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Johnnyt
08-07-2008, 10:18 PM
I have been following pool and pool players for a good fifty years now. I have noticed that some players get stuck in C to B class from their second year to their twentieth or end or their playing days. Most of the time this is because they never learned the basics right. Some just didn't have the talent to get any better, and for some like me the game came natural up to class B or so, then I needed to put work into it. In my case I was too busy working, partying, or too lazy to practice hard to get to the next level. I could always keep my belly full of booze, my lungs full of weed, and my wallet in good shape as a B to B+ player.

But one thing I have always noticed over the years was the good players, the A+ players, shortstops; road and tournament pros were in two groups. The ones that could make those long nine-foot shots jacked up when they were younger, faded very fast when they couldn't make them with any kind of consistency anymore. There are many of them I've seen drop out of the top elite tier in their late thirties to mid-forties. It was how they always played the game. Hell they could fire them in from anywhere?general position was good enough.

Then you have the Buddy Halls and the Efren Reyes's. They always went, and in most cases got pinpoint position and got on the correct side of the next ball. Very rarely did they have a long shot to deal with. These kinds of players last far longer at the top. Even when the eyesight started to go along with other age related health problems they were still OK. They were always playing what I call the short game. Johnnyt I'm talking 9-ball here...not 14.1 or 8-ball.

BigDogatLarge
08-07-2008, 10:23 PM
I have been following pool and pool players for a good fifty years now. I have noticed that some players get stuck in C to B class from their second year to their twentieth or end or their playing days. Most of the time this is because they never learned the basics right. Some just didn't have the talent to get any better, and for some like me the game came natural up to class B or so, then I needed to put work into it. In my case I was too busy working, partying, or too lazy to practice hard to get to the next level. I could always keep my belly full of booze, my lungs full of weed, and my wallet in good shape as a B to B+ player.

But one thing I have always noticed over the years was the good players, the A+ players, shortstops; road and tournament pros were in two groups. The ones that could make those long nine-foot shots jacked up when they were younger, faded very fast when they couldn't make them with any kind of consistency anymore. There are many of them I've seen drop out of the top elite tier in their late thirties to mid-forties. It was how they always played the game. Hell they could fire them in from anywhere?general position was good enough.

Then you have the Buddy Halls and the Efren Reyes's. They always went, and in most cases got pinpoint position and got on the correct side of the next ball. Very rarely did they have a long shot to deal with. These kinds of players last far longer at the top. Even when the eyesight started to go along with other age related health problems they were still OK. They were always playing what I call the short game Johnnyt

What do you think it takes to play like that now?

Dwight

Johnnyt
08-08-2008, 02:05 AM
{What do you think it takes to play like that now?}

Not sure of your question or if it's just a knock on my thread, but here goes.

IMO for the most part most of the young guns coming up now like SVB have a complete game. Even though they can fire it in the pocket from anywhere they also have good defensive games, don't take low percentage shots, play good safes when called for, and try to get perfect postion on all their shots.

Even though most of the new guns have plenty of natural talent most take lessons. Also they have a ton more info available then players did just twenty years ago. Johnnyt

Siz
08-08-2008, 04:31 AM
I think that this is a good observation.

As you get older, the ability to pot your way out of trouble seems to deteriorate - how much of this is physiological, and how much mental I don't know. Those players whose game was relied on this ability in their youth similarly will tend to fade away (although there are exceptions).

I believe that this is the main reason why pool players' careers can last a lot longer than snooker players - not so much emphasis on ultra-accurate potting, and the other skills needed are longer-lived.

Fast Lenny
08-08-2008, 04:59 AM
I agree with your assessment Johnny. ;)

BigDogatLarge
08-09-2008, 10:29 PM
{What do you think it takes to play like that now?}

Not sure of your question or if it's just a knock on my thread, but here goes.

IMO for the most part most of the young guns coming up now like SVB have a complete game. Even though they can fire it in the pocket from anywhere they also have good defensive games, don't take low percentage shots, play good safes when called for, and try to get perfect postion on all their shots.

Even though most of the new guns have plenty of natural talent most take lessons. Also they have a ton more info available then players did just twenty years ago. Johnnyt

I asked that way because I am an old fart that wants to play well. I was a bangers for years and in the last 4 or 5 years I have begun to play for real. Some days I play like I am holding a broom and wonder why I bother. Then, I play like my ass is on fire and I am not about to put it out. I can feel it and want to know how to make it stay there longer, as in every time I play.

I would never knock your thread and I apoligize if I made you think so. I just didn't know how to word the question right. I have read a lot of info and come away with a good basic understanding of the game and I always try to play all the better players in my area. I would like to know how to have the well rounded game you mention above. Any ideas?

Thanks for the help,

Dwight

av84fun
08-09-2008, 11:09 PM
I asked that way because I am an old fart that wants to play well. I was a bangers for years and in the last 4 or 5 years I have begun to play for real. Some days I play like I am holding a broom and wonder why I bother. Then, I play like my ass is on fire and I am not about to put it out. I can feel it and want to know how to make it stay there longer, as in every time I play.

I would never knock your thread and I apoligize if I made you think so. I just didn't know how to word the question right. I have read a lot of info and come away with a good basic understanding of the game and I always try to play all the better players in my area. I would like to know how to have the well rounded game you mention above. Any ideas?

Thanks for the help,

Dwight

First, excellent thread Johnny.

Dwight, your case history is extremely common. IMHO, it results from at least two things.

1. Not having a sound, systematic set of body set up and stroke mechanics.

2. Not having advanced skills in cue ball distance/direction control coupled with inferior route choices.

Re: #1 the supposed "magic" of getting in stroke isn't magic at all. Being in stroke results either randomly for those who don't have precise mechanics or virtually automatically for those who do.

On your next visit to your local pool hall just watch how the typical player sets up his/her body position differently in many cases for virtually identical shot types. And watch where their grip hand finishes relative to their chests...to the line of the shot and relative to where the back of the CB was. They will be ALL OVER the place.

So, it's not that they have "gotten out of stroke" it is that they don't know how to execute a repeating stroke in the first place and only get "in stroke" almost by accident.

Any of the top name instructors can teach players how to get on the path toward achieving a repeating...and correct, stroke. And that is the bedrock of the game. I don't care how good you aim or how brilliant your route selection is...if you can't stroke it correctly/repeatedly you are a "B...ish" player for life.

There are only RARE exceptions to that...such as Django whose stroke is all over the place....BUT....it's all over the place in exactly the same way every time which requires almost super-human coordination to get away with.

Regards,
Jim

Fatboy
08-10-2008, 01:25 AM
There is alot of wisdom and truth in the first post in this thread, You have to listen to guys who have been around for along time, they have seen it all and I have huge respect for that, true some players are a mess when they get old, JohnnyT is right on the nail here, He has been around pool for twice the time I have so I can see exactly what he is talking about,

funny thing i spent some time with the young talented players recently, guys giving me the 6-out or the 5-out, but it amazed me what they didnt know yet they play so much better than me.

there is no subistute for time, so do ya think when i'm 80 I'll learn how to spell???

av84fun
08-10-2008, 01:32 AM
There is alot of wisdom and truth in the first post in this thread, You have to listen to guys who have been around for along time, they have seen it all and I have huge respect for that, true some players are a mess when they get old, JohnnyT is right on the nail here, He has been around pool for twice the time I have so I can see exactly what he is talking about,

funny thing i spent some time with the young talented players recently, guys giving me the 6-out or the 5-out, but it amazed me what they didnt know yet they play so much better than me.

there is no subistute for time, so do ya think when i'm 80 I'll learn how to spell???

Hell, I hope not! You wouldn't be Fatboy without spieling and punkchewation errers.


Besides, I'll be gettin' the 5 out from St. Peter when you're 80 and robbin' him...unless he decides to screw around and make the 9 on the snap every time!

(-:

SJDinPHX
08-10-2008, 01:43 AM
There is alot of wisdom and truth in the first post in this thread, You have to listen to guys who have been around for along time, they have seen it all and I have huge respect for that, true some players are a mess when they get old, JohnnyT is right on the nail here, He has been around pool for twice the time I have so I can see exactly what he is talking about,

funny thing i spent some time with the young talented players recently, guys giving me the 6-out or the 5-out, but it amazed me what they didnt know yet they play so much better than me.

there is no subistute for time, so do ya think when i'm 80 I'll learn how to spell???

Eric,

Short answers to your 3 statements.... YES, WHAT ?, and HELL NO ! :wink:

Dick

Fatboy
08-10-2008, 02:22 AM
Eric,

Short answers to your 3 statements.... YES, WHAT ?, and HELL NO ! :wink:

Dick

the What part, I was with them and they couldnt manage their games/action very good or negoiate them either, but ma they could play like Tom Cruise in COM, alot of horse power but going in to may directions at once, or perhaps knocking their own action(they didnt do that)

good nite

eric

Johnnyt
08-10-2008, 02:27 AM
I asked that way because I am an old fart that wants to play well. I was a bangers for years and in the last 4 or 5 years I have begun to play for real. Some days I play like I am holding a broom and wonder why I bother. Then, I play like my ass is on fire and I am not about to put it out. I can feel it and want to know how to make it stay there longer, as in every time I play.

I would never knock your thread and I apoligize if I made you think so. I just didn't know how to word the question right. I have read a lot of info and come away with a good basic understanding of the game and I always try to play all the better players in my area. I would like to know how to have the well rounded game you mention above. Any ideas?

Thanks for the help,

Dwight

Sorry Dwirght (BigDogatlarge) I didn't come back to this post enough and would have responded to it. Thank you AV84Fun for filling in for me. That's what I was trying to say, and thank you and FatBoy for the kind words.

I had a stroke in between Allen and Keith, only I stood up straighter. I got away with it only because I picked up the game fast and had no fear of taklng any shot when I was younger. After someone busts you bigtime a few times you think twice about just getting down and firing it. IMO that hurts the younger player that felt unbeatable.

After I got beat a few times for a grand or more (big money for me in the late 1950's) something happened to my no fear shi*. It happens to a lot of young guns. Some recover and get better for it, some never get better after it or get worse and some quit the game or the gambling part of it. It's hard to explain if it never happened to you but if you remember the scene in the Hustler of Newman after he got beat by the Black kid, that's what it feels like. Johnnyt

JoeW
08-10-2008, 05:32 AM
An inability to spell is a genetic defect that can be overcome to a small extent with training. I know this becasue I am missing the gene and two out of three of my daughters (with excellent early educations) also have the same disability. :rolleyes:

Unfortunately, the same is probably true for pool playing and no matter how much I read, study, and practice I can only get so far. The rest is but mystical illusions on the horizon.

Sad to say that natural talent is often wasted on the young who do not, as JohnnyT suggests, capitalize on their ability. Playing pool well requires much effort, study, and ability. When the going gets tough, the tough get going.

P.S. Nearly all of my posts have to be edited becasue of spelling and other errors:(

Neil
08-10-2008, 06:40 AM
...............

billyjack
08-10-2008, 07:09 AM
An inability to spell is a genetic defect that can be overcome to a small extent with training. I know this becasue I am missing the gene and two out of three of my daughters (with excellent early educations) also have the same disability. :rolleyes:

Unfortunately, the same is probably true for pool playing and no matter how much I read, study, and practice I can only get so far. The rest is but mystical illusions on the horizon.(

Thanks for the insight Joe. "Mystical illusions on the horizon" in my case can be applied to my aspirations on the pool table, the golf course and the racetrack. At least I can take some comfort in blaming genetics for my inability to improve. I was in the finals of the Pittsburgh Press Spelling Bee competition for a number of my grade school years, but that doesn't help me at all when it comes to position on the money ball. Maybe I'll adopt a new sig line; Sorry for the poor stroke-I was in spelling class and missed 9 ball practice.:D :D

Bill

stick8
08-10-2008, 07:22 AM
I have been following pool and pool players for a good fifty years now. I have noticed that some players get stuck in C to B class from their second year to their twentieth or end or their playing days. Most of the time this is because they never learned the basics right. Some just didn't have the talent to get any better, and for some like me the game came natural up to class B or so, then I needed to put work into it. In my case I was too busy working, partying, or too lazy to practice hard to get to the next level. I could always keep my belly full of booze, my lungs full of weed, and my wallet in good shape as a B to B+ player.

But one thing I have always noticed over the years was the good players, the A+ players, shortstops; road and tournament pros were in two groups. The ones that could make those long nine-foot shots jacked up when they were younger, faded very fast when they couldn't make them with any kind of consistency anymore. There are many of them I've seen drop out of the top elite tier in their late thirties to mid-forties. It was how they always played the game. Hell they could fire them in from anywhere?general position was good enough.

Then you have the Buddy Halls and the Efren Reyes's. They always went, and in most cases got pinpoint position and got on the correct side of the next ball. Very rarely did they have a long shot to deal with. These kinds of players last far longer at the top. Even when the eyesight started to go along with other age related health problems they were still OK. They were always playing what I call the short game. Johnnyt I'm talking 9-ball here...not 14.1 or 8-ball.
I totaly agree with you.somthing that hurts my heart is being a person of 70yr is to know that at one time i was a deasent player. but now age of sight, old man shakes, and focus have left me. but i fel good as i have helped a few of the young ones. and i know they respect me for it it eases the pain some, know i cant play with the big dogs now . but please dont give up trying if you want to good.got a friend that a few years back i thought we had lost to some problems. but he came back with the right addatude!!!way to go SOUTHPAW!!!

Johnnyt
08-10-2008, 07:23 AM
There is more truth in this statement than many of you can imagine. No fear is the advantage of youth. But, eventually, it will bite you in the arse. How you handle that bite depends on your character, and what you will become- a champion, or not.

This is why I always cringe on AZ when pros and others tell up and coming young players they HAVE to gamble to get to that next level. While it's true it will harden you and in most cases make you bear down for the game shots, you have to be very careful who you put them in with and how much pressure/money bet you put them in for. Everyone has a different breaking point.

I have seen young pool players ruined in one big set that he had no chance in. I've seen it many, many times in boxing, pitcthing, and other sports over the years. You don't see it as much now in other sports as you use to. But it still happens all the time in pool. Johnnyt

JoeW
08-10-2008, 07:27 AM
An excellent point JohnnyT-- thank you.

The right competition at the right time. Seems to me that a good coach is the way to bring on the top players.

halhoule
08-10-2008, 07:37 AM
[QUOTE=billyjack]Thanks for the insight Joe. "Mystical illusions on the horizon" in my case can be applied to my aspirations on the pool table, the golf course and the racetrack. At least I can take some comfort in blaming genetics for my inability to improve. I was in the finals of the Pittsburgh Press Spelling Bee competition for a number of my grade school years, but that doesn't help me at all when it comes to position on the money ball. Maybe I'll adopt a new sig line; Sorry for the poor stroke-I was in spelling class and missed 9 ball practice.:D :D

/QUOTE] inability to improve can be overcome in one short session, first, you never had an aiming system, without one you are dead in the water.

HAL HOULE

Johnnyt
08-10-2008, 07:44 AM
[QUOTE=billyjack]Thanks for the insight Joe. "Mystical illusions on the horizon" in my case can be applied to my aspirations on the pool table, the golf course and the racetrack. At least I can take some comfort in blaming genetics for my inability to improve. I was in the finals of the Pittsburgh Press Spelling Bee competition for a number of my grade school years, but that doesn't help me at all when it comes to position on the money ball. Maybe I'll adopt a new sig line; Sorry for the poor stroke-I was in spelling class and missed 9 ball practice.:D :D

/QUOTE] inability to improve can be overcome in one short session, first, you never had an aiming system, without one you are dead in the water.

HAL HOULE

Yeah Mosconi was drowning. Johnnyt

jay helfert
08-10-2008, 08:06 AM
First I want to say Johnny is right on as usual in ALL his posts. His analysis of top players (especially young ones) and slightly lesser players is very good. Like Johnny, I was a career B to B+ player. Many places I would go people would think I was the greatest, but I had already seen and played great players, so I knew where I stood on the totem pole of pool.

I think the answer is that we all rise to our own level of competence (or incompetence). I got a late start in pool at age 18. Most of the top players started very young at 10-13. Once I started I worked as hard or harder than anyone for the next ten years to improve my game. I literally played night and day, every day! And I got to be a good player, just not a great player. The top players could do things on the table that I was not capable of. They had better strokes than me plain and simple. Consequently, they had more options.

Could I have been a better player if I started younger, I don't know. I'm not so sure now. It may be the same reason that some athletes excel in other sports and some don't. I guess we will always have superstars and the journeymen. That is the nature of sport. When I was 25 I still wanted to be a great player. When I was 35 and Danny Diliberto called me a "shortstop" for life, I was content with that. :)

vagabond
08-10-2008, 08:07 AM
[QUOTE=halhoule]

Yeah Mosconi was drowning. Johnnyt

I first held the pool cue at the age of 33. prior to that I was a 400M Hurdler. Now I am a very old guy and older than grady and buddy Hall but I still do a reasonably good job with long difficult angle shots.Because of the aiming system I developed I am able to pot those shots. The aiming system I discovered is called 'Red neck aiming system'.It has two components: 1.cowboy 2.Reverse cow Boy.I was never been disapointed with my system of aiming.
I have very bad stroke mechanics- When i am bending my back hurts.when my bridge hand stretches it hurts in the shoulder and I wince with pain.then when I am aiming my neck hurts.when i am taking the swing at the cue ball my right elbow hurts.But the balls get sunk anyway.

BigDogatLarge
08-11-2008, 11:37 PM
I went to league tonight and followed the advice of the learned people that were kind enough to post some advice. I focused on stance, stroke delivery, and shot speed. I played much better than I usually do. After league they have a nightly tournament and I actually won the matches against the guys that beat me like a drum. I left the first guy with six on the table and the other two with four each. I can "see" what you were talking about and I thank you all for taking the time to help an old fart play better.

Thanks again,

Dwight