Wednesday, November 16

News flash: I won a tournament!

It's not really a laughing matter or maybe it is? It wasn't anything major but nevertheless, even the small victories count sometimes when you look back.

I think I can honestly say that some of my recent form is contributed to me starting to give some lessons again. It's ironic that I was kinda forced to do it in the lack of recent success. I It has simply made me re-evaluate my own form or at least just subconsciously go through the correct pre-shot, the shot itself and post-shot routine. awareness is a good thing. When it comes to analyzing a situation, there is no way we could give ourselves too much information about the shot. The brain does have an amazing capacity to process information. I think the post-shot routine, for example, is often overlooked. This is a really bad mistake.

Also, demanding the very best of yourself is important. I don't mean to say you wouldn't try your best at all times, it's just that a lot of players think they a play position into an area. Wrong. You must pinpoint your position exactly. Like a needle, if you will. This allows for so many things. I will get into that later, but first pre-shot:

You look at the situation: The questions you ask yourself: What is the right shot? What is the easiest most effortless way I can play position? (Best yet, can I play it with center of the vertical line of the cue ball?-this being always the most accurate way of delivering the shot). Visualize the different outcomes. Sometimes you do have to take a tougher shot to earn an overall easier run-out. Then it would have to be the right shot. Once decided, visualize again and PINPOINT(PP) your position(including where the the cue ball bounces of the rail(s), if any.). Of course at this point some of you may be thinking " I can't do that???". Well, It's normal. but if you don't do it, you have a very cloudy perception of the aftermath.

Benefits of PP when doing the post-shot routine:
1. How was my speed? 2.How well did I analyze the speed of the rails? 3. Did I make the ball in the center of the pocket? -because if not, it will result in a different position than intended, assuming that we generally aim for the center of the pocket A.K.A "the heart of the pocket". 4. How well am I adapting to the friction of the cloth?

The difference between good players and great players sometimes simply the ability to quickly read the table and adapt to the situation. But doing these routines will get you towards greatness quicker than the other way. Regardless of what goals you set for yourself.

It's important to understand: The cue ball does not lie. Use the information given. PP.

Quick addition: Cue ball doesn't lie=Cue ball will give you very accurate information about everything that happened. Read the cue ball feedback! Be the cue ball!

By the way, wish me luck at the ALL JAPAN CHAMPIONSHIPS!

From Osaka sincerely yours,


Monday, October 3

Coming to life

It's been a while. Way too long, in fact. I guess you could say I got tired of giving excuses why I wasn't winning or what I needed to do in order to start winning again. On the other hand part of it was just venting out. I don't really ever plan what I am going to write, I just have to sit my butt down in front of the computer and start typing away. My thoughts can be a bit scattered at first and therefore I might have to swap the order of chapters but that's pretty much it. Just wing it, right?

Good news is that I feel like I am playing good again. But it wasn't easy to get back into it. It was a lot of anxious moments and in the end just pure sweat. By this I mean just getting back on the road and the treadmill. How silly of me. My original breakthrough was really a combination of physical & mental strength combined with lots of hours on the pool table as well. This time I ran every day for two weeks straight. Lost my spare tire in the process.

Ok, I didn't win. I lost to Orcollo in the finals of the Predator International in Manila 10-8. But I had him. 5-2, then a bad position resulting to a missed ball turned the tide and he was able to come back in the match. But I am still happy I put myself in the position to win. Normally I do play better in the finals, but let's say I haven't been in the finals in a while. Well, since March when I won the Masters 10-Ball in Virginia VS Ralf Souquet.

I also want to take this moment to thank my family and friends who always believed in me and continue to do so. Without the love from them life is meaningless anyway. That sounds a bit dramatic maybe but after dominating for two years a 5-month drought can be a little much. hehehe. 

Talk to you soon(er)

Mika Immonen
World Champion x 2
US.Open Champion x 2
+1 917 434 3324
+358 40 5882268

Friday, July 15

Brunswick ICEMAN Open

The tournament in question was held Jyväskylä- it's a small quaint town about three hours north of Helsinki by car.

I had been invited to go there by Joonas Ohtonen. A Finnish 9-ball champion in his own right and one of the partners of Players- Pool Hall.

Players features 8 Tournament Edition Brunswick Metro tables and a nice bar area. It's right downtown Jyväskylä.

I have to admit it was the first time I played in a tournament named after my nickname "ICEMAN". so it was an extra incentive to win.

The feature table had live streaming the entire tournament as well as one-on-one interviews from players between matches.

I managed to play up to par and racked up an impressive winning ratio. About 40 won racks to 10 racks scored against me.

My toughest match was the first match on Saturday it went hill-hill. Well, also the semi was tough because I had to play my twin brother Kari. Its not easy to form killer instinct against your "own blood". Other than that I thought I played a dominant game. The Finalist, Salomaa showed some nervousness in the beginning of the match and I retaliated mercilessly every time. Score 7-3 and trophy goes home.

Thanks to Players again for a great tournament I'll be sure to come back.

Thanks to all the fans as well.

( Olishan sen voinut ehkä suomeksikin kirjoittaa, mutta on liikaa kansainvälistä porukkaa jotka lukee tätä blogia. Jep jep. Palataan. )

Thank you = Kiitos



Tuesday, June 14

Through the rubble of the struggle

- I have decided to share an image from which I will draw inpriration:

I know the slump will end sooner or later. I am dedicated to work hard at it. I really have to commit. I know is that I really have to go back to my foundation, my roots. The grassroot level of playing. Maybe even watch some old videos of myself running out. You know, like back to the times where there was no doubt.

I never thought of losing, but now that it' s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That's my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life.
-Muhammad Ali

That was probably Ali's most humble moment. You cannot learn humility without actually losing. Then there is the other Ali: "If you even dream of beating me you'd better wake up and apologize."

As far as he thought, humble people never get very far in life. I personally think that you have to have certain amount of it to keep yourself in check, keep working at the different elements of the game. Same applies to any other sport or life in general.

But we all have our "Ali" moments, That's something we can reach for. I would be lying if I said I didn't want to be the greatest.

Sunday, April 24

Reflections of the moment


I'm tired of losing. It stinks. While I'm at it, I might as well share my thoughts with you. Ok, so what? Nobody cares? Good. The change has to come from within yourself. Like sometimes you think you have to actually perform a circus act to turn the tide. I do feel that way...but when that does happen, don't let go. Just control it. If any of you ever saw he movie "The Hustler", you'll know what I'm talking about. No, it's not about hustling, it's about passion. Fast Eddie Felson, right? RIP Paul Newman. If you knew Goerge San Souci you might have an idea too. RIP "Ginky".

Hey, it's not like I am in a slump but basically, as one of my life mantras, I tend to go back to the grassroots and ask myself: "What got you here? When were you the most happiest?". -- Then stick with it. Whether it is your job, your friends, your unique skills. Don't ever take them for granted. Specially the loved ones closest to you.

Anything you love to do, you'll eventually make it. I love pool. Like the simplicity of billiards balls colliding into each other, trying to judge their speed thereafter and guessing where they all land. OK maybe it's not always simple, but I aim to learn something everyday. If it's not about pool, it's about my own actions and how they affect people around me. I aim to live a good life, yet- win without hindering other peoples chances to do the same.

Respect all, fear none.

Like I said, I'm just rambling, but some times you can look back to something and say: "Hey, that makes sense!"

Let's all commit to ourselves in being the best that we can be. Don't ever let go of the reins.


Thursday, April 21

Happy Easter

Oh, the Islands of the islands of Philippines. Read: sigh

I just back from a Beautiful one. Namely Bohol. (passed by Cebu too on the way which is great too) On Monday I had lunch on a river raft, then went to see the "Chocolate Hills". After that I saw the  tiny fist-size(small fist) Tarsier monkeys. Sooo cute. I then had a great dinner fresh seafood by the beach.

Tuesday I was at an organic food lunch at a beefarm. I just stuffed my face with edible flowers of which you have a sample above- Easter colors in your face, If you will?

I am back in Manila for the rest of the public holiday. The absence of the masses of people here is Eerie. Most Filipinos plan to go their provinces specially for the Holy Week. I, on the other hand, have to get back to the drawing board so I can crank out more money in the upcoming tournament and maintain this ridiculous lifestyle. Practice, practice. And...practice. I'm not sure if I am trying to convince you or myself? Hehehe

Yours truly,


Sunday, April 3



Toast 7-grain with Goat cheese, maple syrup, bacon and strawberry. My variation of a French toast, if you will. A real rush that jump-starts the day of travel.

I just made my way back from Montreal yesterday and off to Manila today. In and out of Manhattan. 

Montreal was a real treat. I love the enthusiasm of people towards pool. Like there is a real craving for watching and learning pool. The grandmaster Alain Martel along with his Promotions right hand Danny Dagenais took good care of me. Next time I hope to stay longer. 

So it was one night pit stop in Manhattan. Just in time to celebrate my buddy Tony Robles' Birthday. It was fun to see the crew at Amsterdam Billiard Club. Next time I will see most of them will be in Vegas about 5 weeks from now. 

Talk about jet-setting huh. 

Hey, I did put that maple syrup into use right away.  

Happy Spring!


Tuesday, March 8

Masters 10-ball Chesapeake.

Before going to the Masters I had a let-down in Fujairah, the world 8-ball championships. I had just finished two great matches VS Muratore and defending champ Boyes, running 15 racks of 8-ball in a row between the end of the 1st one and out of the gate in the next. Yet in the final 16's match against Engert I just could not get started. I felt like it ended abrubtly. I had more to prove. I wanted a title badly. So I just had to brush the defeat off and stick to my guns.

I knew I was doing something right. My break had improved. Specially in 8-ball and 10-ball the preferred break is from the "box", which is anywhere from the middle inside the first diamonds' width. Now i just had to fade the jet-lag from UAE and start preparing for VA.

I stayed focused. And I stayed on the winners side. In the later rounds of the Masters my toughest match was against Strickland. I managed to squeak away with a 8-7 win. Then I just played two dominating games back to back against Ralf Souquet and Mike Davis in the hot seat match. 8-3 and 8-1. So going into the finals (Against Ralf again) I rather just wanted to be well rested. It worked and I was able to pull away slowly. I made some tough runs and beat Ralf in the safety battles. I won the match 10-4, respectively.

There is something magical about the Chesapeake Conference Center for me. For the last 4 majors I won three and finished 3rd in the one I didn't win. I guess ever since 2008 I was able to abolish the ghosts of the loss in the 2001 US OPEN final I have been able to bring it.

It's been a while since I felt this good. Although it was only a 60-player field it was packed with strong talent. It's definitely a nice beginning of the year and good to be in form since there are so many majors coming up.

I hope to share some more good news soon,

Yours truly,


PS. Check out my new website and let me know what you think?

Also, check out the related article in NYC Grind:

Tuesday, January 4

New Year-what's in your agenda?

First of all, I would like to thank the fans for helping us as a team to win the Mosconi-cup. The atmosphere was something incomparable. It was literally like a football game. The songs, chants -some customized for a particular player- were awesome.
It goes to show how important the home-court was there at York Hall. Again, I can't thank you fans enough. You
get a lot of credit for our victory. I am sorry if I failed to address that in my earlier blog.

Also, I would like to express how special it was to have all of my siblings(5) there to witness it all. Thank you all so much.

So what's next? Ok, let's hold the horses a bit. I am still on holiday. But it certainly doesn't hurt to make goals.

Ok, how about getting back on the number 1 spot in the world? It's funny, I was really dominating for a couple of seasons but then due to a bad first part of 2010 and the fact that WPA decided to erase all history except last years points put my somewhere in the 30's. So instead of their traditional style of counting the last 8 majors they went down to 3. I have no idea why. Someone shed some light here?

Anyways, I think the Billiards Digest power index is a much better way of showing the players the position they deserve. WPA points events are partial. They do not even give points for the US.OPEN which is the biggest event of the year.

Ok so regardless, I am going to fight my way to the top. It's a matter of hard work and strong heart. Heart I have. How about work ethics? Well, it's useless to convince you or myself now. Actions speak louder than words.

So let's all make some New Years resolutions and go kick some butt. Start from within.