My Game with David Rice: Mr. Roboto. ~ Anthony Beeler

A cold breeze and the drizzle of rain marked a cold November afternoon back in 1997.

Shadowman’s Billiard Parlor in Campbellsville, Kentucky, was the setting for the area’s monthly 9-ball tournament. The field was star studded. Players like David Rice, Mike Blevins, and John Brumback, were all regulars in quest for the monthly title.

As the tournament progressed, David Rice and I were pitted against one another in the finals. David was an incredibly difficult player to beat and always demonstrated sound pool mechanics.

Local player, Eddie Adams once said, “Look at David, he is just like a robot. He does everything over and over perfectly!” In fact, it was Eddie that coined David the nickname “Mr. Roboto.” During my match with David, I paid close attention to his stroke in an attempt to learn something that might help my game.

I noticed as David approached each ball he would always aim from a standing position then settle into his stance.

Aiming while standing seemed to be the first checkpoint before each shot. Next, he would take several slow warm-up strokes to ensure aim (second checkpoint), and then move into what many refer to as, “The Firing Order.” The first part of “The Firing Order” is called “Set” (third aiming checkpoint). This is where you stop your cue tip 1/4 to 1/8 of an inch away from the cue ball and take one final look.