395 - A Sign of Better Things on the Horizon: Interview with Mike Devenney

In case you missed it last week, Mike Devenney scored big in his 4th game, with an 8 bagger and 395 and I had the chance to sit down with him to get his thoughts on returning to league play as well as talk about business.


Amanda: First off, I want to get your general thoughts and feelings on returning back to some kind of normal, not having shifts, from a proprietor’s point of view. Mike: It was really nice, to see competitive bowling back, nice to see people back in the building, last year with only one team on a pair, it wasn’t really a match play league. Now it became more of a real thing again, head-to-head a lot more fun & challenging.


Would you say that the relief of having match play and head-to-head back helped with your performance?

In my case, after that long of a break, like sure I threw a few games here and there but I didn’t really bowl a lot. To me it was like I had a chance to take a break (not that I wanted to take a break, but a forced break) so the want to get back out there and bowl was stronger. That night, my game came a lot simpler, as I hadn’t had the chance to make mistakes, there’s no memory remembering, it worked better for me that I hadn’t bowled a lot and to start the way I did gives you a lot of confidence and makes you want to play.


When it comes to confidence when not bowling for a while, how was the body and the mind when it came to making mistakes as you progressed through games 1, 2, 3, and 4.

All my life, I have believed in rolling the ball, so when you haven’t bowled for a long time the hardest thing about rolling the ball comes to finishing the ball without pitching it. The first game, I got away with some stuff, but realized that I wasn’t doing the right stuff and was throwing too hard which led to punch, punch, punch. The next game, I kinda found the feel. The last game, I just kept with that and had fun, looked at a spot and threw the ball at the spot, and that spot was working!


Working, to the point where you were what? 6, 7, 8 in a row. Yea, I think I ended up with 8, I think I went spare, strike, spare, 8 bagger, and then I missed it for 395, otherwise I had a chance at the 400, but I mean considering I haven’t done that in a… few years, it was quite a feeling just to be able to go and enjoy that feeling again and just have fun.


Mentioning you were really just looking at a spot and hitting the spot, not letting the mind get in the way, was there ever a moment where you looked up and were like oh crap I have 5 or 6?

Honestly, I didn’t even know I had a shot at 400, until everybody stopped. I had one ball left to show up and hit the middle and you know what, I had no pressure all night long and the only pressure was that one ball. The problem was I did exactly the same thing I wanted to do, except I held on to it so it stayed there instead of curling in, it just hung there and I missed it.


And that pressure of everyone stopping and coming over to watch you, I guess it’s been a while since you’ve had that behind you.

It’s been a long while for me, but it was a feeling that made something click in my mind for me and it really makes me want to get better again, so hopefully we will see what happens.


I don’t have any other questions prepared… but I guess I should say congratulations on the big game and getting back to a full 64 bowler league, I know that wasn’t an easy feat for the league and the bowling alley to plan and figure out, hopefully it can offer you some sort of relief when it comes to business.

Uhhhh, well these last 2 years have been the toughest for any bowling alley across the country. Collectively this has to have been the hardest time we’ve all as a community has had to go through. I hope sunnier days are coming, everything has to get better from here on, our numbers are slowly starting to come back in, we just have to have the faith that we're going to be there.


Hopefully the full 64 people league and your 395 was that sign that things are looking up MAYBE!?!


Thank you so much for your time, and I hope you can maintain that 395 average moving forward…

Ha, I mean let’s not get carried away, I have some 190s in me too and those are just as easy as 390s


More importantly I hope as you said sunnier days are ahead and your business grows into everything you deserve, because I definitely know you deserve it.




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