Nelson Burton Jr. used to condemn players using 15 pound balls after they leave a weak-10 on an apparent good hit, and had for a number of years. I used to hear him say that 15-pound balls hit weak when he was on ABC Sports about a few years ago before they pulled the plug on the PBA back in 1997.
<soapbox>"Bo" Burton is a blowhard who is so full of himself it's ridiculous and I, for one, was absolutely elated when they pulled the plug on him (I hated hearing him do commentary for the latest women's events, though). Listening to him yammer on about "what bowlers should be doing" or "it's inexcusable for a professional to miss a single-pin spare" is akin to listening to Johnny Miller and Lanny Wadkins (thank God CBS axed that joker) browbeat top touring pros for their decisions and games. Hey, old guys, what is it; "if you can't beat them, ridicule them on TV
?" Look, if you're so damn good why don't you get out there and strut your stuff, ok? Put your money where your mouth is, otherwise can it and leave the personal editorials out of the commentary. How's that?</soapbox>
I myself have used 16-pound balls since I started bowling seriously back in 1989, and have heard the cons and pros about players using lighter balls over the 20+ years I have been involved in tbis great sport, and I think that no matter how good the technology of today's equipment is, there are always going to be debates on its use, especially in serious competition.
I switched from 16 to 15 pound equipment 7 years ago and am thankful I did. I leave far fewer 9 pins than I used to and I actually get more
on the ball than I used to because I'm not fighting the weight of the ball in my hand. Yes, one pound is a major difference. Even 8 ounces is noticeable. I won't say it's a move everyone should make, but for some people it does help.
I'm sure part of the reason why WRW went to 15 pounds is because he's 49 and the 15 pound equipment doesn't wear him out as fast as 16 pound equipment did. But, as Jim said, he threw a bad shot, and he paid dearly for it. 99 times out of 100 that shot at least carries the 10 or 8, or even strikes. That happened to be the 1 time it didn't. How many times has any one of us thrown a somewhat bad shot when we needed it and paid the price for the mistake? Yeah, everyone should be raising their hand on that one. I know mine's in the air.
He'll have more chances to take another step towards 50 titles, don't you worry.