Running the Table: The Legend of Kid Delicious, the Last Great American Pool Hustler

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Oct 3, 2008 - Sports & Recreation - 272 pages
“A tremendously satisfying road story. What makes Running the Table so special is not the pool prowess of its protagonist but the unlikely bond between two wildly different young men who find each other through an exhilarating, often infuriating game.”—Los Angeles Times

Running the Table spins the outrageous tale of Kid Delicious, an affable skilled pool shark from New Jersey, and his studly if less talented setup man, Bristol Bob. Wertheim follows this mismatched pair of sidekicks as they go underground to learn the art of the hustle while experiencing the highs and lows of life on the road. Their four-year odyssey takes them from podunk pool halls to slick urban billiard rooms across America, some nights taking down as much as $30,000 and others ending up with just enough gas money to get home. With every stop the action gets hotter, the calls get closer, and Delicious’s prowess with a cue stick becomes more widely known. Ultimately the Kid sheds his cover, becoming perhaps the biggest sensation in professional pool since Minnesota Fats. Wertheim paints a lasting portrait of an insanely talented and magnetic hustler who is literally larger than life.

“Renders the trappings of a road player’s life . . . readers are taken on a sweet and varied ride.”—Sports Illustrated

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RUNNING THE TABLE: The Legend of Kid Delicious, the Last Great American Pool Hustler

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Jersey boy's hardscrabble rise from local pool-hall hustler to tournament pro, in slavish detail. Dilated from a recent Sports Illustrated article by senior writer Wertheim (Transition Game: How ... Read full review


1 The Opening Break
2 Hustlers Finishing School
3 The Ribbon of Highway
4 Life on the Rail
5 The Warsaw Pact
6 Kings of the Road
7 Philadelphia Story
8 Bristolicious Inc
10 Wherever I May Roam
11 Pros and Cons
12 Roll Tide
13 Back in Form
14 A New Wingman
15 Running the Table
Back Matter

9 Flying Solo
Photo Insert

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About the author (2008)

L. Jon Wertheim is the author of three previous books and the forthcoming Blood in the Cage: Mixed Martial Arts, Pat Miletich, and the Furious Rise of the UFC. Film rights to Running the Table were optioned by Lions Gate, and the film is currently in development. He is a senior writer for Sports Illustrated and lives in New York.

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