A moment of revelation

bbb

AzB Gold Member
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Silver Member
IMO, DOA.

The subtilties of 1pocket will be lost on the wider audience you are trying to draw.

So here is my counter for a wider TV audience: short rack banks with points per rail.

One railer -- one point, two railer -- two points, and so on.

People want to see "wow" shots and shots they cannot do. You show them guys shooting shots at pocket that may take a lot of skill but are so subtle as to escape the average bangers ken and its a no go.

The balls need to be flying. The games short and exciting. And when they start going for the three an four-railers to catch up, you might get an audience. Watch any exciting bank game from the DCC and you'll get my point.

Lou Figueroa
Lou
it’s quite often we do not agree
but I do agree with you on this one
it would be exciting to watch a match like that
 

livemusic

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Lou
it’s quite often we do not agree
but I do agree with you on this one
it would be exciting to watch a match like that
I salute Jay for thinking outside the box but I am in agreement with you agreeing with Lou, lol! I just am not sure (in USA) that many people will learn to appreciate the skill pocketing balls. Banks are wow shots. You might also consider points for combos and caroms. This could be really cool! Of course, it takes high-level pros to have this level of skill.
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
Gold Member
Silver Member
IMO, DOA.

The subtilties of 1pocket will be lost on the wider audience you are trying to draw.

So here is my counter for a wider TV audience: short rack banks with points per rail.

One railer -- one point, two railer -- two points, and so on.

People want to see "wow" shots and shots they cannot do. You show them guys shooting shots at 1pocket, that may take a lot of skill but are so subtle as to escape the average banger's ken, and it's a no-go.

The balls need to be flying. The games short and exciting. And when they start going for the three and four-railers to catch up, you might get an audience. Watch any exciting banks game from the DCC and you'll get my point.

Lou Figueroa
Makes sense. I've also watched 'Points by Rail' Bank Pool and it is an exciting game. Maybe it is time to move beyond 9-Ball and try something new. After all, Matchroom owns all the 9-Ball tournaments anyway. :rolleyes:
 

straightline

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Pool is to do. There isn't much to watch about it except to the doers. Poker has way more bling to it. There's your big demographic. Vain, greedy, bipedal hominids.

( :) )
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
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Silver Member
The difference is, everybody thinks they can play poker. When they watch it's a fantasy. Not so with pool.
And this is where Matchroom has the right idea. They want to build their audience and make it interesting to a larger demographic, just like they've done with Snooker. All Im saying is there may be more than one way to skin a cat, and 9-Ball might not be the end-all and be-all to draw that audience. I could be wrong. I've been wrong before. But my instincts have been good most of the time if I follow them. I just got this hunch watching poker the other night, that building a fan base might depend on developing the personalities of the players along with challenging the viewer to figure out a uniquely different form of pool. They may not like it at first, but again I believe that the right commentary could bring them onboard. I'd start right out telling them that this isn't 9-Ball. What it is, is a far more challenging game that take a lot of brainpower to master.

If you can't tell I'm actually working this out in my head as I speak on here. Right now, no one has any kind of agreement with any television network, other than Matchroom with SkySports, that is not shown in the American market. DAZN is just another PPV as far as I'm concerned and from what I hear, prone to screw ups. Unlike others on here who are quick to tout there ability to save our sport, I have no such illusion. I have a pretty good idea of what it takes to put a show on any network, so anything I can conceive on here is a long shot. That said, a long shot does not mean there is no shot. I've seen mountains moved by one phone call.
 

AtLarge

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
my question was in the grady rules its the ball closest to the head RAIL
but in a REAL GAME (no grady rules) is it not the ball closest to the HEAD STRING that gets spotted?
Under the "Official One-Pocket Rules" on OnePocket.org, the incoming player has a choice of playing the balls as they lie or spotting the ball closest to the head string:

9.5 In the event of a scratch with the offending player having no balls to spot when all of the balls are located behind the head string, the ball nearest the head string may be spotted at the request of the incoming player. If two or more balls are equally close to the head string, the highest numbered ball would be spotted.​
 

tobermory2

Registered
Jay, I love traditional one pocket and play that game most of the time when I play. Since I play the game, I frequently watch the live streams and youtube one pocket matches, but only (almost only) if there is decent commentary. There are two main problems with one pocket on TV for a general audience: time between shots and long games, especially long up table games. While I don't mind waiting for players to make up their minds about what shot to shoot, since I'm using that time trying to figure out what shot I would shoot, the truth is that non-players will not have the patience to stick with it on TV when a player takes more than 30 seconds to decide what to do; a time clock would keep it moving, but won't solve the long game problem. So long as the game is played with 15 balls, and one player believes they benefit by forcing a game up table, there will always be the potential for really long games with a million safeties; personally, I like watching the safety battles, but I play the game and understand that those little shots make or break many games.

The solution is to play with less than 15 balls. One ball one pocket is one of the most exciting games to play or watch. If you play 10 games in a row, you'll find out it is almost aerobic. Go read the long thread at onepocket.org to learn more about this option, and the rules. There was a round robin one ball one pocket tournament at Buffalos in May and it was fantastic viewing. Better for TV would probably be 3 ball or 5 ball one pocket. You get all of the strategy, pressure packed shot making with lots of banks and the action of the traditional end game in one pocket without the potential tedium of a 15 ball game. Every shot is critical and crucial. Made for TV. And Bob's your uncle, as the Matchroom folks might say.
 

Black-Balled

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
IMO, DOA.

The subtilties of 1pocket will be lost on the wider audience you are trying to draw.

So here is my counter for a wider TV audience: short rack banks with points per rail.

One railer -- one point, two railer -- two points, and so on.

People want to see "wow" shots and shots they cannot do. You show them guys shooting shots at 1pocket, that may take a lot of skill but are so subtle as to escape the average banger's ken, and it's a no-go.

The balls need to be flying. The games short and exciting. And when they start going for the three and four-railers to catch up, you might get an audience. Watch any exciting banks game from the DCC and you'll get my point.

Lou Figueroa
You just sold me...on 3c.

If the casual viewer isn't entertained by 23' of ball travel, I'm afraid there isn't much hope for the game.
 

Black-Balled

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
The beauty of pool is that there will never be a computer (or even a bank of computers) that can beat a world champion on the table. Pool has a decidedly mental aspect to it, but is still very much a physical endeavor, like Tennis and Golf.
That's what I love about pool.

It all comes down to who is gonna make it work on demand.
 

ChicagoRJ

EEEEEXCELLENT ;)
Silver Member
And this is where Matchroom has the right idea. They want to build their audience and make it interesting to a larger demographic, just like they've done with Snooker. All Im saying is there may be more than one way to skin a cat, and 9-Ball might not be the end-all and be-all to draw that audience. I could be wrong. I've been wrong before. But my instincts have been good most of the time if I follow them. I just got this hunch watching poker the other night, that building a fan base might depend on developing the personalities of the players along with challenging the viewer to figure out a uniquely different form of pool. They may not like it at first, but again I believe that the right commentary could bring them onboard. I'd start right out telling them that this isn't 9-Ball. What it is, is a far more challenging game that take a lot of brainpower to master.

If you can't tell I'm actually working this out in my head as I speak on here. Right now, no one has any kind of agreement with any television network, other than Matchroom with SkySports, that is not shown in the American market. DAZN is just another PPV as far as I'm concerned and from what I hear, prone to screw ups. Unlike others on here who are quick to tout there ability to save our sport, I have no such illusion. I have a pretty good idea of what it takes to put a show on any network, so anything I can conceive on here is a long shot. That said, a long shot does not mean there is no shot. I've seen mountains moved by one phone call.
And I would add in they need to tie in "Social Influencers" and a few big sports folks. Some folks need to be told what is fun and cool. And these "SI" have MILLIONS of followers. Get 10 of them paid to "influence" AND get some of these ladies that promote their exercise regimes because they post their butts in tight shorts and such on Twitter, now, expose those assets while playing pool. They can mention what a "good work out" it is, and how much fun it is to play ;)

But, it would take some bucks and some creative folks to get this off the ground. Or at least all the folks that sell billiard stuff to come together and "reinvest" in the industry to make it grow. I'd toss cash at it just to see what happened.
 
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JB Cases

www.jbcases.com
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Silver Member
I have played one pocket with a backgammon doubling cube and trash talking allowed. Shit gets real very quickly when your opponent is facing a possible sellout shot and he offers to double the bet.

I think that would add the right amount of spice. Poker is interesting because the trash talking is backed up by putting money where mouths are.

The "pit" at Super Billiard Expo where there were a couple hundred people around and everyone was excited and involved was like a sporting event.

Even the ipt had the players mic'd and there was some cross-talk.

Also, one pocket is more like a boxing match with constant action so to speak because it's shot/counter shot for long stretches then an opening and a flurry of shots by one player but can he close it out....

Players use a lot more energy playing one pocket, physical and mental. Now all that said we might consider a form of short rack one pocket with 9 balls and five in your pocket wins. While that would eliminate a lot of the long dink-safe stack battles and greatly reduce wedge games I think it would ultimately be better for creating a viewing product. Poker didn't take off on TV until the hole card camera was invented. Pool has no such mechanism to give the viewers some information that the opponents don't know about each other that directly affects the action on screen. So speeding up the game a little is a way to possibly alleviate that.

And...... If this really took off it would be great for pool room owners if one pocket became the dominant game.

Great ideas Jay. If you do this I want in.
 

BC21

Poolology
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Silver Member
I think it's a great idea. I remember watching Mike Sigel back in the day, and I liked listening to his real-time analysis of each shot... talking out loud about the pros and cons of whatever options he was looking at. I could do without the whining/nitting, but I liked how his thoughts just rolled out of his mouth for all to hear.
 

Danimal

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
When it comes to successful sports viewing in America, people like games that are high-scoring. NBA, NFL - both have the potential for high scores and lots of action. MLB, NHL and Soccer struggle a bit because they have a potential for low scoring matches.

I think some version of Straight Pool with limited defensive play would provide the necessary action, and it would showcase the offensive firepower of our game and minimize the downtime of safety battles. Folks like to see high runs and follow high scores - even Snooker has the prospect of perfect frames and big runouts.

The masses were able to accept the concept of 14.1, as evidenced by the success of The Hustler. Of course, for Straight Pool to thrive, table specs would have to trend back to more generous pockets (gasp!) and *clutches pearls* probably slower cloth.
 

straightline

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I have played one pocket with a backgammon doubling cube and trash talking allowed. Shit gets real very quickly when your opponent is facing a possible sellout shot and he offers to double the bet.
I've always thought this would be a great game. You could start at a buck a game lol. There's other stuff about one hole that needs tightening though - like intentionals. Should be minus 2 minimum. Minus 5 if the guy is chronic, or even ball in hand.
 

fjk

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
This is going to sound strange and many of you might disagree with me, but that's okay, I can take the criticism.

I was watching a Heads Up poker match last night between two of the big names in poker - Phil Hellmuth and Antonio Esfandiari. They were both mic'd for sound and there were two excellent commentators, Nick Schulman and Ali Nejad. Poker is a far simpler game than pool and yet there is complexity to the betting patterns and infinite possibilities on the outcome of each hand. That makes it interesting, plus the fact that you can get lucky and win even if you've misplayed the hand. All this combines for good television viewing. NBCSN was the network airing this show. For two hours might I add.

My observation was the banter between the players before, during and after each hand was very entertaining. The thought processes that went into the playing of each hand was always well explained and analyzed by the coms. The show kept my attention for the entire two hours and I was left wanting more. Sad to say that watching two mostly quiet and stoic pool players play a rack (or ten) of 9-Ball is not nearly as interesting. And usually the commentary is equally uncompelling. Now, for my point.

9-Ball has been the go-to game for pool on TV for a long time and it's gone no where. Even diehards like us get tired of watching it. The racks are too routine for the most part and it's easy to connect the dots to see where the next shot is going. You almost don't need commentary to watch it. I began to think how could pool capitalize on what I was seeing here, and it struck me. The much maligned game of One Pocket is the answer! Yes I said ONE POCKET! Now you will ask me why I came to that conclusion. First of all it is a very cerebral game where a lot of thought goes into each shot and the options are limitless. This fact alone opens the door for discussion between the commentators and also allows the contestants (opponents) to engage in conversation as well. In most games of One Pocket there will be banter between the players, and that can only add interest to the match, IF you can hear it.

I think new viewers might be turned on by what they are seeing, not just another game of boring 9-Ball. It's an opportunity to challenge your audience and grab their attention. They might actually learn something about the intricacies of playing pool if they watch this show. Believe it or not, there are a lot of intelligent people who watch TV and are looking for new and interesting content to view. That's the people I want to watch a show like this. They would see pool in a whole new way. We would not just have to depend on the One Pocket geeks to have an audience.

One more thing. In case you didn't notice (I have), it is the big One Pocket matches that draw the most viewers on PPV streams. Can you imagine Scott Frost and Tony Chohan jawing away, while they make one astounding shot after another. I'd like to give a TV audience a dose of that. And who knows, maybe some day I will. ;)
Yup, agree on everything you said. Watching the top, top players play 9-ball is like watching paint dry. No personalities and routine (for them) run-outs. I love pool and even I don't like watching it.

One option is to tighten the pockets so much we see them miss regularly and we see their personalities come out. This would better separate players and would also add in more safety play. Personally, I enjoy the strategy part of pool more than the regular potting of routine shots.

Also, how about slowing the tables way down so we can see their strokes let loose?
 

middleofnowhere

Registered
When it comes to successful sports viewing in America, people like games that are high-scoring. NBA, NFL - both have the potential for high scores and lots of action. MLB, NHL and Soccer struggle a bit because they have a potential for low scoring matches.

I think some version of Straight Pool with limited defensive play would provide the necessary action, and it would showcase the offensive firepower of our game and minimize the downtime of safety battles. Folks like to see high runs and follow high scores - even Snooker has the prospect of perfect frames and big runouts.

The masses were able to accept the concept of 14.1, as evidenced by the success of The Hustler. Of course, for Straight Pool to thrive, table specs would have to trend back to more generous pockets (gasp!) and *clutches pearls* probably slower cloth.
So used to be a straight pool TV show called 10 20. You can find old episodes of it on YouTube.
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
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Silver Member
Boy, you guys are coming with a lot of good ideas. Thanks, thanks and more thanks! Now if I can just wave my magic wand^^^^^^^ (y)
 

ChicagoRJ

EEEEEXCELLENT ;)
Silver Member
The difference is, everybody thinks they can play poker. When they watch it's a fantasy. Not so with pool.
LOL. A lot of folks think they can play pool. I'm amazed how many times I get invited to a friend of a friends superbowl party or some other party, and they have a pool table. Everyone tells you to don't play the owner, he's almost a pro. It's not until you see him shoot he's an APA 3, at best, and kind of laugh inside a little. Yeah, he probably beats up his buddies and the neighbors real good though ;)

So, there are a lot of pool tables in folks homes, and a lot of them play causally. Not leagues or tourneys, but they play and enjoy the game.
 
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