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Posts Tagged ‘Phil Ivey’

Is Phil Hellmuth the greatest player ever?

July 11th, 2011 4 comments

Phil Hellmuth may be the most decorated WSOP Player in history, but is he the best player ever?

It’s an argument that has some teeth to it, and you can make a case.  This year’s World Series of Poker saw The Poker Brat make 3 final tables, and pit himself heads-up for career WSOP Bracelet Number 12 all three times.  However, in every case he fell just one spot short and failed to extend his record of the most bracelets in WSOP history.  Despite the lack of titles this year, Phil Hellmuth saw the most profitable World Series of Poker of his career in 2011 with the Main Event still pending, a truly remarkable feat considering all of his prior accolades. His incredible play at this World Series has made him the front runner for Player of the Year honors.  But do the achievements of 2011 combined with the list of unprecedented accomplishments from years past make perhaps the most recognizable player in the game of poker, the greatest player ever?  Now that is a question worth talking about. Read more…

Skill versus Luck. What a great court case this would be.

May 4th, 2011 1 comment

United States Attorney General Eric Holder (pictured) said today that there is skill involved in poker. Enough skill to be considered a "Skill game?"

Today US Attorney General Eric Holder spoke at a House Judiciary Committee meeting and was asked some questions about the Southern District of New York’s indictment of the three largest US friendly online poker sites.  The part that struck me, I think that Holder really at his core is going to see that poker is a skill game.

While Holder said that he “agreed” that the actions made sense, he wasn’t exactly a great sales person for the prosecution.  Firstly, Holder said at the committee meeting today that “We have to enforce the law as it exists and there are laws on the books with regard to Internet gambling that we have to enforce.  The case that we brought for instance in the Southern District of New York involved pretty substantial amounts of money and big financial institutions and I think those cases are appropriate.”

I’m reading a little between the lines here, but my basic thought on this quote is that the only reason that they brought the action is because these companies made so much money.  While I think that he believes the UIGEA violations occurred by the sites, I don’t think that action would have been taken if the companies were only making a few thousand bucks a year.  But because that number was around $40 Billion, well, now you have our attention. Read more…

Top 2010 Poker Player Stories – #8 Phil Ivey

December 29th, 2010 No comments
Phil Ivey

Phil Ivey captured bracelet #8 in the 2010 WSOP

In my opinion, placing Phil Ivey on a poker list has nothing to do with “how much did he win?”  It does however have everything to do with “Where did he finish this time?”  There are very few people that are going to argue the fact that Phil Ivey is the greatest living poker player on the planet.  There are still a great number of people who will conjecture that Ivey is probably the greatest player to have ever played the game, and they can make a compelling argument.   Ivey is at the top of the leaderboard when it comes to money earned in the career tournament earnings category and finished the year with another “ho-hum” $1.6 million in earnings in 2010.  But the most compelling story over the 10 years that Ivey has played at the summer series in Las Vegas has been how many championships Ivey will win at the WSOP, and in 2010, we saw him increase that number by one, making him one of the best stories of the year. Read more…

Top 2010 Poker Player Stories – #26 Johnny Chan and the Main Event

December 6th, 2010 No comments
Johnny Chan

Johnny Chan made us all think that he could do it again at this year's WSOP Main Event

There are very few names in the poker industry that are referred to with the same sense of awe as Johnny Chan.  For nearly 30 years, Chan has been throwing cards around poker tables all over the globe, and stacking the chips of other poker players that have left with their wallets empty because they played with the poker icon.  Bob Stupak once coined the nickname “The Orient Express” after Chan won the 1981 American Cup poker tournament, getting through the final table of the tournament in under an hour.  The name just stuck and the train has been cruising along the tracks ever since.  Chan was the last player to win back to back WSOP Main Event titles (in 1987 and 1988), a feat which is very likely never going to be replicated given the size of today’s fields.   It’s also incredible that in 1989, he finished runner up in the Main Event to Phil Hellmuth.  But the 10 time bracelet winner was immortalized in the movie “Rounders” where Mike McDermott watched the tape of Chan slow play a monster versus Erik Seidel en route to winning his second Main Event title.

Last year I had Andew Feldman of ESPN on our show (the TPT Live Show) to talk about the play at the final table after the November 9.  As part of our discussion, we discussed if there was another player that would have the impact on the game of poker that Phil Ivey had in making the November 9.  I somewhat  jokingly said “Can you imagine if Johnny Chan was a November Niner? In fact, I think that Johnny Chan will make the final table again.”  This year, he made me believe that it was not only possible, but likely.  This made his 2010 Main Event story one of the best of the year. Read more…

Non Hold'em Poker

November 27th, 2010 1 comment
Phil Ivey

Phil Ivey won the 6th of his 8 WSOP Bracelets playing No Limit 2-7 Lowball

About a month ago, Full Tilt Poker released a new series of Draw games to their software, which offers the ability for players to add to their current selection of games.  I know a lot of players that simply rely upon No Limit Hold’em as their game of choice, but poker is a game that really requires a variation of play in order to keep it from becoming boring and predictable.

First of all, I love Hold’em.  It’s my game of choice.  It’s probably the most simplistic of the games to explain and learn, and its the game that most people play.  But every once and again, I just need a change-up Read more…

Making the World Series of Poker Better

November 19th, 2010 No comments
Jonathan Duhamel

2010 Main Event Champion Jonathan Duhamel just didn't move the ratings needle

The WSOP Ratings on ESPN came out this week and the final table numbers were bad.  I mean, really bad.  They were worse than 2007 (the year that Jerry Yang won the main event) which was the last year before moving to “The November Nine” concept, and have been on a steady decline from the 2008 year when Peter Eastgate won the event.   Last year’s table with Phil Ivey drew fewer views than I think most people expected, but this year’s numbers can’t be classified as anything other than a disappointment.

The reality is that Read more…