Question for CJ Wiley

TheCutShot

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
CJ

Your stories about your life on the road as a Player are great and tell a lot about what that kind of life is like, (a cautionary tale indeed)! But I was recently reminded that Dillard Allen had passed away some years ago, and that got me to thinking about all the people I had known over the years that played at and were regulars of CJ's Billiards and some of the more colorful events that had taken place at the room over the course of the years! If you have any stories along those lines, I'm sure we would be interested in hearing about them.

I remember one event in particular but don't know all of the details - The night the front window got busted out! I was sitting at the back side of the bar either waiting on or having just received a food order when I heard a loud Pop, almost like a gun shot, then I heard the glass breaking, well of course I ducked down just in case! when I raised up I saw you and several others grabbing house cues and going out the front to chase someone down, but you didn't catch him/them? and then you got the police involved. So if you remember this incident could you give us more of the details of what actually happened that night, I'm sure it's a great story!!

(If I remember correctly, it wasn't a gun shot, but they had thrown a rock or pool ball at the window and that was what broke it)

Another event I'll never forget is - one night right after Last Call a customer had gotten upset that his last beers had been picked up and had come to the bar to complain, he said to Clint (Loudly/Angrily) "I have a Question", well you were also standing there and you turned to him and said (firmly) "I can answer all of your Questions"!! then you quickly began to put him in his place!!

I'm sure you have a lot more stories like these from the room, that we don't have all of the details to, that we would all enjoy hearing about!!
 
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CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
he ducked, the bullet went through the front windows and hit a picture of Minn. Fats

For anyone that didn't get a chance to play at CJ's, here's a video. This is where Earl Strickland ran the 11 racks for One Million Dollars and we hosted several "Dallas Opens" and 'The Million Dollar Challenge'.

I can't remember this particular event, although I'm pretty sure I've never "grabbed a house cue" for a weapon (although my staff sometimes had to). During my time there I had to help break up close to 50 "bar fights"......in 2006 we had a challenging clientele, including a large group of gangs that definitely kept us on our toes at the front door.

One night we did have a gun fired at a police officer, he ducked, the bullet went through one of the front windows and hit a picture of Minnesota Fats in the head. I kept that picture for a long time, it was strange to see that bullet hole in "Fatty's" head, and I always wondered if it had any "deeper" relevance.

You're right, there were many stories generated out of CJ's Billiard Palace, we were open 24 hours a day so long that when it was finally time to lock the front door we didn't have a key......and, in those days it wasn't unusual to have a full house (we had 42 tables) at 4 am on a Friday or Saturday night.

Airing 4 ESPN commercials a night for many years was a huge key to our success and kept pool in font of the Dallas sports crowd. (Click Here to See )

It's ironic that when I stopped advertising on TV my business dropped noticeably over a couple of years, just like entire billiard industry......I doubt if it's a coincidence, when it comes to marketing, when you're "out of sight, you're out of mind".





CJ

Your stories about your life on the road as a Player are great and tell a lot about what that kind of life is like, (a cautionary tale indeed)! But I was recently reminded that Dillard Allen had passed away some years ago, and that got me to thinking about all the people I had known over the years that played at and were regulars of CJ's Billiards and some of the more colorful events that had taken place at the room over the course of the years! If you have any stories along those lines, I'm sure we would be interested in hearing about them.

I remember one event in particular but don't know all of the details - The night the front window got busted out! I was sitting at the back side of the bar either waiting on or having just received a food order when I heard a loud Pop, almost like a gun shot, then I heard the glass breaking, well of course I ducked down just in case! when I raised up I saw you and several others grabbing house cues and going out the front to chase someone down, but you didn't catch him/them? and then you got the police involved. So if you remember this incident could you give us more of the details of what actually happened that night, I'm sure it's a great story!!

(If I remember correctly, it wasn't a gun shot, but they had thrown a rock or pool ball at the window and that was what broke it)

Another event I'll never forget is - one night right after Last Call a customer had gotten upset that his last beers had been picked up and had come to the bar to complain, he said to Clint (Loudly/Angrily) "I have a Question", well you were also standing there and you turned to him and said (firmly) "I can answer all of your Questions"!! then you quickly began to put him in his place!!

I'm sure you have a lot more stories like these from the room, that we don't have all of the details to, that we would all enjoy hearing about!!
 

Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
For anyone that didn't get a chance to play at CJ's, here's a video. This is where Earl Strickland ran the 11 racks for One Million Dollars and we hosted several "Dallas Opens" and 'The Million Dollar Challenge'.

I can't remember this particular event, although I'm pretty sure I've never "grabbed a house cue" for a weapon (although my staff sometimes had to). During my time there I had to help break up close to 50 "bar fights"......in 2006 we had a challenging clientele, including a large group of gangs that definitely kept us on our toes at the front door.

One night we did have a gun fired at a police officer, he ducked, the bullet went through one of the front windows and hit a picture of Minnesota Fats in the head. I kept that picture for a long time, it was strange to see that bullet hole in "Fatty's" head, and I always wondered if it had any "deeper" relevance.

You're right, there were many stories generated out of CJ's Billiard Palace, we were open 24 hours a day so long that when it was finally time to lock the front door we didn't have a key......and, in those days it wasn't unusual to have a full house (we had 42 tables) at 4 am on a Friday or Saturday night.

Airing 4 ESPN commercials a night for many years was a huge key to our success and kept pool in font of the Dallas sports crowd. (Click Here to See )

It's ironic that when I stopped advertising on TV my business dropped noticeably over a couple of years, just like entire billiard industry......I doubt if it's a coincidence, when it comes to marketing, when you're "out of sight, you're out of mind".

CJ, has anyone seen Smokey around. It's been about 15 years since I saw him. Just wondering how he is doing.
 

TheCutShot

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
LOL @ Commercials & Funny Story

I remember those commercials, LOL

I wasn't there the night the Gun Shot hit "Fatty" but I was there the next night and heard about it, I had forgotten about that event. That happened not too long after the event I was talking about, now that you have jogged my memory, I remember coming in the day after it happened and seeing the window taped and boarded up and when I got inside I asked someone what had happened because it hadn't been too long since CJ had gotten that window fixed from the first event.

Yep, I can remember going in there at 4am to get in some late night practice and having to get on a waiting list for a table! those were the days.

Funny story that happened to me one night at CJ's, It was right about the time CJ's quit staying open after hours until 4am and started closing at 2am. I had pulled in to CJ's about 1:45 one night and was going to once again get in a couple of hours of late night practice. Well when I was walking up to the front door there was a group of Black Men standing just outside the front area and one of them said to me that CJ's was closing for the night but that since I was White they might let me come on in and play, I thought they were kidding, so I said to them that "I think the only Color that matters in there is Green!" I then went on in to find out that in fact CJ's had indeed again changed their hours and they were indeed starting to close at 2am. So on the way out I told the Black gentlemen that, "Well my being White didn't make any difference". So we had a good laugh about it and then I went on home.
 
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CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
Smokey, at one time was going to make a movie with David Keith

"The rumors of his death have been greatly exaggerated".

Could he jump balls or what? Using a full length cue I've seen him jump full balls from just inches away! Smokey, at one time was going to make a movie with David Keith about his pool hustling adventures. David came to one of my tournaments with him and we had dinner at Campisis on Mockingbird Ln....he's a cool guy, from around Austin originally.

I hear Smokey's alive and well in Jacksonville Fl, although I haven't heard of him playing pool in many years.


CJ, has anyone seen Smokey around. It's been about 15 years since I saw him. Just wondering how he is doing.
 

Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
"The rumors of his death have been greatly exaggerated".

Could he jump balls or what? Using a full length cue I've seen him jump full balls from just inches away! Smokey, at one time was going to make a movie with David Keith about his pool hustling adventures. David came to one of my tournaments with him and we had dinner at Campisis on Mockingbird Ln....he's a cool guy, from around Austin originally.

I hear Smokey's alive and well in Jacksonville Fl, although I haven't heard of him playing pool in many years.


He was the master at jumping! Back in the 90's when Texas Express Tour was going strong they held a tournament in Lubbock, TX. at the Copper Caboose. He was on a bar table betting he could jump the mub ball over a ball, make the ball in the opposite side pocket and draw back and make the ball he jumped with less than a chalk width. He did it 7 out of 10 tries for $50 a try and the guy pulled up after that saying it was unbelievable.

Also a very good one handed player! My wife and I went with Randy and Karen Gottlicker to the green room in Greenboro (can't remember North or South) Carolina in the mid 90's to run a tournament. We walked in and I walked toward the back looking at the tables and Smokey was playing one handed jacked up and his opponent using both hands. I just walked on by and he winked and we never acknowledged we new each other. Later he came up and we talked and he said thanks for walking on by and not blowing the action. He made a big score off the guy and later after the tournament they matched up again and he had another good night of action. A lot of thing have been said negative against him but he has always been respectful with me.
 

alphadog

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
My CJs story.
Went to Cjs with ears to back him playing 1 hole. Got a game for a hondo. Played fom about midnite till 2. Had to pay bartender 50? To play after closing. Play till around 4. Told finish it up. Played last game for 200 & time. Took tbat down. Head out on 30 going west. Traffic stops and we find a temp. Detour due to road construction has washed out! We sat there for 3 hrs before we could turn around and drive wrong way back to a exit.
 

CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
Smokey is charismatic and a lot of fun to be around....unless.......

Yes, Smokey is charismatic and a lot of fun to be around....unless he's "liquored up". ;) He has been known to have some personality changes when drinking the "fire water".

He was on the run for many years (from the FBI) and was actually spotted at Rusty's on N.W. Hwy in Dallas.....I think he ended up finishing a 7 year sentence. He was involved in a "shoot out" at a bar and in the "cross fire" he hit someone and they put a manslaughter charge on him.





He was the master at jumping! Back in the 90's when Texas Express Tour was going strong they held a tournament in Lubbock, TX. at the Copper Caboose. He was on a bar table betting he could jump the mub ball over a ball, make the ball in the opposite side pocket and draw back and make the ball he jumped with less than a chalk width. He did it 7 out of 10 tries for $50 a try and the guy pulled up after that saying it was unbelievable.

Also a very good one handed player! My wife and I went with Randy and Karen Gottlicker to the green room in Greenboro (can't remember North or South) Carolina in the mid 90's to run a tournament. We walked in and I walked toward the back looking at the tables and Smokey was playing one handed jacked up and his opponent using both hands. I just walked on by and he winked and we never acknowledged we new each other. Later he came up and we talked and he said thanks for walking on by and not blowing the action. He made a big score off the guy and later after the tournament they matched up again and he had another good night of action. A lot of thing have been said negative against him but he has always been respectful with me.
 

Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
Not to hijack the thread so back to the stories at Champ's/CJ's days were so many to be told you could spent years just trying to remembering them all. I would drive from the Texas/Oklahoma border every day after work to play there till 2am. and every week end. I bought a new Nissan Centra in 1991 and after 1 year had over 100k miles on it. I quit about the time the gangs started. I remember one day walking in and a bunch were at the entrance out side and I walked by going inside and held the door for a guy going out and as I went in they jumped the guy and stabbed him. I yelled at Ben and he told some one to call 911.
 

CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
David Blair was my manager's name, to this day one of the best I've seen.

Yes, they came down off the roof (they had unlocked a latch) and held my manager at gunpoint. He gave them about $15,000, but no one was hurt. They attempted to stick me up at gunpoint behind CJ's one night too....that didn't work out as they had planned. ;)

We both had to go down to the police station the next day and go through huge books of mug shots. He had robbed several other places in the area and was finally caught in southern Texas if memory serves me.

David Blair was my manager's name, to this day one of the best I've seen. David is still in the restaurant business, I need to go pay him a visit and have some of that delicious Texas barbecue he's serving in Coppell Tx.

Didn't I hear about the Carson's Club being robbed at some time?
 

Papa Red

Love it or Leave
Silver Member
One of the best matches I saw you play was against Johnny Archer after he has just won the World Championship in 9-ball in 94-95 at Firecracker Tournament at CJ's. I think it was a race to 11 for $6k and it wasn't even closes if I remember correctly. Everyone was talking about how you played and I said money players are different that tournament players.
 

crow

Caw Caw
Silver Member
Yes, they came down off the roof (they had unlocked a latch) and held my manager at gunpoint. He gave them about $15,000, but no one was hurt. They attempted to stick me up at gunpoint behind CJ's one night too....that didn't work out as they had planned. ;)

We both had to go down to the police station the next day and go through huge books of mug shots. He had robbed several other places in the area and was finally caught in southern Texas if memory serves me.

David Blair was my manager's name, to this day one of the best I've seen. David is still in the restaurant business, I need to go pay him a visit and have some of that delicious Texas barbecue he's serving in Coppell Tx.
CJ calm down you and john on the road now would be broke quick . Especially if you stop in cleveland and match up with scooter
 

TheCutShot

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
CJ, Thank You

CJ

Thank You for the Replies to all of the questions!! If you can think of any more stories about Events or the Colorful Characters of CJ's Billiards, please post them!!

Everyone, let's keep this thread about the Events, Colorful Characters, or your Personal Stories that took place at CJ's Billiards!

(If it's a personal story, make it a good one!):wink:

(NOTE - Your Gambling stories of a race to 10 in 9B, 1P, etc... is Not what I'm looking for here on this thread!!!):(

Thank You
 
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CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
Here's one of my favorites, it made a lasting impression on me.

Sure, I'll pass on a few more, or add to any that someone else experienced, if possible.

Here's one of my favorites, it made a lasting impression on me.

I was hanging out at my pool room "CJ's" behind the bar of all places....I really didn't spend a lot of time back there, but this day was the exception. An older man came in, sat down and ordered a soda...I knew how to "mix" that one so I got it for him and set it down.

The man said "you are the professional pool player CJ aren't you?"....I replied "yes, that's me, unless I owe you money - LoL"....he laughed, took a drink and said, "no, you don't owe me money, but I would like to ask you a question that may result in some."

I suddenly felt him get serous and wondered what this older man was up to -

"sure, you can ask me whatever you want" I said, leaning against the cooler.....the man pointed at the pool table and ask "what are you trying to achieve playing that Game?"....

I hesitated, thought and replied "I'm trying to be the best player I can be, maybe even the best in the world, at least for a time-being".

The man place his napkin between us, looked into my eyes and said firmly -

"you know this Game you play is already perfect....it's up to you to uncover it" and immediately turned over the napkin and looked under it.....

"Do You Understand" he said firmly again "The Game is already perfect, it's just up to you to uncover that Perfection", again he lifted up the napkin, looked under it and then quickly back into my now de-focused stare.

His eyes by now felt like they were probing my very soul and I shifted a bit, suddenly feeling more clear, answered "I think I understand.....it's not me that has to be perfect, it's the game, so I don't need to try to be perfect, I just need to Uncover the Perfection that's already been placed there...in the Game.....by...uhhhh".

He smiled at my hesitation and finished "by the Breath of the Universe or The Breath of a Higher Power, right now that's not as important as you having Faith that it's true!

He then told me to hold on for a minute and went to his car and brought back a book called 'A Parenthesis in Eternity', that I read and still have to this day.....this was one of those occasions that influenced me so much I find myself wondering if this old man was really an old man.....or.....angel....no, that would be silly now wouldn't it?.....hmmm, I still can't help but wonder...?"

'The Game is the Teacher'



CJ

Thank You for the Replies to all of the questions!! If you can think of any more stories about Events or the Colorful Characters of CJ's Billiards, please post them!!

Everyone, let's keep this thread about the Events, Colorful Characters, or your Personal Stories that took place at CJ's Billiards!

(If it's a personal story, make it a good one!):wink:

(NOTE - Your Gambling stories of a race to 10 in 9B, 1P, etc... is Not what I'm looking for here on this thread!!!)

Thank You
 

CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
Billiard digest feature article - road stories

.

Here's a story that first appeared in Billiard Digest in 1992 - at this time there was a Pro Tour that had 15 events in the United States, many televised on ESPN and other sports channels. I had run out of gambling action, so after many years I took the chance and dedicated myself to the Pro Tour - and the timing was impeccable.


BILLIARD DIGEST FEATURE ARTICLE - Written by Michael Geffner



CJ WILEY REMEMBERS with residual sting a 9-ball session in the Minneapolis when he and a road partner were stiffed after beating a local roughneck for $3800.:

"The guy just grabbed the stake money from the lights after the last set and said, 'You're going to have to kill me to get this money.' And he wasn't kidding. The guy was big, and he had a bad reputation. And he was wired real tight. He said, 'I've had road players beat me for a lot of money before, then skip town. That's not going to happen again. Tomorrow, we'll play for $5,000. ' Well, what could we say but OK."

Wiley paused and, winces. "It turned out the guy was arrested later that night for robbing a drug store. The police not only confiscated all of his money, but ours, too.

No wonder Wiley turned legit.

A respected high-stakes money player for 10 years, playing "anybody and everybody," he says, the 27-year-old Wiley finally turned pro a little more than a year ago, and already has established himself as the top up-and-coming player of the year.

"He's a real gunfighter," says Buddy Hall, Wiley's favorite player. "The only thing he's missing is his boots and a six-shooter."

With a style as relentlessly aggressive as Earl Strickland's, Wiley has impacted so quickly and with such a bang on the pro circuit, finishing impressively high in four major tournaments (fourth in the Dufferin Classic, fifth in the '91 Sands Regency Open, third in the '92 L.A. Open and third in the recent Bicycle Club Invitational), that insiders say it's only a matter of time until the brash, fast strutting Texan makes a run at the No.1 spot.

"I do think I'm starting to get some people's attention," says Wiley, in whast may be the understatement of the year.

"I have a lot of respect for the top players, but if I play my game, I know I can beat any of them at any given time."

Born Carson Wiley (surprisingly the "J" stands for nothing: he has no middle name) on Oct. 18, 1964 in Milan Mo., he was raised by working parents: His late father, Jim, who nicknamed him CJ as a kid just because it sounded good, was tthe owner of a lumber company and his mother, June, was a city clerk.

"I knew all about hard work," Wiley says, "And I especially knew I didn't want to do any."

He grew up in nine miles from Milan in an off-the-map place called Green City, a corn-and-cattle community some 150 miles from Kansas City and out in the middle of nowhere. The thrill capital of the world it was not. Green City is smaller than even your typical small town: 629 people back then according to Wiley, no stoplights, and no movie theaters.

"A big night there was drinking beer and driving around the town square," he says with a sardonic laugh. "But even to do that , you had to be old enough to drink."

Wiley, though, found a way to amuse himself early. At 7 years old, cutting an especially shrewd and novel idea with his mother, he convinced her to let him play pool on Saturdays with the $2 she'd pay for his baby-sitter.

"I was a little leery at first," his mother says, "I didn't like the image of the poolroom for a small child. But after I looked it over, it didn't seem so bad, and besides, the owner promised me he''d keep an eye on him."

Barely tall enough to reach the table, Wiley played at the only poolroom in town, a three-table place called Cleeton's, owned by family friend Orrin Cleeton. The joint had three old Brunswicks and a dusty backroom where the old men played gin rummy.

At first, he played only rotation and 8-ball.

"By the time I was 11, I was already the best player in town," he says. "It got so nobody would even play me."

The kid was a natural. At age 11 years-old, still completely self taught, he ran tow straight racks of 8-ball form the break: at 13, he ran a rack of rotation; at 15, he discovered 9-ball and started running racks at an alarming rate.

FIRST OF THREE PARTS - CONTINUED LATER TODAY.

Orrin Cleeton who was reponsable for where I am today.....thank's Orrin, you were right, the game is my teacher.






CJ

Your stories about your life on the road as a Player are great and tell a lot about what that kind of life is like, (a cautionary tale indeed)! But I was recently reminded that Dillard Allen had passed away some years ago, and that got me to thinking about all the people I had known over the years that played at and were regulars of CJ's Billiards and some of the more colorful events that had taken place at the room over the course of the years! If you have any stories along those lines, I'm sure we would be interested in hearing about them.
 
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CJ Wiley

ESPN WORLD OPEN CHAMPION
Gold Member
Silver Member
He wanted to get done fast (because work was a 4 letter word)

Most people think he got his nickname from pool, this isn't the case at all.

In LA he worked at a popular 24 hour pool room, and early in the morning he had to vacuum for the boss. He wanted to get done fast (because work was a 4 letter word) so he would take these "super strokes" with the vacuum cleaner.

One of the locals said "look at him stroking that vacuum, he's got a SuperStroke"!!!

And the rest is history. :thumbup:


Do you have any interesting stories about Superstroke you can share?
 

(((Satori)))

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Most people think he got his nickname from pool, this isn't the case at all.

In LA he worked at a popular 24 hour pool room, and early in the morning he had to vacuum for the boss. He wanted to get done fast (because work was a 4 letter word) so he would take these "super strokes" with the vacuum cleaner.

One of the locals said "look at him stroking that vacuum, he's got a SuperStroke"!!!

And the rest is history. :thumbup:

No kidding? Now that is funny!
 
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