This is gonna be great a trip to Sunday on the line let's play Pickleball it's wide on the volley from Arnold there and we are underway Johnson's added another layer since his last match he's got the little sport coat and uh sweatpants on now point.

The false two-handed drop there by J dub to start that yeah we talked about him having uh maybe the edge in power he certainly has plenty of touch and feel as well point three in a row to start there's nothing more deceptive on this.

Entire screen than that eight next to JW Jones all comes down to points earned over the last 12 months so uh that will change rapidly side out yeah certainly thought to be one of the very very top uh singles players that we have in the game like you mentioned don't expect him to be an eight seed for much longer good.

Look at Julian Arnold using that new Volare paddle he had a big hand in developing side out just the strength in that forearm Kyle come on yeah it's such a short efficient motion and when he gets a ball up it is certainly one ball put away power that he possesses.

Good job by Arnold just keeping the ball in front of him here he's got some great lateral movement in addition to his other types of speed on the court side out what a smart return you thinking it's going to the backhand not so much yeah a lot of these guys are so good if you return to their backhand about making it a forehand anyways.

Sometimes just going right to the strength actually can surprise uh these guys a little bit from JW it's around and pulls that right down the line on cue and it is four zip J dub s right in the corner pocket and another one on the line this guy has.

The brush out Kyle yeah and Jacob's such a rhythm player when he gets going he's so tough to slow down a beautiful lifetime club and we are having quite a day of singles action and I'm badly needed for Julian Arnold out of the timeout down 5-0 sometimes you just need that first one gets the.

Ball back yeah absolutely he's had some shorter returns here early this will be his opportunity to serve and get on the board gladly accept all freebies one five well double freebie and uh Dave Johnson Park out the score for me would you please.

Two five Arnold same move your feet sometimes they hit the ball right back to you it's actually bad because you need to just shuffle a little bit Kyle yeah yeah clearing your body is a unique skill set uh certainly tough when the when the volley is deep.

Point yeah just a great angle there from from Johnson way back at the Baseline and made it very easy for Arnold to miss that as it really Shrunk the size of the court for him Point what a inside out I mean on the Run no height on that ball and that was going to be in Kyle he really just accelerates up the back of.

That ball with that really Lively wrist that he possesses and he can generate a lot of pace and spin with not a whole lot of rest of his body uh getting involved you talk about hitting the back side of the ball after this point let's talk about most people are just trying to connect but these players are not just trying to connect.

Sign out yeah at this level they've really learned to trust the acceleration and paddle speed and it's it's one of those things where you know the faster you swing actually the more control you have so you really have to get over that mental hurdle of just kind of pushing it in and just kind of go for it and he's he's doing a great job of that right now.

And Arnold runs it up the line twice that looked like a very Ben Johnson reset there on the backhand side from uh JW Johnson Arnold fired away there twice beautiful man that backhand roll is something else for J.W Johnson checks the ball it's like man that was really good there that thing didn't bounce at all.

Certainly his uh his signature shot that backhand flip again we talked about ain't only Waters not being in the women's draw Ben John's not in the men's draw so while he did not win the last tournament he won the first two before that so opportunity knocking for these gentlemen as well and staxford will not be in the final.

Either so we've guaranteed ourselves a new gold medalist here for 2023 with the stack Street going out to JW Johnson in the last round seven two oh my just beautiful Court positioning and then a flick of the wrist yeah he just looks so comfortable and almost casual coming forward but he just.

Has such a good understanding of the angles that he needs to cover once he gets up there point and Arnold a little frustrated with the miss yeah the pattern I've seen from Arnold he just needs to kind of recalibrate his flight path a little on the returns.

Because his misses haven't been long they've been in the net and he's had several quite short as well and he's just not gonna have that depth um you know when he's doing that he really in singles depth is the most important thing you're always looking for depth what you decide on is you know forehand backhand middle but you're.

Always wanting to get good depth two game point for JW Johnson in a hurry beautiful shot there from Arnold so can he get a little something going he's been staring at the ground as if the ball isn't coming up again indoor surface lots of uh new things to adapt to and the adaptable be will be the ones that win here.

Sign out yeah Arnold just just struggling to find his spots right now um obviously frustrated but when you're down 10-2 this is the time to just play free try to find you know a pattern or some sort of confidence Builder to take into a probable game too Donald clap from it is J.W Johnson cool.

Just ahead comfortably 11-2 in game number one Point yeah I mentioned I was kind of surprised by the lifetime of that 7-1 uh head-to-head but you know game one certainly went like somebody who was seven to one you know lifetime so we'll see if Arnold can bounce back he seems.

To be seemingly frustrated about the bounce of the ball it seems to be a little bit lower than he's used to and hasn't been able to calibrate his passing shots yet everyone gets first point of game number two and the volume's going up.

Yeah if you're an Arnold fan that's what you love to hear and obviously it's it's go time for him now we talked about you know the opportunity for the women with with Waters out we mentioned Ben Johns will not be in the final these guys have a great opportunity to to play for gold two great balls in a row there from J.W Johnson just keeping Arnold off the.

Kitchen and pressure yeah smart job going behind him there uh Arnold was already running to that forehand side Johnson just said you know what I don't think you can really hurt me if I keep it in that corner point and that just can't happen uh pretty easy volley to stay ahead in that.

Rally side out fortunate again there by Arnold he just again needs a little more lift a little more height than what more net cleaners to get some good depth on that return if he's gonna come away uh the Victor in this match.

strike on the return from J.W Johnson they're just absolutely tattooed a two-handed backhand yeah that was a rope if there ever was one and good job by Arnold just making him play one more ball but uh too far on defense there good job by Arnold there and it's interesting you see that and then you.

See very limited off the bounce of the kitchen and doubles from JW Johnson of going after those those groundies so uh because they are there you just saw it and you've seen it throughout this day against Stack's route as well sign out yeah I think Johnson's a very disciplined doubles player especially especially in men's and on that backhand.

Side but I think he could maybe Redline his game a little more we see some of the ability he has hello exhibit a that's just too good and you saw Arnold show the way that J dub holds the paddle with that unique positioning can you speak to that a little bit Kyle he.

Hinges his wrist in a unique way and what it allows him to do is kind of change the trajectory and angle of the ball even as it starts to get kind of behind his body or close to his body um certainly a very high degree of difficulty but it's a unique uh technique that allows him to be offensive at some different times.

So what a great first volley from JW Johnson all day long I mean if Arnold isn't perfect he's eating it because the next Ball's so deep yeah there's just so much action off the paddle again it's a short motion but it's a fast motion where he really accelerates well to create that spot again targeting that Arnold backhand.

Volley gets a mistake there as well three one way too short and in the middle of the court on the return there and Arnold is having a lengthy discussion with himself as he goes back to get the ball here 4-1 J.W Johnson four one.

Side out Arnold found a nice deep return there and you know I've had matches like that too you come out and what feels right to you off the paddle just doesn't translate into the correct depths you almost have to aim it's almost try to miss a return long just to kind of find uh your bearings out there.

Now there's a beautiful two in it back and we know it's in there this is the one of the fieriest players in one of the highest level players in the early part of our run through the desert in Arizona he was the MVP of Major League pickleball and deservedly so and here we go he's going now Dave he's going now.

And he has a unique grip on that backhand just holds it up the paddle just a little bit three four left hand rolls through another winner and we are tied at four yeah it kind of shoots from the hip on that side he holds it holds it holds it and again similar to Johnson really accelerates up the back of that ball right at the last.

Second side out you heard him say you gotta hit it there so he did hit it well enough to get this tied up at four so J.W Johnson back to serve precious brilliant singles yeah like I mentioned earlier he's just.

So calm moving forward and that's so tough to be like that in singles when there's so much core that you have to worry about covering that's a gorgeous overhead from Julian Arnold there yeah when all 20 feet is yours you seem to be in a hurry at least you think you have to be and that's the absolute opposite of what you should be.

Doing five four five I see your Arnold overhead and I've got an Arnold angle as well says J.W Johnson both giving a lesson how to you know pronate on that overhead right at the top to go kind of inside out there five four more.

wow what recognition to take the one before that out of the air Kyle well and even the shot he missed the degree of difficulty darn near had that to go from a fast battle to just completely taking the pace off that ball for a short angle darn near worked for Johnson but Arnold now right there.

Five five five Johnson's Still barking it out side out I mean the going behind your opponent in singles is just usually one of the easiest places to finish just to make them make the first move the other way smart shot from Johnson.

Find out yeah good job by Arnold there on that volley he put a little extra backspin on there went straight up the middle but it landed so short and stayed so low tough for uh tougher Johnson to be able to do anything with that pass oh the dropper's so pretty.

and you think don't drop it because Arnold is so quick but he's so far behind the Baseline such a smart choice from Johnson yeah when you can bring him to the net on your terms and keep that Advantage then you're then it's a good play.

Oh he had the Andiamo planned after that backhand he saw a winner down the line but unfortunately didn't hit a cleanup well that's what you hoped for all that coverage all that getting another ball back he's just waiting for his moment to have that opening he had it and just was unable to connect time in after this we got Austin and hello Utah Red Rocks.

Beautiful Court there set just below the Red Rocks go to pickleballtournaments.com and PPA tour you can play where these guys play right next to them Kyle so many great venues all over the country I promise you we will be coming to a stop near you at some point this year yeah and hello Nashville Hello Seattle first time in.

Those two areas that's going to be so much fun later in the year back to Denver again this year I believe seven absolutely so uh all we're doing is expanding and bringing this brakes great sport to a lot of new players and speaking of new players the official information just came out this week.

Pickleball again wildly the fastest growing sport over 150 percent growth of the people playing it's it's incredible oh my La volley that did not work out yeah that's uh maybe a touch too creative you know he'll lob a little bit more than most in singles I think in that situation uh probably just won't work out for him most of the time yeah.

Because you don't have J dub convicted on a dink there to try and throw it over his heads and and the kids tall and athletic yeah he wasn't all the way at the line so a much tighter space to have that be effective and that lands Point directly on the line much to the Chagrin of Julian Arnold and we are at nine five what a shot from Johnson yeah so tough.

To straighten that ball out when you're on the stretch like that but we talked about the wrist control that he has there's an example of what that can do for you it is absolute go time we talked about fire and ice and it is time for all the fire for that man Julian Arnold right now.

and he will take it he don't care how that went over six nine they're bright back there hanging out six nine played a very entertaining match ing parental earlier today.

Side out yeah we talked about you know Arnold just just struggling a little bit with the condition I'm assuming just based on his body language that the bounce is maybe a little lower than he's used to and you don't see him miss that low in the net very often get a Big Moment Like.

This trying to fight a fuss nine six nine foreign there and just can't be committed to that consistent ball striking that he is.

Known for and these are the instincts that the top level players have I think when you get that good of a return against you maybe sometimes not going for the pass and just forcing your opponent to play a volley and waiting for that opening might be the better choice easier to say that from here for sure.

You know make him do something first oh caught wow J.W Johnson they're both shaking their head because J dub was on his way to the left and stuck his paddle out and hit a clean one yeah I think they were both fooled at different points in that point but uh Johnson able to get it just kind of been his day so far.

And that's that volley just stays inside the Baseline so again Johnson stuck at nine for the last three times he's had the chance to pull up to 10. oh my red that like his favorite book did J.W Johnson but swatted it into the net yeah and maybe that will be the.

Point that turns things around Arnold very fortunate to sneak that one away and then cannot believe that the serve trickled over the net obviously not a let gotta clear the kitchen to get a reserve that didn't even get close to clearing the kitchen so another chance to get to 10 for J.W Johnson and he is way ahead in the point but the.

Hands from Julian Arnold both these guys are Elite doubles players showcasing the fast hand battle there in singles and again Arnold giving himself another chance here to stay alive in game two welcome you heard Arnold say so dumb drop another one another vicious two-handed.

Backhand return started that whole thing yeah Johnson he's hitting all those drops just to extend the point not necessarily putting a ton of pressure on but he's waiting for that opening and upsetted himself that maybe he pulled the trigger just a little too early oh and goes with the lock serve to change.

wow oh I hope he's okay something weird happened on that left leg there I think he's all right yeah he was trying to stop quickly and pull this ball I think across his body but it was just too far outside his Strike Zone to do that looks like he's gonna be okay.

We are at match point go to Sunday point for J.W Johnson we'll do it not Jay W Johnson
Watch #5 Julian Arnold face off against #8 JW Johnson in the Semifinal Men’s Singles match at the Vulcan Indoor National Championship Presented by Life Time.

This tournament aired live on YouTube from February 23rd-26th, 2023.

Location: Life Time (Lakeville, MN)