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Who's the most intimidating player you've ever seen?
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Who's the most intimidating player you've ever seen? - 04-08-2015, 01:07 PM

Who is the most intimidating player you have ever seen on a pool table? Not necessarily the best player, but who looked the best? What made them so intimidating?

I played Jim Rempe once. I can remember his intense concentration and pinpoint position. He was one of those guys that would hold every opponent to without a point if he could. I recall sitting there and thinking "this guy is never going to miss and will never give me a shot". By looking at his expression though, you would have thought it was a hill-hill match for million bucks. On a pool table, that guy had no off switch. Every part of his game just looked perfect and he had this intense drive to not just win, but to play perfect and beat your brains in.
  
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04-08-2015, 01:18 PM

Two words....

Buddy Hall


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04-08-2015, 01:27 PM

Intimidating players...Ive seen few over the years. Toby Sweet has to be the on my top 5 all time. He isnt a big man, nor loud or aggressive but he was like a stalking Lion at the pool table, still is and he's over 70. Backroom legend "Monster" John Rouse {RIP} was another...he was set on kill 24/7. Id have to say the most intimidating player Ives ever seen/played was the Miz {RIP}, he truly was an assassin at the table. Note, all three men mentioned were/still close friends of mine but wouldnt EVER give an inch and cut your heart out with every stroke of the cue! Jean Balukas hands down on the ladies side, she was intense. Oh, and BCA barbox champ from yesterday Linda Hoffman...she was a killer too.

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04-08-2015, 01:50 PM

I would say Mike Sigel in his prime was the most intimidating. In a slightly different era I would say Luther Lassiter. In their primes, they hardly ever lost.
  
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04-08-2015, 02:02 PM

Watching Pete Horn screw around playing one handed was one of the most intimidating things I've ever seen on a pool table. He was amazing playing normal, but the one handed stuff is what sticks with me.

First time I saw Cliff Joyner he seemed invincible playing one pocket. It's one of my favorite memories of living in Richmond, VA.

Watching SVB break 8 ball on a Valley bar box before he started winning all the pro events was also amazing.

It's seems like there is something more intimidating about a player you don't know doing amazing things. We almost of expect it of the pros. When Earl catches a gear though, it's always stunning even if you're expecting it.
  
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04-08-2015, 02:03 PM

I think any player, pros included, would find Shane intimidating. His monster break is the envy of the pool world.


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04-08-2015, 02:08 PM

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Originally Posted by WildWing View Post
I would say Mike Sigel in his prime was the most intimidating. In a slightly different era I would say Luther Lassiter. In their primes, they hardly ever lost.
Ditto for Sigel. I've never seen a player that had a greater killer instinct than Mike in his prime. Scary good and a very intimidating opponent.
  
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04-08-2015, 02:15 PM

I would think Buddy would be very intimidating. I saw Shane play and his focus was awe inspiring. Room full of people and his focus and concentration was so intense you could feel it, it was so palpable.

Other pros in the room did not bear the same intensity. It must have been very intimidating.


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04-08-2015, 02:26 PM

..................

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04-08-2015, 03:00 PM

For me that would be Richard "Gorilla" Guinn, or Gorilla Dick, as we sometimes called him.
Easily six feet eight inches tall, and weighing in at over four hundred and seventy-five pounds, even when he was dieting (which he usually was), Dick's problem was chronic high blood pressure that was caused by his weight that was caused by his inability to say no. He couldn't say no to the buffet at the local Golden Corral, Pizza Inn, or the Kentucky Fried Chicken store out near the Interstate.
One afternoon, while playing One Pocket, Dick bent way too far over the head rail, reaching for a shot...and got stuck. He just teetered there, back and forth, while the rest of us laughed our asses off. Needless to say he wasn't the least bit amused, and threatened to break all our cues in half if we didn't get him off the table. We drew straws, causing another round of threats, then two of us pushed up on his shoulders while three others pushed down on his legs. After a couple of minutes of grunting, and groaning, he was free.
None the worse for wear, Dick thanked us with a round of beer, as well as a double order of tater tots for himself.
What a guy.


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04-08-2015, 03:35 PM

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I would say Mike Sigel in his prime was the most intimidating. In a slightly different era I would say Luther Lassiter. In their primes, they hardly ever lost.
Back when Sigel and Rempe were both in their prime, they only lived about a 3 hour drive apart. I lived right in between the two so I got to watch them bang heads several times. I recall Mike never being bashful about loudly explaining all of Rempe's lucky rolls whenever he lost.

One famous match between those two happened in Rochester playing straight pool. Although I wasn't there, the story goes one was up 148 or 149 to 0 and the other ran a 150 and out. Considering the rivalry between those two, I'd bet the guy who did that 150 and out had wood for a week.
  
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U. J. Puckett
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Thumbs up U. J. Puckett - 04-08-2015, 03:40 PM

You can read about why I call U.J. Puckett, the MOST TERRIFIYING road player I ever saw be clicking here on my blog.

There are about 30 other stories there that you can read about, most of them about pool but a few others thrown in for mixed measure. ( You have to sift through the blogs "archives" as many of the stories have been written over a long period of time.

I've seen a LOT OF ROAD PLAYERS in my life, but NONE have ever terrified well-seasoned pool gamblers like U.J. did that day.

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04-08-2015, 03:49 PM

Mika Immonen is one of the more intimidating players of today in my opinion. I've never even played him, but I've been to a few events that he's played in and just walking by him is intimidating for some reason....He looks, acts, and dresses like some kind of movie star and walks around with this confidence, like we are all lucky to be breathing the same air as him lol.....I've played Shane before too and even though that was intimidating, Mika's presence is different in some way. I'm not knocking Mika either, just an observation on my part. I have no idea what he's thinking about or going on in his head. A friend of mine, just beat him and Rodney in a tourney not too long ago back to back and then lost to Archer. He basically said the same thing. He was twice as nervous to play Mika, compared to Rodney and Archer.
  
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04-08-2015, 04:01 PM

I played Preacher Red once in Vegas and was nervous the whole time.


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04-08-2015, 04:02 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by WildWing View Post
I would say Mike Sigel in his prime was the most intimidating. In a slightly different era I would say Luther Lassiter. In their primes, they hardly ever lost.
I will go with Sigel as well. I saw him play a lot back in the 70's and 80's and he was incredible. I saw him crush Earl in a back room game. As good as Earl was head to head you could see the difference, Earl quit.

Then for a brief shining moment (he died young) Mike Carella. He was fearless and scared most anyone who faced him. Never reached his peak though.

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