Is Fats a fit?

gulfportdoc

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There's been a lot of talk, mostly favorable, about whether or not Rudolph Wanderone should be considered for the 1P Hall of Fame.

In my particular case, during the late 60's and 70's I assumed "Fats" was a joke. I knew he'd stolen the Walter Tevis character's name, had capitalized on it, and made big money because of it. He reportedly was a source of anger and embarrassment to Tevis, and later to his widow. One wonders if Wanderone was ever in any way grateful to the Tevis's.

I saw a few of his TV shows. And while they were entertaining, Fats' play was terrible. Of course by then, Fats had gotten older. His incessant banter was the draw, and he was an expert at that. For that reason, he seemed like a good fit for the BCA HOF, simply because their hall leans toward the commercial success of pool-- not necessarily toward the excellence of their inductees.

Nevertheless, I started hearing rumors that the guy could actually play, and that he'd been a feared back room player, up through his middle years. He'd beaten RA and Kelly, albeit with a little weight. Recently on this site, Jay Helfert, Beard, and others have attested to his high level play. Others, such as Diliberto, have continued to denigrate Fats.

It occurred to me that there is possibly a "resentment factor" in regards Fats. That he has received way too much attention over the years, whereas much more deserving players have remained unheralded in the shadows. There may be some truth to that.

Still, presumably without Fats' influence, our beloved game may not have been brought into modern times. Reportedly he was a big influence in the Jansco's inclusion of 1P at Johnson City. Without Johnson City, 1P may have withered away.

Because of this, and because of his legendary back room 1P prowess, my personal opinion is that Fats, despite having been an insufferable windbag, deserves to be strongly considered for HOF.

Doc
 

androd

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gulfportdoc said:
There's been a lot of talk, mostly favorable, about whether or not Rudolph Wanderone should be considered for the 1P Hall of Fame.

In my particular case, during the late 60's and 70's I assumed "Fats" was a joke. I knew he'd stolen the Walter Tevis character's name, had capitalized on it, and made big money because of it. He reportedly was a source of anger and embarrassment to Tevis, and later to his widow. One wonders if Wanderone was ever in any way grateful to the Tevis's.

I saw a few of his TV shows. And while they were entertaining, Fats' play was terrible. Of course by then, Fats had gotten older. His incessant banter was the draw, and he was an expert at that. For that reason, he seemed like a good fit for the BCA HOF, simply because their hall leans toward the commercial success of pool-- not necessarily toward the excellence of their inductees.

Nevertheless, I started hearing rumors that the guy could actually play, and that he'd been a feared back room player, up through his middle years. He'd beaten RA and Kelly, albeit with a little weight. Recently on this site, Jay Helfert, Beard, and others have attested to his high level play. Others, such as Diliberto, have continued to denigrate Fats.

It occurred to me that there is possibly a "resentment factor" in regards Fats. That he has received way too much attention over the years, whereas much more deserving players have remained unheralded in the shadows. There may be some truth to that.

Still, presumably without Fats' influence, our beloved game may not have been brought into modern times. Reportedly he was a big influence in the Jansco's inclusion of 1P at Johnson City. Without Johnson City, 1P may have withered away.

Because of this, and because of his legendary back room 1P prowess, my personal opinion is that Fats, despite having been an insufferable windbag, deserves to be strongly considered for HOF.

Doc
Doc, FATS Was the greatest, and could play very well. He was one of a kind and had you spent any time around him, you would love him as much as I did. Kind generous and as his orignal nickname implied "triple smart"
Rod. <--- He should be in !
 

SJDinPHX

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gulfportdoc said:
There's been a lot of talk, mostly favorable, about whether or not Rudolph Wanderone should be considered for the 1P Hall of Fame.

In my particular case, during the late 60's and 70's I assumed "Fats" was a joke. I knew he'd stolen the Walter Tevis character's name, had capitalized on it, and made big money because of it. He reportedly was a source of anger and embarrassment to Tevis, and later to his widow. One wonders if Wanderone was ever in any way grateful to the Tevis's.

I saw a few of his TV shows. And while they were entertaining, Fats' play was terrible. Of course by then, Fats had gotten older. His incessant banter was the draw, and he was an expert at that. For that reason, he seemed like a good fit for the BCA HOF, simply because their hall leans toward the commercial success of pool-- not necessarily toward the excellence of their inductees.

Nevertheless, I started hearing rumors that the guy could actually play, and that he'd been a feared back room player, up through his middle years. He'd beaten RA and Kelly, albeit with a little weight. Recently on this site, Jay Helfert, Beard, and others have attested to his high level play. Others, such as Diliberto, have continued to denigrate Fats.

It occurred to me that there is possibly a "resentment factor" in regards Fats. That he has received way too much attention over the years, whereas much more deserving players have remained unheralded in the shadows. There may be some truth to that.

Still, presumably without Fats' influence, our beloved game may not have been brought into modern times. Reportedly he was a big influence in the Jansco's inclusion of 1P at Johnson City. Without Johnson City, 1P may have withered away.

Because of this, and because of his legendary back room 1P prowess, my personal opinion is that Fats, despite having been an insufferable windbag, deserves to be strongly considered for HOF.

Doc
I certainly agree with most of Doc's opinions on the Fat man. I was only around him enough to absorb (not necessarily appreciate) his inccessant con and braggadacio.

I never resented him, but he was only tolerable (to me) in very small doses. He could easily give our top two horn blower's on this forum...
8 to 4 and the break, in the self engrandisement department.

That being said, he could be a very unique and entertaining individual. He had the bufoonery of W.C. Fields, crossed with the caustic wit of Groucho Marx or Don Rickles.

I know he was instrumental in getting the Jansco's to include one pocket in their first tournament, but so was Squirrel, Beanie, both Red's, and all the other top one holer's of that era. It was allready an established action game. He just had George's ear a little better than the rest.

To say that he was "responsible" for bringing 1P out of the closet, is in IMHO, a bit of a stretch.
Fat's was all about "Fat's", and I don't think he ever even thought much beyond HIS agenda, as far as promoting ANYTHING.
That doesn't make him a bad guy, its just the way he was.

Thanks to Tevis, he gained a level of notariety he almost certainly, would NEVER have enjoyed... if it had not been for the success of the book and the movie. He should have kissed him, instead of suing him. But I guess that was a necessary step to gaining that notariety.

He is definately worthy of a "lifetime award" of some sort...maybe even a "special" award of some kind, due to the colorful character that he always was.

But there is simply too long a list, of other's who did more for the game of pool, (Tevis, Newman, Gleason, Cruise ???)...and a whole bunch of guy's who played it better than Fat's ever did, even in his prime. Just my 2 cents.
 
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fred bentivegna

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What! Are you nuts!

What! Are you nuts!

SJDinPHX said:
I certainly agree with most of Doc's opinions on the Fat man. I was only around him enough to absorb (not necessarily appreciate) his inccessant con and braggadacio.

I never resented him, but he was only tolerable (to me) in very small doses. He could easily give our top two horn blower's on this forum...8 to 4 and the break, in the self engrandisement department.

That being said, he could be a very unique and entertaining individual. He had the bufoonery of W.C. Fields, crossed with the caustic wit of Groucho Marx or Don Rickles.

I know he was instrumental in getting the Jansco's to include one pocket in their first tournament, but so was Squirrel, Beanie, RA, both Red's, and all the other top one holer's of that era. It was allready an established action game. He just had George's ear a little better than the rest.

To say that he was "responsible" for bringing 1P out of the closet, is in IMHO, a bit of a stretch.
Fat's was all about "Fat's", and I don't think he ever even thought much beyond HIS agenda, as far as promoting ANYTHING.
That doesn't make him a bad guy, its just the way he was.

Thanks to Tevis, he gained a level of notariety he almost certainly, would NEVER have enjoyed... if it had not been for the success of the book and the movie. He should have kissed him, instead of suing him.
But I guess that was a necessary step to gaining that notariety.

He is definately worthy of a "lifetime award" of some sort...maybe even a "special" award of some kind, due to the colorful character that he always was.

But there is simply too long a list, of other's who did more for the game (Tevis, Newman, Gleason, Cruise ???)...and a whole bunch of guy's who played it better, than Fat's ever did, even in his prime. Just my 2 cents.

Newman, Gleason and the fag, over Fats?!! Tevis is full of shit saying, "work of fiction, no real people." Bull shit! He told me that same bag of puce in Dayton OH. In the book he describes a rat joint that I played in on Congress and State, to a tee, a real place; hamburger joint up front, pool tables in the back. He has a guy in there that is supposedly fictional. He is the first guy that Eddie plays after his thumbs heal. The old slavic guy that took up hustling after he came to America in his 50s. That was Tom Smith, my good friend. There aint no coincidence like that. Two slavs that took up pool in their 50s? And if you knew Tom, like I did, Tevis's description of him is dead on. Tom hustled pool up until he was a 100 years old! He was a gigolo when he was in his eighties. Big, strong, bull of a man. Faught off a stick up guy when he was 90. Refused to give up the money to a man with a .45. Took a pistol whipping instead. I'd walk thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats.
At Johnston City, any broke, young pool player could get an automatic hot $20 bill from Fatty, no questions asked. A $20 bite back then was a weeks rent and 3 or 4 meals. That I know from personal experience. A guy named Lindy who used to live down there, when he found out I was empty, he said, c'mon with me, Fatty will put you in action. Lindy intro'd me to Fats as a young, broke pool player, and Fatty hit his roll and peeled off a tough 20, no problem. There was a line of guys that went on the books. I watched him play Ronnie, nobody can tell me he couldnt play.


the Beard

I know Fat's speed in his prime, from people who knew, like Marcel Camp, Chicago Pony, Gene Skinner and others.
 

SJDinPHX

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fred bentivegna said:
Newman, Gleason and the fag, over Fats?!! Tevis is full of shit saying, "work of fiction, no real people." Bull shit! He told me that same bag of puce in Dayton OH. In the book he describes a rat joint that I played in on Congress and State, to a tee, a real place; hamburger joint up front, pool tables in the back. He has a guy in there that is supposedly fictional. He is the first guy that Eddie plays after his thumbs heal. The old slavic guy that took up hustling after he came to America in his 50s. That was Tom Smith, my good friend. There aint no coincidence like that. Two slavs that took up pool in their 50s? And if you knew Tom, like I did, Tevis's description of him is dead on. Tom hustled pool up until he was a 100 years old! He was a gigolo when he was in his eighties. Big, strong, bull of a man. Faught off a stick up guy when he was 90. Refused to give up the money to a man with a .45. Took a pistol whipping instead. I'd walk thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats.
At Johnston City, any broke, young pool player could get an automatic hot $20 bill from Fatty, no questions asked. A $20 bite back then was a weeks rent and 3 or 4 meals. That I know from personal experience. A guy named Lindy who used to live down there, when he found out I was empty, he said, c'mon with me, Fatty will put you in action. Lindy intro'd me to Fats as a young, broke pool player, and Fatty hit his roll and peeled off a tough 20, no problem. There was a line of guys that went on the books. I watched him play Ronnie, nobody can tell me he couldnt play.


the Beard

I know Fat's speed in his prime, from people who knew, like Marcel Camp, Chicago Pony, Gene Skinner and others.
Calm down Fred,

You act like I said Fat's was a piece of crap. I never said one thing about his character or generosity. I know he had many good qualities...It is obvious which of his character trait's, made him your HERO !..(but sorry, he had MUCH more personality, to go with his B...ging ! (He also really endeared himself to broke "bite artist's" [sic] :cool:)

You are certainly entitled to your opinion re; Tevis. All authors draw from their life experiences, how else could they communicate to the masses. (not just our sub-culture)

If you can't see that Tevis MADE Fat's..(accidetally, or not)....rather than Fat's making Tevis...than you have a very ignorant and biased take on the whole subject.

As for his "street smarts", he was in a class by himself... But,If you think he was in the top echelon of 1P players of his era, I don't happen to agree. Thats why they have Bascom-Robbin's !

He could outsmart almost all of them, but without his built-in shark, and the con, he couldn't compete at their level, at hardly any discipline...EVEN UP. I also have a long list of very credible sources.

Are you saying the four people I mentioned, did not give pool a much needed shot in the arm...when it needed it most ? Obviously, their contribution, (except for Tevis)..was accidental...But, they had the capacity to make many, many time the impact that Fat's could ever remotely make, and they did !...Your denouncement of them, as a major factor, shows that you were as immersed in the miniscule "pool world", as Jay H. was !...You are just blindly showing you refusal to accept the actual FACT'S !

If it had not been for "the Hustler".. NO ONE, (outside of our LITTLE world) would ever have even heard of "Minnesota Fats", much less Rudolph Wanderone..:rolleyes:... George Jansco saw that immediately.. If you can't, then you have your blinders on !... Methinks you are letting old "hard-ons" cloud your usually sensible [sic] judgement. ;)

San <---can hardly wait for your buddy Lou to weigh in..:eek:
 
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fred bentivegna

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Amazing

Amazing

SJDinPHX said:
Calm down Fred,

You act like I said Fat's was a piece of crap. I never said one thing about his character or generosity. I know he had many good qualities. (especially those that really endeared him to broke "bite artist's" [sic] :cool:)

You are certainly entitled to your opinion re; Tevis. All authors draw from their life experiences, how else could they communicate to the masses. (not just our sub-culture)

If you can't see that Tevis MADE Fat's...rather than Fat's making Tevis...than you have a very strange and biased take on the whole subject.

As for his "street smarts", he was in a class by himself. If you think he was in the top echelon of 1P players of his era, I don't happen to agree. Thats why they have Bascom-Robbin's.

He could outsmart almost all of them, but without his built-in shark, and the con, he couldn't compete at their level, at hardly any discipline...EVEN UP. I also have a long list of very credible sources.

Are you saying the four people I mentioned, did not give pool a much needed shot in the arm...when it needed it most ? C'mon Fred...get real.

If it had not been for "the Hustler"... NO one outside of our little world, would ever have even heard of "Minnesota Fats", much less Rudolph Wanderone..:rolleyes:

If you can't see that...you have your blinders on. Methinks you are letting old "hard-ons" cloud your usually sensible [sic] judgement. ;)

San <---can hardly wait for your buddy Lou to weigh in..:eek:

It's amazing how you took my unshakeable argument apart. All you had to do was ignore all the evidence I put forth, sidestep my most important points, where I name names and places, and then put forth claims, accusations, and conclusions that I never made, in order for you to debunk them. You need to get a job with MSNBC.

How many tournaments have you seen Newman, Fatso and the fag attend? How many have they sponsored, like they do for golf and auto racing? I only know of one tourn that Tevis ever attended.

The cast members of Hustler and TCOM care as much about pool as I care about them and the rest of the populace of Hollywood. Gleason played exactly one person the whole time he was in Miami. How many golf events did he front for? I'm a Sicilian Italian, and where I come from, family is family, and Fats is family.

Tevis wrote a great book. I just dont like the fact that he was vain enough to claim that he invented Fats in his own little brain. Just like the big poolroom in Chicago was named "Bennington's." Another coincidence.

the Beard

I also didnt miss the way you made the bite from Fats seem "dirty" and unseemly. More trick rhetoric that had nothing to do with the basic contentions.
 

beatle

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your way off base on this one dick. fats goes together with the hall of fame like butter and syrup goes on pancakes.
 

NH Steve

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Doc, you pretty much nailed it with every line, including Danny Di's opinion (and probably George Rood's opinion, too -- although he isn't as outspoken as Danny).

Dick, You are right about Squirrel and Beenie being influential in getting George Jansco to hold a One Pocket tournament, but you have your facts wrong about RA -- he was not a factor at Johnston City until later. Cokes would have been another pre-tournament Johnston City guy, along with Taylor & probably Schriver. I do not know for sure about either of the "Reds", but I have my doubts about Jersey Red anyway.

SJDinPHX said:
I know he was instrumental in getting the Jansco's to include one pocket in their first tournament, but so was Squirrel, Beanie, RA, both Red's, and all the other top one holer's of that era. It was allready an established action game. He just had George's ear a little better than the rest.
Another thing that is a plus for Fats in my opinion is that when he came out with his own rule book, it not only included One Pocket, it featured it right on the cover! Contrary to Mike Shamos's article on the history of One Pocket, Fats' rule book was out about a year before the BCA deigned to include One Pocket in their rule book (oh, dear, it is a gambling game :D )

Here's another question for you. The Hustler movie opened the door, but it took Fats to turn the character into the most unforgettable name in pool. Just for example, several other players back then tried to get traction with the "Fast Eddie" moniker -- including RA. You are a big RA fan; well try explaining why a true character, (and better player than Fats) could not get near as much traction with "Fast Eddie" name as Rudy did with the "Minnesota Fats" name? Big, big difference.

I never saw Fats, but there is no question that he was a huge early and loud promoter of the game of One Pocket.
 

SJDinPHX

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NH Steve said:
Doc, you pretty much nailed it with every line, including Danny Di's opinion (and probably George Rood's opinion, too -- although he isn't as outspoken as Danny).

Dick, You are right about Squirrel and Beenie being influential in getting George Jansco to hold a One Pocket tournament, but you have your facts wrong about RA -- he was not a factor at Johnston City until later. Cokes would have been another pre-tournament Johnston City guy, along with Taylor & probably Schriver. I do not know for sure about either of the "Reds", but I have my doubts about Jersey Red anyway.

Another thing that is a plus for Fats in my opinion is that when he came out with his own rule book, it not only included One Pocket, it featured it right on the cover! Contrary to Mike Shamos's article on the history of One Pocket, Fats' rule book was out about a year before the BCA deigned to include One Pocket in their rule book (oh, dear, it is a gambling game :D )

Here's another question for you. The Hustler movie opened the door, but it took Fats to turn the character into the most unforgettable name in pool. Just for example, several other players back then tried to get traction with the "Fast Eddie" moniker -- including RA. You are a big RA fan; well try explaining why a true character, (and better player than Fats) could not get near as much traction with "Fast Eddie" name as Rudy did with the "Minnesota Fats" name? Big, big difference.

I never saw Fats, but there is no question that he was a huge early and loud promoter of the game of One Pocket.
Steve,

You are right, I should not have included RA as a factor in influencing Jansco with regards to 1P, at Johnston City... My error.
His domination began slightly later..He also lacked Fat's ambition, and never went to the extremes Fat's did !..Plus, RA was virtually an "unknown" in 1960-61. You are right Steve, Fat's was a very loud promoter of Fat's...One pocket just happened to be his favorite game at the time !...RA's nick-name of "Fast Eddie" (Newman's character)...was basically bestowed on him, by the pool community...I still stand by the rest of my evaluation, and who cares how many people tried to claim the character of "Fast Eddie" ?

At the time the movie came out (1961) I was considered one of the best all around player's in the SF/Oakland Bay Area.( Tevis' 'Fast Eddie's' home town was Oakland)..Even though I was considered a "dead ringer" for Paul Newman, (;)) did RA or myself, accuse Tevis of using one of us, as a character in his movie or book ?..Uh, No.. I was just happy the movie was well accepted...I am certainly glad Newman's character, 'Fast Eddie', did not hail from Chicago...Tevis would have been tied up in court for years...Every pool player in Chicago, would have been claiming "Fast Eddie" was REALLY him ! (even the lowly [sic] 'bank pooler's :p)

originally posted by Fred Bentivegna said:
I could quickly name 100 players who had talent, played good and then eventually disdained practice and never again worked hard on their craft -- and then never advanced another foot in pool. Nobody is going to tell me that Jimmy Mataya, Cole Dickson, Keith McCready, Richie Florence, etc., etc., couldn't have gone up a few more levels if they would have seriously worked on their game.

By now it should be obvious that my posts are designed to PROMOTE ME, and secondarily help players along with their game, have become fewer and fewer. It seems every time I broach a subject re strategy or knowledge,or a system, or whatever, -- stuff that the world champions at DCC have no problem taking very seriously --the very next post is not someone asking a sensible question, but it's the "Knowledge Jumper" with an asinine comment designed to jump all over the post and stop all further discourse. (He also has a habit of doing it to The Ghost, and you can count on your two arms the amount of knowledge progression posts he has made in the last year)

Beard
The "Chest Thumper" is flattering himself again !...I am not surprised, that HE would think that every post I make, I worry about what HE will think about it...HE has ALWAYS been severely lacking in the capacity to realize when I am joking, and when I'm not..I am only 'anti practice' for MYSELF..not for all the people he "think's" hang on HIS every word..That is why I always include the obvious reference to my drinking, which not surprisingly, sails right over his head.

Of course I know there are thousands of player's that NEED a regular practice regimen to learn, or improve..(HE is a perfect example )...However, the player's HE named, and hundreds more I could name..Disdain practicing, as something they prefer NOT to do..(including moi) All those people he named became quite proficient without "making their eye's bleed practicing"..I think the "Chest Thumper" might be perturbed (ie. jealous) that they "didn't need to practice", in order to eclipse him in pool skills. (you obviously prefer 'insult's, to a productive discourse, so I shall accomodate you)

Being as the "CT" has chosen to escalate our war of words..let me just say this. He might be the favorite to win a popularity contest, against me.(on this forum).. But that might all change, should I divulge any of the MANY, MANY, supportive PM's I have recieved... Of course, being the master of restraint that I am, I would never do that..Even though HE has chosen to dig up every possible rumor, (think "Claim Jumper", Heist Man, Dumper, Liar, etc.) or any other shortcoming, my good friends know to be untrue..! (which is also an insult, to our many mutual friends)

Granted, he has been clever enough to use his 2 or 3) close friends, (or his roomate) to introduce these unfounded rumors,..Then HE jumps in, as an innocent commentater on the subject...So you see "CT" it is YOU who have created a 'thorn in your side', by letting your epidermally challenged, self-engrandized braggadocious personna...to NOT be the uncontested, unbridled source of wisdom you WERE, prior to my 'very active' defense mechanism..So live with it !..

PS..Do not include the Ghost, as one of MY casualties, (if he is) it has absolutely NOTHING to do with you..Our differences were handled via PM..(like ours could have been)...However, I will say this..His only reason for posting less may be the SAME as yours..Dare I say it, ZERO, ZILCH, NADA, NIL, NO, FRIGGIN' SKIN AT ALL !...

PS..I consider Tevis's works, to be a composite of all his experiences in the pool world. I never knew the man, but why is no one giving him his due. The bottom line is, Tevis created a masterpiece, no matter how he arrived at it. Who can deny the impact it had on a struggling pool environment ?..I would venture to say, that were it not for "The Hustler" and "TCOM"...One Pocket.org. or AZB...may not even exist !..That is the thrust of my diatribe. It is NOT meant to disparage Fat's or RA,or anyone...it is simply an unalterable fact.

You and Fred, are arguing semantics...I am stating what is factual !..Bottom line is.. Fat's did NOT make Tevis,..Tevis gave a fading old pool hustler, a new lease on life !...Those are George, and Joanne Jansco's words..not mine, I am just the messenger !
 
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fred bentivegna

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No Reds

No Reds

NH Steve said:
Doc, you pretty much nailed it with every line, including Danny Di's opinion (and probably George Rood's opinion, too -- although he isn't as outspoken as Danny).

Danny never liked Fats. Fats' claims about running 200 balls onehanded etc., and assorted other lies, infuriated Danny. Idiots would compare Dannys real feats against Fats' brags and that would heat up Danny. He couldnt go along with the gag and the legend, like so many of us did.[/I].

Dick, You are right about Squirrel and Beenie being influential in getting George Jansco to hold a One Pocket tournament, but you have your facts wrong about RA -- he was not a factor at Johnston City until later. Cokes would have been another pre-tournament Johnston City guy, along with Taylor & probably Schriver. I do not know for sure about either of the "Reds", but I have my doubts about Jersey Red anyway.

Fats and Cokes were the driving influence in getting a tourn going. Fats lived about 25 miles away in Dowell IL., and Cokes lived close by in Evansville, IN. Squirrel, Beanie, Shriver and Taylor all shilled for the original jamboree. Both Reds, Corn and Jersey, had zero influence in the beginning. The people I mentioned originally were all friends and cohorts of the Janscos. I was with Jersey Red just before he went to his first Johnston City tourn. He stopped in Chicago first. He was near broke and intimated that he had no juice with the Janscos.

Another thing that is a plus for Fats in my opinion is that when he came out with his own rule book, it not only included One Pocket, it featured it right on the cover! Contrary to Mike Shamos's article on the history of One Pocket, Fats' rule book was out about a year before the BCA deigned to include One Pocket in their rule book (oh, dear, it is a gambling game :D )

Here's another question for you. The Hustler movie opened the door, but it took Fats to turn the character into the most unforgettable name in pool. Just for example, several other players back then tried to get traction with the "Fast Eddie" moniker -- including RA. You are a big RA fan; well try explaining why a true character, (and better player than Fats) could not get near as much traction with "Fast Eddie" name as Rudy did with the "Minnesota Fats" name? Big, big difference.

I never saw Fats, but there is no question that he was a huge early and loud promoter of the game of One Pocket.



I guess so Stevo, since he got George and Paulie to put on the first ever, One pocket tourn ever held.
Da Beard

Here is the link from my site for the greatest pool article ever written. A Hustlers Holiday in the Lions Den, by Tom Fox. Tell ya a little sumptin about Fatty.
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1073280/1/index.htm
 
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Cowboy Dennis

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fred bentivegna said:
Newman, Gleason and the fag, over Fats?!.

Freddy,

You almost made me spill my Miller Lite with this line. I'll have to be more careful in the future when reading your posts.

Dennis
 

SJDinPHX

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Cowboy Dennis said:
Freddy,

You almost made me spill my Miller Lite with this line. I'll have to be more careful in the future when reading your posts.

Dennis
RBL.

I would question ANYONE from Chicago, being able to tell the difference between a Fag, a Tranny, a runaway hillbilly, or a cheap Chicago hooker...(or even an alligator)...to them, it appears to be all the same.....sex is sex..:D :D :D

(the Beard is venturing into an area he had best not get into,... with the San-man).:eek:

San <---has much higher standards...:cool:
 
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gulfportdoc

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"New York Fats" was an exceedingly clever con man who stole the persona of "Minnestoa Fats" from Walter Tevis. The character in the book did not resemble Wanderone in the slightest, nor did the Jackie Gleason character in the movie version. I doubt that Tevis had ever even heard of Wanderone. Tevis was living in Lexington, KY in 1959 when he wrote The Hustler.

The question is, was Fats a good enough one-pocket player in back room action to be considered for our HOF; or alternatively was his influence strong enough in the history or promotion of 1P to be considered via the Teachers and Promoters category?

If he does not qualify under one of these two, then he is not HOF material, despite his cleverly self-promoted fame.

Doc
 

demonrho

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SJDinPHX said:
RBL.

I would question ANYONE from Chicago, being able to tell the difference between a Fag, a Tranny, a runaway hillbilly, or a cheap Chicago hooker...
Now that one made me spill my Guiness Stout:D
 

SJDinPHX

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fred bentivegna said:
I guess so Stevo, since he got George and Paulie to put on the first ever, One pocket tourn ever held.
Da Beard

Here is the link from my site for the greatest pool article ever written. A Hustlers Holiday in the Lions Den, by Tom Fox. Tell ya a little sumptin about Fatty.
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1073280/1/index.htm
Beardman,

You'll go to any lengths to try and prove your point won't you. How can you call that the "Greatest pool article ever written" ?... YOU have written better, more believable stories yourself. (Gar, the Iron Man...for one)
It's just not like you to acquiesce.:cool:

It was not hard to tell that Fox was mesmerised by Fatty's persona, Just like Harry Reasoner was, with Puckett when he did the "60 minute" bit.

It's also not hard for an insider to tell when someone does not understand the "real" pool world, but has enough literary skill to put down a decent story, that the average man on the street can comprehend.
Jim McKay... of WWOS, had the same qualities when he was there televising things. Both are good at what they do, but they don't always really understand the nuts and bolts of the sport they are covering. (Somebody like Joe Rogan might pull it off nicely)

I'm sure Mr. Fox took notes, and interviewed Fatty and a few other notables, but we both know, it was because of Fat's barrage of comical chatter, (and woofing) that made him the central character of his short story.
5 years later, he wrote an excellent article on Hubert Cokes, by that time, he had a little more "pool schoolhousin' " under his belt.

S.I. or "Wide World of Sports"... were not noted for their coverage of ANY pool event at that time. And I might add, they have given very few nods to our sport, since those early days, when pool was a hot item, because of the success of "THE HUSTLER"... BY WALTER TEVIS !!!

Sure Newman and Gleason had other interests. Just maybe their exposure to "Sourpuss" Mosconi (tech advisor for the movie) was all they needed to see, of the pool world. Are you saying Newman was not a generous person, who gave away many millions to different charities. To me, that transcends anything ANY ego driven pool player EVER did.

There are numerous holes in Fox's story, I would venture to say, there were several guys in that room, that could have dug Fat's a hole he couldn't have gotten out of...even getting weight.

Danny was probably the weakest 1P player in the whole joint, at that first tournament, and I really doubt, that either he, or Fat's (or Cokes) would have "doubled up" every session...don't you ?

I would like to hear Marshall's take, on how many guy's could have given Fatty a ball or two for the cash. I know of 3 or 4 (including Squirrell) for sure.

And if you are going to tell "bite stories on yourself.... please do not be so thin skinned as to take offense if I tease you a little.. :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: sheeesh!!
 
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fred bentivegna

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Fats didnt steal anything from Tevis

Fats didnt steal anything from Tevis

gulfportdoc said:
"New York Fats" was an exceedingly clever con man who stole the persona of "Minnestoa Fats" from Walter Tevis. The character in the book did not resemble Wanderone in the slightest, nor did the Jackie Gleason character in the movie version. I doubt that Tevis had ever even heard of Wanderone. Tevis was living in Lexington, KY in 1959 when he wrote The Hustler.

The question is, was Fats a good enough one-pocket player in back room action to be considered for our HOF; or alternatively was his influence strong enough in the history or promotion of 1P to be considered via the Teachers and Promoters category?

If he does not qualify under one of these two, then he is not HOF material, despite his cleverly self-promoted fame.

Doc
Just to qualify myself, and defer to San Man's unfounded point that I havent given Tevis his due, I read the book within minutes of its publication. I also read the precursor to the book, the article he wrote for Playboy magazine. Once I got the book I read it cover to cover. As soon as I got to the last page and finished that, I flipped back to the first page and started all over. I have read that book a minimum of five times. To say, Doc, that the character in the book didnt resemble Fats in the slightest is a remark that I wont let stand. How many great, FAT, big money pool hustlers were there in the US at that time? How many of them had a nervous tic? How many of them played in Bensingers (Benningtons)? Lets see, how many pool players were as "dainty and meticulous" around the table as the book Fats? Certainly not me, or 90% of the pool players that I know. Most of us are slobs around the table, if nobodys looking, I might spit on the floor. How about the "light on the feet?" All the fat people I know are light on their feet, right? Let's next check on "coiffed," like the expensively coiffed Fats in the book. Anybody ever see Fatty with a hair out of place, or a dirty or rumpled shirt, or anything other than expensive shoes, shirt and slacks? Apparently you didnt spend much time around Fats, Doc. Finally, and this is really a tough one to get past, how many of them were named "Fats?"

Now to the "Tevis never heard of him." Here below is a link to a Sports Illustrated story about hustlers that mentions New York Fats in an article dated March 1961, seven months BEFORE the first Johnston City tourn. Tevis also knew, and had been to Bensingers as is evidenced by his description of the room in the book. But the strongest case to be made, and no one has even asked me about it, was his knowledge of that shit little pool room on State Street where he writes about the Tom Smith character. I name the date, the place, and the guy, and everybody just blows right past that. This is getting to be like talking to my ex wife. Ignore, deny, and change to subject.
So Tevis knew about an obscure Tom Smith, but Minnesota Fats came to him in a literary apparition. Just because most of you never heard of Tom Smith aint an argument. There are plenty of people still around that did.

More examples of my PERSONAL EXPERIENCES being peed on: the question of could Fats actually play? Didnt I cite earlier in this thread that Fats challenged, and got down with Squirrel, one pocket dead even for $400 a game in Tampa in 64 or 65 -- and ran 8 and out 4 games in a row? Squirrel played as good as anybody at that time. What am I, some kind of bullshitter? Anything I say on these forums about what happened, especially about someone else, I will bet my money on it being the truth. I might add a little color to my own adventures, but even there, if I tell you a spot I gave or received, or who I beat, you can bet your Granny's soc sec check on it.
Weenie Beanie and Strawberry Brooks are in the OnePocket HOF. Fats would have robbed Strawberry, and I would have bet on him against Beanie. I beat Strawberry out of $10,000 in Chicago at Bob Agins black pool room on the South Side; yeah, the same one from the Color of Money -- playing dead even. Sugar Shack Johnny Novak was in with me, and he is still alive. Notice how I name names and places when I claim something. I never thought I could beat Fats playing one pocket, but I did believe I could beat Beanie.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1072373/index.htm

the Beard
Do I gotta go to the 40k he beat Riche Florence out of, or have I pontificated enough?
 

lfigueroa

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fred bentivegna said:
Newman, Gleason and the fag, over Fats?!! Tevis is full of shit saying, "work of fiction, no real people." Bull shit! He told me that same bag of puce in Dayton OH. In the book he describes a rat joint that I played in on Congress and State, to a tee, a real place; hamburger joint up front, pool tables in the back. He has a guy in there that is supposedly fictional. He is the first guy that Eddie plays after his thumbs heal. The old slavic guy that took up hustling after he came to America in his 50s. That was Tom Smith, my good friend. There aint no coincidence like that. Two slavs that took up pool in their 50s? And if you knew Tom, like I did, Tevis's description of him is dead on. Tom hustled pool up until he was a 100 years old! He was a gigolo when he was in his eighties. Big, strong, bull of a man. Faught off a stick up guy when he was 90. Refused to give up the money to a man with a .45. Took a pistol whipping instead. I'd walk thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats.
At Johnston City, any broke, young pool player could get an automatic hot $20 bill from Fatty, no questions asked. A $20 bite back then was a weeks rent and 3 or 4 meals. That I know from personal experience. A guy named Lindy who used to live down there, when he found out I was empty, he said, c'mon with me, Fatty will put you in action. Lindy intro'd me to Fats as a young, broke pool player, and Fatty hit his roll and peeled off a tough 20, no problem. There was a line of guys that went on the books. I watched him play Ronnie, nobody can tell me he couldnt play.


the Beard

I know Fat's speed in his prime, from people who knew, like Marcel Camp, Chicago Pony, Gene Skinner and others.

Funny you should mention, "...walk(ing) thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats" because I was just thinking of Dan McGoorty's comments about Fats:

"I'm sorry, but Minnesota Fats was never a top player. He was good, sure, but not tops. There have always been at least twenty people in the country who would have been glad to swim a river of shit to play Fats for money. Fats won a lot of money in his life, but it was mainly because of the heavy hustle he used. Oh, the stream of bullshit he would pour on people was enough to make you sick. He was afraid to rely on his game alone; he had to constantly irritate the other guy. Either that or he would get his backers to put up so much money that his opponent would crack under the pressure. Even playing somebody like Zsa Zsa Gabor on his television show he was afraid of getting beat, wouldn't let her shoot in peace, kept bothering and distracting her all the time. Now, if a man is afraid to play fair with Zsa Zsa, how do you think he would have done against real players like Wimpy Lassiter, Washington Rags, or even Big-Nose Roberts?"

McGoorty, page 155

Lou Figueroa
 

SJDinPHX

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lfigueroa said:
Funny you should mention, "...walk(ing) thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats" because I was just thinking of Dan McGoorty's comments about Fats:

"I'm sorry, but Minnesota Fats was never a top player. He was good, sure, but not tops. There have always been at least twenty people in the country who would have been glad to swim a river of shit to play Fats for money. Fats won a lot of money in his life, but it was mainly because of the heavy hustle he used. Oh, the stream of bullshit he would pour on people was enough to make you sick. He was afraid to rely on his game alone; he had to constantly irritate the other guy. Either that or he would get his backers to put up so much money that his opponent would crack under the pressure. Even playing somebody like Zsa Zsa Gabor on his television show he was afraid of getting beat, wouldn't let her shoot in peace, kept bothering and distracting her all the time. Now, if a man is afraid to play fair with Zsa Zsa, how do you think he would have done against real players like Wimpy Lassiter, Washington Rags, or even Big-Nose Roberts?"

McGoorty, page 155

Lou Figueroa
You must have a high dollar edition of the book Lou. It's on page 131-132 in my cheapo paperback.
But to continue on with the 1 1/2 pages Byrne's devoted to Fat's, Mc Goorty goes on to say....

"I suppose I shouldn't say these things, because Fat's was always nice to me. I heard him say once on national TV, 'The only person left in the country who knows anything about three cushion billiards is Danny McGoorty'.
But it is high time somebody stood up and said, that Fat's estimate of his own ability is just part of his act. Why his name is even made up. "Minnesota Fats" is just a nickname, his real name is New York Fats. He started using Minnesota because that's what the fat man was called in the movie The Hustler.
As a promotion man, thats different. He may very well be the all-time greatest promotion, or con man. But a player ?
When he gets on television and says he was the best, and that everybody was afraid to play him, dozens of guys around the country jump out of their chairs and try to get to the toilet before they ruin the rug."

Just pointing out... not all people shared your view of his cuemanship Freddy. And one pocket WAS his best game. It sure as hell wasn't "trick shots". (have you ever seen him make one ?). ;)

Freddy, I am not against Fat's getting the kudos he deserves as one of the greatest, if not THE greatest characters, or hustler's, who ever picked up a cue...But the disagreement we have going here, is how GOOD a player was he ?

You seem to want to hang it all out there and say he beat "everybody he ever played", when you KNOW he was getting weight, from a half drunk Richie Florence, and almost every other top player he ever matched up with.

I would REALLY question the circumstances surrounding him beating Squirrell, EVEN...at any time during the 60's. It's not a question of believing YOU, although you have admitedly been known to shade the truth.(or maybe omit extenuating circumstances, if it better suits your agenda)

What is your point ??? Is it because his roots are in Illinois ? Sorry Fred...but, your not wanting to play Fat's does not make him a shoo-in for the 1P HOF..:D:D:D <---note smiley faces

PS..One of my adventures with Fatty, is covered in SMAS ( page 299 ) and is attested to by Jersey Red. (also note the quote by Earl Heisler)...I repeat, whats your point ?
Lets give it a rest Fred, you have your take on Fat's ..and myself and quite a few others, have ours.
 
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fred bentivegna

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What a reference, Danny McGoorty

What a reference, Danny McGoorty

lfigueroa said:
Funny you should mention, "...walk(ing) thru a long puddle of Figeroa's bullsh*t, in my bare feet, to spend some time around Fats" because I was just thinking of Dan McGoorty's comments about Fats:

"I'm sorry, but Minnesota Fats was never a top player. He was good, sure, but not tops. There have always been at least twenty people in the country who would have been glad to swim a river of shit to play Fats for money. Fats won a lot of money in his life, but it was mainly because of the heavy hustle he used. Oh, the stream of bullshit he would pour on people was enough to make you sick. He was afraid to rely on his game alone; he had to constantly irritate the other guy. Either that or he would get his backers to put up so much money that his opponent would crack under the pressure. Even playing somebody like Zsa Zsa Gabor on his television show he was afraid of getting beat, wouldn't let her shoot in peace, kept bothering and distracting her all the time. Now, if a man is afraid to play fair with Zsa Zsa, how do you think he would have done against real players like Wimpy Lassiter, Washington Rags, or even Big-Nose Roberts?"

McGoorty, page 155

Lou Figueroa
You used the right guy to talk about how much bullsh*t and self promotion Fats did. Mcgoorty was originally from Chicago so his story is known to us peoples. His book is filled with as much unadultered horse dung as the stables at Churchill Downs. Ask Grady what a wonderful reference point Danny McGoorty was, and how much you could rely on his word. The only thing he told the truth about was that he was a drunken lout.

the Beard
 
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