Review: JOOLA's Perseus and Scorpeus Paddle (16mm)

Today is the official release date of JOOLA's new Perseus and Scorpeus paddles. I've had the opportunity to play with both  over the last week as I was able to get them in a bit early. I have played with both in the 16mm version.

I have not tried out the 14mm version in either. I'm a control player and I know that I'd rather give up some pop in exchange for enhanced resettability.

The Perseus feels fantastic. It swings effortlessly through the air. If you're familiar with the Hyperion line, you'll notice that this paddle feels lighter in the hands. The distribution of weight out of the box feels extremely natural to me. Players love adding lead tape to their paddles to suit their preferences anyway, so having a lighter standard weight gives players the ability to doctor up their own paddles without giving up too much hand speed.

The drives feel extremely solid. I've been playing more singles than usual this week which means I've been hitting more forehand and backhand drives than usual. The first few hits it felt like the ball was jumping off my paddle. A few serves went out of bounds, a few drives went long, but once I got the feel for it I've been ready to rip.

Forehand and backhand rolls are really, really good. I feel like my volleys are crisper and more powerful. The surface is just as gritty as a fresh Hyperion as I feel like I'm able to generate a ton of topspin on my rolls. This really helps me when I'm trying to aim at my opponents feet while they're transitioning from the baseline to the kitchen.

Even though it's powerful, the Perseus in the 16mm has a ton of control. Resets are smooth. Dinks can be kept tight and low. I did give up way too many ATPs this past Saturday so I'm going to have to work on slicing my dinks when trying to push my opponent out wide. I've had the paddle for less than a week and it's definitely a huge upgrade to the Hyperion. If you've experienced tennis pickle elbow, then the 8oz paddle may put less strain on your arms.

Now onto the Scorpeus. It's really, really soft. I can see why Collin Johns loves this paddle. The control is unlike any paddle I've ever played with. He is the King of Resets so it makes sense that his signature paddle would also be the King of Resets. The wider face gives you a much larger sweet spot to work with which makes this a perfect paddle for beginners learning the game.

As I'm ramping up my coaching business, I will be recommending this paddle to all beginners who are willing to pay for a paddle that they can play with as they grow from a beginner to a skilled player.

If you're a right box player, this paddle is perfect for you as well. I definitely noticed the different shape of the paddle when swinging for overheads. However, I can see why this is a good fit for Collin Johns. He yields to his brother Ben a fair amount. You still have that power ability, but the Perseus cuts through the air much more smoothly. The wider sweet spot makes engaging in hands battles that much easier. There's more room for error, more chances you can get that ball back over the net and ultimately win the point.

I'm going to be playing in the first Barstool Sports Pickleball tournament this August with my buddy Erik. We haven't gone over strategy just yet, but I imagine we will be stacking and I will be allowing him to take up a majority of the middle. For this reason, I will probably use the Perseus as a tournament paddle whenever I'm not playing singles or switching boxes with my partner after each point scored.

Both paddles are priced at $250 so they're definitely not the least expensive paddles on the market. However I just sold a 14mm Perseus to a local player who recently picked up a Gamma Obsidian since his Gamma Hellbender was no longer serviceable. Here's what he had to say:
Yep the Obsidian. It’s a great paddle don't get me wrong, but with a huge price difference you would hope that there is a discernible difference and I think there is for sure.

So if you have the budget to spend on these new paddles, I personally think they're worth it. If you're here on the Jersey Shore, I'm stocked up on 16mm Perseus paddles and can get them to you as soon as today. If not, feel free to order them directly online on the JOOLA Website (you can probably get 10% off your first order when you create an account with them).

I'm having a lot of fun with my new wands. I'm allowing people to demo the paddles in my bag and they're having a lot of fun as well. I believe the Perseus is living up to the hype so far and the 16mm Scorpeus by Collin Johns was a beautiful surprise.

Disclaimer: I am a JOOLA sales rep