Where does SVB rank all time?

Jaden

"no buds chill"
Silver Member
I pretty much agree with the players you list above, although the OP was asking only about the American greats. Typically, in the modern era of Pool (post Hustler 1960) there have been one or two dominant American players during each time frame. In the 60's that would have been Lassiter in 9-Ball and Straight Pool, Eddie Taylor in Banks and Taylor, Boston Shorty and Ronnie Allen in One Pocket. Harold Worst was like a shooting star who went right to the top and then was gone just as quickly (regretably!). Ed Kelly was considered the best All Around player of that era. When 9-Ball became the dominant tournament game in the 1970's and beyond, Buddy Hall began his hierarchy, along with the emerging Mike Sigel. Steve Mizerak was the king of Straight Pool and Ronnie still dominated One Pocket. In the 1980's, Buddy had to share the top dog honors with Sigel, Varner and Strickland. Buddy and Strickland held court into the 90's, as Sigel began to bow out and Johnny Archer emerged as the man to beat. Varner was right there too, winning his share. It was a very competitive era in pro pool, with many other good players capable of sometimes knocking off the big guns. The early 2000's saw the slow drop off in Archer and Buddy's game, as Earl and Varner continued their winning ways. Shane came along in the 2010's to change everything.

How I rate all these guys overall for their respective dominance.

1. Harold Worst - Brief though it was. Probably the best poolplayer I ever saw.
2. Luther Lassiter - He really dominated 9-Ball and Straight Pool at a time when there were many great players.
3. Buddy Hall - For his longevity on top.
4. Earl Strickland - Absolutely the best tournament 9-Ball player ever! A speed above the rest.
5. Mike Sigel - He knew how to win, over and over again. Unbeatable if he got to the Finals.
6. Steve Mizerak - He was not just a Straight Pool player! He was at the very top in 9-Ball and One Pocket as well.
7. Nick Varner - He got the most out of his game, clawinfg his way to the top echelon.
8. Johnny Archer - Our best 9-Ball player, along with Earl and Buddy for a long time.

Where does Shane rank along with these great players. Right now I would put him somewhere in the middle of the pack. Unfortunately he has dominated American pool when the overall level of his competition is much lower than what these guys faced. Unlike the players I have listed, Shane has had to cut his teeth on a greatly increased level of competition that comes from abroad. Sigel, Varner and Archer fared well against a lesser field of international competitors. Basically it was only the Filipinos (Efren, Parica, Luat et al) that gave them trouble. The Euros were only starting to make waves in the 90's and the Chinese came along a decade later.

This is my first take on this and I may adjust it accordingly as I think about it more. All eight players that I listed above were amlong the greatest of their respective eras. That is without question. Buddy emerged in the 1970's and stayed at or near the top until the 2000's. For over 30 years he was at or near the top of his field. Varner and Earl are second to him in longevity. Lassiter also enjoyed a long illustrious career, winning tournaments into his 50's.
On the level of competition I would have to disagree. He's dominated the top tourneys of American pool at a time when there are WAY better foreigners playing in those events.

You can't even begin to pretend that it was easier to win the US opens that Shane did than when Earl did.

Jaden
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
Gold Member
Silver Member
On the level of competition I would have to disagree. He's dominated the top tourneys of American pool at a time when there are WAY better foreigners playing in those events.

You can't even begin to pretend that it was easier to win the US opens that Shane did than when Earl did.

Jaden
I have to agree with you there. Shane beat some very strong fields to win his U.S. Opens. Good point! Move him up a couple of notches.
 

easy-e

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
On the level of competition I would have to disagree. He's dominated the top tourneys of American pool at a time when there are WAY better foreigners playing in those events.

You can't even begin to pretend that it was easier to win the US opens that Shane did than when Earl did.

Jaden
I disagree. I just pretended that it was harder back then. It made me chuckle a bit, but I was able to get there.
 
Last edited:

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
I think he's mid tier or bottom for an American great. He is considered one of the greatest of all time due to domination but he has lost some matches he shouldn't be losing. Some say he's a choker and some say he gets coached through his listening device.

Where do you have him ranked?

For me in no partcular order:

Mosconi
Greenleaf
Strickland
Efren
Ronnie O'Sullivan
Here's one answer:

 

ChicagoRJ

EEEEEXCELLENT ;)
Silver Member
How I rate all these guys overall for their respective dominance.

1. Harold Worst - Brief though it was. Probably the best poolplayer I ever saw. He had no weakness anywhere or at any time.
2. Luther Lassiter - He really dominated 9-Ball and Straight Pool at a time when there were many great players.
3. Buddy Hall - For his longevity on top.
4. Earl Strickland - Absolutely the best tournament 9-Ball player ever! A speed above the rest.
5. Mike Sigel - He knew how to win, over and over again. Unbeatable if he got to the Finals.
6. Steve Mizerak - He was not just a Straight Pool player! He was at the very top in 9-Ball and One Pocket as well.
7. Nick Varner - He got the most out of his game, clawing his way to the top echelon.
8. Johnny Archer - Our best 9-Ball player, along with Earl and Buddy for a long time.

Where does Shane rank along with these great players. Right now I would put him somewhere in the middle of the pack. Unfortunately he has dominated American pool when the overall level of his competition is much lower than what these guys faced. Unlike the players I have listed, Shane has had to cut his teeth on a greatly increased level of competition that comes from abroad. Sigel, Varner, Earl and Archer fared well against a lesser field of international competitors. Basically it was only the Filipinos (Efren, Parica, Luat et al) that gave them trouble. The Euros were only starting to make waves in the 90's and the Chinese came along a decade later.

This is my first take on this and I may adjust it accordingly as I think about it more. All eight players that I listed above were amlong the greatest of their respective eras. That is without question. Buddy emerged in the 1970's and stayed at or near the top until the 2000's. For over 30 years he was at or near the top of his field. Varner and Earl are second to him in longevity. Lassiter also enjoyed a long illustrious career, winning tournaments into his 50's.

It's a great list. And Kudos for giving Earl his due. I know you are not his biggest fan but it doesn't change his talent.

But, I'd add one thing for Varner. I'm not sure who played all games as good as he did.

If you had to play a world series of pool that included straight pool, 9b, 8b, 1p and banks, what person would you bet who would finish with the highest score, kind of like a DCC, Master of the Table :)
 

JoeyInCali

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Shane's the best Yankee 9 and 10 baller ever imo.
In one of his US Open titles, he had to beat several WORLD champions in the final 2 days .
And had to beat Dennis in the finals .
 

garczar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It's a great list. And Kudos for giving Earl his due. I know you are not his biggest fan but it doesn't change his talent.

But, I'd add one thing for Varner. I'm not sure who played all games as good as he did.

If you had to play a world series of pool that included straight pool, 9b, 8b, 1p and banks, what person would you bet who would finish with the highest score, kind of like a DCC, Master of the Table :)
I'm takin Efren in that deal.
 

book collector

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think he's mid tier or bottom for an American great. He is considered one of the greatest of all time due to domination but he has lost some matches he shouldn't be losing. Some say he's a choker and some say he gets coached through his listening device.

Where do you have him ranked?

For me in no partcular order:

Mosconi
Greenleaf
Strickland
Efren
Ronnie O'Sullivan
First off Efren and Ronnie aren't Americans Mosconi and Greenleaf were straight pool experts in a time when it was the major game , Shane plays good 14.1 for as few opportunities, or reasons there are, to even play the game nowadays.
Strickland is arguably the best nine ball player who ever lived.
Lets say there are 10 super grandmaster American nine ball players of all time , what 5 to 7 do you place above him ?
Hint ......Alex and Dennis are not Americans either.
 

JoeyInCali

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I'm takin Efren in that deal.
I believe Efren has the most number of master of the table titles
Be a good bet. But, I dont think even Efren has a world championship in all of those games? At least I don't think so ??
Has in 9-ball, 8-ball and One Pocket . I don't know if his banks titles are considered world titles ( DCC ).
Won his first straight pool tournament with PBT.
 

jason

Unprofessional everything
Silver Member
I'm glad you justified this as semi-scientic. That said, a lot of the names on the list are more recent generations of players and understandably so. Earl, although his skills are justified, has a lot of "groupies" and therefore this becomes a popularity contest as well. I really don't know why people are obsessed by the "goat" phenomenon, but they are. We can't and never will be able to honestly compare generation to generation. Knowledge, training, performance enhancing substances, rules, playing conditions, equipment and technology blurs the field in every sport. Today every millennial thinks Lebron is the goat (LMAO). Shane is definitely one of the greats for many reasons. I think Corey should be more respected as well and the reason I say that, is he probably would have dominated for many years with his break if they didn't change the rules. Instead, his legacy will go down a little less polished than what it could have been. When you have to change the rules because of your game, that is an honor easily over looked. Lastly, it doesn't matter what the OP's opinion is anyway. He wanted to start a flame war as usual. Thats my opinion
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
I'm glad you justified this as semi-scientic. That said, a lot of the names on the list are more recent generations of players and understandably so. Earl, although his skills are justified, has a lot of "groupies" and therefore this becomes a popularity contest as well. I really don't know why people are obsessed by the "goat" phenomenon, but they are. We can't and never will be able to honestly compare generation to generation. Knowledge, training, performance enhancing substances, rules, playing conditions, equipment and technology blurs the field in every sport. Today every millennial thinks Lebron is the goat (LMAO). Shane is definitely one of the greats for many reasons. I think Corey should be more respected as well and the reason I say that, is he probably would have dominated for many years with his break if they didn't change the rules. Instead, his legacy will go down a little less polished than what it could have been. When you have to change the rules because of your game, that is an honor easily over looked. Lastly, it doesn't matter what the OP's opinion is anyway. He wanted to start a flame war as usual. Thats my opinion

FYI, here's a pertinent quote from the Consensus "Greatest of All Time" (GOAT) List thread:

"Note that I did not include players from the "straight pool era." For example, arguments can be made that Mosconi, Greenleaf, Lassiter, Hoppe, Cranfield, Crane, Worst, DeOro, Lindrum, Caras (and others) deserved to be on the list, but I purposely excluded them since it is too difficult (or impossible) for most people to compare them to players in the modern "9-ball era" (since about 1970, or the last 50 years). I at least gave them honorable mention here. For those who still object to this, wherever you see "GOAT" in this thread, read it instead as "GITME" (Greatest In The Modern Era).

There are also many great female players who were not considered in this list. They probably deserve a separate GOAT list that would include players such as Allison Fisher, Karen Corr, Siming Chen, Jean Balukas, Ruth McGinnis, Ewa Mataya Lawrence, Lori Jon Jones, Robin Dodson, Jeanette Lee, Ga Young Kim, Gerda Hofstatter, Kelly Fisher, Jasmin Ouschan, Vivian Villarreal, Pan Xiaoting, etc. These players are certainly among the GOAT female players, but not the GOAT of all players."
 

measureman

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I'm glad you justified this as semi-scientic. That said, a lot of the names on the list are more recent generations of players and understandably so. Earl, although his skills are justified, has a lot of "groupies" and therefore this becomes a popularity contest as well. I really don't know why people are obsessed by the "goat" phenomenon, but they are. We can't and never will be able to honestly compare generation to generation. Knowledge, training, performance enhancing substances, rules, playing conditions, equipment and technology blurs the field in every sport. Today every millennial thinks Lebron is the goat (LMAO). Shane is definitely one of the greats for many reasons. I think Corey should be more respected as well and the reason I say that, is he probably would have dominated for many years with his break if they didn't change the rules. Instead, his legacy will go down a little less polished than what it could have been. When you have to change the rules because of your game, that is an honor easily over looked. Lastly, it doesn't matter what the OP's opinion is anyway. He wanted to start a flame war as usual. Thats my opinion
The PGA lengthened a lot of courses because of Tiger Woods and he still dominated.
 

Mich

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think he's mid tier or bottom for an American great. He is considered one of the greatest of all time due to domination but he has lost some matches he shouldn't be losing. Some say he's a choker and some say he gets coached through his listening device.

Where do you have him ranked?

For me in no partcular order:

Mosconi
Greenleaf
Strickland
Efren
Ronnie O'Sullivan
I would have Sigel above Earl and Efren. Regarding SVB it's more a question of which titles and lack confer greatness. The 5 US Opens are incredible, but the lack of a World 9B is a minus in my opinion. There is no doubt he's the greatest American Player Post-Archer.
 

Mich

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It's just too tough to compare the straight pool era to the nine ball era in pool.

In the straight pool era, the top five are surely Mosconi, Greenleaf, Crane, Sigel and Mizerak, but nearly all the straight poolers of that era were American. Of course, Luther Lassiter and Harold Worst may have been better than all of them if all-around play is the measure.

The nine ball era is much harder to gauge, but however you look at it, Shane's name is in the mix for greatest ever. There were two especially noteworthy crossover stars from the straight pool era in Sigel and Varner, who continued to be world beaters even when the primary pro game was changed. Each is in the conversation for greatest ever American player.

Shane's excellence at the US Open 9-ball and the Derby City Classic evidence just how great he has been on home soil. He has not fared nearly as well overseas, and in the large field, WPA sanctioned events offering the most elite fields in our sport's history (World 9-ball, China Open 9-ball, US Open 9-ball, All Japan 9-ball), he has never won an overseas title. That said, however, he has won silver at the World championships, bronze at the China Open. and bronze at the All-Japan, so he has, at times, excelled overseas even though the biggest titles have eluded him.

His name deserves to be alongside all-time legends like Sigel, Varner, and Strickland, Reyes and Pagulayan, but where he fits in the hierarchy of the nine ball era is not so easy to gauge. I suspect that if I made this list on some other day it might look different, but my hierarchy for this era of pool is:

Efren Reyes
Mike Sigel
Earl Strickland
Shane Van Boening
Alex Pagulayan
Nick Varner
Ralf Souquet
Johnny Archer
Buddy Hall

Throw out all the qualitative stuff. Greatness is measured in titles. Always has been, always will be. Shane's resume of titles validates that he's one of the all time greats.
Well said and summarized, as usual Stu.
 

BeiberLvr

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Okay but seriously, where does Shane rank.

Definitely top 10.

You could make argument for top 5 based on his titles.
 
Top