Minor League Pickleball - Dallas Showdown - Recap

Kevin Brown
January 8, 2024
On April 15-16, Minor League Pickleball headed to the Oasis Pickleball Club in Rockwall, Texas for the Dallas Showdown.



The Oasis Pickleball Club has become a premier tournament venue in Texas, with more than 40 permanent outdoor courts and home to many high-profile pickleball tournaments. This was the second Minor League Showdown event to occur in 2023 filled with plenty of highs and lows throughout the weekend in both the DUPR 18 and DUPR 20 divisions. All the teams who competed did not disappoint and brought the same hyped and upbeat team energy to this event as we’ve seen at previous Minor League events.

From customized jerseys to color-coordinated outfits, we saw some unique styles all around. Team names were nothing short of creative with some notable team names such as “Baby Got Backhand”, “Big Dink Energy”, “Dink 182” and “Not Another Podcast”. Minor League teams traveled from near and far to compete in this event, with players traveling from cities around Texas and even out of state from California, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Florida to name a few. On Day 1 on Saturday, the weather brought less than ideal conditions with 20 mph winds at times and large gusts which was challenging for most players throughout the day. Certain players adapted to the conditions and those teams proved to be successful throughout the weekend.

On Day 1, the 12 teams in the DUPR 18 division competed in pool play and the two top teams in each pool advanced to the Semi-Finals on Sunday. The Oklahoma Outlaws advanced to play the 501’s and Baby Got Backhand advanced to compete against Risky Biscuits on Sunday. The remaining teams that didn’t advance played a compass backdraw on Sunday.  Both Baby Got Backhand and the Oklahoma Outlaws advanced to the finals with Baby Got Backhand coming out victorious after winning a fifth game dreambreaker and securing a $1600 prize for their team. The Oklahoma Outlaws took home $800 for second place.

For the DUPR 20 division, six teams competed in a round robin format on Saturday to determine seedings for Sunday. Dink 182 and the undefeated No Strings Attached moved directly into the semi-finals while the remaining teams played each other in the quarterfinals Sunday morning. Team Not Another Podcast and Team DUPR advanced, but Teams No Strings Attached and Dink 182 both advanced to the finals, with Dink 182 winning the final in three games. Dink 182 won the $2,800 prize and No Strings Attached took home $1,200.

All the teams who competed accumulated points based on how they finished towards Minor League Pickleball’s National Pathway Year-End Championship in December. Teams who accumulate the most points throughout the year advance to Championship and compete for large prizes. Thank you to all the Teams, Sponsors, and staff who made this tournament possible.



Written By: Sydney Steinaker - Executive Assistant

Edited By: Kevin Brown - Director of Marketing

Contact: Marketing@mydupr.com

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May 16, 2024

Dinking on Deck: The Cruise Industry is Riding The Pickleball Wave

Pickleball player demographics, tight court dimensions and easy accessibility is making it a popular addition to cruise liners and riverboats.

Pickleball's unique blend of fun, friendship, fitness and accessibility has attracted millions of older people to the court in the last few years. These players can now combine their new favorite hobby with another activity beloved by retirees - cruises.

As well as hitting the demographics bullseye, pickleball is an attractive proposition for the cruise industry because of the low price of installing courts and their compact 20mx44ft dimensions, far easier to accommodate compared to those of tennis, squash or padel.

 

Many cruise ships already contain pickleball courts either indoor or on deck, but Pickleball International is taking its offering several stages further. The company was founded by former professional basketball player Eric Dailey Sr, who is now applying his 15 years' experience in basketball training, competitions and tours to the sport he fell in love with almost as soon as he picked up a paddle.

 

His sports travel enterprise included a partnership with cruise industry giants Caribbean International, which he is now expanding. Pickleball International offer cruises which include pickleball tuition from top pros, competitions and off-court physical preparation including yoga, spin classes, strength and agility training in top-of-the-range gyms and aqua training in the ship's swimming pools - in addition to all the usual cruise attractions: dinners, parties, casino nights and much more. 

 

AmaWaterWays Co-Founder

Eric says: "The training is an important part of the offer for this demographic of pickleball players. We can't play like we're 17 any more! We have a world-class yoga instructor and facilities to prepare our players' muscles for four hours of fun on court each day."

 

Caribbean International's ship, The Odyssey of the Seas, has three indoor pickleball courts. Five-day cruises set sail from the UK, Greece and the USA (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) to the Caribbean, Australia, Hong Kong and Alaska. A maximum of 24 players go on a single trip and all standards are catered for by Pickleball International's roster of highly qualified pro coaches ('Z' Orano, Pedro Penteado, Jay Jaudon and Fiona Edwards).

 

"These cruises are for guys who want to improve," says Eric. "If you're a DUPR 3.0, that's fine, go have fun and learn. If you're a 5.0, there will be plenty of competitions to get your teeth into. It's a great opportunity for anyone who loves pickleball and loves to travel."

 

UK-based Amadeus River Cruises have pickleball courts on their Amadeus Cara and Amadeus Silver III and offer pickleball-themed cruises on which you can take on locals at clubs along the way.

 

Janine and Damian on board

AmaWaterways, headquartered in Calabasas, California, has also spotted pickleball's potential. Last year, they added a full-size pickleball court on the 21m-wide deck of the AmaMagna riverboat which cruises along the Danube through Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Slovakia and Turkey.

 

Pickleball activity led by on-board coach Damian fuses perfectly with the ship's large gym and Zen Wellness Studio (offering circuit training, resistance bands and core training, yoga and Pilates). “More people want to stay active when they’re on holiday. Pickleball is really easy to pick up and you can quickly start playing a game,” says Damian.

 

As more cruise companies capitalize on pickleball's popularity, we are sure to see the trend for dinking on deck spread across the globe.

Community
Events
May 14, 2024

Meet the Passionate Organizer Behind The Dink Minor League Pickleball

With pickleball's rising popularity, there's a growing demand for local tournaments catering to amateurs.

The Dink Minor League Pickleball (formerly known as Minor League Pickleball) gives players an exciting way to compete, emphasizing teamwork, strategy, and camaraderie. 

Following Major League Pickleball’s innovative format involving teams of four players (two women and two men), teams compete against other teams in four events: women’s doubles, men’s doubles, and two mixed doubles matches. A singles-based tiebreaker format, called a dreambreaker, is used when teams are tied 2-2. 

The Dink Minor League Pickleball’s National Pathway allows teams to compete locally to pursue a spot at the national championship. A national leaderboard is utilized to display ranked players, allowing you to easily view their standings.

Its first official season was in 2023, and its director, Caroline Luelf, is tasked with growing the organization.

Luelf's journey with the league began as a participant, along with her husband, in a one-day event in Kansas City. The convenience of these short events appealed to the couple, balancing their passion for pickleball with family commitments. 

As Luelf says, “When you have four kids, planning the logistics, getting all the kids to where they need to be and us being gone three or four days for a tournament, that's not easy.”

After participating in several Minor League Pickleball events and experiencing firsthand the thrill of competition and community, Luelf was inspired to bring the experience to her hometown in Oklahoma. Her first event sold out and received rave reviews. Luelf shares, “This one team posted on Facebook that it was their favorite tournament ever. They didn't even win a match!”

People were hungry for more events, and Luelf decided to reach out directly to the league saying, “I love everything about Minor League Pickleball, and I have all these ideas on how to grow it.” A few weeks later, they offered her a job.

What sets the league apart is its emphasis on the team concept.


Unlike traditional tournaments, where players compete individually, The Dink Minor League Pickleball encourages collaboration and support among teammates. With rally scoring and opportunities for coaching between points, players are fully engaged both on and off the court, creating an electrifying atmosphere for participants and spectators alike. 

"The Dink Minor League Pickleball is for everyone,” Luelf notes. It’s for any player — from amateurs to non-contracted pros, regardless of age. Events have seen players as young as 12 and as old as 70. The family-friendly nature is obvious, with Caroline herself cherishing the opportunity to play alongside her husband and 18-year-old son and create lasting memories on the court.

Looking ahead, The Dink MiLP's goal is “to be in all 50 states” (they are currently in 29 states) and “continue to expand globally,” according to Luelf. With events planned across the United States, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Puerto Rico and beyond, it’s poised to become the premier destination for amateur pickleball enthusiasts worldwide.

Whether you're a seasoned player or new to the game, The Dink Minor League Pickleball welcomes you to find a team, join the fun, forge new friendships, and experience the thrill of pickleball like never before.

Join a team, have fun, and experience the excitement of pickleball! Sign up now!

Written by Alana Jackler

Minor League
Collegiate
April 23, 2024

The Wait Is Over - Presenting The Dink Minor League Pickleball Regional Showdowns!

Prepare for an epic showdown as The Dink Minor League Pickleball announces seven thrilling tournaments! With 12 to 16 teams per division, each Regional Showdown promises fierce competition. The stakes are high, and the first-place team of each division takes home a Dream Ticket, automatically qualifying them for the 2024 National Championship!

Discover the 7 Regional Showdown Locations

The Regional Showdowns span the nation, offering aspiring players from all corners of the country an equal opportunity to showcase their skills and play for a chance to secure the coveted Dream Ticket to the National Championship. Learn how you can earn points at Regional Showdowns to climb the National Leaderboard

Take a look and sign up for a Regional Showdown near you!

  1. Northeast Regional Showdown
  2. Midsouth Regional Showdown
  3. Midwest Regional Showdown
  4. West Coast Regional Showdown
  5. Northwest Regional Showdown
  6. Southwest Regional Showdown 
  7. Southeast Regional Showdown

Explore Regional Showdown Divisions and Pricing 

Offered Divisions: 12*, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22* (*DUPR 12 and 22 are only available in specific locations)

Price: $100-$150

Unleash the Rewards: What Players Can Expect

  • Guaranteed 4 Matches (8 games) where all teams go to bracket. There is a single elimination back draw and the main draw plays for gold medals.
  • Winners of each division earn a Dream Ticket to the National Championship. some text
    • Dream Ticket = guaranteed team spot at Nationals. 
    • If the gold medalist team chooses not to compete at Nationals, the silver medalist team will be offered the Dream Ticket. 
  • The 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners receive The Dink Minor League Pickleball medals.
  • Players receive a swag bag which includes a Gamma Chuck Tournament Pickleball, the official ball of DUPR. 

 

Northeast Regional Showdown Hosted by All State Pickleball League

Date: July 20th

Venue: Bounce

City, State: Malvern, Pennsylvania

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18

Register Now!

Midsouth Regional Showdown Hosted by OPC & Pickleball Kingdom

Date: July 27th & 28th

Venue: Pickleball Kingdom Plano

City, State: Plano, Texas

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22

Register Now! 

Midwest Regional Showdown Hosted by iPickle Nation and Sponsored by JustPaddles

Date: August 10th

Venue: PickleCon (Kansas City Convention Center)

City, State: Kansas City, Missouri

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18, 20

Register Now! 

West Coast Regional Showdown Hosted by Carmen Sanz Pickleball Club

Date: August 31st

Venue: Willow Pass Community Park in Concord

City, State: Concord, California

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18, 20

Register Now!

Northwest Regional Hosted BY ZZ2 Pickleball 

Date: September 7th & 8th 

Venue: Caverlero MidHigh School

City, State: Lake Stevens, Washington

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22

Register Now!

Southwest Regional Showdown Hosted by iPickle Nation and Sponsored by JustPaddles

Date: October 5th & 6th, 2024

Venue: Picklemall ~ Tempe

City, State: Tempe, Arizona

Divisions: 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22

Register Now!

Southeast Regional Showdown Hosted by All Florida Pickleball 

Date: November 9th & 10th

Venue: Lone Palm Country Club

City, State: Lakeland, Florida

Divisions: 14, 16, 18, 20 

Register Now!

To learn more about The Dink Minor League Pickleball, visit the website. Visit our blog for more information on the 2024 National Championship. Sign up for a The Dink Minor League Pickleball event now to get on the National Leaderboard and start your journey toward Nationals!

Minor League