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carnifex2005 OP t1_j2tyfea wrote

For context, Michael Smith has lost eight PDC major finals in a row including the World Darts Championship final in 2019 and 2022. He finally got over the hump.


Vahrez_ t1_j2tyooh wrote

Think its important to mention that he won the second to last major for his first ever.


aflickering t1_j2tzwl9 wrote

yeah. many of us were saying that once he gets the first one the floodgates are gonna open, and so it's proving! in terms of natural talent he's top 2 or 3 all time IMO, now he's got his head right i'll be quite surprised if this isn't the most common WC final pairing over the next decade.


BasTiix3 t1_j2ur8ul wrote

Im all here for the "rivalry".

I was literally screaming when that D12 hit god damn


Nek0maniac t1_j2vsix1 wrote

I know, it's stupid to hype up some newcommer, but I truly feel like we could see an era of three dominating players actually, if Josh Rock keeps performing the way he did in the last months. At least I really hope so, because he is fucking exciting to watch


aflickering t1_j2wsyed wrote

realistically there are several other players who have that kind of ceiling too. if we can see the version of price that won the worlds and dominated the grand slam, the world title-winning level from wright, 2020 era van den bergh (untouchable for a bit), world title-winning level from cross (seems to be slowly coming back), 2021 version of clayton, plus continued progression from other ridiculous talents like humphries, van duijvenbode, dareisay beau, etc, and we could have a golden age on our hands. i’m sure we won’t see all of those players peaking at the same time, but if even a couple of them do alongside the 3 mentioned then it’s gonna be carnage! and i haven’t even mentioned cullen, noppert, aspinall, searle, de sousa, r smith, heta etc, all of whom have a hell of an A game.


Nek0maniac t1_j2wxa4h wrote

Oh, I absolutely agree with you. The coming years may be the best years for Darts ever. Sure, there will never be another Taylor, or Bristow, or Lowe, but those are legends for more reasons than just their talent. But the level of play will be incredible over the next few years, probably better than it ever was. I can't wait to see where the current generation of players will lead us


Ammo89 t1_j2ymcn4 wrote

Who was the other kind of short older man that was always in the finals. Felt like any time I saw darts on sports channel there he was. This bald guy MVG, also some dude with a either braided beard or long rat tail.


aflickering t1_j2ymzix wrote

that’d be phil taylor, the greatest ever (won 14 of the last 25 world championships). he’s from my town! and you may be thinking of simon whitlock, the aussie number 1 for many years (although overtaken recently), actually won them the darts world cup for the first time in 2022.


Ammo89 t1_j30yqbb wrote

Just googled those names. Exactly the faces I was thinking of. Crazy how long they stayed at the top.


aflickering t1_j31dxx1 wrote

that’s a fun thing about darts, you have guys who go into freefall in their 20s but then you have others who don’t even emerge at the top level until their 40s. there are players in the top 50 in the world who are well into their 50s in age and played their first world championships back in the 90s when i was a kid watching it on the bbc.

at the other end of the spectrum, another exciting thing about the game right now is that arguably the best teenager in the world is female. women’s darts has made some strides lately and a woman beat a couple of men at the world championship a few years back, but this kid beau greaves is a different animal, so that’s gonna be interesting to follow.


MusicaParaVolar t1_j2ypr1n wrote

Is this why the title says he was "born" for this? I don't quite get that part....


carnifex2005 OP t1_j34way0 wrote

Imagine if Rafa Nadal lost a ton of majors in a row to start off his career then finally won a major then winning a world championship. That is sort of akin to Michael Smith. A very good youth player (now the only player to win both the youth and men's world championships), and now looking like he'll be #1 for a while.


badquarter t1_j2tz9yo wrote


faketan11 t1_j2u2fji wrote

man, i don't know shit about darts, i'll keep knowing shit about darts but i'm just glad this sport exists


ParadisePete t1_j2u8t5w wrote

Do you know shit or do you not know shit?


TwoTinyTrees t1_j2utqf5 wrote

Shit, I don’t know.


Jlx_27 t1_j2uyah9 wrote

And if you're good enough, it pays millions.


ShawshankException t1_j2ybdee wrote

Basically you just watched a perfect game and a near perfect game.

Imagine in baseball you watch both pitchers make it to the 9th inning on a perfect game but one blows it on the last out, but the other completes it.


adambadam t1_j2v45e4 wrote

If the first guy had hit it in nine would that have been the leg or would the other guy have had a chance to match to throw his 7-9 darts?


ProffesorSpitfire t1_j2w32bc wrote

Wow, I never knew Darts was a spectator sport. And popular enough to cram hundreds of people into an arena.


RobynLongstride35 t1_j2x7uoj wrote

80,000 people over 15 days of darts! Bucket list to attend one of these events!


MusicaParaVolar t1_j2ypns9 wrote

One thing I've learned is that for ANY new thing you learn about, there are going to be some seriously obsessed people with that thing. It is also likely to be outrageously expensive at some levels.

Like, I know literally NOTHING about darts but I guarantee you there are sets of darts that cost thousands of dollars but probably "fly" (or whatever) just as well as cheaper sets.


Vahrez_ t1_j2tyheo wrote

What a ridiculous final.

I’m still bewildered by the 9-darter.

Wow, Smith will go on to win more World Championships now, I’m sure of it.


iheartmagic t1_j2uecoo wrote

Never really followed darts. Are 9 darts the minimum amount of darts you can throw in a leg to win it? Was it like a the perfect performance at the most clutch time imaginable type of thing?


Vahrez_ t1_j2ueyfm wrote

Yeah 9 darts is the minimum. In essence, Smith threw 9 perfect darts in a row, and MVG threw 8.

That I know of, 2 players being on 9 darters and only 1 dart missing has never happened before until tonight.

It was really early on in the game, so no way to know for sure how definitive it was - but he broke MVG’s throw (he won the leg in which he threw second so he was at a disadvantage) and he needed to do so to win the set.


Significant-Mud2572 t1_j2v0rt3 wrote

The MVG guy was like less than 3/4s of an inch from hitting 9 as well.


daneats t1_j2yflio wrote

He was probably less than 1/3rd of an inch away.


chiguy2387 t1_j2ufe74 wrote

Yes, it is the least amount of darts needed to come a 501 leg. What made this one great was that both players had 6 perfect darts to start the leg, Van Gerwen missed the Double 12 needed to win the leg and Smith came up and completed his right after.


yeotajmu t1_j2vmxaq wrote

It's basically bowling a perfect game in the world championship of bowling

Or like a golfer tied for the lead getting a hole in 1 at Augusta's 16th on Sunday

Or throwing a no hitter in the world series



Brsijraz t1_j2vzc8e wrote

but perfect games aren’t THAT rare and a hole in one at the masters nevermind on sunday is supremely rare.


yeotajmu t1_j2wxvpr wrote

There's been 23 hole in one's at 16 at the masters. 33 hole in one's at Augusta if you include other holes.

There's now been two 9 dart legs in a world final.

There's been 34 televised 300s, 2 of which came in the PBC championship.


twokietookie t1_j2xwie2 wrote

We'd have to adjust for # of attempts or something for this to mean anything. The golfing field is much larger than the other sports.


yeotajmu t1_j2xznzv wrote

And golfers get 1 attempt per round where a dart player may have 30 legs in a match

Golf has also been around much longer

But use your brain and you can see how it "means something"


Chonaic17 t1_j2wjewh wrote

Perfect games are significantly rarer than holes in one at the masters, there's usually about 1 HIO every year, though both are extremely rare and cool to see.


aflickering t1_j2tzgjx wrote

Click here for the "greatest leg in darts history" everyone will be mentioning.


The_Celtic_Chemist t1_j2uto8z wrote


Seriously though, I was very surprised to see that slow mo of how he threw the dart @ 1:18. It wasn't straight at all like I'd expect.


NornIronLad t1_j2yspg6 wrote

The flights on the dart are responsible for that. You could throw a dart backwards and it will flip and right itself in mid-air.


dont_worry_im_here t1_j2unkdy wrote

Can you ELI5 to all of us what a "9-darter" is?


DDougie t1_j2uo110 wrote

It's the minimum amount of darts you need to win a game of 501. Basically a "perfect game".


dont_worry_im_here t1_j2uo8gd wrote

So is 501 the points needed and he had 9 dart throws to get there or something?


DDougie t1_j2uq3sx wrote

Yes they start at 501 and go down from there, needing to hit a double to win (so if you have 40 points left you need to hit a double 20). He can throw as many as he needs to win, but the minimum possible is 9 darts.

Traditionally its 3 Triple 20s (180 points) on turn 1, 3 Triple 20s (180 points) on turn 2, then Triple 20 Triple 19 Double 12 (141 points). There are other combinations that work, but that's the standard.


C_IsForCookie t1_j2uy0tg wrote

What happens if he gets more than 141 points in the last turn? Or goes below 0?


DDougie t1_j2uykco wrote

If you go over (or leave just 1) you bust and your whole score for that turn doesn't count. So if you have 141 and get 150, your turn ends and you go back to 141.


thepotplant t1_j2vebys wrote

Lol, if I ever tried darts I would 100% get stuck for 5 months on a score of 3.


Oomeegoolies t1_j2wkob4 wrote

Yeah that's normal.

You tend to play single checkout when you first start playing because of how hard it is to checkout on doubles.

After a few months of decent play you can move to double checkout.


meetchu t1_j2uyyzp wrote

It's a bust. You need to end on a double, and need to score the exact amount.


ThePrideOfKrakow t1_j2v3znt wrote

So do you automatically bust if there's no double for an odd number on your final throw?


slublueman t1_j2vjpac wrote

The only way that can happen is if you get down to 1 point, and yes


meetchu t1_j2vzru5 wrote

A pro would usually have to deliberately make that happen, but you basically lose the leg yeah.


itstinksitellya t1_j2ux9qv wrote

How come 20-19-12 on turn three is the standard?

Do people like throwing at 12 better tha throwing at 11?


DDougie t1_j2uyv0r wrote

It's just how the math works out. You have 141 left and the most common triples are 20 and 19 which leave you at 24 (or double 12) as standard.

But even when not on a 9 darter, double 12 is preferred over double 11 by most players, especially professionals because if you miss and hit a single 12 you are still on a double (double 6).


itstinksitellya t1_j2uzpth wrote

Oh gotcha - forgot the last one was a double not a triple.

If you went 20-20 you’re left with 21 left and there’s no double available.

Thx for the explanation.


SpicyDaddyKyle t1_j2upru6 wrote

Yes, 9 darts thrown to score exactly 501 points with the last dart hitting a double. Any miss outside the tiny red/green segments would've extended the leg to 10 darts minimum.


kellogg76 t1_j2uqngt wrote

You start on 501, and have to get to zero, ending on a double or the bullseye.

Smith hit 180 (60+60+60), 180 (60+60+60), and then 141 (60, 60, 24 as double 12) to do a nine darter in a world final. Incredible stuff.


Kinglink t1_j2w1hen wrote

Your math for the 141 is off. One of them is a Triple 19, not triple 20.


Kinglink t1_j2w1fpl wrote

small thing. "He used" not "Had".

if you don't hit 501 in 9 darts (or go over), you keep playing.

9-darts is the minimum possible. Plus you get sets of three darts, so going to 10 darts, gives your opponent a turn.


SensationalM t1_j2v0scs wrote

the only thing i'll clarify here is that, while you're right, perfect game does bring to mind baseball, and this is much more common than that

much more comparable to an immaculate inning - 3 strikeouts on 9 pitches, or in other words 9 perfect pitches in a row


TurboMuff t1_j2vnv39 wrote

There were only 2 nine dart legs in history until 2002. An improvement in technology has meant they are more common now (although still rare), but historically a 9 darter was the rarest of the rare.


SensationalM t1_j2voa3a wrote

wrong...there were only 2 televised 9-dart legs prior to 2002...that doesn't mean they weren't happening


TurboMuff t1_j2vobsb wrote

Yea, and I'm sure there were little league perfect games, but we don't count those either


SensationalM t1_j2vomjk wrote

but do we count professional baseball stats from before there was television?


jfl_cmmnts t1_j2x0v0m wrote

Dude I can throw a perfect inning, just get my sister up there batting, she'll swing at ANYTHING I strike her out every time. Now have that pitcher hit strike-zone dead centre 9 times in a row - that's the equivalent. Also have him do it under TV lights (if you've ever been on TV you know it's HOT up there) and with a thousand fans screaming in the same room


SensationalM t1_j2xcczc wrote

this is a terrible take for so many reasons

>Dude I can throw a perfect inning, just get my sister up there batting, she'll swing at ANYTHING I strike her out every time.

i'm not comparing a 9 dart leg in the world championships to you striking out your sister...i'm comparing it to facing the best hitters on the planet

>Now have that pitcher hit strike-zone dead centre 9 times in a row - that's the equivalent

no it isn't because, the same way MVG or whoever isn't trying to hit the exact same spot every time, neither is a pitcher...a pitcher is trying to hit his spot, which isn't always right down the dick, same with darts...they're not up there aiming for 9 double corks every leg...not to mention, if you divide the strike zone into 9 equal boxes, so there's one right in the middle, 99% of professional pitchers (meaning all the way down to rookie ball) can hit that middle box 9/9 probably 99% of the time, it's not that hard; you literally picked an easier task for your equivalency

>Also have him do it under TV lights (if you've ever been on TV you know it's HOT up there) and with a thousand fans screaming in the same room

the world record for people at a darts event is about 1/3 of Yankee Stadium's average for last season, and they play outdoors in the summer...i think they'll be fine "under the lights with screaming fans"

since 1984, which was the first televised perfect leg...

perfect games (MLB) - 13

televised 9-dart legs - 72 (which means there were more professional 9-dart legs not televised...since 2007 there have been approx. 4 per year televised; if we assume 4 per year total going back to 1984, it's closer to 150)

immaculate innings (MLB) - 85

to say that a perfect leg in darts is similar in rarity to a perfect game in baseball, when one happens more than 5x as often is insane


aflickering t1_j2u3w3k wrote


Feels like I've been waiting for this day for half my life. So proud of my boy! It's hard to explain to those who don't watch darts all year round just how many agonising disappointments this man has gone through to get to this point. Given that to my mind he is probably one of the top 3 most naturally talented darts players to ever live, his career, while still very good, has been a series of calamitous near misses which unfortunately came to define him and weigh upon him. Many of us always said that if he finally got over the line in a big one, as he did in the grand slam two months ago, the floodgates would open.

Well... here comes the flood.


Dan19_82 t1_j2womym wrote

I couldn't work out why he was saying Spake unless he was joking saying it jokingly because he couldn't Speak out of shock . Still a weird thing to say.


aflickering t1_j2wopml wrote

that’s simple: it’s because he couldn’t spake.


xenglandx t1_j2u4ra6 wrote

Why was he born to be WC?


emale27 t1_j2u72vg wrote

He was born after his dad gave his mam a quick 9 dart finish.


muffalowing t1_j2uefss wrote

I dont follow darts but sounds like he's very naturally talented and many people pegged him to be one of the greats but he's come up short several times in the big moment but has now won 2 big ones including This world's recently.


proriin t1_j2uidnc wrote

Idk look at him. Looks like a dart guy to me. Simple make him champ.


Jlx_27 t1_j2uyi8b wrote

Its a journo coming up with a cringe headline. It worked too, its been all over twitter.


CondorPerplex t1_j2vtv8g wrote

From a Dutch perspective we were quite confident Van Gerwen would take the title, with an average of 104 (compared to 97 for Smith), winning his half final 6 to 0, the quarter 5 to 0 and Round 4 at 4 to 1.

I was surprised to reas this morning Van Gerwen lost.


sheargraphix t1_j2w3m0x wrote

Out of interest, how big is darts in the Netherlands? I don't really watch it but when it's in there's always at least a few Dutch players.


Nek0maniac t1_j2wcot2 wrote

Netherlands is the biggest market for darts right after the UK and Ireland and also has some of the very best players in the world. Though currently Germany is also on the rise and will probably overtake the Netherlands, once there is a German icon in darts, like Raymond van Barneveld or Michael van Gerven are for the Netherlands.


jfl_cmmnts t1_j2x163x wrote

> once there is a German icon in darts

You've got a couple of VERY promising guys right now. Max Hopp is going to have to improve his game significantly in order to stay near the top of German players


devildance3 t1_j2w6ar0 wrote

MvG was an absolute legend on Twitter after the match. Gracious in defeat and full of praise for the new champ. A true champion indeed.


ChillyChocolate t1_j2wiclp wrote

Same for Smith in the post match interview. Nothing but respect towards MvG. Love to see it


devildance3 t1_j2wqaml wrote

Watch the darts occasionally, buts it’s behaviour and match play like this that’s gonna make me watch more. Gerwyn Price…nah


wannacreamcake t1_j2xc4fv wrote

Gezzy is generally super gracious after every loss. Everyone on the tour will tell you he's one of the nicest blokes on there as well. It's just his on stage antics that can grate on people, and they extrapolate that to the rest of his personality


jerschneid t1_j2uealt wrote

Why did he go for double 8 at the end instead of single 16?


Difficult-Speech-270 t1_j2ul797 wrote

As was mentioned, you need to finish on a double OR with the bullseye.


IWearACharizardHat t1_j2us29m wrote

Are the triples harder to hit than a bullseye? I kind of wish the optimum strategy was to always go for the bullseye, though I understand there isn't room for that many darts if they both need to keep throwing at it


irze t1_j2w0q9w wrote

Just to add to what others have said, the bullseye can be a bit risky to go for at times. Because it’s in the centre of the board, you can effectively accidentally hit any single number, which can fuck up your out-shot and make it more awkward to check out. You’ll often see them give up a chance to finish with a bullseye if the other player is far enough behind for this exact reason


IWearACharizardHat t1_j2w1e6j wrote

Right so basically the bullseye requires more skill than the other spots that are targeted. Disappointing. A variation with darts closer to classic archery arrows where you could physically split the opponent's to steal a bullseye would be much more entertaining to watch even if actually designing them that way for home usage isn't rational.


Certs t1_j2wy2zr wrote

> Right so basically the bullseye requires more skill than the other spots that are targeted.

I don't think you're looking at it the right way. Sure, the bullseye is smaller and harder to hit, but I wouldn't say it requires more skill. Imagine archery, but the bullseye moves all around the board. That's what this game is. You see them aiming for triple 20 most of the time, but you can't win there. You have to then hit the triple 19, then the triple 12, or if you miss you have to hit different numbers all over the board. If you're just focusing on the bullseye it's much easier to adjust when you're off, but you can't adjust to hitting the double 16 if you haven't thrown there yet.

The dart game Cricket has more emphasis on the bullseye, because you are required to hit it to win, but even that game forces you to hit other numbers as well.


aflickering t1_j2wu3v9 wrote

there are still plenty of bullseyes hit in darts though, and a lot of the biggest checkouts require you to finish on it, it’s not like players can just avoid it consistently. i actually think if they were constantly aiming at it at the end of every leg it’d take away from the thrill of when it does get hit.


zxnoregretzxzx t1_j2uxwys wrote

The trebles have a bigger surface area than the bullseye, so they're easier to hit with more space for your three darts, while also being worth more in the case of T17-T20. In soft tip darts (played on dartboards with holes in them) players usually aim exclusively for the bullseye as both the inner and outer part are worth 50 points (rather than 50 for the inner and 25 for the outer) and therefore has a bigger surface area, allowing for more consistent scoring and less risk than going the trebles.


SensationalM t1_j2v106k wrote

there are soft tip dartboards with single and double corks though


Benzaah t1_j2ualxt wrote

Not afraid to say it brought a tear to my eye when he clinched the win. Bloody fantastic


Nek0maniac t1_j2vt27e wrote

I've been watching darts for a while now and loved it, but this was the first time I got emotional over any kind of sports event. He worked so hard for this title and got so close multiple times. When he ran down to his family, I truly realised how much this meant to them all and I was really moved


Benzaah t1_j2vy2u8 wrote

He’s had so much heartbreak over the last 5 years. The game started well but when he got broken in the 1st set I thought the games over and MVG was gonna walk away with it. After he hit the 9 darter I thought there no way he can lose. What a final.


tall__guy t1_j2um4pj wrote

Darts is so fuckin lit


MattyFTM t1_j2u18q8 wrote

Probably the best game of darts I've ever seen. Definitely the best final. The nine darter was insane.


DrTopps t1_j2ubt68 wrote

As someone who has never watched, and never will, good on em


kellogg76 t1_j2ur55e wrote

You should try it, but be warned it’s just like crack, in that it’s very moreish.


Average_Pimpin t1_j2ueyju wrote

The Bully Boy. After last year's disappointment. Amazing. Bravo, sir.


tripleyothreat t1_j2vfbsq wrote

What's up with the "born to be world champion"?


Nek0maniac t1_j2vtexs wrote

He's probaly one of the, if not the most talented darts players there has ever been. Absolutely natural and smooth technique and great dedication to the sport. There have been many players that are insanely talented, but don't put in the work. There are also many players that are not very talented, but managed to train enough to become great. Smith however has both the talent and the dedication to improve. It really was only a matter of time for him, there was no doubt that he would one day lift the trophy


jfl_cmmnts t1_j2x1kdh wrote

> are not very talented, but managed to train enough to become great.

Heh, John Lowe. Worked though!


worm30478 t1_j2uy4ez wrote

Going to this is on my bucket list. And I don't even have a bucket list.


worm30478 t1_j2uyczw wrote

Where exactly is this held? Like the city and venue.


verbutten t1_j2v05c2 wrote

London's Alexandra Palace (nicknamed "Ally Pally" as you can hear in the broadcast)


worm30478 t1_j2v0xme wrote

How hard is it to get tickets? Seems like a fantastic time.


verbutten t1_j2v3p7j wrote

Sure does! I'm not from anywhere nearby, so can't easily help unfortunately


726wox t1_j2vw3ic wrote

pretty easy for the earlier rounds, I go every year no issue getting tickets.

Semis and final bit trickier


GreenBasterd69 t1_j2w2ssy wrote

So choked I missed this. They always show the final like 4 months later in Canada for some reason. Would have dialed it up over the internet for sure.


Mutterlover t1_j2x4jdg wrote

Did his mom shoot him out her pussy and score a bullseye on his birth day? He was born to play darts.


Capt_Anders t1_j2ukjot wrote

What a leg of darts though, absolutely mental


camelzigzag t1_j2x33v7 wrote

Watch exclusively on The Ocho®


adamsterrdam86 t1_j2xmpfb wrote

I watched it this morning. I do love watching a bit of darts but this was next level shit. It got me pumped for the day


Theonlykd t1_j2y45gz wrote

Why is this 9 darter the “greatest leg in history”? When there have been many other 9 darters in history?


SeanConneryShlapsh t1_j2y6142 wrote

Wait a minute..this is the same guy who was a strong man??


SportsPi t1_j2ybbc8 wrote

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hallvard25 t1_j387iu8 wrote

Cool throne Handsome hank


LineAbdomen t1_j2wlewd wrote

right off the bat this sounded like a George Santos headline. lol.


JayNN t1_j2xbkub wrote

Lard face


Jlx_27 t1_j2uy7lu wrote

Cringe headline, but well deserved win. The final was quite good.


borntobemybaby t1_j2vhvrq wrote

This is very exciting and sounds like a huge accomplishment. Not really sure tho, I also now believe my bf when he says he is a pro bowler.. ….


the_alert t1_j2ug6b6 wrote

Destiny seems like a bit of embellishment when talking about a bar game


meetchu t1_j2uz9z4 wrote

How many arena sized bars have you played darts in?