Launched in 2014, Poker Night in America aims to showcase everything about poker – from the lives of poker celebrities to tournaments to invite-only cash games.
The show comes way after the poker boom in America and has to make its own mark after the hugely popular Poker After Dark and High Stakes Poker.
“Our mission is to revolutionize televised poker,” said Nolan Dalla, the show’s Creative Director during the launch. “We want to make poker fun again…that starts with bringing in some of the game’s most entertaining personalities, turning on the cameras all over the place and capturing the magic that we all know happens but we rarely see on television. We want this to be a real game-changer.”
Presumably, the show was hoped to boost the poker market in America in general in the same way that its predecessors did. Airing the excitement of the game and the drama that goes with it, would have re-energized a new wave in the poker community.
The show had even featured a blow-up that happened between Mike “The Mouth” Matusow and Shaun Deeb, when the latter slow-rolled Matusow, to his annoyance. The episode revealed off-the-felt scenes of steaming Matusow to show a “real feel” of what happens on a poker table.
Not “a game changer”
But after 4 seasons, the show has not been the “game-changer” producers had expected it to be. Nonetheless, the show is still airing which only means that there is a market out there that still appreciates these nostalgic poker shows.
Sexual Harassment Scandal
Recently, Poker Night in America has also been surrounded by some scandal regarding sexual harassment and racism. Poker Player Jacklynn Maskow has accused Creative Director Nolan Dalla of sexual and racial misconduct. According to reports, Dalla tried to settle the issue with a payout of $20,000. But news has it that Maskow demanded for $100,000 instead. In an interview with Poker Life podcast, Maskow says that she refused any payment in the end so that she could tell her story.
Partnerships with live events
To further promote the show, Poker Night in America has partnered with live event organizers to host live tournaments that will be broadcast on the show. Last June 2016, Poker Night in America held a tournament in the Golden Nugget which saw a field of 136 players. Vinicius Lima won the tournament and took home $56,000.
Article by Gabrielle Barredo