We are in the midst of another consecutive weekend stretch of tournaments. Although Beer City did not have a full pro contingent, it had the full feel of a pro tournament. After Seattle, the PPA will head to Los Angeles for the Takeya Showcase next weekend. No wonder why some of the pros wanted a little longer break by not playing Denver. Although Ben and ALW still reign supreme, more partnership switch ups have begun and we are seeing that in this Seattle field, especially in men’s doubles.
Slim and Gritty are back to all square for the year, which means Slim has a chance to take his first lead of the entire year! Gritty win the loss and elected to pick first.
(1) Anna Leigh Waters / Ben Johns (Gritty)
(2) Anna Leigh Waters (Slim)
(3) Anna Leigh Waters / Anna Bright (Slim)
(4) Ben Johns / Collin Johns (Gritty)
(5) Ben Johns (Gritty)
Gritty – ALW and Ben are too good together so they are my number 1 overall pick. Ben/Collin have only lost one time this year and, despite Ben being most vulnerable in singles, he is still the best out there.
Slim – Anna Leigh is yet to lose in women’s doubles this year, and has only lost once in women’s singles so she was an easy pick in the second and third spots.
(6) Lea Jansen (Slim)
(7) Dylan Frazier / JW Johnson (Slim)
(8) Lindsey Newman / Riley Newman (Gritty)
(9) Lucy Kovalova / Jorja Johnson (Gritty)
(10) Lacy Schneemann / Lea Jansen (Slim)
(11) Federico Staksrud (Slim)
Gritty – Lindsey/Riley are so solid together when they are out there and they make opponents work for every point. Lindsey does not appear to be developing weapons but Riley is such a force. Lucy/Jorja might have been the wrong choice here but I liked Lucy’s steady play with Jorja’s firepower. I’ll be curious if this team can make some real noise.
Slim – Lea is clearly the second best women’s singles player, and out of the Denver altitude this week, I’d expect her to be herself again. Lea and Lacy Schneeman also present a very intriguing women’s doubles partnership, and I will be curious to see if they stack or play straight up.
(12) Julian Arnold / Riley Newman (Gritty)
(13) Jorja Johnson / JW Johnson (Gritty)
(14) JW Johnson (Slim)
(15) Etta Wright / Irina Tereschenko (Slim)
(16) Connor Garnett (Gritty)
(17) Jay Devilliers / Matt Wright (Gritty)
Gritty – Julian/Riley probably have a lot more potential variance than the Wright/Newman partnership, but the upside is going to be there. Even though the Johnson siblings have a lower floor to their mixed days, they have the ability to beat literally anyone out there. Connor Garnett is coming off a Beer City Open win in the gold medal match over Jaume Martinez Vich and he has the ability to podium on any day. I’m thinking Matt Wright may be the power that Jay Devilliers needs. If Jay can’t make this one work, there are going to be serious questions where he fits into the landscape of 2023 pro pickleball.
Slim – Etta Wright and Irina Tereschenko have had some success playing together this year, though it will be interesting to see if Irina continues to play the left side in this partnership. Will JW debut his new paddle this weekend?
(18) Quang Duong (Slim)
(19) Lacy Schneemann (Slim)
(20) Mary Brascia (Gritty)
(21) Jackie Kawamoto / Vivienne David (Gritty)
(22) Vivienne David / Thomas Wilson (Slim)
(23) Jessie Irvine / Julian Arnold (Slim)
Gritty – Mary Brascia has had elite results this year and I liked her as the #3 player in this draw. Jackie Kawamoto and Vivienne David don’t have a lot of firepower, but they are a team that will make a ton of balls.
Slim – No player is rising faster than Quang Duong in singles right now, can he keep it going this weekend? Lacy Schneemann’s singles results have not been great but I continue to think the way she plays provides more upside.
(24) Christian Alshon (Gritty)
(25) Judit Castillo (Gritty)
(26) Pablo Tellez / Federico Staksrud (Slim)
(27) Anna Bright / James Ignatowich (Slim)
(28) Jade Kawamoto / Jessie Irvine (Gritty)
(29) Jorja Johnson (Gritty)
(30) Erik Lange / Tyler Loong (Slim)
Gritty – To get Christian Alshon at the last slot for men’s singles feels like a steal to me. Judit had a weird weekend in Beer City and I’m hoping that was an anomaly. Jade and Jessie are a first time partnership, which means Jessie will be on the left so let’s see how that goes. Jorja Johnson is coming off a big Beer City gold medal in singles. Is she refreshed and ready to go?
Slim – Federico and Pablo had a bit of rough weekend in Beer City last week, but I would expect them to bounce back this weekend.
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