'Sweet Spot' With Mike Sugerman: Tough Competition And Olympic Hopes For Foosball

June 07, 2018 - 7:26 pm
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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The Olympics is considering expanding the sports athletes may compete in, among them a bar game popular with New York City drinkers.

As WCBS 880’s Mike Sugerman reported in this week’s “Sweet Spot,” there aren’t many Olympic sports you can excel at while drinking beer. But foosball would be one.

“Foosball is sort of in this pool of sports that the Olympic Committee considers for possible inclusion into the Olympics,” said Randy Sauer – after he put down his beer.

The bar game that means a lot to players who have dedicated part of their lives to it.

“I’ve agonized over matches that I’ve lost; agonized over things I should have done differently; played games in my head over and over until I figure out what I did wrong,” said Victor Lam as he took a break from the regular Tuesday night league he organizes at Fat Cat bar in the Village.

Lam is among the sport’s elite.

“Besides the years and years of practice, discipline, ice in your blood; never get scared – stuff I don’t have,” he said modestly.

While foosball may look like just a bar game – which, honestly, it is – competitive players shoot the ball upwards of 35 mph.

When the ball only goes less than a foot, that speed is incredibly fast.

Real players give up some of the comforts of home to get better.

"I even took my kitchen table and bought a foosball table, so I replaced my kitchen table with a foosball table to learn how to play,” said Jefferson Vicente.

That was back when he was single.

As for the Olympics, the idea might seem farfetched. But for one comparison, amateur ping-pong players take each other on in bars too – and table tennis is among the 28 sports now in the games.

And you can drink beer.

“There’s actually athletes in Belgium that use beer as sports drink during the Olympics, which is pretty cool,” Sauer said. “I think we could hang out with those guys.”

The other sports being considered for Olympic competition? Poker, and pole dancing. We’re not kidding.