View Full Version : What 3 Pros would you pay $1000+ for Pool Sch?

02-11-2003, 08:27 PM
Ok, so then what 3 LIVING pros would you pay $1000+ for a 2 day Pool School ?

for me it would be

Efren Reyes
Nick Varner
Grady Matthews

I'd like to throw in Busty for a guest session on the Break /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

02-11-2003, 09:29 PM
I would take one pocket lessons from Steve Mizerak. In fact if anyone feels like spending some time in Florida, I don't know if he is doing it since his illness, but spending some time with him at his new room would be a great vacation. Years ago I was in, I think it was Asheville, at a room owned by Wade Crane (aka, Billy Johnson). Just hanging around there for a short time was an education in 9-ball.
Second would be Grady (more one pocket), and third would be The late Jimmy Caras.

02-11-2003, 10:33 PM
Mike Sigel, Nick Varner, and Buddy Hall. If any of these guys reads this, get together and get within 400 miles of Oklahoma City and I'll show up with $1000 tuition.

02-11-2003, 11:07 PM
1. Efren Reyes (he should be on everynody's list)
2. Steve Davis (knows the sport inside and out)
3. Johnny Archer (4 times world champ-how can you go wrong)

02-11-2003, 11:28 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote thebanker:</font><hr> Mike Sigel, Nick Varner, and Buddy Hall. If any of these guys reads this, get together and get within 400 miles of Oklahoma City and I'll show up with $1000 tuition. <hr /></blockquote>

Bit surprised at Sigel. His knowledge is unquestion but i thought he had a rep as an arrogant pr*ick and this is backed up by his videos. Is this right ?

02-11-2003, 11:50 PM
Such doesn't exist in my mind or wallet.

02-12-2003, 07:38 AM
Our own Fran


02-12-2003, 07:52 AM
Efren Reyes
Chris Cass

Kato~~~pro's, throw in Bustamante and Janette

I believe Voodoo knows as much as any pro walking

02-12-2003, 08:26 AM
Great idea!!!! How about a school with our very own ccb experts!!!

But then, there are so many expert here, I might be one of the few students. Then it would be 18 teachers to one student. /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif


02-12-2003, 08:31 AM
I got news for ya blu, there aren't a lot of EXPERTS, there are a lot of really good players that I wouldn't mind racking for and/or butting heads with. You aren't alone though, I'm far from expert, I may not even be good. /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif

If Fran ever gives a workshop in Florida I'll be there. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif


Rich R.
02-12-2003, 09:07 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bigbro6060:</font><hr> Bit surprised at Sigel. His knowledge is unquestion but i thought he had a rep as an arrogant pr*ick and this is backed up by his videos. Is this right ? <hr /></blockquote>
I've only had limited contact with him, but in a very short time, I came to the same conclusion as you. /ccboard/images/graemlins/frown.gif

Maybe I have to get to know him better.

02-12-2003, 09:25 AM
Arrogant? Who, Sigel? LOL I am just kidding around. Yes he is pretty arrogant in the times I have been around him. I once ordered some Simonis from him and he gave me hell. I called up to his shop and asked to buy some Simonis. He told me that he only had Fortsman in stock and he would have to order the Simonis. Then he wanted to know why I would want Simonis. He told my, (loosly paraphrased), "Why do you want Simonis, I don't have Simonis on my table in here. If I am not using it why would you want to use it." I asked him why he was giving me a hard time about spending my money in his store and he shut up.

He is a great guy to go in and hang out and chat with because he likes to talk. I have spent a few hours in his shop with him chatting about pool and what is going on in the industy. He still feels he is the best player but does not compete because there is no money in the game. I guess he is right to an extent, however I don't think Efren is having a problem with his winnings. Sigel is very proud of his custom cues also. Not very happy about the ordeal that happened a little while ago with ebay, but he did confirm making everyone one of them. LOL He just will not do any work on them or warranty them if anything is wrong. /ccboard/images/graemlins/frown.gif


02-12-2003, 09:28 AM
Probably Blomdahl would be at the top of my list because of what he might be able to show me about billiards. I am assuming he could be a decent teacher which he may or may not be. I think I'd take 1.5 days of billiards instruction and the rest pool. No question my ability to control the cueball in pool would go way up after top-level billiards instruction. As to the others I don't know for sure. I'd pick the better teachers rather than the best players probably. Finding out who can teach is the trick.

Steve Lipsky
02-12-2003, 09:46 AM
I am surprised some people are mentioning Efren. I can't imagine he would be a good teacher at all. Efren and Bustamante are examples of players that do things most of us cannot. Their strokes are so insanely beautiful that they can apply a mountain of inside english at any time and always make the ball.

I have seen these guys do things that most "normal" pros would not, and of course they get away with it - they're just so talented. (Incidentally, I'm not saying they don't have the knowledge to do it the "smarter" way - I'm saying that they know they can get more perfect on the object ball if they do something weird.)

I'd rather learn from a player who doesn't do much that I can't, but just does it more consistently.

- Steve Lipsky

02-12-2003, 11:11 AM
Steve, I don't care if I'd pick up anything at all, I just wanna hang out with Efren /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif If I pay for lessons it's gonna be 1 on 1.


Voodoo Daddy
02-12-2003, 11:27 AM
Nick Varner
Toby Sweet
Johnny Ervolino

Honroable mention; Jimmy Reid, Steve Mizerak, Ray Martin and Ronnie Allen

Not Living?
Marcel Camp
Joe Balsis
Luther Lassitter

Honorable mention; Irving Crane and Ralph Greenleaf

CCB Living or dead?
Howie Pearl

Voodoo Daddy
02-12-2003, 11:30 AM
/ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif Thanks Kato...nice to say.

02-12-2003, 11:34 AM
Hey Voodoo, what has Howie been up to? I miss his posts. He has some great stories like ####Leonard.


02-12-2003, 11:46 AM
Didn't think of Toby. Shame on me.

Heck what I wouldn't give to get ####, Howie Pearl, Toby, you, and some other great old story tellers in the same room. Oh what fun I'd have.

Kato~~~loves a good story but loves 100,000 good stories better.

Rich R.
02-12-2003, 01:22 PM
I've been thinking about this question for a while and my answer would have to be, NONE.

Would I like to hang around 3 top players for a day? Of course. Most are nice guys and fund to be around.

Would they be able to teach me a lot about playing pool.
Of course? That would not be hard.

The real question is, would I be able to absord $1000 worth of information in one day?
Regretfully, I have to say, NO.
Unless I could video the entire day, there is no way I could remember everything that is taught. Even with the video, I'm not sure it would be worth $1000, because I need time to absorb information, attempt what is being taught and formulate questions.

I believe the $1000 would be better spent with a good instructor, for a series of lessons, over a long period of time.

02-12-2003, 09:25 PM
id have to go with Steve Lipsky /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

02-12-2003, 09:32 PM
I know everyone will think I'm crazy, But...

Earl Strickland
Max Eberle
Ralph Souqet

Three of the most mechanical accuate, focused, repetitively consistant players I have ever seen.


Mike Sigel skills taught by anyone else but Mike Sigel.

02-12-2003, 09:34 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> Years ago I was in, I think it was Asheville, at a room owned by Wade Crane (aka, Billy Johnson). Just hanging around there for a short time was an education in 9-ball.
<hr /></blockquote>At my local poolhall (Mobile, AL) I've noticed flyers on the walls that advertise lessons from Wade Crane. I guess he is living around here now. Anyone know if that's actually the case?

02-12-2003, 09:52 PM
I've only met Sigel once, and yes, he's arrogant, but I didn't find him obnoxious at all. I think his abundance of confidence contributed greatly to his success (along with a ton of talent). It would be worth having him in the mix just to watch that stroke of his. A thing of beauty.

02-12-2003, 11:33 PM
I never took lessons from him, but I saw him play a lot of 9-ball. He is one high powered player. He used to have a motivational audio tape for playing pool. I must have listened to it hundreds of times. If you can take lessons from him, it may be worth checking out. You can tell after a lesson or two if it will be worth anything to you. That is great if he lives near you. Also, if you know where he hangs out and plays, (if he is still playing) try to catch him in action, he is one of the best.

02-12-2003, 11:39 PM
I'm stuck here in the nation's heartland (Oklahoma), so I'm afraid my opportunities to watch Sigel play in person will be slim to non-existent. I do have plenty of old ESPN matches recorded and Accu-stats tapes of him. I think he's the best all-around player to ever wield a cue. Even though many may not agree, you'd still have to put him in the top 5 at worst. He's an incredible player, and his stroke is just scary.

02-13-2003, 05:02 AM
I'd have to go with Nick Varner, Bobby Hunter, and Rafael Martinez. They all have distiguished, unique styles.

02-13-2003, 09:10 AM
Cycopath, I understand Wade is living in Mobile now. I talked to him at the last tournament at Breakers.

Wade is very articulate, and his level of knowledge is awesome. Lessons from him should be quite productive, besides he's a nice guy too. I knew him when he was still Billy Johnson, and his 9 ball game was fierce!

02-13-2003, 09:54 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote AndyG:</font><hr> I knew him when he was still Billy Johnson, and his 9 ball game was fierce!
AndyG <hr /></blockquote>What is the deal with the aka (Billy Johnson)? Was he a wanted man or something?

I wonder if Earl Strickland is an alias?

02-13-2003, 10:06 AM
I was at a tournament some years back and he was in the practice room practicing. There were some bleachers and about ten of us were sitting there watching, when someone asked a question about a position he had just played. He answered the question and began speaking as he was running out racks, explaining his thinking as he went. This went on for almost an hour till he was done. He thanked everyone for their interest and hoped they enjoyed it. Not the Mike Sigel you always hear people talk about. I wish I had it on tape. This was an exception as far as him doing a short seminar, but I can't say enough times that a player has to get around good players to improve. Go to tournament and watch the players, go to where you know the good players hang out in your area and so on. Pool can't be learned in a vacuum. Even living in Oklahoma, I would bet there are tournaments within a few hours drive with top players you can go watch. Check out some of the web sites that show where the tournaments are. Definitely, if pool is your passion, try to attend a big tournament whenever you can. Make it your vacation even if only once a year and see these players in person. You owe it to your self.

02-13-2003, 11:01 AM
Can I just pay $333 and get Jim Rempe to teach me how to play straight pool?

02-13-2003, 11:46 AM
Cycopath, In the 60's and thru most of the 70's, many of the road agents used aliases. There weren't many legitimate tournaments then, and everyone was doing 'undercover' work.

I knew Billy for several years before I ever knew his real name. Occasionally, at a tournament, you'll still hear someone call him Billy.

02-13-2003, 03:26 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote AndyG:</font><hr> Cycopath, In the 60's and thru most of the 70's, many of the road agents used aliases. There weren't many legitimate tournaments then, and everyone was doing 'undercover' work.<hr /></blockquote>Cool info Andy. Thanks.

02-13-2003, 08:43 PM
You got that right! I'm WAY past due for a tournament road trip. Unfortunately, work has interfered with my pool game over the past 5 years or so. I've played numerous tournaments before that had some strong players. I recall a tournament around 1996 that Tony Watson was at. I'm not sure how old he is now, but appeared to only be around 16 then. I believe David Matlock is still in the area, and there are a couple of others that I will leave nameless at this time that play even stronger big table 9 ball than he does. I think he's still regarded (by many) as the toughest bar box player in the country. But, we don't really have any of the bigger names around. We do have our share of talent. They're just not active on the "pro tour", if you can call it that. I'll get in stroke and hopefully hit a few tournaments this year.

02-14-2003, 09:39 AM
OK..pretty close to "CC"...Alot of the big names play on the Midwest 9ball tour...and regularly show up elsewhere. I believe the post above was correct, within a couple hours there should be tourneys with better players. If that is not the case, then you must be a champ, so drive farther. To get better, means ya got to play better quality players. I am within an hour of some really tuff players, but the true players in michigan are 3.5 hours away in Detroit. So we make some road trips. Use them for fun as well as the competition.

02-14-2003, 08:52 PM
I play pretty well, but I won't have to drive far for someone to convince me I'm not a champ (maybe 10 miles, lol)! We have several players here that are tour-caliber 9 ball players, and another guy that was on the tour in the 70's and early 80's. And you are precisely right: this type of competition raises your level of play quickly.

02-15-2003, 03:17 PM
You guys have got this entire thing wrong, your dreaming, wanting some pool fantasy, where you can hang out with a star &amp; tell all your buddies new stories. That is about All you are going to get from these guys, so just rent them for an hour or two, after that, they wont have anything left. If you really want to learn something, then seek out a professional teacher of the game, and not a professional player of the game, they are two entirely different people &amp; subjects. The worst teacher you can find, is going to be a pro player. You have to be taught, how to teach, it takes years of teaching experience to learn how to spot a players flaw, &amp; cure it quickly. The pro player feels he's doing you a favor just hanging with you. You will get a lot of disjointed information that does not fit together, and some of it is going to be dead wrong, because most of them never had professional teaching them selves, they just picked it up in pool halls watching others play. That is the long hard way to learn any sport. What you are going to get is a information dump, and a lot of chit chat. Early on I took lessons from several big names, and quickly began to realize the lessons sucked. They did not know how to teach, they did know how to take your money. I am a scratch golfer and have taken many lessons from the best in that game, Ballard &amp; Ledbetter, so I know what a professional lesson should be like. No body in golf, will take a lesson from a pro player, they all go to the professional teachers. No body in golf will take a lesson from a teaching pro that just looks at you &amp; talks to you. If the teaching pro does not teach with a digital cam corder, he cant even be recognized. Golf learned that teaching with a camera &amp; tools, the student learns 4 times faster than the old yack at them method. And that's the pool lesson you will get from a pro. If the teacher does not teach with a camera, dont go near him, he is not a teacher, period. You can come to our pool school in Atlanta, be taught in a private room on a gold crown with new 760 cloth, perfect lighting, heated slate, get 7 hrs a day of video taped lessons, and in 2 days, spend $600, not a grand, &amp; go home learning triple what you would get from the player. Admire the great player, let him be your hero, just dont take pool lessons from him, because he can do it all, but many of the things he does, he really does not know how he does them, &amp; he can't pass many of these things over to you. I am not saying every pro player can't teach, there are some that are really good at this, there are also many who do not have a clue. A professional instructor does not have to play at pro speed, all he has to be able to do, is to teach you to play at pro speed. None of the great teachers in golf can break 80, because when you begin to teach &amp; analyze the game technically, you begin to know &amp; see too much, and it will destroy your playing ability. All the pro pool teacher needs to be able to demonstrate is that he can break &amp; run a rack of 8 ball, if he can't do that, then there are things we wont understand &amp; can't pass on to you. Be careful, you might find a big time writer or two in the magazines who pretends to be a world class teacher and this guy cant run a rack. I would not take a lesson from this guy. Check people out, before you start spending a lot of money. I realize coming to the Power Source Pool School is less glamorous than hanging with this TV star, but we give you twice the results, for half of the money you are prepared to spend, you figger it out. If you don't choose our school, there are others just as good as us, so look around, shop around, and choose wisely. Fast Larry www.fastlarrypool.com (http://www.fastlarrypool.com)

02-15-2003, 03:57 PM
Jeez, why do so many people on this board get so upset with the threads? You made some good points, but I don't believe anyone in this thread said that they believed the pro players could teach any better than pool instructors. I believe the question that started this thread is above in the subject box. My only point was that I would pay $1000 for a weekend of instruction from my choice of pros. Would I learn $1000 worth of pool knowledge? Doubtful. Would I enjoy it $1000 worth? Who knows, but I'd pay it to find out. I'm sure your instruction, and that of other pool instructors, is excellent. I'm also sure that no one who posted here meant to insinuate that pro player instruction would be more beneficial.

02-16-2003, 02:12 AM
I agree with Fast Larry. The 1000 bucks would probably be better spent, for my game anyway, on regular lessons from a qualified instructor. What is the going rate for instruction anyway?

BUT... if I had a grand to drop, I would probably thoroughly enjoy taking lessons and hanging out with a few pro players... get some pictures and some stories to tell. I'm sure I would learn a lot, but I couldn't retain much from a couple of days of lessons. I'm sure if I had the money to blow it would be an enjoyable and worthwhile experience though.

02-16-2003, 08:01 AM
If you are worried about absorbing two days of lessons just go to Mike Sigel. You might get two hours from him unless his rates have gone up.

02-16-2003, 08:12 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dave_m:</font><hr>What is the going rate for instruction anyway?<hr /></blockquote>Hi Dave. Tony Robles charges $50. per one hour lesson I think. I don't know if he has a package rate. Former woman's pro Billie Billing charges $45. plus table time I think, for a one hour lesson, and four one hour lessons taken within a 4-6 week period for about $150. including table time.

#### leonard
02-16-2003, 08:52 PM
Voodoo Is Joe Balsis dead? I haven't heard anything about him in years. My all time nice Guy/Poolplayer.####

#### leonard
02-16-2003, 08:56 PM
Kato, Peter Falk would say if you were listening in a hotel hallway with comedians on one side and poolplayers on the other side, you couldn't tell what side the comedians were on.####

#### leonard
02-16-2003, 09:04 PM
Popcorn I ran a new room during the 60s boom of pool, my job after I over saw the clean up was to play pool. The owner believed that the only way for people to get good was to see good pool played. He would take the desk when it was busy. ####

#### leonard
02-16-2003, 09:12 PM
When I was running poolrooms my nickname was the Flaw Man. In 10 minutes I could tell every thing that a player was doing wrong. Telling them was a different matter.####

02-17-2003, 09:25 AM
As a teacher, I agree with FastLarry. Some pros might have a knack for teaching, but it's unlikely that any of them could put you on track as efficiently as somebody like Jerry Briesath could.

02-17-2003, 09:37 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote eg8r:</font><hr>Sigel is very proud of his custom cues also.<hr /></blockquote>
How many cues does he make a year? Are they selling? Other than their high prices, I haven't heard much about them.