Sweet Spot With Mike Sugerman: Inside The World Of Competitive Skee-Ball

Mike Sugerman
August 23, 2019 - 5:00 am

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- It’s a sport that takes a keen eye, steady hand, and lots of quarters to play. 

In this week's Sweet Spot, Mike Sugerman heads over to a bar in Williamsburg to explore the world of competitive skee-ball.

"It's not just riveting and exciting, it's a real sport," said Eric Pavony, CEO of the National Skee-ball League and host of the weekly NSBL weekly review show on Twitch.

While some may roll their eyes at the idea of skee-ball as a sport, Pavony said, "They do more rolling of the balls than rolling of their eyes once they actually see a league night in person. These people are as talented at skee-ball as any athlete is talented at their respective sport."

Pavony started the first competitive Skee-Ball League in 2005. It's now in its 14th year and bigger than ever.

"We now have in the Skee-Ball Open this year 17 cities in 16 U.S. states, including Cologne, Germany, competing for the title of number one skee-ball player on the planet," Pavony said. 

The grand prize is $10,000 which is a long way from the bunch of tickets you might have won at Chuck E. Cheese back in the day. 

So how good are these players? Well if you tell them to hit a 40, they'll hit a 40. Tell them to hit a 50, they'll hit a 50. A 100? It's harder, but there are players who have scored a perfect 900 in one game with nine balls.

And the hundreds who play in New York, and thousands nationwide, bond while they roll.

"We have so many friendships. I've been to like six weddings from skee-ball. It's created a community that we are a part of that I love," said Ashley Binns of Brooklyn.

The national finals are coming to Brooklyn's Full Circle Bar in September. 

Skee ya there!