The Grand National Championships

January 27, 2008

I know it’s easy to Rip on ESPN.

It’s ever present ubiquitousness and slavish catering to the casual fan means they are the dome that covers the Sports fans Springfield. It happens, we all have taken a shot or two at them. We all will again.

And the big brouhaha in recent days was about ESPN Anchor Dana Jacobson and her comments at the Mike and Mike celebrity roast. After the anger died down in regards to the Catholic League and their protesting, Sports by Brooks reported that they pulled all coverage regarding to the matter. A shameful move, to be sure. But not at all surprising.

Back in October, a scandal broke in regards to Absolute Poker, one of the many online poker concerns. It seems as if that Absolute (AP for short), had some users that were able to make some really odd moves. They could play for 20 minutes without folding one hand, and then they would fold queens. They were playing poker in a zone. The problem?

Nobody can play perfect poker for an entire tournament or an entire cash game session. You will make misreads. You will fold to a bluffer. You are human. You screw up.

Players like POTRIPPER? They weren’t screwing up.

Why? Because they saw all. From IP addresses to hole cards. They knew exactly how to play every hand because they had perfect information. And here’s the kicker.

Absolute Poker knew about everything. Every last thing. And they covered it up. Why? Because a part-owner, Scott Tom, was in on the whole thing.

Here’s where it gets interesting.

Gary Wise is an online poker reporter for ESPN. He is also the proprietor of the poker blog Wise Hand Poker. He’s a well-regarded name within the poker industry. It only makes sense that a story that big in the poker world would be given the depth and breadth from Mr. Wise.

Only problem? The Worldwide Leader killed it.

  • I can’t say i’m all that happy about it myself. Because I named names, questioned the validity of AP statements and was unable to get sources from within the company to confirm (Nat and Serge were very helpful with providing information, but espn doesn’t consider them official sources on AP goings-on) ESPN has some understandable concerns with legal issues. That leaves me a) wanting to remain loyal to my employers and for the article to get the exposure only they can provide, or b) wanting to post it somewhere else.” 

Now here is why ESPN’s “legal concerns” are nothing more than a spurious claim. If you have ever seen a poker match on the ESPN family of networks, you might have noticed the pretty girl shilling for a poker site.

Indeed. Absolute Poker advertises heavily on the worldwide leader. We all know that if someone who brings ESPN lots of money is unhappy with ESPN programming, they will roll over. But the NFL does not try to defraud those that want to participate in its activities. It does not defraud those that pay money in to the league.

Absolute Poker has done that. It’s a proven fact. ESPN is helping out a company that’s taking money out of your pocket. People have a right to know the entire story.

ESPN needs to disclose everything.



  1. DUH! Why would you think the site would be honest? Computers only spit out what’s programmed into them. There was money to be made somewhere and the programmer made sure it happened.
    Let me guess, you think online betting will actually send you the money if you place a winning Super Bowl bet. LOL sucker
    It’s harder to get your money from them, then a 5-year old kid in a candy store.

    Comment by Jim Stuckey — January 28, 2008 @ 12:19 pm |Reply

  2. James: Don’t talk to me like I’m seven while you are missing the point. It does not matter what you think of online poker and its efficacy compared to Pro Wrestling. The scandal is context. This is about ESPN killing a story from one of its columnists because this site is a heavy advertiser on ESPN.

    Please read the entire article before commenting. It will make you a better person.

    Comment by Andrew — January 28, 2008 @ 1:06 pm |Reply

  3. whats that girls name?

    Comment by carson — February 23, 2008 @ 12:07 am |Reply

  4. Serinda Swan

    Comment by Andrew — February 23, 2008 @ 5:35 pm |Reply

  5. Where can I find the girl with the “Absolute Poker” blue tablecloth covering ?

    Comment by Cater to Me Please — February 24, 2008 @ 10:17 pm |Reply

  6. Serinda Swan , nice name

    Comment by Online Poker Vij — February 26, 2008 @ 3:21 am |Reply

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