By Rod Ross on Oct 10, 2019 12:14:04 PM
EJ Tackett is widely regarded as one of the top two players in the world. At age 27, he already has 13 PBA Tour titles, two of which are majors, and he was the PBA Player of the Year in 2016. It's no surprise he's one of our top stars on Team USA as well.
Tackett has most of the basics we're always looking for, but he also does a couple of things that help him stand out from the rest and make him one of the most powerful players in the world.
First, we look at the fundamentals in his stance. His ball is underneath his chin and his bowling shoulder is dropped down. Once he starts moving, though, look at his arm swing. He takes it outside his shoulder into the backswing, then tucks the ball back in at the top of the swing. We used to call this the professional tuck. I guess we still do. By doing this, he changes his launch angle to where he wants it.
We don't consider the pro tuck a liability with EJ because he's able to be consistent with it. We don't want to change things just to make them look better; we only want to change things to help players perform better or more consistently.
If EJ had inconsistency with his launch angles, this would probably be the first place we'd look, but he's about as consistent as a player can get so we're not going to mess with it.
At the bottom of the swing, look at how far inside his shoulder the bowling ball is. Even his head is outside the ball. Normally, we only see this on two-handed players, but EJ is able to do it over and over again, which is one of the reasons he's able to have comparable revolutions and power to two-handed players.
Looking at the actual release, we see the powerful uncoiling of the shoulder, elbow, and wrist as so many great players have in common. But also look at his sliding knee. As he's releasing the ball, his knee is extending and his entire body is standing up a little bit. This creates almost a whip effect as his body rises and his arm uncoils.
Now, look closer at his hand at release. He's not lifting with his fingers at all. His hand stays open all the way through and his fingers never close. He's getting his power from his entire approach and it almost looks effortless as he lets go of the ball.
All these things together are how EJ can generate so many revolutions per minute on his bowling ball.