Pickleball Live On TV

Image of tv cameras on court

Pickleball, a racquet sport resembling a cross between ping pong and tennis, is booming. 

Participation in the sport grew from 5 million players in 2021 to more than 36.5 million in 2022 and more fans than ever are watching pickleball live. The sport is growing so rapidly that the pickleball product market could reach as much as $4.1 billion by 2026. 

Much of this growth is thanks to increased visibility with a growing number of television contracts with major networks. These contracts brought pickleball to ESPN, CBS, and ABC. For some, watching pickleball tournaments on TV is more entertaining than watching tennis.

Where To Watch Pickleball Live

There are plenty of options to watch pickleball on TV in 2024. Each of the major tours has live TV and streaming coverage, making it easy to watch live pickleball today.

APP pickleball on television.

Association of Pickleball Players Tour

Previously known as the Association of Pickleball Professionals, the APP became the Association of Pickleball Players in 2023. The APP boasts the first tour officially sanctioned by USA Pickleball. The 2024 APP Tour features 12 APP tour stops with 4 majors, including an International and Collegiate Series and 3 events for the Next Gen Series, which cultivates younger players.

In addition, 5 APP tour events in 2024 will conclude with Pro Team competitions. These single-day team events have a $100,000 prize pool at stake. The upcoming schedule also includes an international team event for the first time!

CBS Sports Network and ESPN2 will broadcast pickleball live from the APP tour, though details are still forthcoming. These stations are available to subscribers of most cable providers and major streaming services, such as Hulu, Fubo, DirectTV, and YouTube TV. You can find APP TV on Facebook and YouTube. ESPN+ is available as a standalone subscription or as part of the Disney+ bundle with Hulu.

Can you find pickleball on TV tonight? We have good news! This year, The APP announced a partnership with Navio Networks, so fans can watch APP events on the newly-launched Court Sports Network as well, a Free Ad-Supported Streaming Television channel dedicated to fans of court sports.

Check out the pickleball TV schedule for PPA.

Carvana Professional Pickleball Association Tour

The PPA is a professional pickleball tour that features some of the top pickleball players in the sport. This year’s tournament schedule is unique as it is an integrated schedule with Major League Pickleball following the consolidation of the two into a unified entity in 2023. 

The PPA has pickleball live broadcast partnerships with FOX, CBS, Tennis Channel, ABC, ESPN, Prime Video, YouTube, and Fanduel. There will be 25 live tournaments in 2024, more than 4,500 on-demand matches, and over 1,500 hours of pickleball content across the various PPA platforms.

FOX, CBS, and ABC are available free over the air and, along with Tennis Channel and ESPN, on most major cable and streaming services. Prime Video is a streaming service available to Amazon Prime subscribers, and Fanduel is a popular sports-betting site.

MLP will feature live pickleball on TV

Major League Pickleball Tour

Major League Pickleball distinguishes itself from the other professional leagues with a format that features co-ed team competitions. Many of the league’s 24 teams have high-profile celebrity owners and the league recently announced yet another new dynamic for the 2024 schedule.

The 2024 season will feature six divisions of four teams each for the regular season, meeting for 15 events. The schedule will include a minimum of 40 regular season matches, with each team facing every other team at least once. Divisional rivals will meet multiple times, and the season will close out with a two-week MLP Playoff Series. 

Pickleball live, sponsored by Minto US Open.

Minto US Open Pickleball Championships

The US Open Pickleball Championships bills itself as the world’s largest live pickleball tournament combined with the world’s largest pickleball party. The 2024 US Open will take place April 12-20 in Naples Florida and CBS Sports Network will broadcast live for the mixed, women’s and men’s pro finals. You can also find coverage of the event on the Pickleball Channel on YouTube.

Pickleball Slam is back on live TV this year.

Pickleball Slam

The Pickleball Slam is back for a second year at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida on February 4, 2024. ESPN will broadcast exclusive coverage of a celebrity showdown featuring the return of John McEnroe and Andre Agassi from last year’s tournament with Steffi Graf and Maria Sharapova rounding out the competition.

The doubles matches in this tournament will feature McEnroe and Sharapova facing the married couple, Agassi and Graff, with 42 combined Grand Slam singles titles between the two teams.

A $1 million cash prize will be up for grabs. The event also features a return of the Amateur Slam tournament challenge, which features DUPR-ranked amateur doubles teams playing for a cash prize and a chance to play with the pros. However, the amateur event does not appear to have any planned television coverage.

Selkirk TV

Selkirk is the first and only free pickleball TV app. The app features pickleball live streaming, pro lessons, past tournaments, podcasts, and on-demand shows. You can download the app on Google Play and the Apple App Store. It is also available on Apple TV, Android TV, and ROKU and will be coming to Amazon’s Fire TV. With Selkirk, you are sure to find pickleball on TV today.

Check out live Pickleball streaming on Paramount Plus

Paramount Plus

Paramount+ offered the Seattle Pickleball Open for streaming to U.S. subscribers in July 2023. The tournament aired on July 29 in Seattle, where pickleball is officially the state sport. Even when you can’t find live pickleball on TV this weekend, Paramount+ subscribers can watch the tournament on-demand.

When To Watch Pickleball Live

With hundreds of hours of livestream and television coverage, there will be no shortage of chances to watch pickleball game broadcasts in 2024.

2024 APP Tour Television Schedule

Although the pickleball TV schedule is pending for the 2024 APP tour, the tour dates are as follows:

Date TournamentTimeNetwork
January 8, 2024APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open
January 17-21Punta Gorda, FL
February 1-4AARP U.S. Champions Cup
February 14-18San Antonio, TX
March 6-10Sacramento, CA
March 20-24Miami (Major)/APP Atlantic Cup
April 3-7Delray Beach, FL
May 8-12Cincinnati, OH
May 22-26New York City, NY (Major)
June 12-16U.S. Indoor Championships
June 26-30Southern California (Major)
July 18-21Kansas City, MO
July 24-28Women’s Open
Aug 28-Sept 1Chicago, IL
September 25-29Boca Raton, FL
October 9-13Dallas, TX
October 23-27Southern California
November 13-17Dallas, TX
December 4-8Fort Lauderdale, FL (Major)

2024 Carvana PPA Tour Television Schedule

You can watch all of the PPA Tour events on PPA TV.

Date TournamentEventChannel
January 10-14The MastersPalm Springs, CApbtv
February 1-4Desert Ridge OpenPhoenix, AZpbtv
February 17-25Mesa Arizona CupMesa, AZpbtv
March 7-10Indoor National ChampionshipsLakeville, MNpbtv
March 14-17Austin ShowdownAustin, TXpbtv
March 21-24Virginia Beach OpenVirginia Beach, VApbtv
Mar 30-Apr 7TBANCpbtv
April 12-15Houston OpenHouston, TXpbtv
April 18-21TBALos Angeles, CApbtv
April 25-28Red Rock OpenSt. George, UTpbtv
May 11-19Atlanta OpenAtlanta, GApbtv
May 30-June 2TBADallas, TXpbtv
June 6-9TBASacramento, CApbtv
June 22-30TBASan Clemente, CApbtv
July 4-7TBAColoradopbtv
July 20-28TBASeattle, WApbtv
August 3-11TBAKansas City, KSpbtv
August 15-18TBABristol, TNpbtv
Sept 7-15TBACincinnati, OHpbtv
Sept 28-Oct 6TBAFt. Lauderdale, FLpbtv
Oct 10-13TBALas Vegas, NVpbtv
Oct 24-27TBADaytona Beach, FLpbtv
Nov 1-10TBADallas, TXpbtv
Nov 14-17TBAMilwaukee, WIpbtv
Dec 5-8TBASan Clemente, CApbtv

Major League Pickleball Tour

The 2024 schedule for Major League Pickleball features 16 regular-season events and two playoff events. 

Regular season:

  • Feb 8-11 in Los Angeles, CA
  • Feb 17-19 in Mesa AZ
  • Feb 29-Mar 3 in San Diego, CA
  • Mar 30-Apr 1 in North Carolina
  • May 2-5 in Miami, FL
  • May 11-13 in Atlanta, GA
  • Jun 13-16 in TBA
  • Jun 22-24 in San Clemente, CA
  • Jul 11-14 in Grand Rapids, MI
  • Jul 20-22 in Seattle, WA
  • Aug 3-5 in Kansas City, KS
  • Aug 24-26 in TBA
  • Sep 7-9 in Cincinnati, OH
  • Sep 19-22 in New York, NY
  • Sept 28-30 in Ft. Lauderdale, FL
  • Oct 17-20 in TBA

Playoffs:

  • Nov 1-4 in Dallas, TX
  • Nov 21-24 in Orlando, FL

The July event in Grand Rapids is the mid-season tournament.

Minto US Open Pickleball Championships Television Schedule

This multi-day event begins with a Kids Day event on April 12th and the event schedule features both amateur and professional players. CBS Sports Network will broadcast the mixed, men’s, and women’s pro finals live on April 20, 2024 as part of the CBS pickleball broadcast agreement.

Pickleball Slam

ESPN will broadcast the Legends tournament starting at 8:30 PM ET on February 4, 2024. Additional Pickleball Slams will take place at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino locations around the country. The organizers have yet to announce the locations, times, and any planned television coverage for future events.

What You Need To Know Before Watching Pickleball Live

If you are new to the sport, you may enjoy your watching experience more if you learn some of the basics first.

What Is Pickleball?

Pickleball is a racquet sport that combines facets of badminton, tennis, and ping-pong. Participants play the game on outdoor and indoor badminton-sized courts with a slightly altered tennis net.

Players use paddles that look like big ping-pong paddles to hit a plastic ball that has holes similar to a Wiffle ball. Pickleball matches can be doubles or singles style. Players of all ages and skill levels enjoy the sport, and its popularity has grown continuously.

How Did Pickleball Get Started?

Pickleball is an invention of three dads, Bill Bell, Joel Pritchard, and Barney McCallum. They invented the sport on Bainbridge Island in 1965 when they were looking for an activity to entertain their children. The first known tournament took place at South Center Athletic Club in Tukwila, Washington, in 1976.

The sport gained more notoriety in 1982 when Sid Williams organized tournaments in Washington state. Organizers then formed the United States Amateur Pickleball Association in 1984 to expand the sport nationally. By 1990, players in all 50 states played pickleball.

The inclusion of the sport in the Arizona Senior Olympics in 2001 helped grow pickleball’s popularity with older Americans. Advocates for the sport formed the USA Pickleball Association in 2005. The organization held its first national tournament in 2009 and established a grant program to help players create new sites. USAPA created the International Federation of Pickleball to help grow the sport worldwide in 2010.

The Pickleball Channel became the first professional media group for the sport in 2014. CBS Sports Network hosted the first pickleball live broadcast with the US Open Pickleball Championships in 2016. ESPN3 live-streamed more than 17 hours of pickleball on television from the Margaritaville USA Pickleball National Championships at Indian Wells Tennis Garden in 2018.

USAPA became USA Pickleball in 2020. The sport’s popularity grew exponentially during the pandemic, fueling high-profile investments in the various professional pickleball leagues.

What Makes Pickleball Fun To Watch?

Pickleball has widespread appeal as a recreational sport because almost anyone can play it, but what makes it fun to watch?

Fast-Paced Games

Professional tennis matches can take several hours. Most professional team sports have similarly time-consuming games. By contrast, you can watch an entire pickleball match in less than 20 minutes. The short matches appeal to fans who do not have an evening or afternoon to devote to watching sports and to bettors who want to see quick returns.

Variety of Formats

Most tournaments follow a similar format to tennis as an individual sport. However, if you enjoy rooting for your local sports team, the MLP format features 24 teams, comprised of two men and two women, located in cities around the country.

Cool Vibe

Pickleball live matches strive to create a festival-style atmosphere complete with loud music and high energy. If mainstream sports are too self-serious for you, consider giving pickleball a try.

What Are Some Challenges Pickleball Faces?

With its smaller court size, pickleball does not have the dramatic sprints to run down a ball or deep serves that tennis does. The action is more confined and may appear less exciting to casual viewers. However, enthusiasts appreciate the more subtle strategy and nuance of the game.

While pickleball has a growing list of celebrity owners, such as Lebron James and Naomi Osaka, it does not yet have a Roger Federer or Serena Williams on the court. It has also yet to prove that it can pull in substantial viewership ratings on television or streaming services, though it is gaining in popularity every year. 

There is hope that the increasing availability of TV and streaming coverage will boost the star status of the top players and elevate the sport to mainstream status.

How Does the Scoring Work?

Players can only score points when they are serving. Most games end when a player or team scores 11 points. However, at some tournaments, matches go to 15 or 21 points. Players must win by 2. If there is only a one-point difference when a player reaches the winning score, the game continues until a player with enough points to win has a two-point advantage.

How Is Pickleball Different From Tennis?

Pickleball servers must allow return shots to bounce before hitting them, so there is no serve-and-volley game in pickleball live matches. Additionally, players can not volley while inside the seven-foot kitchen on either side of the net. This alters the dynamic of play in comparison to tennis, giving matches a different pace and energy.

Because pickleballs do not bounce as well as tennis balls, there are fewer clean winners and overhead smash shots are not as effective. This changes the approach to play because winning is more about skill and strategy and less about physical ability. 

Much of the action in pickleball matches takes place between the kitchen line and the baseline. Unlike tennis, where the singles game is the star of the show, doubles matches are the most popular and prestigious on pickleball tours.

Who Are the Top Players?

Some of the professional leagues have exclusivity deals that prevent some players from playing in other leagues. Each league has its own ranking system.

APP Top Players

The top five pro men’s doubles players are:

  1. Andrei Daescu
  2. Rob Nunnery
  3. Stefan Auvergne
  4. Hunter Johnson
  5. Yates Johnson

The top five pro men’s singles players are:

  1. Hunter Johnson
  2. Yates Johnson
  3. Jhonnatan Medina Alvarez
  4. Eduardo Irizarry
  5. Jack Foster

The top five men’s pro mixed doubles players are:

  1. Andrei Daescu
  2. Hunter Johnson
  3. Rob Nunnery
  4. Brendon Long
  5. Martin Emmrich

The top five women’s pro doubles players are:

  1. Simone Jardim
  2. Parris Todd
  3. Megan Fudge
  4. Susannah Barr
  5. Alix Truong

The top five women’s pro singles players are:

  1. Salome Devidze
  2. Megan Fudge
  3. Judit Castillo
  4. Parris Todd
  5. Dominique Schaefer

The top five women’s pro mixed doubles players are:

  1. Susannah Barr
  2. Parris Todd
  3. Simone Jardim
  4. Megan Fudge
  5. Allison Harris

Rankings can change throughout the year as players accumulate points by playing in tournaments.

PPA Top Players

The top five pro men’s doubles players are:

  1. Ben Johns
  2. Collin Johns
  3. JW Johnson
  4. Dylan Frazier
  5. Matt Wright

The top five pro men’s singles players are:

  1. Ben Johns
  2. Federico Staksrud
  3. Tyson McGuffin
  4. Connor Garnett
  5. JW Johnson

The top five men’s pro mixed doubles players are:

  1. Ben Johns
  2. Riley Newman
  3. James Ignatowich
  4. JW Johnson
  5. Thomas Wilson

The top five women’s pro doubles players are:

  1. Anna Leigh Waters
  2. Catherine Parenteau
  3. Anna Bright
  4. Callie Smith
  5. Lucy Kovalova

The top five women’s pro singles players are:

  1. Anna Leigh Waters
  2. Catherine Parenteau
  3. Lea Jansen
  4. Mary Brascia
  5. Irina Tereschenko

The top five women’s pro mixed doubles players are:

  1. Anna Leigh Waters
  2. Anna Bright
  3. Vivienne David
  4. Jorja Johnson
  5. Catherine Parenteau

PPA players also accumulate points by playing matches that can affect rankings as the season progresses.

What Are Pickleball Ratings?

When you watch pickleball live, you may hear announcers talk about player ratings. Pickleball ratings represent a player’s skill level. They start at 1.0 and go up to as high as 8.0, depending on the scale. There are three types of ratings.

Self-Ratings

Players can assign themselves a rating based on their approximate skill level. Brand-new players should rate themselves in the 1.0-2.0 range. Once they have some experience, know the basic rules, and can keep a short rally going, they can rate themselves as a 2.5.

When players have a basic understanding of strategy and can hit some basic shots, they can rate themselves a 3.0. As they gain more control over their shots and improve their strategy, they can move up to 3.5.

When players can hit all of the basic shots with consistency, control, and pace and have a moderate number of unforced errors, they can rate themselves a 4.0. When they develop the skill to add spin, changes of depth, and adjustments of direction to their shots, and they can change their game to exploit their opponent’s weaknesses, they are ready to rate themselves a 4.5.

To earn a 5.0 rating, players must master all of their shots and pickleball strategies. They should also make few unforced errors. Players with a 5.5 rating or above are elite. To self-rate in this category, players should be winning matches against professional players.

USA Pickleball Tournament Player Ratings

This rating system is only available to USA Pickleball members. Players’ scores range from 0.000 to 6.999 based on their performance in pickleball tournaments. Players can choose to play matches against players at or above their skill level but not below. This prevents players from entering brackets where they can easily beat the competition to get a medal.

Dreamland Universal Pickleball Ratings

DUPR is the official rating system of the PPA. DUPR bases player ratings on both tournament and recreational play. It also takes every point a player scores into account, instead of just wins and losses. 

DUPR weights the weaker player’s skill level in a doubles match higher because of the assumption that the weaker player will receive more shots. Additionally, it only has one rating, unlike the UTPR, which has separate ratings for mixed and gender doubles.

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About Dan Langston

With experience in the ecotourism industry and time well spent as a fly fishing guide in the remote absaroka mountain range for 6 years, Dan brings a unique perspective on customer service to the digital world. As the operator, Dan is now committed to revitalizing Pickleball Portal and plans to build a support system for content creators and provide helpful information for the pickleball community. dan@pickleballportal.com

4 thoughts on “Pickleball Live On TV”

  1. Is there a site that we can go to that will show when and where pickleball is televised, and rebroadcast? Thst would help out tremendously.

    Reply
    • Sorry for the delay, we just updated this post for 2023! Should find everything you need right here in the article now!

      Reply
  2. The Tennis Channel listed live pickleball tournament from Vegas between December 15-18, 2022, but they didn’t broadcast it. What channel carries the tournament?

    Reply
    • Hi Gaby, we just updated this article for 2023 and it includes the “when and where” information for all of the tournaments.

      Reply

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