Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Twas the Night before Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the courts,
not one ball was bouncing, of any kind or sort.
The rackets were strung in the club house with care,
in hopes that Federer would soon be there.

The players were nestled all snug in their beds,
while visions of Rafa danced in their heads.
And mamma in her short skirt, and I in my Nike cap,
had just settled our legs for a post-season nap.

When out on the courts there rose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the clubhouse I flew like a flash
to see the ghost of old Arthur Ashe.

The moon shone brightly on the courts just below,
where tennis ‘s greats gathered to put on a show.
When what to my wondering eyes would appear,
Was McEnroe and Bjorg, having a beer.

And over by the keg, there was such a loud laughter,
it was Federer shouting “I’ll write the next chapter.”
“From the Australian and French, to Wimbeldon and the Open,
I’ve won the most titles, and given you all a roping .”

“I’ve beat Roddick, beat Murray, Djokovic and Fish,
Tsonga, Del Potro, Soderling, Y’all wish.
Berdych, Ferrer, Monfis and Nadal,
I’ve beaten you one, I’ve beaten you all !”

Full of himself and his Christmas cheer,
he toasted them all and downed another beer.
Then he filled the clubhouse full of RF apparel,
as he chanted “Endorsements” as his main Christmas carol.

Then he hopped in his paid for Mercedes Benz,
and said “All good things must come to an end.”
As he drove away in a flash, clear out of sight,
you could here him exclaim, “..but it won’t be without a fight!”

Merry Christmas to you and your families, and a blessed New Year !!!

Captain Fantastic

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Year End Rating Out - Sort Of

2011 Year - end ratings were released yesterday. And once again overwhelming demand has driven the USTA's tennislink site under.
Perhaps it was thousands of USTA members all logging in to check there ratings,
Or perhaps it was Bob Somabut's players flooding the system with early appeals again,
we may never know because it's now 24 hours later and the site is still down. :(
USTA Texas you say??? No, they do not have a list compiled and public yet either.
So for now we will just have to wait.

[sarcasm mode="on"] Once again, Good Show USTA!!!
You have this Ratings thing under control!!  [sarcasm mode="off"]

Monday, October 24, 2011


It is up to the Dallas 4.5 team to bring back home a National Championship Title for Texas.  While our state has been represented well, every team has come up short of 1st place honors. 

This past weekend, the 3.0 men led by Bob Benner (not Bob Bender) out of Oak Creek, fought hard but fell shy a line to get out of their bracket.  

Men’s 3.5 led by Bob Bender, and his 2nd back-to-back appearance, couldn’t handle the heat that comes out of the Caribbean.  They make it to the semi’s on Sunday, but lose to the Caribbean, claiming 3rd place.  Still a nice showing.   

Houston’s 4.0 team that waltzed through Somabut’s and Arcaria’s team in Sectionals, get stumped in the finals by the Pacific Northwest, losing 2 of 3 super tie-breakers in the Finals match.  They take 2nd place and make a great placing.    

At 5.0, Austin’s team makes the Finals, losing a 3rd set tie-breaker in the Finals to Southern.  They proudly take 2nd place. 

So looking to this weekend, Dallas is in a flight with Pacific Northwest, Northern California, and Florida.   Here’s the breakdown.

NorCal -  NorCal has the most extensive play going undefeated in a flight of 10 teams.  They also had to fight through 4 flights in District play and then a flight of 4 for Sectionals.  They play out of Chabot Community College, and included on their roster is the college's head coach, Rick Morris.  A few of their players like Jake Pawid and Phil Wan are listed on the college’s website as a member of their men’s team.  Looks like Cesar Hernandez may have played minor league baseball.   It appears this team is a bunch of 20 year old ringers.  While youth has its advantages physically, that is not always the case with mental toughness.

While impressive and going undefeated all season, they were 0-4 in 3rd set breakers in District, and just 4 of 10 (40%) in 3rd set breakers throughout the entire post season.   Compare this with our mighty Dallas team who were 5 for 6 in City, and 3 for 5 in Sectionals for a combined post season 8 of 11 or 73% conversion rate.   My guess is if it goes into breakers, Dallas pulls them out.

PacificNW – Their team is named “Code Violation” so that has to make you wonder.  Their regular season play was not as extensive, nor was their post season.  They had one match to play to make it to Sectionals, and then only 2 matches in their flight at Sectionals, then the final.   It's not always the case, but usually when a team doesn’t have many teams to play to become Sectional winners, they tend to be a bit weaker than the rest.    They were 5 for 7 (71%) in breakers, but I have a feeling their competition may not be as tight as Norcal or Dallas.   Hopefully most of their "4.5" level players were playing for their 4.0 team that edged out Houston.

Florida – They were in a flight with one other team and played them 5 times.  If I lived in there, I would want my money back.  Their Region was comprised of their own team and one other, of which for the playoffs, they played each other twice.  (And you think we have it bad here in Dallas and Texas??!!!)  Their Sectionals was at least a little bit better with 2 flights of 4 teams.  They were 4 for 5 (80%) in their breakers throughout Sectionals, with a lot of 3-2 match wins.  With not much regular season or post season on-court competition than the other teams have had, I think they finish at the bottom of the flight.

Based on paper, my guess is NorCal will be the team to give Dallas the toughest fight.  As I said before, while they may be a squad of young college players, our team has, shall we say, “wisdom” and better court sense to get them through the breakers. 

Well I would love to break down the other flights, but the World Series is about to start.  I’m sure Pickett has already done all the homework anyhow.  If not, you owe me one.     

We’re counting on you to bring the hardware back home to Texas – no pressure guys.  I’m sure you can do it !!   Have fun, and best of luck !!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Good Readings for the Fall

In light of the blatant tanking that is at hand this Fall, it appears that some may need a lesson in sportsmanship, and could use some tips to help them achieve their goal of losing a match, yet still keeping the game competitive.

Remember, the players on the other side of the court paid league fees to play tennis.   You can still give your opponent a challenge while still managing to lose.  Here’s how you do it.

1) Have a designated tanker.   Think of it as “Good Cop, Bad Cop”.   When playing doubles, have one partner play their game with the other partner making the majority of the unforced errors when needed, blaming it on a “off day”.  This can be set up with side- comments like, “I shouldn’t have had those 9 Tequila shots last night”, or “I’ve been working like a dog and haven’t touched my racket in weeks”.

Another card you can play is the injury card.  Show up with your knee wrapped and how you tweaked it playing soccer with your son.  Or perhaps your shoulder is sore from sleeping on it wrong or throwing the baseball with your son.  This can limit your mobility on the court and getting crucial points.  Whatever it is, have a game plan and stick to it.

2) Make it your goal to control the overall match by determining the exact # of games you want to have won in each set, and where in the set you will win those games.  This gives you something to work for and allows you to focus on key points. 

3) Have a stroke that you are “working” on.  Maybe its lobbing in the wind or a forehand drop shot.  Whatever it is, use it in crucial moments.  When your opponent is rushing to the net, use the lob.  If hitting into the wind, hit it short; with the wind, hit it long.  When the ball goes out, blame it on the wind.   Same with the drop shot.

4) Keep your games close.  Make it a goal to have several of your games go to deuce.   If you win the first point of a game, have your partner make an unforced error to keep the game even (see Step 3).  If your opponent is up 1 or 2 points, make an effort to get the next few points to take it to deuce.  This is good because it give you something to do by focusing on winning crucial points.  It also makes your opponent feel like they are “earning” their points.   

5)  Defer service if you win the toss.  This gives your opponent the opportunity to go up early in the set, and makes it easier for you to have a 2-6 loss.   By allowing your appointment to serve first and hold, then breaking your serve because of your sore shoulder, pulled groin, or taped up knee, before you know it you are down 0-3 and on your way to losing the set.    

Example.    Play the game as you normally would.  If for some reason your opponent is extremely weak and you are up on their service game about to break, make a return of serve error.  Keep the first game close and even allow it to go to deuce, multiple time.  Make your opponent work for a hold, so when they win their service game, they are patting themselves on the back thinking they just worked to win their game, not that you gave it to them.

Your service game is easy to control because when you need to shed a point, you can always revert to a double fault.  Rub your shoulder and follow up with one of the excuses in Step 1.  This isn’t rocket science.

Now you are down 0-2 and it is their serve again.  Allow them to hold, again, keeping it close.  Before you know it you are 0-3.  Now is the time to decide and get a game.  It is your service and you get a hold.  Again, make it fun and challenging by keeping it close or  staying in a long sustained rally.  If you are up 30-love in the game, throw in a double fault or two to get your opponent back to deuce.  Make it look as if you are working hard to hold your serve. 

Now you are 1-3 and it is your opponents serve.  Allow  them to hold and your 1-4.  You then hold and now you are 2-4.  They hold and it is 2-5.  Crucial game.  Again, make it a close one.  Take it to 2 or 3 deuces by doing the above.  Allow them to hold and take the set 6-2. 

Set 2.  Repeat the above.

You have now lost a match with a score of 2-2, meeting your objective, while your opponent felt as if they just played some of their best tennis to win.  Remember, most of your opponents on the other side of the court don’t know your strengths or weaknesses, they are just out there to play.

Lastly, if you are going to tank, don’t tell your opponent.   It just looks bad and is outright wrong. 

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Frank the Tank's Guide to the Fall

The weather has finally broke Just in time For the Fall USTA season, or as it is better know:

Friday, August 19, 2011

Texas Tennis Open this week in Grapevine TX

Big-time women’s professional tennis is returning to North Texas with a Sony Ericsson WTA Tour event the week of Aug. 20th -27th at the Hilton DFW Lakes in Grapevine.
This inaugural tournament is expected to draw in many of the top 100 players in the world competing to take a piece of $220,000.
For more information on the event

The tournament is short on volunteers, if you have interest in volunteering contact Keeley at or call 325-203-0467.
Get Out and Support Tennis in Texas!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sectionals Start NOW!!!

Sectionals are under way.
So far the Dallas and Ft Worth teams are off to a good start in 4.0 and 4.5.
It's surprising that Dallas and FTW don't send more teams to the Nationals having Sectionals in their backyards every year. It's a huge advantage.

Click below to see the standings.

USTA/TEXAS Men's 4.0 Section Championship

USTA/TEXAS Men's 4.5 Section Championship

USTA/TEXAS Men's 5.0 Section Championship  

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Top Guns Take Flight in Dallas City Playoffs

Ice-pick was the Iceman and Top Gun this weekend, taking the 4.5 City title.   Word on the street was that Joel was having his team practice nothing but Komen 10 –point tie-breakers, knowing that 4.5 would come down to that, separating the boys from the men.  The payoff couldn’t have been any sweeter.  HP wins 4 out of 4 breakers in the finals to take the title from Royal Oaks.  They defied the odds and took 5 out of 6 breakers for the weekend, showing they had nerves of steel and that hard work pays off.  This is one talented squad of aces, and should represent Dallas well at Sectionals.

Nice job Ice-pick.

In  4.0 land, it was Maverick (aka Arcaria) who first had to out ace Jester (aka Sisk) in their flight show down.   What looked like would be a nasty dog-fight turned into a routine drill for Lifetime who gunned down both singles.   These weren’t ordinary wins, but rather beat downs of the mighty Flora and the once feared Yaramenko.   Arcaria better hope the rating gods play favor to his self-rate and he can keep him for Sectionals.   Corcoran and Zachary get beat by fellow teammate Conan the barbarian, and Maverick walks away with a 4-1 win. 
What would appear on the surface to be a nail-biting showdown for the finals with Lifetime and HP Bob, it was anything but that.  Let’s just say it was interesting.   While I like the fact that 2 teams from Dallas typically go to Sectionals in 4.0, it tends to steal from the drama for the claim to City title.  Both teams wanting to protect self-rates, throw in the benches and have the oddest line up for City I have seen in some time.   (Well, maybe it has been only a year since BMO ungraciously “retired” at match point last year to take the easier flight the Wild Card was dealt.)
We still do not know who Viper (aka Somabut) has hidden in his squad of self-rates, but from the looks of things, I didn’t see anything unusual that makes me believe he has 2 singles ringers at hand.  He still relied on Kargel for one of his lines, but he most likely knew he wasn’t going to be challenged all weekend.   I guess we won’t know until Sectionals.  The question is, who got the easier path, the City Champs or the Wild Card.  Only Bob knows!!   

Anyhow, credit to Lifetime for getting past GTC to claim the title.

In the lower squadron of players but still not unnoticed, it was Commander Tom “Stinger” Jordan (aka Bender) who took top gun awards at the 3.5 level.  Having to duke it out with Sisk again, Bender prevailed again.  Like the 4.0 level, both teams get to go to Sectionals so all the cards aren’t on the table as to what both teams have, but my feeling is Bender is “jonesing” for not being at a National event for the past 10 months.  Looks like Sisk had another tough day at the office.

Well there you have it, the wrap up of the Dallas City Playoffs.  Congratulations to all the Top Gun Winners.  Go represent our city well in Sectionals!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Who Wears the 4.5 Crown this weekend?

Well, well, with the Cities coming up this weekend, I have to say there were some surprises at the QT. T Bar M, who managed to SQUEEEEAK into the QT comes out the winner!!! - And how did they do it? By having 4 3rd set tie breakers against Noel and coming up the winner at 3-2. Wow! What an exciting match!!! I understand it came down to the last 2 lines played in that match and both final lines for both teams (Modic AND Noel) were match point down and both teams came back and took victory from defeat!!! The result ended up with a 3-2 win (the Hard Way in Table Craps speak) for T Bar M.

QT summary said we now have the cities upon us, where we seem to have some pretty good teams out there. A little bird told me that there are some surprises in store, and that HP might not be the shoe-in that everyone thinks!!! On a COMPLETELY side note as I am looking up players, - who the Hell is Max Stevens (an Open player). ANYBODY that can beat Johan Mudsam 6-0 6-0 has to be a pretty exciting player to watch!!! Okay, where was I? Back to 4.5...

T Bar M - Not really liking their schedule. They come out against Royal Oaks, and then have to come and play HP that same day (and btw, it's going to be HOT!). So having to decide which singles guys to rest to prepare for the toughest match in the heat of the day against HP does not bode well for TBarM. That seems to be a slippery slope.

Oak Creek - It can be nice playing the hardest team on paper the first round, because it is easy to get looked past and you know you can go 5 lines strong as your "must win" match is your first match. Unfortunately for OC, HP is so depth laden, that they can play 8 guys in the morning, and play a completely different 8 guys in the afternoon and not really have a drop off in talent.

Royal Oaks - Not really tested, IMO in flight B. Bartlett, who lost to RO 3-2 during the regular season was run over and destroyed in the QT. That does not sit well with me. Rothwell is going to have to do the Captain dance a little bit, as he will want to get his guys warmed up but not too over worked for the big match at 7/24 at 11 am.

I have always felt that captain's have over estimated needing to rest guys too much in playoffs, as having a good match or two under your belt really helps with the playoff jitters.

HP That's all you really need to say about them.


Friday, July 15, 2011

2011 Early Season Ratings

How do I appeal my rating down? Click here for the official online appeal form. You will be asked to 'register' for a team. Put in your USTA number along with the team number 0000713237 for women or 0000713236 for men. You will get a note that your rating is too high for the team entered and will see the option to appeal your rating. When you do appeal, the system will immediately determine whether you are within the allowable range. If your appeal is granted, it will be automatically and immediately changed. If denied, then your appeal cannot be granted. 

Start Appealing You Pussies!!!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Too Predictable

Almost with as much certainty you can say that Nadal, Federer, and Djokovic will make the semis of most Grand Slams, you can say that City Playoffs will come down to Somabut, Sisk, and Arcaria.

Lucky Thunder summized it all in his April 3 post which got a whopping 8 comments.  But he predicted the season with pinpoint accuracy except for Flight E which has Oak Creek Bogle taking 2nd spot in place of the Village.

It is amazing to me that 4.0 has become sooo predictable that our fearless blogger can call 1st place and 2nd place of each flight before the season even begins.   But this is what 4.0 has come to; a quagmire of players with the most talented easily rising to the surface and sticking out like a sore thumb.

There is no going out on a limb to make a call as to what the results of City Playoffs will be.  But I will go ahead and make my calls, which to me, is blatantly obvious, but will hopefully stir the pot and get some of you out there to liven up this blog and get some trash talking going before the showdown begins.

Rather than taking a “bottom-up” approach and call which teams end up in which flight (since Jane and John are smoking peyote and it is anyone’s guess), I will take a Top-down approach and call give you your 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners.  This is so easy, it isn’t fair.

City Champs – Team Somabut—
He has the talent, depth, and the unknown of the self-rates.  His talent level is deep and I just don’t see who is going to challenge him.  While he was in a fairly easy flight, his wins were uncontested and convincing, winning all matches either 5-0 or 4-1.  He beat their 2nd place team in their flight, Greenhill, 5-0.  With a roster of 23 and getting each player 2-3 matches, he never had to rely on any single set of players week in and week out.  He managed a flawless season playing his whole roster.  As far as singles, Kargel is the only player who played with any regularity, followed by Abercrombie.  Kargel was an Appeal, but no past record to be overly concerned with.   My guess is his singles players are self-rates who were hidden in the roster playing doubles regular season.  When playoffs come, and he plays his top horses together when he needs them, he easily walks away the winner.

Runner up and Wild Card to Sectionals – Team Arcaria
I at first battled with who will take 2nd, Sisk or Arcaria.  I assume both of these teams will be in the same flight, and fighting each other to take on Somabut in the finals.  Sisk relies on what he thinks are “shoe-in” singles with Flora and Zackary.  I agree, Flora will beat most, but Zackary is fallible –having 3 matches going to 3 sets and losing 2 of the 3.  He can be beat.   On the flip side, I compare this with Arcaria’s roster.  He had Glasgow and Gerber playing singles most of the regular season, with Alfonso Muriel and Kent Gray playing a few matches.   Alfonso is a self-rate so  I assume he is a ringer.  Gray went 3 sets with Boozer from Fretz which puts doubt in my head on him being a ringer.  Glasgow has game, but I can’t see him pushing that weight in 3 sets in 105 degrees come mid-July.  Arcaria must be hiding someone but I just don’t see who it is.  The only unknown is Tyler Flemming, and  I don’t think he is it.  So with proper match ups, they split singles.

So now I look at doubles.   – Sisk has Caceras, Cocoran, and Pace, but I am reaching to find the others.  While Arcaria doesn’t have the powerhouse players he had last Spring, I still think he has better all-around doubles players to get 2 lines from Sisk IF properly matched-up.   I give team Arcaria the edge, but easily could be wrong.

The Dark Horse –  Team Pearlman
As I continue down the flights of players and look throughout the roster, I can’t help to be impressed with Brookhaven Pearlman.  Boccara and Arenas both went udefeated, although I can’t say they were tested with the best, but still impressive.  Most impressive is the depth of Pearlman’s doubles and I think it would be foolish to count them out.  I believe they easily can take 2 lines from any team they go against, so it would come down to their singles.  If match up properly against Sisk with Flora/Zackary, I could see them providing the upset.  Same with Arcaria.  He only has Alfonso as his shoe-in.  Pearlman could be the spoiler of the whole event, and I can easily see him taking 2nd place away from Sisk or Acaria.

Not surprised if last – No offense Carey.  You did a great job calling the season in April, but I just don’t see the strength in your team this year.  I could be wrong, but none of your wins were convincing and there is too much tougher competition out there, I just don’t see you placing. 

QT – Battle between Greenhill and Canyon Creek.  Regardless of the winner, they fight Bazan for last place in the City.    

OK  That is my assessment.  Prove me wrong and let’s here the smack talk.  Who’s got the Shit to go out there and win this thing and beat Somabut ???

Friday, June 17, 2011

4.5 Update - How Things change

Flight A - Once again, we have a cat fight here for #2. I think I will stick with my opinion that this was the toughest flight due to 2 weeks left and 4 teams competing for the last playoff spot in the flight! JCC is technically in the catbird seat, with 3 wins up and two of the easier matches for the last 2 weeks. Not away to gear up for QT as I would want my harder matches last, but if they don't get 5-0 wins this week and next week, they could find themselves behind to whomever won the Garland/TBar unreported slug fest!!! (TBar is 4 wins behind them with the Garland match...AGAIN...unreported. - Must of been a rainout).

Hard to believe the QT winner might come down to whom can beat up on the lesser teams in the flight over the next 2 weeks. Collin County and LB Houston have got to be pretty unhappy that even though they have a combined 1 team win, the matches they play over the next 2 weeks greatly impact the playoffs. woh woh wohhhhh.

Flight B - Well well well. We have surprises here. Of course RO wins the flight, but low and behold, who would of thought that Mr. Bartlett and The Beatles would be in control of QT in Flight B? Not I sure. Especially after having such a crappy Fall showing. How could this happen? Is Bartlett giving pep talks before matches to rally the boys? Maybe we need to do checks for HGH on that team? I think I noticed that Bobby Smith hat size has grown about 3 sizes since last year, could he be on "the juice"? All I know is something is going on here, cause here they are solidly in the playoffs.

Flight C - Another blog surprise with Oak Creek Herget in the driver's seat ahead of pre season favorites Noel & Rossouw. I don't get why Rossouw and Noel keep trying to snatch defeat from victory, but the generosity of both teams is unprecedented from my memory!!!! The playoffs start SUNDAY in this flight!!! Rossouw is favored by 2 lines with two weeks left. HOWEVER, the next 2 teams they play are ALSO fighting for a playoff spot and they are only up by 2 lines to BH / Harlee. A lot of sleepless nights for Rossouw over the next 2 weeks. Oh the humanity!!! Should Rossouw slip up we have .... HARLEE pushing hard for the QT spot! They play one team that is still in the the playoff hunt with Juhn. With a Noel loss to Rossouw and a Juhn win over Harlee, Juhn has an outside chance as well to make the playoffs. I would dig down further, to figure it all out, but, nah, I am feeling too lazy to dig all that up. I will let you propeller heads figure the If, then statements. Long story short. We also have 4 teams pushing for that last QT spot with a team that I never gave a chance sitting in 1st place.

Good Luck Gentlemen and have a fun week!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Women's Tennis Association Tourney - August 19-27

the WTA is bringing professional tennis back to the Dallas Fort Worth with the announcement of The Texas Tennis Open to be held August 19-27, 2011 at the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center in Grapevine, TX. This event is expected to attract a number of the "top 20" players as they prepare for the U.S. Open. Wickmeyer is expected to participate in Dallas!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

4.0 Playoffs taking shape with a few weeks left

Flight A:
Our first DQ of the year took place in this flight with Brian Shelton going buh-bye. This week the Fall winner faces Eldorado, an upstart group who is also 4-0 and could further mess with Lifetime's plans of another Spring run through the playoffs. With that said the next three teams already have 2 losses and would need massive help to jump back in the mix. It will be interesting to see the outcome since the Village match was probably closer than expected for Lifetime.

Flight B:
Garland and Canyon Creek are still cruising along waiting for their 6/18 showdown but there is a 6/11 match between Fretz and Garland that could be interesting as Fretz has run off a few wins after an opening weekend loss to Canyon Creek. The news here may be the signing of Oleg Yaremenko to Garland. The Garland team was lacking some depth and with this addition may just have put themselves back in the top mix with High Point/Bob and Lifetime.

Flight C:
The showdown this Saturday turned out to be a SMACKDOWN as High Point/Bob crushed Greenhill. John Arnette must still be talking about what went wrong, if you listen closely you might be able to hear him still mumbling about it. That was a pretty solid HP lineup although there wasn't anything extremely lopsided. Greenhill is all but assured a QT spot and could be a favorite in that weekend playoff. Bob looks to have assembled a solid doubles crew and a singles contingent that can hang with the top players in the league.

Flight D:
Hight Point SWAT improved to 5-0 and clinched at least the QT with a win over Stonebridge this weekend. After the SWAT team there are four teams vying for the 2nd spot all sitting at 3-2 (Stonebridge, Lakes, Huffhines and Fair Oaks) They will play each other on 6/4 and 6/11 so whoever finishes strong will take the QT spot. I have not seen Fair Oaks play but if I had to take a gues I would go with Stonebridge to squeak into the 2nd spot.

Flight E:
This flight is very interesting as there is a 4 way tie for 1st place between Brookhaven, OC, Village and JCC. Village scored a big win this weekend over JCC. Brookhaven does not play any of them so it stands to reason they will secure the #1 spot. OC has to play Village and JCC so their road is toughest but really all three have a chance to make it happen. My money is on Village just due to depth at singles and doubles.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

4.5 As the Season Turns.

Flight A:

Rain affected the first big match (TBar vs High Pt). Lifetime has recruited well and gotten off to a great start. Zimmerman is a strong player for the LTF Team! I see a grudge make in the making as LTF plays HP this week. If its based on gang size, HP wins this one easily with 24 players on there roster to the meager 11 of LTF. To say this is a tough match for LTF is an understatement. I think LTF has an outside chance, but I see a 2-3 loss in there future. Meanwhile, Garland has had a solid start record wise but hasn't played any tough teams yet. JCC has had two 2-3 losses against some of the top teams, so they are a little better then their record. Its all about #2 for this flight. Hard hard flight, but the survivor will be battled tested for the QT already. I nice thing to have under your belt going into the playoffs.

Flight B:

Big "upset" if you liked the pre-season pick of some, taken down by Brookhaven who are likely now to claim 2nd place and go to the qualifying tournament. They have posted some strong lines and maybe they are a different Bartlett team this year. Stonebridge's record is flattering but reality bit hard last week. Royal Oaks, whom continue to add players and are far and away the best in the flight, - cruise control to cities. Similar to HP they need to get everyone qualified. (A lot harder then it sounds).

Flight C:

Traditional powerhouse Brookhaven is 0 & 2 after losses to Greenhill and Oak Creek. Upstarts Canyon Creek scraped through against Lifetime but then turned it on to upstage Greenhill and Oak Creek. Can they keep it going? They lead the flight but still have some tricky weeks ahead. Northwood is also unbeaten. This week's match between Oak Creek and Northwood is make or break for Oak Creek. A loss and they may well be out of it! I still see the #1 and #2 spots being determined in the last week of the season for this flight.

Match of the Week is LTF v HP @ Lifetime fitness at 2 pm.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

4.0 Two Weeks in, not many surprises

So we have a bye weekend so I thought we could look at any interesting teams and players so far.

Flight A:
Lifetime may not have been able to keep their Wild Card but they earned a great seed for the spring as it doesn't look like they will see any real opposition in this flight. LB Houston and Eldorado will be trying to test them a little as they both will go after that 2nd spot. Not sure if any of the other teams are quite ready to contend yet.

Flight B:
Springpark has jumped out quickly but will soon be tested as they play Garland next weekend, the real showdown in this flight will not be until 6/18 of course Garland and Canyon Creek need to stay perfect until then for that match to have some hype to it. It will be a battle of the two captains who are trying to set records for most players registered. Rossouw v. Sisk

Flight C:
Greenhill and High Point/Bob will meet up on 5/14 and I have feeling that flight order might be decided as of that date. Anyone else in this flight going to give them a fight????

Flight D:
Fair Oaks came out of nowhere to jump to the top with team SWAT. Stonebridge thought to be a contender fell to Samuell Grand in week 2. Looks like this flight might be a battle of Dallas v. Collin County. SWAT took down Lakes in a close score although the match was decided before our two losses, unfortunately that is a theme with our team so far, win 3 and then lose 2. I guess I am OK with that as long the 3 win part stays the same.

Flight E:
Somewhat of an early season upset in this flight as Burt's perennial contender fell to JCC last week. This flight is the most even flight so having two losses will be hard to overcome, some interesting matches coming up in this flight. 4/30: Brookhaven v. Village, 5/7: Brookhaven v. OC, 5/14: JCC v. Village.

Any thoughts minions??

Thursday, April 7, 2011

4.5 Pre Season Analysis

And here we go with a little bit of insight on how the 4.5 looks to break down.

flight A

HP/ Pickett has it locked up! They already have the wild card to qualies but look for them to waltz through this easy flight. Rumor has it that Jean Nguyen is out for the season with an ACL tear and having lost Big Clint Laukaf they may be thin at singles. Phy Pham is a nice add.

distant second: probably TBar. Lifetime/ Hill may have a say this time but lost quite a few players this season with Brownlee, Collin, Vascalis, and Mudsam. That is going to require a lot of recruiting this year; Oak Creek/ Myrick have an interesting roster

also rans: Hackberry (can't field strong lineups for away matches but have a solid top 8); Garland Sisk - not sure who else he will add but I don't think this is his focus; JCC seem serious but don't have dominating players

flight B

Royal Oaks are even further ahead of the pack here! What a cake flight! They may lack depth in singles but their dubs is DEEEEPPPP

Next are probably Brookhaven or maybe the Village who can be tricky. Kyle's team is always a tough match but not sure they can come second

Also rans: new team DCC?

flight C

This is the dog fight flight!

Favorites: Oak Creek have quietly retooled and have 3 ex Branch players and now have depth at singles and dubs

fighting for second: Greenhill, always a tough team with potentially the best top 2 singles lines out there; Brookhaven: have lost their lock singles but have experience and depth at dubs; Nothwood Noel - not quiet as strong as prior years or as previously anticipated as they lost some players to various teams incl Oak Creek; Canyon Creek return from the fall 2 team experiment to 1 team. They went 7&2 last spring losing to Branch and TBar

of course Morrison will win it all!!!!

QT picks:
flight A second place: TBar
flight B second place: Brookhaven/ Bartlett
flight C second Place: Brookhaven/ Harlee

DCC picks:
HP/ Pickett
Royal Oaks
Oak Creek
TBar - from QT

going to sectionals - HP/ Pickett (and Oak Creek if there is a Wild Card)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

4.0 Spring Season set to begin

So I have a moment so I thought I would put up some preseason thoughts although I know things will change as new additions arrive on lineups over the next few weeks. It is strange that we had a drop off this year of about 100 players and 2 teams. There are some other teams that have split to make more teams so talent is spread out even more which should pave the way for favorites to roll on to the playoffs but the last few seasons there has been a surprise team in the playoffs so I doubt this year will be any different.

Flight A:
Favorites: Only one favorite here and that is Lifetime Fitness our reigning Fall champ. Some new additions plus almost all there team back minus their front line singles guys. This flight is rather weak so they will not be tested even if Stephen or Alan went out and played singles. :)
Contenders: Eldorado and LB Houston will fight it out for the 2nd spot. LB Houston did make the Fall playoffs with essentially the same roster but Eldorado is right on par with their talent. Eagles Landing hung out in the middle of their flight in the Fall and if either of these teams falter they might have a chance to sneak up.
Fretz, Westlake, Springpark, Royal Oaks and Village. None of these teams are bad but I just don't see anything on their roster that could have me put them near the top. With that said the contenders here are not strong so 2nd place is truly available to anyone who wants it.

Flight B:
Favorites: Garland looks to jump back to the top of the pack after some fall "work" on gaining back some old players. Canyon Creek returns a solid roster and I actually think might just be the strongest team in this flight. I don't see any others really touching these two teams in this flight.
Stonebriar, Lifetime/Kaiser, Springpark and Fretz all have middle of the pack written all over them. A few strengths on each squad and would say Fretz is a solid 3rd but will have a tough time catching one of the top two teams.
Northwood, Gleneagles and Westlake. All have one or two good players but not enough to be considered a team that could win week in and week out.

Flight C:
Favorites: Greenhill and Team Bob meet again in regular season play. I have to say I think Greenhill might have the angle on 1st place in this flight but you never know what Mr. Bob has under his sleeve since I guess he won't be playing any 4.5 tennis.
Dallas Country Club and Springpark have some good players but not enough to go up against the depth of either of the favorites.
Gleneagles, Canyon Creek, Huffhines and OC/Bogle 2 could have asprirations of 3rd or 4th place but really would be hard to go much higher with their rosters.

Flight D:

Favorites: The SWAT team and the Lakes meet again and I see us both returning to our fall positions of 1. SWAT and 2. Lakes.
Contenders: Stonebridge has some quality experienced players including the return of Cocoran and Brookhaven has a interesting mixture but not enough strength up top to aspire higher than 3rd place.
Huffhines, Eldorado, Samuel Grand and Fair Oaks. I honestly don't know all that much about these rosters other than their recent history and that history shows this about where they will finish although their are some solid players on each team.

Flight E:
Favorites: Village and Brookhaven Pearlman will fight it out here, again doesn't it seem like these two were just in the same flight last time around, I could be wrong but either way I see the two of them at the top but it is no slam dunk as it is in other flights.
T Bar has mastered the art of finishing 3rd or 4th although they have bubbled up to be a playoff team every so often and this might just be their year if all goes in their favor. Oak Creek is curious here with such a small roster I would think there needs to be some more talent added to make this team into a real contender.
Pretenders: Hackberry, Garland, Canyon Creek and JCC. Nothing on these rosters say anything more than they are in it for the regular season only.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Captain's Meeting Saturday/ Tennis Link Fixed / Season Starting up

I don't really have time to do a new post, as I am already behind being out of town all week for work, but here is a quick update to give us a change of scenary.

Captain's Meeting - Get updates on the rules, meet the captains of the other teams, play a little captains tennis doubles mix and match afterwards (weather permitting - It appears to be only raining in the morning on Saturday!)

Tennis Link - Just reviewed it, and it is up and running. Done and fixed already.

With the beginning of the Captain's meeting, we signify the start of the season. Looks like we have the start of the new season in 4.5 with the exact same number of teams as last year. We did lose a team last seaon (Hilton) due to excessive defaults on a team - so it can happen guys! Overall same number as teams as before. Players is still yet to be determined.

Ultimate Tennis and TCD have both kicked off already, and this Sunday looks to be a good day for you tennis minded people.


Monday, February 21, 2011

New USTA / Tennis Link / Tri Level Sectional Results

So what is the take on the new USTA / Tennis Link site? Looks like we have some serious Ooops! going on here.

So, doing the best summary on Tri-Level with the tools available. (which kind of majorly bites because you can't see the quality of the losses, or which lines lost...whine whine, bitch bitch. - HINT: I think Klamecki is a good gun for hire, he seems to be a smart techie guy... but i digress.

Sisk did not match up well with SETX and lost to SETX. This opened the door for Houston, whom won the flight, but took a loss to Sisk along the way. (3 way tie for first in that flight, and Houston won with 4 less sets lost in flight A).

Meanwhile, Team Pickett cruised through flight B, never dropping a set in there flight!!! WOW!

Finals summary (Pickett beats Houston 2-1) INTERESTING NOTE!!! The exact same score that Sisk beat Houston by as well) Again, I can't tell if it was a match up thing, which lines lost, or what happened there, but inquiring minds want to know. So, feel free to make your Sectional and USTA website comments. Me, I made my comments already, so it seems silly for me to bash further.

P.S. I Would, however, love to hear from a USTA rep on an ETA on the site being fixed (since it does appear they peruse the blogs from time to time). - So, I nice SWAG from USTA rep and I guess we could file this under positive communication.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Kenny Mc's Corner Reply

So I couldn 't help but notice as I leafed through my Tennis Life magazine after I ready US Weekly and Flash Tattoo (yeah, I have tattoo envy since I don't have one) that the title was "Blog This!" and as I read further and the words seemed to describe a certain blog I once read and contributed.

My first instinct was to let NASTY Lucky Thunder out and respond but my kinder Cary side prevailed but I cannot let it all go by so I just wanted to use the Lucky Thunder translator on some of Ken Mcalister's words.

1. "Attitudinal"
Translation: I love to use big words to show I am not just a tennis player but also someone who has a high college (no university) degree and can use words that have no synonyms except for maybe: PRETENTIOUS.

2. "tells me what just happened as if I am to dumb to know (which may be arguable)"
Translation: Ken actually translated this one for us.

3. "I watch football and basketball games with the sound muted (except when my friend Ron Franklin does play by play)
Translation: I used to be one of those really pretentious people who said I didn't own a TV but I figured this is my new line, and also you really should know who Ron Franklin is, he is mega famous and he and I are really good friends.

4. "I realize that there are brilliant and relevant analyses and comments made in all these venues"
Translation: Captain Fantastic has written two or three blog posts that are better than anything I wrote in my life.

5. "We monitor several of these (blogs) just to hear the pulse of opinions of tennis constituents"
Translation: The Dallas Blog is my home page and it my most visited site behind Facebook, I would translate constituents but I only went to college and not a university.

6. "It is with constant amazement that we read the rumors of what is happening in USTA Tennis"
Translation: We cannot believe how quickly these blogs seem to find out things we messed up.

I don't know if I even commented on the whole ratings mix up when it occurred because December was a rather busy month on and off the court for me. When you step back now and look at it I am about 99% sure everything was on the up and up with the USTA but I think what Marc was exposing was some mistakes and errors that had occurred and to me there was nothing wrong with it. Looking back it was rather strange that all the errors did happen to occur with only one team. Coincidence? Probably and we will never know and since all is corrected we do not care anymore. Marc earlier was a watchdog about tanking players in the Fall and I thought it was great, even as Ken noted in his magazine article walking a mile in our shoes people often see the situation clearer. There are many issues that occur in our league and we know that can all be fixed in an instant we just want to know they are being addressed and I think that is the great divide between USTA players and the USTA Office is that we wish the USTA would acknowledge the issues and let us know how they are dealing with them or what help they might need.

But before I start to show some of my attitudinal background I will end this post because there is an NBA doubleheader starting and I cannot wait to watch it in HD and listen to the commentators.

Link to the "Blog This" Article 

Monday, January 3, 2011

Tri Level Power Rankings

Here are the Official Power Rankings published by Roger Goodell himself. Roger made a surprise visit to Tennis Blog head quarters and posted the Official Tri Level Power Rankings. I can't agree with all of his picks, but I was going to be fined if I did not post them...

Official USTA NFL sponsored Power Rankings:

Blue Flight: AFC

1. John Sisk, The Bill Bellichick of the league. Cap't John with his rumoured sheninigans, thievery, rape and and murderous ways, [but never caught on video
, John is the trickerous captain, and seems to have signed a very strong team with Tom Brady (Jean Nguyen), Deion Branch(Jared Kemp), and Wes Welker (Glenn Flora).

2. Brian Morrison - This would be the Pittsburgh Steelers. I can't put my finger on it as to why, but I rank this team second in the blue flight, so they HAVE to be the Pittsburgh Steelers. (oh yeah, I know why. It's because its my team, and I am completely biased towards my team.)

3. Ray Bogle - In reviewing this team, they could very well be a very good team. This might have to be the Baltimore Ravens. Strong results, but I don't expect to see them in AFC title game.

4. Mike Myers - The New York Jets.

Red Flight - NFC

1. Shawn Acaria - aka the Philadelphia Eagles - sure they got Michael Vick & Jeremy Maclin at 4.5, but is there defense and special teams strong enough to take care of business and make it past the title game?

2. Rossouw - Chicago Bears - You don't see a stand out player when you look at this team necessarily, BUT, they just seem like they are divisional winners and will be playing in the NFC title game.

3. Scott Russell - Greenbay Packers. They are playing with a couple of 4.0 bumpdowns at 3.5, and they look like they can be wiley, so, there is some potential there.

4. Scott Morris - Kansas City Chiefs - This team reminds me of the Kansas City Chiefs, because I only know of 1 player that plays on the Chiefs, and I couldn't pick that guy out of a line up. But, somehow, he almost beat Jim Brown's record. So, with that said, here are your Kansas City Chiefs.