That Stands for Pool Recap

Maggie and Lucky wait for the launch in Lucky's office and Andamo finally comes in to tell them that it's arrives. As they prepare to leave, Nick Popolous and two thugs come in. Nick greets Lucky, an old friend, and then tells him to get the broad out of the room. Maggie takes offense but Lucky gets her out. Nick then explains that he's back to win against Lucky after having lost $100,000 to him in the past at craps and poker. He plans to win it all back and this time he wants to play Lucky a game of pool. When Lucky points out that he's good at pool, Nick agrees but says that his two thugs are there as good-luck charms... and not-so-subtly hints that they're there to take care of Lucky if he wins.

After Nick leaves, Lucky tells Andamo about the situation. The casino owner figures that he has no choice but to throw the game to Nick and lose the $100,000. They'll be playing at the club in town the next day at 3 p.m. Once Lucky and Maggie leave, Andamo calls and books a flight to Tucson.

In town, Nick and his men go to a restaurant and pay to sit next to mobster Mark Langdon. The three men stage a loud conversation about how Nick plans to beat Lucky and needs someone to cover his $100,000 by betting on the casino owner. Langdon overhears them and has his bodyguard bring Nick to the table. The mobster say that he'll bet on Lucky and Nick feigns reluctant acceptance, aware that Lucky will throw the game to save his life.

In Tucson, Andamo meets with J.B., an old friend of him and Lucky. Andamo explains that he's there to bet on Nick because he's not sure that Lucky will win. He claims he came to Tucson to place the bet because he didn't want to destroy Lucky's confidence. J.B. agrees to cover Andamo's $100,000 bet so he'll win if Lucky wins.

At noon the next day, an exhausted Lucky tells Maggie that he has a short business meeting appointment at 3 without telling her what the business is. She's worried that he's exhausted after being up all night, but Lucky assures her that he'll get a nap in and then pick her up at 9 that night for their date.

When Nick and Lucky meet at the club, they tell the crowd of interested spectators that they're playing to 100 points. However, one man suggests that they pay to 500 points to make sure it's clear the game was won on skill, not luck. Lucky reluctantly agrees and Nick wins the break. On his shot, an exhausted Lucky scratches the cue ball of the table and into Langdon's hands. He glares at Lucky, who he's bet on to win, and tosses the ball back. The game continues on and for the next five hours the two men remain neck-and-neck until they reach 300 points. Andamo arrives and is surprised to discover they're playing to 500 points. As they take a break for supper, Lucky tells Andamo what's going on and asks where his friend disappeared to. Andamo claims that he was with a woman and Lucky then calls to tell Maggie that his "business meeting" is running later than anticipated.

The game continues and three hours later, Nick reaches 495 while Lucky is behind at 457. Everyone is dozing off and Lucky can barely stay away. When Nick misses a shot, Andamo has to wake Lucky up but the casino owner manages to lose his grip on the cue entirely when he tries to make a shot. The thugs go for their guns until Langdon and Nick call them off, and Langdon tells Lucky that he has $100,000 riding on Lucky winning.

As the game continues, J.B. arrives and Andamo tells Lucky that they're in trouble. He explains that he hedged the bet so they wouldn't lose anything, and warns that J.B. won't take it kindly if the thinks Lucky threw the game. Lucky tries to convince J.B. to go to the Fortuna and get his pool glasses, but the oil tycoon insists on staying to watch the game. He sits down with Langdon and the two old friends greet each other. Meanwhile, Nick makes two more shots, putting him at 497. Lucky tries to make a shot but dozes off on the table. When Nick insists that Lucky will have to forfeit if he can't continue, Langdon tells Andamo to win Lucky up... or else.

While the hoods walk Lucky around to wake him up, J.B. and Langdon compare notes and realize that they've both been sucked into betting on Lucky to win. Langdon and his man drag Lucky and Andamo into the restroom and tell them that if Lucky doesn't win, he'll assume they were working with Nick and trying to cheat him. The mobster assures Andamo that he won't like what happens if he thinks Lucky cheated him. Once they leave, Andamo wakes his friend up and says that he has to win, because Nick is a lot less dangerous than Langdon.

After splashing Lucky with water, Andamo drags him back to the pool table. As Nick prepares to take his next shot to win the game, Maggie barges in and yells at Lucky. Nick scratches and Lucky tries to explain what's going on. She punches him, dropping him to the floor, and starts to leave. Andamo catches up to her and tells her what's happening, and she immediately runs to Lucky, apologizing. Maggie can't wake him up until she calls him a miserable slob, which brings him upright. Andamo warns his friend that he needs to make over 40 shots to win the game, and then bets with Maggie on whether Lucky can succeed.

Playing for his life, Lucky sinks shot after shot, as an admiring Langdon looks on. Lucky finally makes a three-bank shot to make the winning point... and runs out of the room. The hoods go after him and Lucky manages to lose them briefly in the steam room. When he tries to leave the building, Lucky finds himself back in the pool room. The hoods arrive but Nick tells them to hide their guns so Langdon won't suspect anything. Langdon tells Nick to pay Lucky. Lucky then gives the money to Andamo, to pay to J.B., while Nick pays Langdon.

Lucky and Andamo are left with nothing until Langdon pays Lucky from his $100,000 winning in appreciation of the best game of pool he's ever seen. The mobster then tells Lucky and Nick that if Lucky had lost, he would have killed them both for trying to play him as a sucker. Once he goes, Nick profusely thanks Lucky for saving his life by winning... and promises to be back with another payroll to play a game of horseshoes. Maggie and Andamo are ready to leave, but Lucky decides to have a nap on the pool table instead.

Written by Gadfly on Dec 16, 2018

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