Saturday, December 31, 2011

Break Shot Patterns Vid Helped

As you prolly figured out, I haven't really played pool the last two months.

I have either just had non-pool things going on Nov/Dec during the weekends (when I would normally play in Fri/Sat night tourneys), or been staying in my cocoon, away from the real world, being a hermit.  The holidays were tough without my Mom.  But I also played more poker the last two months, which kept me away from pool.  I just didn't feel like playing pool - wasn't interested in being around certain people at the pool room, either.

But now that my Straight Pool Season starts in January, and I have 4 big pool tourneys coming up in Jan/Feb, I know have the pool bug back!

I decided to check out the new Video from Phil Capelle and watched almost 50 clips of straight pool break shot patterns before I headed to the Friday night weekly tourney. 

If you haven't heard yet from your friends or read in billiard magazines, Phil has a new book/video called Break Shot Patterns where he shows how the pros would run the last 5 balls in straight pool matches (via a book AND 110 video clips!).  As we all know and have heard, straight pool helps all your games - and so Phil's new DVD is no exception.

I don't know how Phil complied over 100 break shot patterns, as I can only imagine how long it took!  It's definitely a labor of lover, for sure, and we all get to reap the rewards of his efforts!

To watch so many awesome break shot patterns by the pros, was very inspirational.  I haven't even watched all the video clips yet, but just the 50 or more I saw only makes me eagerly want me to watch the rest of the DVD!  And REWATCH it!

I played in a 9ball tourney last night and wasn't sure how I would do with almost two months off from playing pool. 

To my surprise, I played pretty good!  I scratched too many times on freaky shots, but otherwise, I stayed down on my shots and looked a lot at the correct shape for the cue ball.

I kept in mind what I had just watched on the videos.  I noticed how the pros would take their time even on straight-in, simple shots.  I recalled this as I played and didn't take "easy" shots for granted.

I also noticed how the players would walk around the table a lot to ensure where they needed the cue ball.  It's very crucial to ensure you are on the correct side of some balls, so you can get to your next shot best. 

I *think* I assume a lot when I play, and last night (when I kept in mind what I had watched on the videos), I looked at my position more and didn't assume that I would be okay moving the cue ball to a certain "area" on the table.

So, watching the all those video clips Phil compiled, I'm convinced, helped me play decently in the tourney last night, and also enjoy the game.  I, more, than anyone was surprised when I got Last Lady and also third place!

Thank you, Phil Capelle!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Moving to the Rio

I'm sure you've heard by now that the BCAPL will be moving their famous 8Ball Nationals tournament from the Riviera Casino to The Rio Casino in 2013.


While many people applaud this, I am one of the few who love The Riv, so I was actually a little disappointed with the news.

You see, I am a huge creature of habit and so I love all the little things everyone else prolly can't stand about The Riv.  I don't mind the rooms at all and plus, I get a good room rates because I have a Player's Card.  I also like the food at Kady's (even tho most people don't).  And the food court is nice and conveniently located.  It's also nice to already know where everything is in the casino, hotel, and convention area.  :)  Further, I like their table games and the dealers have always been nice and it's cool to see them again every year.


This news especially saddens me because the new owner has made so many awesome changes already, I can't wait to see what he has in store for us in 2012! 

And.... most importantly.... I have a lot of casino gambling history with The Riv.  I do most of my gambling there so I can get good rates for the room the following year.  Staying there ten days, I'm always looking for deals!  My Riviera Player's Card (every casino has a frequent player's card program) has earned me free nights and comp meals.  So, I'm saddened my casino play at The Riv in 2012 wont help me get good rates at The Rio in 2013.  :-(

But then.... I noticed something awesome the other day!

As I was trying to find a good deal at a casino for the Mosconi Cup in Vegas with the two main player programs I have (M Life and Total Rewards)... guess what?  YEP - The Rio is under the Total Rewards players program!

I am so excited now!

That means I already have a a player history and that also means when I go to the associated casinos of the Total Rewards program, I will be able to use that play toward a cheaper room rate at The Rio! Woo-Woo!

BTW, in case you are interested, all these casinos below all have the same Player's program (Total Rewards) and what you earn can be used at any of these locations:

Horsehoe Casino
Caesars Palace
Planet Hollywood
Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino
Harrah's Las Vegas
Paris Las Vegas
Flamingo Las Vegas
Bally's Las Vegas
Imperial Palace

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Similar Cues

I heard this awesome rumor about one of the one pocket players at one of the pool rooms I go to.  I told him I wanted to showcase his story on my blog.  The catch was... I needed to somehow figure out to show up when he had both his two cues with him.

I know, many people have more than one cue.  So, what's the big deal?

Well, how many have two cues like THIS?

He bought a Szamboti in 1978.  If you don't know what a Szamboti is, let's just say it's one of the most expensive and yearned-for cues by collectors and pool generations of its time.

After he bough the cue in 1978, he then bought Schon in 1987.


He had the same exact inlays of the Szamboti put into in the butt sleeve and the forearm of the Schon.  He even put the inlays in himself.

So, the cues look very similar!

He uses both, but you never really know which one he's using that day when he spars in his one pocket games (unless you know what to look for).

Check out the pics of the two cues:  Pretty darn cool!

(click on images to enlarge)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My Favorite Mosconi Cup 2011 Shot

During the Mosconi Cup in Vegas in December, when Chris Melling and Darren Appleton were playing doubles against Rodney Morris and Shawn Putnam, I saw my favorite (and most impressive) shot of the tourney!

The score was close:  Europe up overall 4-3 against USA (in a race to 11) but this match was tied 5-5 in a race to 6!  Very, very crucial hill-hill match.

Darren broke and... almost scratched!

Although the cueball didn't fall into the pocket for a dreaded scratch, instead, it nestled BEHIND two balls near the corner and Chris Melling was left with several options:  Push Out or try to hit the 3 ball.

As SOON as Chris walked to the table, I saw him motion for a third option:  Kick Safe.

I turned to Amanda and exclaimed, "no way!"

Darren and Chris asked for a time extension and added 60 seconds to their discussion.  Chris told Darren that's what he wanted to do and Darren checked it out and presumably said, "Go for it, Chris."

The announcers thought Chris was going to try and kick at the 3 ball to make another ball near the pocket, but I saw Chris's first inclination to the shot as he motioned the Kick Safe as soon as he walked up to the table.

Check out what happened via the video below:


What impressed me most was he executed exactly what he envisioned in his mind.  And further - the shot came immediately to him and he had a lot of confidence to pull it off!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Funny Straight Pool Moment!

One night I was playing in a straight pool match against a very serious player.  I was ahead by about 20 and on the verge of winning in a rack or two, so even though I was ahead, he could still win.

I left myself with the below:  I ensured that I could get by the rack to see the 6 ball as a break out ball.  He racked while I went to the bathroom.

When i got back, I grabbed my cue and chalk and walked up to the table to break and was dumbfounded!  OMG!  This is where I found myself:

I couldn't see the 6 ball after all!  I could have sworn I double checked I would be able to make the 6 from where I left the cueball!

I stood there speechless, and then my opponent walks up to the table and says, "just kidding, I racked it low to trick you.  Here, let me re-rack it right. HeHe"


Although what he did was super funny, I think I am more shocked that he did this during a kinda stressful match where he wasn't winning, and because normally he's so reserved and pensive.

I guess Mister Serious isn't that serious after all!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My Third One Pocket Video - Frozen Balls

I realized yesterday I hadn't yet posted Chapter Two of my One Pocket videos on my blog for you all.  Sorry about that! 

But first, a shout out to our video editor at (Steve) for helping us so much!

In this third video (which is Chapter Two for the One Pocket series over at, I talk about how to make frozen balls

I learned this from Phil Capelle (well, not personally, but from one of this books) and this helps me in ALL my games, but esp one pocket because balls are more congested in that game.

If you weren't aware of this, I hope it helps you as much as it has helped over the years!  Enjoy.  :)


In case you are new to my blog, some background:  I am one of the contributors over at  I am honored to have my very own little section!  And I focus on one pocket over in my little corner.

But the clever catch is, it's only via video!  The whole site smartly focuses on video - the dream of the originator of the site.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Press Release Back Fire - There is no I in Team

As I mentioned before the Mosconi Cup, there were several unhappy people that Charlie Williams was the team captain of the USA Team.

But then!

I shared with you that I heard during the Mosconi Cup that Charlie was the hardest working USA Team Captain they had ever seen. We all wouldn't know that, because it's behind the scenes, but that's what was told by one of the Matchroom guys.

I thought that was really nice to hear, because I know the USA Team Players felt like Charlie was a good captain, but to hear that other people recognized how hard he worked, truly reinforced it.

Further proof:  you can view a blog about the togetherness at this link (Captain's Log):

But, imagine my surprise at the end of the Mosconi Cup when each team was asked to say a few words.  Captain Williams shocked the whole audience by saying, " discredit to the European team, but we really felt we got a little bit worse of the rolls sometimes."

What?  Who in the heck says something like THAT?

You can hear for yourself he got BOO'd from the crowd for saying such a thing (listen about the 7 minute mark):

BTW, the Europeans had nothing ill to say and ONLY complimented the USA Team.

Captain Williams (finally) complimented the European Team but then tried to remove his foot from his mouth and added "don't take it the wrong way" (about his rolls comment).  But the damage was done.

Or was it?

Barry Berhman (for whatever reason) issued his thoughts on the Mosconi Cup and they were posted on AZB as a headline.  I wondered why he would say anything at all and was quite confused about why he would comment like that anyway?  Then I got miffed when he said, "To my two time U.S. Open Champion, Darren Appleton, you played great again this year. I am very proud of you and especially for being the gentleman and class act you are."


"My U.S. Open Champion?"  Isn't the U.S. Open really a tournament for the players?  I realize you may think I'm playing schematics, but not many people with proper etiquette walk around saying a tournament is theirs.  It's the players tournament.  Sure, he's been running it for years and handles everything, but that wording is SLAP in the face (imo).

But I digress...


Well, evidently his comment and fan comments from forums ruffled the feathers of the USA Team and therefore the USA Members decided to issue a press release.

/sarcasm on/

Yay, a Press Release!  How smart! 
/sarcasm off/

The Press Release completely backfired.  If they intended to explain themselves, it only did more harm than good.

Read for yourself.  I'll wait right here.



So, 9 times "I" was used by the captain in his paragraph.  There is no I in Team.  And like others who are expressing themselves on the forums, I agree it seems to be a Press Release about excuses of why the USA lost.  Maybe they were trying to use the platform as a little sounding board, as most of the team seems a little upset (except for Johnny Archer who gave a great comment).  But, where is the Public Relations person for this team?

Did not one person think about the consequences of how the Press Release was worded?  Or were they too quick to want to (try) to defend themselves?

Even Charlie Sheen fired his Public Relations person... and shouldn't have. 

I'm not knocking the Captain's preparation of the team, the togetherness, or the team camaraderie.  But I admit I am disappointed in the speech and the Press Release (from Barry, also).

But, all this gives me something to express my opinion about, huh?  lol.

We all learn from all mistakes.  Just take these things as a learning experience, guy, and things will improve in the future.  Learning isn't a bad thing!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Heat of the Battle - Mosconi Cup

On Day 2 of Mosconi Cup 2011, when Shawn Putnam and Rodney Morris were playing Scotch Doubles against Darren Appleton and Chris Melling from Europe, Rodney got visibly upset.  Being deep in the crowd, we couldn't hear what happened, what he was saying, or why he was upset.

However, being mic'd up, the entire TV audience could!  And boy, did they get an earful from Rodney.  Rodney was pissed!

Check it out for yourself:

The USA Captain (Charlie Williams) even went over to say something to Darren and Chris and altho I have no idea what he said to them, he must have been trying to calm everyone down.

While checking Facebook that night, I ran across this from Darren's FB wall:

"Here's the story as all sorts of stuff getting thrown around.. Rodney was been a little disrespectful first 4 racks of match and nonstop talking when at the table, the Europeans guys were drinking so they started to talk back at him and he eventually took the bait.. He said something to me about our fans ..I just told him you brought it all on yourself and then he offered me outside in the parking lot ..I just simply replied grow up and it all spilled over for a while.. Rodney actually thought I said something different which I didn't.. I don't know what he was saying after as I couldn't hear him maybe you guys did,, anyway later he apologized to me's all heat of the battle .."

The psychological parts of handling pressure is interesting to me.  And we were lucky we were afforded the opportunity to get an explanation and to hear the different perspectives.  Emotions run high.  Things get carried away.  People see things from a different set of glasses being under the gun and upset. 

I hadn't seen the video above before reading what Darren wrote, but I thought it was nice of Darren and actually pretty cool of him to explain what happened, his version, that Rodney apologized, and he also offered the most important part:  "It's all heat of the battle."

Pretty smart thinking on Darren's part to understand why Rodney got upset (the fans and being under pressure).  I commend Darren for stepping up and explaining to the fans.  I also commend Rodney for apologizing.  Not easy to do sometimes, right?

(photos courtesy of Don Akerlow, of On The Break News magazine)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

December PoolSynergy

Michael Reddick is this month's host of PoolSynergy.  You know - PoolSynergy!  Where billiard bloggers blog about a certain topic each month.  Michael gave us this topic for December:  How do you recharge your batteries?

Well, I recycle mine.  Wait.  What?

Michael explains: Based on personal experience, there are times when I overload on pool and I need a break.  Especially during the holiday season, there are other parts of our lives that can take celebrations that we want to attend (or are required to attend), visiting with friends and family, etc.  What I'd like to know from the writers is what they do when they are away from pool...specifically, how do they recharge their emotional or physical batteries so they can come back to the table feeling physically and mentally refreshed and ready to play?

For me this answer is easy. When I need to get back into a pool mind frame, because maybe I've taken a mental vacation due to life's' hiccups or responsibilities, I simply set goals.

I normally do this at the beginning of the year (I don't like resolutions at all, instead I'm a goal-setter), which helps me get back into playing pool and wanting to compete after all the holiday fuss.  But, other times I set goals after I realize my game may not be up to par because of the time off.

Most of my goals revolve around what I can do to improve my game. So, goals such as watching a certain number of videos a month or a goal to practice a certain amount of time each week, are best for me. These goals automatically get me back into the mind frame to play pool; to want to play pool.  Especially when I've had to take a break, which means less time at the table.

Also, as the famous saying goes, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder" (by Eleanor Roosevelt), what I've experienced is being away from pool makes me anxious to play again.  Therefore, the anxiousness automatically pulls me right back in and that makes it easy to feel refreshed and ready to play!  :) 

Sometimes that anxiousness takes time to come back, but when it does, you will be ready (it's like magic!).  

Good luck!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

2011 Mosconi Cup TidBits

The Mosconi Cup was a lot of fun again this year. To see this event in person is awesome! I highly recommend you add this as a must-see to your Bucket List.

Altho the European team outplayed the USA Team this year, it was still an exciting event and a wonderful life experience.

It was held at the MGM in Las Vegas again, like it was in 2009 when I saw it for the first time. This year Amanda and I went and we had a blast seeing friends and watching pool in person being broadcast live on tv!

Amanda and I
Here are a few trigger-gems from the event:

  • On Day 2 of this 4-day event, USA Team Member Shawn Putnam was faced with a jump shot after a safety by one of the European players. Shawn not only jumped the ball cleanly to make contact with this 3-ball, he also cut it right in the corner pocket! The crowd went crazy! Right afterwards, someone from the crowd said, "Who says white men can't jump?" lol 
  • I deemed Melanie Archer (Johnny Archer's wife) Head Cheerleader. She was awesome with her signs and cheering and getting the crowd to their feet throughout the event! She is a beautiful woman with a heart of gold. And their son and daughter made the whole crowd ooh and ahh with their comments, "Go Daddy!" or "USA" in their child-voices as they shouted out when Johnny was playing in his matches.  It was absolutely adorable!
Melanie Archer
Johnny Lee Archer and LeeAnne Archer at the end of the event.
  • Although Rodney Morris got quite upset during one of his matches, I noticed during his matches at the Mosconi Cup that he is actually a very funny guy! He showed his fun personality as he played each day and he would make the crowd laugh with funny facial expressions, funny comments, or fun antics. I had no idea he was quite a character!
  • Ken Schuman is a friend of mine and a top-notch ref, but he can also be very blunt when it comes to reffing and ensuring people follow the rules. So, altho he might have rubbed people the wrong way in the past by being a stickler, he was VERY professional at this event and did a FANTASTIC job refereeing! His co-ref was Michaela Tabb, who is a hottie and famous all around the pool world. She was gracious to take a pic with me.
  • Michaela Tabb and myself.
  • I have seen Shawn Putnam at another event and he mostly complained, so I was quite surprised to see him smiling and laughing and having a great time at the Mosconi Cup. I guess it does make sense to be in a great mood for this event, but I was happy to see him play well during Scotch Doubles and keep the crowd entertained.
  • Mike Dechaine and Chris Melling were rookies for this event and it's quite an honor to play in a Mosconi Cup! They both played well and I was impressed with their play on Friday. Mike didn't fair too well on Saturday, but the entire U.S. team had trouble with their breaks Saturday, unfortunately. But Mike played great Friday and I could see why he was on the team this year. He did get upset on Saturday, but emotions run high in this event. Chris Melling from Europe is a fantastic player and I am honored to call him my friend. He played so beautifully. Chris lost his Mom and I told him how proud she was of him. I just know my Mom is with his Mom and they watched the event from Heaven together.

Chris Melling and I
  • There was one very loud European but he was also funny as he yelled "Gooo EuuuurOOpe" deep from his belly about 1,000 times, lol. On Day 3 he wore a Santa suit from head to toe and during the first break he came to the bar and said, "Santa needs a drink, It's a long ways from the North Pole." lmao!  One of my friends told me they were impressed he hadn't got into a fight based the amount of alcohol he had consumed each day during the event, lol.

  • And altho I was one of the one's who didn't like the choice for USA Captain, I was told on Sunday that he was the hardest working USA team they had ever seen. We all wouldn't know that, because it's behind the scenes, but that's what I was told by one of the Matchroom guys.
Next year we go back to Europe and then in 2013 back to the USA. Hope it's in Vegas again - maybe I'll get to see it again!   Love running into friends at this event. I had a great time!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Stream Thoughts

Someone stated recently, "Streaming is the best thing to ever happen to pool."

I was like, "Huh?"

How is that??

Maybe I am biased, but I think some peeps will agree with me on some of these points. lol.

Streaming at first was huge and the big "thing" for sure.  And, it still is sometimes, but is it really that big anymore?

Streaming itself is HUGE, for sure.  I can watch sport events on my phone - pretty cool, huh?  Technology allows us to no longer be in our own living rooms and watch sports or other events.  Now we can be out having fun and also be able to watch our favorite programming at the same time.

And that is the key:  Favorite programming.

How many pool players are out there in the U.S.?

How many know there is even a stream on?

If pool was as huge a basketball or football, I could see the incentive to stream more events.  But pool is still not popular just because streaming came along

I can't even begin to tell you the last time I watched a pool event streamed.

I fully admit if my significant other was playing in a tournament, I would pay full price immediately to watch him on a stream.  But even free streams from local tours that showcase my friends in matches, I simply don't care to watch.  I'm just not interested anymore.  Huge money match-ups of big pro players?  Nope, them neither. 

The It Factor is gone for me for some reason.

The U.S. Open came and went.  I could buy the stream.  I didn't.

Even if the Mosconi Cup was streamed, I wouldn't buy it.  If it was free, I would prolly watch it because it's a fantastic event to see!  But otherwise, I'm just not interested anymore to watch regular pool tournaments on tv or streamed.

Maybe because my interests have changed or because I don't care anymore who does what in tournaments?  I'm not in awe of the pros - I know most of them personally.  I also am not home a lot anymore on weekends, so maybe that's a factor, too?

I dunno.

I'm just not completely sure why, to be honest.

I do know this:  I am more interested in improving my 14.1 knowledge via DVDs than watching 9-ball matches on tv.

So, if I am home (key point) and there is a straight pool tournament being streamed with great commentators, I would fork over the all-weekend stream pass in a heartbeat because I want to learn that game so much right now.  And I recognize that when I was enamored with one pocket a couple of years ago, I would watch streamed one pocket matches a lot more back then.

"But Melinda, what about being on the stream itself?"  Ahh, I do enjoy playing on streamed matches.  But for selfish reasons - so I can go back after the match to see how my mechanics are, and also for the experience of playing under pressure.  I do love to help streamers - so enjoy commentating and being a part of the production of a "show." 

But otherwise, what does streaming do for people?

People think streaming brings in sponsors.  Phooey.  I don't buy that.  Do you?   The people who put on streams have to go GET sponsors; the sponsors don't come running to them, knocking down their doors to be listed on a stream (imo).  The streamers are out there trying to make a living, working their tails off to provide streams, trying to find sponsors.

But for who?  The small fan base of pool players?  Yep.  Just little 'ole us.

And what does a tour get out of a stream?  Does a tour somehow magically get money from the people who watch their tour on a stream?  Sure, it *might* get a few more people interested in playing their event - but wouldn't a player already know about an event in order to know to watch it on a stream?  And I've even heard of people NOT driving to watch an event in person because they can sit in their pj's from the comfort of their home to watch a tournament being streamed.  This obviously leads to less money for the pool room.

And what does a sponsor get?  Do they sell more products?  Enough to offset the cost of being advertised on a stream? 

Some tours have stopped streaming their events.  And who complained?  Sponsors?  Fans?  Nope.  None.  Just the players who like the awe factor of the stream.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think streams hurt our sport, but I don't think it magically puts money in peoples pockets, nor magically increases our fan base (unfortunately).  And I definitely don't think streaming is the best thing to ever happen to pool.  I wish that WAS true. 

Just my opinion.

Maybe in the future something else amazing will come along and increase our fan base somehow.  I surely hope so! 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Photo: Protecting A Pool Table!

At league a few weeks ago, a guy comes over to our side of the room and starts to cover one of the 7-foot pool tables with plastic bags.

Turns out he needed a pizza table!  

I love people that protect the proper things in life!

Room Size For a Pool Table?

Seems like once a year or more peeps ask via the AZB Forums what room size they should be looking for in a house to fit a pool table nicely.  Since I am currently wondering myself, thought I'd share what I found out.

I found many suggestions and links, and actually EVERY link had different suggested requirements!

Good rule of thumb that many agree with:  Add about 5 feet to each end of the table (no matter what size) and you will have enough space to play pool comfortably.

Just a quick note, if you only add 10 feet to the length and 10 feet to the width, people say you won't have space to stroke the ball if it is frozen to the rail. If you want to play and be completely comfortable without any problem, you really need about 15x20 for a 9 foot table. 

If you don't have exactly 5 feet on each side but close to that, then see what the very minimum space required needed for a particular table size:

Seven foot table: 3.5' x 7'
(Playing area: 38" x 76")
13' x 16'

Eight foot table: 4' x 8'
(Playing area: 44" x 88")
13' 6" x 17'

Oversize eight foot table: 4' x 8'
(Playing area: 46" x 92")

13' 6" x 17' 6"

Nine foot table: 4.5' x 9'
(Playing area: 50" x 100")

14' x 18'

P.S.  BTW, all measurements in this blog article are for standard 58" cues that most of us use daily.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Mosconi Cup Coming Up

My bestest girlyfriend Amanda wanted a girl weekend so we decided to head to the Mosconi Cup in Las Vegas!  We'll be leaving Thursday to watch the festivities live at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.  It's gonna be fun!

The Mosconi Cup is like the Ryder Cup of pool - USA players against European players.  I was lucky enough to attend this event in Vegas two years ago (the venue swaps from the US to Europe every year) and I had fun watching a live broadcast of a huge pool event.

The made-for-tv room with one 9-foot pool table is surrounded by bleachers full of electric devotees and the audience is pumped up with the casino oxygen (just kidding) and the energy in the room is amazing, with clapping almost every shot, emotions from the players seen at every whisper, and banners showing support for their favorite team.

Just in case the tv camera catches a glimpse of me, I've got my hair done, botoxed my crows feet, tanned my bod, and my nails are finished (oh, who I am kidding - I do this before EVERY trip to Vegas, lol).  The only thing I didn't accomplish is the 5 pounds I wanted to lose, but since I'm going to stuff my face at my favorite buffets anyway, it would have been pointless, lmao.  Trust me, when it comes to good food, I savor it with all my might and take advantage (because life is short and to be enjoyed).  Good food, good friends, good times! 

This year, there is a lot of talk on the forums about the USA Captain.  While there are 5 players, there is also a non-playing captain.  The forums are lit up right now with their dislike and shock who was picked.  Not because of his talent, but more so they feel there are better suited captains, mostly because of the character of the newly-appointed Captain.

When I attended in 2009, Nick Varner captained the winning USA team!  It was awesome.  Dennis Hatch was voted in and easily became the most enthusiastic player, played with more heart than I've ever seen, and easily won MVP.  Too bad he wasn't chosen as Captain, or Nick Varner again.

Instead, the new Captain is currently playing in a World Mixed Doubles tournament in China (this week) - as he represents Korea.  Huh?

I personally think that his ties to his business got him voted in (which isn't politically correct, but that's politics, right?).   And that's just my opinion, btw.

Granted, I'm going to cheer on USA because I'm from the USA.  The team is FULL of talent and rock solid.  And I believe can win without a Captain --> Johnny Archer, Shane Van Boeing, Mike Dechaine, Rodney Morris, and Shawn Putnam can get the job done!

I can only imagine that if pool were as big as basketball / golf /football, that this new Captain would be addressing all the concerns being brought up about him, and possibly step down from "Captain."

But I'm goig to cheer on the USA!  USA!  USA!