yeah so yeah that's what you're talking about where someone's speeding up usually from a cross-court ball so ben stinky cross court that's the most common speed up and it should be said that everything about my doubles pickleball game and men's was designed to complement ben from the very.

Start because mark when i first started um ben's like obviously you're really good tennis player great table tennis player you have me we're going to play together eventually i need you to develop everything to compliment me and i was like done like i'll do that whatever you need you tell me um so that includes.

Forehand thinking um one of the most important shots that ben put his finger on is the slide backhand so fading um because he's going to be playing the left and he's going to be covering metal with the forehand pickleball as ben likes to say was not is not designed to be played 50 50. you should not be covering 50 of the court.

It depends on where the ball is and in my mind the perfect team is a lefty righty to where that could apply to both sides but since we're both right-handed ben's gonna take more of the court it's just the reality of it um it doesn't even necessarily come back come down to that he's the better player he is but it's more of that's the way you need to.

Cover a pickleball court because especially when somebody's speeding up you don't want to have to guess for him backing because that little split second throws your timing off enough makes you late enough to where their follow-up is going to be much better so from the very start ben's like i want you to work on this shot where you slide to the right.

You sit on your backhand you know it's going to be a backhand and just leave anything to your right because if you're far enough over anything to the right side of your body is going to go wide so there's really nowhere to go and he developed that with his other partners as well so like anna lee he's been teaching her how to do that it's just.

Nice that she has like the nastiest two-hander on the planet yeah right so it's actually something i also learned from simone and not that she taught it to me it's that when i was playing skinny singles with her and i would try to speed up at her she would do the same slide with the two-hander and i was like that looks like a good shot i'm gonna.

Try that and i kind of combined that with the one-hander that ben taught me and of course playing with ben you get a lot of a lot of opportunities to hit it and it's really just about shifting your body out of the way so that it's not a target and the target zone is on a side that you know it's going to be on namely the backhand because the back end just.

Covers so much area and it really just presents no open court to the opponent if ben keeps the dink low enough and they're trying to force a speed up i've got my corner covered with all backhands so good luck trying to get it through and if you go middle ben's sitting there in the forehand and the whole idea of that is designed to be.

It's designed to wind up to ben's forehand whether it's the first ball the second ball so in an ideal world i hit a clean winner on it if they speed up at me but a lot of times the guys with good hands will get the next one back but then the reply will go directly into the jaws of ben's forehand which is where we want the ball to go and then it's good.

Night and that's exactly where we want to live and if you want to try to roll the dice and go through the middle to ben's forehand good luck with that as well so i feel like our system our slide system is one of the hardest to beat and it's not that i'm the world's best counter puncher but if you give me a backhand and i tee it up.

And we have ben sitting there in the middle it's it's a tough proposition it's uh definitely one of the harder systems to be in the game i feel like and i'm glad that we started out by practicing that it's basically like uh a michael jackson moonwalk with a sick.

Backhand finish i mean that's what it looks like yeah you're just just flow out of the way and counter dude it's so sick i love that guy you talk about the ownership of ben take in the middle too because it's the same in in our game it's like if the guys jump to me and i got the tailwind like there's a crosswind in my corner we.

Call it like the hot corner right so i'm in the trenches here and i just have to own that middle no matter what scenario happens if the ball's coming from that area and that leaves so much more ability for us as a team to process what kind of ball they're going to give us because we already know who has what.

Ownership versus like the constant guess or when you place people that don't understand the angle and the trajectories they're like well that's my middle it's like well dude if you just let me own this at all times we would both be more confident and make a better decision long term and get ourselves out of these rallies or speed up rallies.

That happen because we have a job to do we have ownership in each scenario because if it crosses over you know it changes the angle that'll adjust but i love you say that because i do that same thing i go hey my middle no matter what even if the ball is like almost hitting his high left shoulder i'm still owning that middle because.

We can count on that and then i can we can make a better play as a team it's cool to have people understand that a little bit better even just through pickleball like no it's not like a 50 50 game we gotta adjust and move and there should be ownership with that left sider being a right-hander for sure like it's like a 70 30.

Oh yeah that's so interesting the parallels that apply on that as well and i'll tell you something that also helped me on that with that mindset is playing and teaching platform tennis at baltimore country club where i worked um so i taught and played that for three years and it's exactly the same size as the pickleball court and there's chicken.

Wire around the court which you could play it off the walls making it sort of like squash but the parallel that i really found was the simplicity of the shot selection and who's balls anything over your partner's left shoulder is your ball there's no deviation from that um unless.

You're a lefty righty and even so it depends on the position of the players you can't deviate because even though it might not look like you're putting your team out of position you are and if you just stick to something very concrete like that and you have a system if you're not reaching for that one ball of the center your partner's so sure.

That ball is his that it just makes for a better system overall yeah and it's interesting to hear that that applies to volleyball in the same exact way yeah same thing it's like oh let's minimize this effort and and confusion and maximize look ownership and then control of that scenario it's like dude the outcome is significantly better when.

We just have that structure right and of course there's the random audibles where you know maybe you can poach one and pick it off because the angle's a little bit different but that's such a good thing for people to hear and understand is like look this you need to establish your uh your structure and your team chemistry.

Too because like you said ben's like dude i need you to be this for me so we can maximize our potential i think that's something that i've done too with every partner from guys like i'm better at the right side i'm like sweet dude i played both and i'm not scared i'll go over to the left you know i'll deal with the left side or this guy's like dude.

I'm really confident on the right all right i'll go over on the right and i think being able to to systemize that for your partner and be elevate together that's so huge so it's cool you guys train that way like specifically because we do the same thing it's so cool yep and uh definitely something where you don't want.

Indecision and yeah and if you remove that entirely i feel like that's part of the reason why ben and i play so well together is we know who's balls who's at all times and when he plays with other partners once a while you'll see it doesn't happen often because they're great players but sometimes they take a ball that he wants.

And i feel like i do a pretty good job of getting out of the way which is part of the system and it's not again because i'm that much worse it's because we have a system and we don't deviate from it that's so rad it's cool because sorry thomas i'm just i'm feeling it right now i played the first time i played with.

Like a really elite like i played a few olympians like coming through the ranks and they would kind of be like oh here's the young kid with the energy he's bringing all the fire and and they would pick me up and right bring me into the main draw and i went through a couple but then when i landed on this one named jay gibb.

He is like very very similar to how you play colin where he's he makes all his shots he's super consistent he's even killed he's not like super high or low he brings fire but he's not like gonna be in your face all the time and what it did for me is it took me from being this guy that was.

Just like all energy and if it was i was like a roller coaster i was unstoppable or i was in the trenches right it helped me like level out and it's cool because you can see like you and ben are both kind of similar in that way but with the way that you your body language and your control is so like.

Like calming and balanced that it makes it's really fun to watch because i've personally seen and had a partner like that where it was like oh okay now that like calmness and trust level is so dialed that i could actually experiment and be super creative because i know my guy's just gonna do his job he's gonna he's gonna be there and then.

Also game time like that i can't remember what match it was it was like i think it was set point in either one of the finals or maybe like a quarter semi in the last event for the ppa you hit an ernie i think for a winner to win the set i can't remember it was it that or.

The save one and i was like there it is dude it's like he's just the freaking the steady calm the dude that just puts in the work and then creative highlight reel it was really cool to see but i think that's something for listeners to to really focus when they watch these matches to see how.

Like structured and stable of a player you are it's so fun like for me that's like one of the coolest things to watch somebody who just like over time just does their job and plays at such a high level that it's like almost they don't recognize it because you're not flashing you're not like yelling and screaming and talking a.

Crowded time you're just like you're there the whole time hello dude thanks i appreciate that and i feel like i'm at my best when i could tell ben just let loose go for your shots i got you if you miss it's fine i'm gonna be a backboard over here and i've told him that in certain matches where he's maybe.

A little passive he's not bringing energy i'm like go attack go light them up i got my side just yeah feel free to do that because you need somebody who's a little bit more aggressive more creative and somebody who's just never going to miss yeah just green light that's what my guy told me green light bro and i'd go back.

And bomb serves when normally i'd be like nervous to keep it in and then we go in some like six point run and be like green light bro i love it thank you thank you for being that like foundation for me to be able to be creative because i'm not worried that's huge never apologize when you guys go on rants like that.

Thomas is just chilling there for a while that you guys just i my mind was blown like five times over
Collin Johns and Ben Johns are #1 in the world in pickleball, and they don’t play the game like the rest of us. In this segment from PicklePod, Collin explains why doubles pickleball should NOT be played 50/50.
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