View Full Version : mike massey in USA Today today

04-18-2005, 07:48 AM
page 3 of the sports section has a nice article about Mike Massey. I tried to find in the the online edition but its not on there yet.

Mike Athens

04-18-2005, 07:56 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mike_in_iowa:</font><hr> page 3 of the sports section has a nice article about Mike Massey. I tried to find in the the online edition but its not on there yet.

Mike Athens <hr /></blockquote>

Billiards trick-shot champ Massey keeps the faith on cue

By Amanda Shank

Mike Massey is a busy man.

Even with multiple charity golf events, an appearance on Regis and Kelly and shows from Oregon to London, the billiards trick-shot player sees no need to slow down.

“The Lord gives me a lot of peace, strength and energy,” Massey says.

Massey, 58, who estimates he has traveled 3 million miles playing pool, has won 10 world championships and is ESPN's 2004 Trick Shot Magic champion. He was inducted into the Billiards Hall of Fame this month in Las Vegas in the meritorious service category.

Massey says the game is about entertainment. “Snooker players are like stand-up comedians,” he says. “We do shots and tell jokes.”

He also has written a screenplay, Louie and the Preacher.

“It's about a pool-playing preacher,” he says, “who hustles the greedy to give to the needy, like Robin Hood with a pool cue.”

Massey, who says he was into gambling as a child, walked into a pool room in his hometown of Loudon, Tenn., for the first time at age 13. Two years later, he says he was the area's best player.

After a stint in the military, Massey went state to state hustling.

“I was staying up all night, drinking, doing drugs, going from city to city,” Massey says. “I'd have thousands of dollars in my pocket one day and be broke the next.”

Massey recalls one night in a California hotel when he was 22. He was 6-4 and weighed 145 pounds.

“I was looking like walking death,” he says. “And something just clicked, and I said, ‘There's a better life to be living than this.' ”

After some soul-searching, Massey says he found God. Though he still has ups and downs, he no longer gambles. He teaches that while performing at prisons.

“It's a really dangerous world,” he says. “If you go down that hustling road, it looks good, but it can lead to total destruction.”
web page (http://www.usatoday.com/printedition/sports/20050418/c3pool18.art.htm)

04-18-2005, 08:31 AM

04-18-2005, 08:42 AM
He may have gotten God but I was surprised to not see him mention his wife. I am sure he would not be where he is today if not for her. She really got him under control. We would be standing around in some parking lot talking at 4 in the morning and she would come and just haul him away. He better not lose her she was the best thing that ever happened to him.

04-18-2005, 09:08 AM
I've read before, where Mike gives lots of credit to his wife, for turning his life around.

04-18-2005, 10:53 AM
At the state tourney in waterloo Iowa last month I had the pleasure of eating breakfast right next to mike. He went into his background and WOW, He has had a crazy life. His early childhood stories are something to hear. Been around the world too many times to count.

04-18-2005, 01:01 PM
I honestly think Mike might be dead now if he had not met Francine. She is a terrific lady and a pretty good photographer. She is always standing by with his juice to drink and supporting him in every way. He often credits her with his lifestyle changes. I hope that's still the scoop. I used to interpret for him when he did his exibitions in Germany. By the middle of the show, he'd be talking over me, I'd shut up and the crowd didn't even care. his cheerfulness overshadowed the language difference. Bob Bryne once said Mike's finger pool is the "damnest thing you ever saw." It is the damnest thing you ever saw...


04-18-2005, 01:49 PM
Massey came to a local room and did his finger pool tricks. It was unbeleivable. He ought to do some on the ESPN broadcasts to liven it up a bit.

04-18-2005, 04:00 PM
Excuse my naivete' - but does he actually use his finger in place of the cue stick?

04-18-2005, 04:06 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote BlindPlayer:</font><hr> Excuse my naivete' - but does he actually use his finger in place of the cue stick? <hr /></blockquote>

One of his finger tricks is to spin the cue ball from behind the headstring around a rack of balls on the spot and have it return to the kitchen. (not touching a rail of course)

04-18-2005, 04:37 PM
Like a karate chop? Using index finger? Help me visualize this....

04-18-2005, 04:58 PM
He snaps his fingers and spins the ball.

04-18-2005, 05:04 PM
Woooo....now I get it. I'm a little slow - it's Monday.

04-19-2005, 08:19 AM
In one finger shot, he places a ball on the spot and one in the foot corner pocket. He snaps the ball around the spotted ball from the head of the table and makes the ball in the pocket. Then, he moves the object ball closer to the end rail making shot after shot. It ends up not much further than a ball length from the cushion and he still makes it around the ball and pockets the ball in the jaws of the corner pocket. The damnest thing you ever saw. Whe he's on, he's about 80% on every shot. They don't do this in the trick shot competition as I don't think anyone else would even bother to try most of them. I've spotted the balls for him as well and still could not believe my eyes.

do NOT try to outsqueeze Tarzan on a handshake... /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif