garcia hits a very heavy forehand and I had her at #5 on my women’s singles board.
Slim – I decided to take some upside shots in men’s singles with the last couple of picks and went with Jayden Broderick and Marshall Brown. Brown’s cat and mouse game in singles may cause his opponents some trouble this weekend.
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