We would appreciate it if anyone reading this could let us know if they still interested enough for us to keep doing these previews. It’s unclear what is at stake in tonight’s DUPR exhibition, which is always cause for concern with these things. It seemed the stream numbers for last week’s more interesting, but less well known players, version of Tuesday night pickleball weren’t great from what we saw. We guess tonight’s event could be kind of fun but what is this version of mostly mixed rec play going to look like? Again, tell us if we’re wasting our time doing these.
Here’s a breakdown of the partnerships and the link to the DUPR blog here. They are calling this Texas Hold ‘Em format where the winners of the first match play in the finals and the losers play a consolation match.
Thomas Wilson / Anna Bright – Apparently Anna Bright has quit her job and is now working for DUPR (hat tip to one of our readers for this), which helps explain how she is able to play all of the pickleball now. It was also announced that Bright signed with Top Notch Management, who also represent Tyson McGuffin, Jessie Irvine and Zane Navratil. Bright is officially all-in on pickleball and for good reason. It’s clear the top players have massive respect her game already as her backhand was getting avoided when playing with Irvine over the weekend. Bright and Wilson is scary from a potential standpoint, but we’re not sure where they sit right now as a pair. Wilson is going to keep getting better and is one of the smoother players out there so they may be the most enjoyable team to watch tonight.
Stefan Auvergne / Wyatt Stone – This team is probably the most interesting part of this exhibition with the always caveat of whether the teams are playing 100%. They will he playing Bright/Wilson in the first match. You have two guys who get wins consistently at the pro level but don’t hit podiums yet. How does this team fare against mixed teams with pretty high end males and females? We tend to think this team should hold up against all 3 of their opponents, but Bright/Wilson will be tough for them in the first match.
Dekel Bar / Lee Whitwell – Another concern with these DUPR matchups is that you get most of the Dreamland crew repeating. Bar/Whitwell is a fine enough partnership but these are players we have seen before, and will probably see again. Dekel Bar’s mixed game seems to be improving and Whitwell has established herself as a steady force. Again, Whitwell is limited by the lack of weapons and counter-attack ability, but that is mitigated to some degree by the weapons Bar possesses and his court coverage.
DJ Young / Andrea Koop – Speaking of people who don’t seem to work anymore, is Andrea Koop in-house counsel for DUPR or something? She has been playing a lot of pickleball and it’s hard to imagine much legal work is happening on the weekday trips to Dreamland from Michigan. But we digress. These are two talented players we haven’t seen together before. The mixed teams in this group are all relatively close, and there is an argument that Young/Koop are the best of the bunch. We aren’t quite there with that take, but it is not out of the realm to make that case. Maybe that can be Andrea’s legal work for the week. However, this team we like a smidge better than their first matchup of Dekel/Lee because Koop is the better female player.
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