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Top 10 Best Pool Players of All Time 2024 Guide

Best Pool Players of All Time

Pool, a game of precision and strategy, has seen its fair share of exceptional players throughout history. The pool world boasts a rich tapestry of talent, from the early legends who laid the foundation for the sport to the modern-day icons pushing the boundaries of excellence. In this article, we’ll delve into the lives and achievements of the best pool players of all time, celebrating their mastery of the game and their lasting impact on the sport.

Early Best Pool Players

In the early days of pool, several players emerged as trailblazers. One of the best pool players was Willie Mosconi, whose dominance during the mid-20th century earned him the nickname “Mr. Pocket Billiards.” Mosconi’s unmatched skill and precision set the standard for generations of players, solidifying his place as one of the greatest pool players ever.

Modern Era Best Pool Players

As the game of pool evolved, so too did the caliber of its players. Icons like Efren Reyes and Earl Strickland rose to prominence in the latter half of the 20th century, dazzling audiences with unparalleled talent and strategic prowess. Reyes, known as “The Magician,” mesmerized spectators with his ability to navigate the table with finesse, while Strickland’s fierce competitive spirit earned him numerous accolades on the professional circuit.

Best Pool Players of All Time – 2024 Ranking

There are several popular variations of this game, including eight-ball and nine-ball, and it is played on a pool table with six receptacles or pockets along the rails. Contrarily, the six-pocket is an antiquated design. There are hundreds of other pool games, some created by combining elements of carom billiards and pool. The greatest pool players of all time are listed here. Let’s examine their accomplishments.

10. Ronnie Allen | Greatest One-Pocket Player

ronnie allen pool player

Ronnie Monroe is an American professional pool player. In his heyday as a pool shooter, “Fast Eddie” Allen was considered a “superstar.” He ranks eighth on our list of the all-time greatest pool players and is called a “one-pocket specialist.”

From the 1960s through the 1980s, he was the world’s most dominant one-pocket player. Hall of Famer Eddie Kelly once said of Fast Eddie, “Ronnie Allen was the best one-pocket player I ever played.”

Furthermore, Ronnie Allen was the Best Pool Player reported to have “no chance at all” by the illustrious Minnesota Fats to anyone who plays him for financial gain. Fast Eddie was admitted into the One Pocket Hall of Fame in 2004 for his significant contribution to the pocket billiard game of One Pocket.

9. Buddy Hall | The Living Pool Legend

Buddy Hall

The International Pool Tour hailed American professional pool player Cecil P. “Buddy” Hall as a “living pool legend.” He ranks ninth among the greatest pool players of all time. Due to his incredible accuracy, he earned the nickname “The Rifleman,” for almost thirty years, he dominated the pool.

According to PoolVideo.com, Buddy is also credited with inventing the “clock system,” which is “a technique for where to hit the cue ball, using the clock as a mechanism for where to aim.”

He is presently a member of the International Pool Tour and was crowned Player of the Year by Pool & Billiards Magazine and The National Billiard News three times. In 2005, Buddy Hall was admitted into the Hall of Fame of the Billiards Congress of America.

8. Johnny Archer | New-Gen Great Pool Star

Johnny Archer

American professional Best Pool Players Johnny Archer is the eighth-place inductee on our list of the greatest pool players ever. He was third in Pool & Billiard Magazine’s 2007 “Fans’ Top 20 Favorite Pool Players” poll.

Because Scorpio is both his zodiac sign and one of his sponsors, he goes by “the Scorpion.” Throughout the past 20 years, he has been among the most accomplished nine-ball players.

In 1992 and 1997, Archer was twice victorious in the WPA World Nine-ball Championship. In 2003, he took home the first World Summit of Pool and the Sudden Death Seven-ball. He also won the 2006 International Challenge of Champions, a $50,000 winner-take-all competition. On June 8, 2009, Archer was inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame.

Read More: Top 10 Most Successful Goalkeepers of All Time

7. Mike Sigel | Greatest American Pool Player

Mike Sigel pool players

Mike Sigel, an American professional Best Pool Players, currently holds the 7th position on our list of the greatest pool players of all time, with over 102 major pool event victories during his active career. Because of his skill in hooking opponents with safety plays, fans dubbed him “Captain Hook.”

Sigel won the global pocket billiard championship five times and the U.S. Open Nine-ball Championship three times. He has received three Player of the Year awards from Pool and Billiards, Billiards Digest, and Pool.

In 1989, at 35, he became the youngest player ever inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame. Sigel ranked fifth in Billiards Digest’s “50 greatest pool players of the Century.” 2011, he was also inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.

6. Earl Strickland | Greatest Nine-Ball Player

Earl Strickland

Earl Strickland, often known as “The Pearl,” is an American professional pool player ranked sixth on our list of the greatest players ever. Many people believe that Strickland is one of the greatest nine-ball players ever. In addition to winning multiple championships, Earl gained notoriety as one of the most divisive athletes due to his strong opinions and erratic conduct.

He is the only player to win the WPA World Nine-ball Championship twice and has won five U.S. Open nine-ball championships. In 2013, Strickland was victorious in the Turning Stone XXI 9-Ball Championship.

2006, he was inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame. According to Pool & Billiard Magazine’s 2007 “Fans’ Top 20 Pool Favorite Players” survey, Earl Strickland is rated sixth.

5. Luther Lassiter | The Wizard Of Nine-Ball

Luther Lassiter

Pool enthusiasts still remember the legendary American Best Pool player Luther Lassiter, often known by his moniker Wimpy, for his skill in the nine-ball game. He currently sits fifth on our list of the greatest pool players ever.

Many still regard him as one of the all-time great pool players. In addition to several other trophies, he won six world titles. In addition, in 1983, he was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the Billiards Congress of America. Lassiter was inducted into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame the same year.

On Billiards Digest’s list of the “50 Greatest Players of the Century,” Luther Lassiter came in at number nine. In his prime, he was regarded as the unchallenged master of pool hustlers, having amassed almost $300,000 via bets on pool games between 1942 and 1948. Luther Lassiter became a national hero in his own country after winning $15,000 in a single week.

4. Rudolf Wanderone | Greatest USA Pool Player

Rudolf Wanderone

During his peak, professional pocket billiards player Rudolf Walter Wanderone also referred to as “Minnesota Fats,” rose to prominence as the most well-known pool player in the country. In addition to being a fantastic pool player, he rose to fame as a showman.

He currently occupies the fourth spot in our all-time great pool players ranking. He took an early interest in pool and, in his teenage years, turned into a traveling pool hustler. During World War II, Minnesota Fats performed for military personnel in Norfolk before rising to fame as a folk musician.

Minnesota Fats is the nickname given to Rudolf by a character in the 1961 movie The Hustler. Film experts assert that he was the only inspiration for the character. 1984, he was inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame. Rudolf has been nominated for his contribution to the national popularity of pool in the United States.

3. Willie Mosconi | Legend Of Pocket Billiard

Willie Mosconi best pool players

Third on our list of the Best Pool Players is William Joseph Mosconi, an American professional pool and Pocket billiards player. Between 1941 and 1957, he achieved fifteen unprecedented victories in the World Straight Pool Championship.

He became known as “Mr. Pocket Billiards” after inventing and using a lot of trick shots. In North America, his name grew to be practically synonymous with pool. Additionally, he contributed to the pool’s popularity as a national pastime.

With 526 consecutive balls, Mosconi holds the world record for the longest officially certified straight pool high streak. In 1966, he was inducted as one of the first three members of the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame. Additionally, Mosconi was the technical advisor on the 1961 movie The Hustler, starring Paul Newman. That movie was a major factor in the pool’s surge in popularity.

2. Ralph Greenleaf | Greatest Carrom Billiard Player

Ralph Greenleaf

Ralph Greenleaf, an American professional pool and carom billiards player, has been hailed as the greatest player ever. And his talent and charisma allowed him to earn that notoriety. He currently sits in second position on our list of all-time great pool players.

“What Babe Ruth did for baseball, Dempsey for fighting, Tilden for tennis…Greenleaf did for pocket billiards,” said the obituary published in the New York Times in March 1950.

Greenleaf achieved a record-tying twenty victories in the World Pocket Billiards Championship. His primary competition was in the game of straight pool, which had different formats over his career.

In 1966, he was inducted as one of the first three members of the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame. He was ranked third on the list of the “50 Greatest Players of the Century” by Billiards Digest Magazine.

1. Efren Reyes | Greatest Pool Player Of All Time

Efren Reyes

Efren Manalang Reyes is regarded by many pool commentators, enthusiasts, and former players as the best pool player of all time. This Filipino is also ranked first in our ranking of the greatest pool players of all time. As the first pool player to win two different World Championships, he still maintains the record.

Up to now, Efren has won almost 70 international titles. In addition to winning the World Pool League twice, he won 14 Derby City Classic titles. In addition, he had two World Cup championship victories during his playing career.

In the 1980s, he became a great player in his home nation. After relocating to the United States to pursue his hustle, Efren won $80,000 weekly. In 2003, Efren was inducted by the Billiard Congress of America’s Hall of Fame, becoming the first Asian inductee. He was ranked number two in the 2007 “Fans’ Top 20 Favorite Players” vote by Pool & Billiard Magazine.

Conclusion

Best Pool Players are held in the highest regard because they possess the skill, accuracy, attention, and patience necessary for someone to become a competent pool player. Apart from these attributes, pool players have something more in common. They exude a refined and poised air, grace, and finesse characteristic of the port itself.

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