The Hustler isn't what he used to be. But he has the next best thing. A kid who is.
Former pool hustler "Fast Eddie" Felson decides he wants to return to the game by taking a pupil. He meets talented but green Vincent Lauria and proposes a partnership. As they tour pool halls, Eddie teaches Vincent the tricks of scamming, but he eventually grows frustrated with Vincent's showboat antics, leading to an argument and a falling-out. Eddie takes up playing again and soon crosses paths with Vincent as an opponent.