Photo by Tino Tran – phototino.com
The Seattle Rainmakers are elated to count Danny Karlinsky as one of their core handlers, a position where he has excelled by breaking the mark and the mold with his spirit and experience.
Karlinsky grew up in Southern California and was first introduced to the sport of Ultimate by his older brother Dennis at the age of 5. Karlinsky first started playing in earnest at University of California, Santa Cruz in the fall of 2003. He quickly warmed to the sport and joined the elite Los Angeles and Bay Area club teams like Monster and Revolver before moving to Seattle to follow his brother, where he played with several more clubs and even started one of his own before joining the Sockeye ranks in 2011.
He’s even got some international experience, having played for Bischi, the Italian team that went to Worlds in Prague in 2010. The variety of teams that Karlinsky has enjoyed playing with have allowed him to develop and hone his own style of play.
“He is helping to define the non-traditional, dynamic role for handlers,” said Assistant Coach Andy Lovseth. “His ability to get downfield, then come back to get the disc, makes him an unpredictable mark for defenders to handle. His throws, vision, and field sense are all top class.”
Karlinsky’s skills — not to mention his 94% completion rate — have paid off for the Rainmakers in a big way as they head into the remaining regular season games with the knowledge that they have already secured a playoff spot, but Karlinsky isn’t getting complacent.
“Making the playoffs is awesome, but competing and playing your best is what all the players continually focus on and is completely separate from our standings,” he said.
The Rainmakers are especially lucky to have a player who is as cerebral off the field as he is tenacious on it.
“The nice thing about our last game against the Dogfish and knowing we’ll be seeing them for the conference finals will be our ability to hone in on the things we know we do well against them, the things that slow them down, and then aggregate all that valuable information to create a game plan that will be the best it can possibly be for our big showdown,” said Karlinsky.
Beyond his participation with the Seattle Rainmakers, Karlinsky is also involved with Ultimate Peace, an organization that uses the unique team- and character-building attributes of Ultimate to build community, unite people, and educate youth around the world. Karlinsky was there for the organization’s inception and has since travelled to the Middle East and South America with Ultimate Peace to spread the good word of Ultimate.
The Rainmakers have a bye this week, but they’ll be playing their final game at home on Sunday, June 23. Get your tickets here and see Karlinsky in all his unorthodox glory on a gorgeous Seattle afternoon.