Thursday, May 01, 2008

I can't believe what I just saw

OK, this rumors about the WSOP working its way to the final table and then taking a break for nearly 120 days has been floating around for a while now. As others are posting and according to this USA Today Story, it seems that it now not a rumor; but fact or at least we will know after the press conference scheduled today.

To quote the late great Jack Buck (St Louis Cardinal play by play man) after he watched Kirk Gibson's home run in the World Series, "I can't believe what I just saw". What I saw was the aforementioned USA Today article that pretty much confirmed the rumors.

What are your thoughts about this? Well, I will tell you mine and No, it WON'T come later. No beating around the bush on this one. I'm going to come right out and say it. I wouldn't want to delay my thoughts on this because I feel it is THAT important. So, I might as well get right to it and quit hem hawing around. Oh, oh .. right... to the point.


What on earth were they possible thinking? Why would they do it. Actually, it is quite simple. GREED!!!

I am looking at this from the perspective of the player and avid poker fan. Let's start out with the good.

1. OK, Harrahs and ESPN will probably make out like a bandit here.
2. The players will undoubtedly get better sponsorship deals.
3. The players will be rested (which is actually a bad thing for me).

There are maybe some others; but I am going into detail why I do not like this.

Now listen, this tournament is the top dog, big cheese, head honcho, numero uno when it comes to poker tournaments. It's the one that you want to win to place yourself into the history books. Now, I will say, that it is not really the tournament that tells us who the best poker player is. We'll save that honor for the 50K HORSE tourney or the 25K WPT championship. The WSOP Main Event is just a semblance of pros and amateurs going for the biggest title in the sport.

The Main Event has become a grueling marathon while weeding through thousands of players over almost 2 weeks of 12-14 hour days. So the first reason I hate this is:

Integrity. You are taking a tournament that has just spent almost 2 weeks defining what it is going to be and then what... you going to delay the outcome? I liken that to playing the Super Bowl until the 2 minute warning and taking a 2 week break. Yes, the Super Bowl is already live so maybe this is an apple to orange comparison. The real question about people that watch the broadcast on ESPN. How many people watching the broadcast actually know who is going to win? Of course the diehards such as myself and other poker enthusiasts will know; but I'll bet the number is really, really low. For example, watching the 2003 WSOP for me was truly exciting because I didn't already know. This kind of leads to my next point:

Stamina. Again, this is a long, grueling tournament and I do not believe that you change the outcome by giving people a rest. Dan Harrington has said many times that the reason that he lost or should I say one of the biggest reasons that he lost was that the long hours had taken an effect on him and he had trouble concentrating and playing his best poker. This makes me wonder how George Foreman would have done against Ali during the rope a dope fight if George would have gotten some more time to rest. OK, I know. George would have knocked Ali into the next decade. What if a pitcher after throwing 8 innings of no hit ball could then rest for a couple of days before they played the ninth inning. I'm sure you get idea. Nobody likes being tired; but to prove that you belong with the WSOP Main Event elite, you need to finish it out like everybody else has done.

Coaching. This kind of goes along with integrity. Whenever they do finally play the final table, it won't be against the same players. Or should I say against the same players playing the same way. How crazy is it for you to play a tournament for however many days and get reads on those players and then all of that going for squat. Will it make for better poker since the amateurs will be coached? Maybe from a theory standpoint; but the beauty of watching amateurs is putting ourselves in their place and saying that could be me.

Travel. What about the guys that are from overseas? OK, they are obviously make a ton of money by making the final table; but why should they be inconvenienced to worry about travel and hotels again. Again, unnecessary in my book.

So, those are a few of my grievances. I think I could go on for hours on this one.


In other news, I busted out of the Mookie early last night when my 55 was sucked out on by TT. Apparently, Presto is NOT gold.


Fuel55 said...

What fawker cracked your presto? - I'll kill the basta'd!

jamyhawk said...

Silly rabbit: Presto is for Fuel55

I agree with you 100% on the WSOP.

BTW, you playing Saturday night?

Pud's Poker said...

Changng the final table of the WSOP to a date 3 months later is ridiculous to say the least. heaven forbid that anything should happen to any of the final nine players during that three months and if it does what will Harrah's do?

Do you think this will have an effect on the overall number of entrants ths year?

WillWonka said...

I think it may have an impact on this year's tourney.. especially from foreign players.

I know I am not playing now.. ;-)

With the popularity of the EPT, there are now probably enough big buy in tournies overseas to sastify alot of players.

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