The most expensive stick ever sold was made by McDermott Cues. The Intimidator cue sold for $150,000 to an unknown buyer during the 1990's. The stick was made from a chunk of steel that weighed over 80 pounds. It had over 300 various inlays and ended up with a final stick weight of just under 10 pounds. The final product looks like a weapon straight from the dark ages that would cause the shooter to lose an eye if they miscued. Hardly a stick anyone with any talent would want to try and shoot with. With the insane cost of the Intimidator, it begs the question as to why someone would pay such a high price for any cue?
Bar Cue vs Branded Cue
Let's face it. Branded cues are beautiful. They have style and make you look better than you actually are. Just like the phrase, "everyone puts their pants on one leg at a time", well everyone strokes their stick in the exact same way to make a shot. It's not rocket science. If you're truly a good pool player, it doesn't matter what stick you use. Do you want to mess with an opponent's head? Walk into a bar carrying a $500 cue and case, then go pull a bar cue off the rack and take them to school. While a branded cue looks nice, has perfect balance and a solid tip, the key is in how you use it. If you can't send the balls to the pockets, it's just another cue.
It's All in the Stroke
Every person has their own stance and their "signature shot". That's great, but you won't get a chance to use that shot in every game so you better be damn good at all of the other shots you need to make. When you play pool, being a "one-hit wonder" is not what you want to be known for. If you get to know a stick, then you can adapt your personal stroke. It's just that simple. Walking to the table stroking a $1000 cue is nice, but if you can't stroke your stick into making shots consistently you shouldn't have wasted your money.
Who Needs An Expensive Stick
When it comes to choosing a stick the following list will help.
- Budget – Find the right cue without breaking the bank.
- Skill Level – Consider how serious the player is.
- Performance – Pick a cue that does what you need it to.
- Style – Choose a look that fits the player’s personality.
- Weight / Balance – Select the right weight and balance.
No matter how hard you try to justify buying the best stick on the market, it boils down to how well YOU use it. Looking good at the table doesn't earn you the win or the cash pot.
While the Intimidator is an amazing stick, a serious pool player will walk away with their money in their pocket. Only a showboat would buy a stick like that and expect to come out playing their best. Use a stick your comfortable with. After all, pool players look better with a wad of cash in their hand!