In this column, we deliver you the latest and most interesting news and gossip from our favourite poker people.
Nick Wright forfeits duel vs Hellmuth
The latest challenger, amateur player Nick Wright took on 15-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth in what ended up being only a single round in the third edition of the High Stakes Duel series. Having lost $50,000 in the first game, Wright used the intended 72 hours following the match to decide whether he would push through for a rematch – this time for $200,000 on the line, or ultimately call it quits. With a few hours left on the clock, Wright made the conclusion to give up the fight while revealing a few personal reasons on why.
— nick wright (@getnickwright) July 31, 2021
“To be really candid, I’m still not over the loss, not because I got unlucky or anything, Phil deserved to win but because I feel like I blew it with some really poor play in the middle, I don’t know if it was fatigue or lack of experience or whatever. But I had a plan, I was executing it and I strayed from it”, said Wright.
In spite of the Fox Sports host’s valiant effort, the decision to withdraw could be ideal for both parties with Hellmuth likewise, wishing to take on a notable pro rather than an amateur. Wright’s failure to continue means the series will move on to its next challenger with Hellmuth sitting on seven consecutive victories – 3 from Antonio Esfandiari, 3 from Daniel Negreanu, and 1 from his latest conquest, Nick Wright.
Tom Dwan to be next contender in High Stakes Duel III
After more than a decade, the long awaited heads up match against iconic Tom Dwan and legendary Phil Hellmuth is finally taking the spotlight. Next challenger Dwan will take Wright’s place in the third season and instantly proceed to round 2, which requires both players to fork $100,000 each for a total prize pool of $200,000. The exciting episode is set to play through on August 25th, 8 p.m. ET at the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas.
Dwan has been waiting a while for this time and has repeatedly expressed his interest in taking on one of the biggest faces in the industry. Back in 2008 at the NBC Heads-Up Poker Championship, the duo had already faced each other with Hellmuth on the losing end after a terrible bad beat. Having busted out of the tournament with his pocket Aces after Dwan spiked a ten on the turn for a set, the Poker Brat reacted much like his usual self and was met with an invitation for a challenge from Dwan for any stakes of his choosing. Regardless to say, the match never saw light until this day.
Galfond Challenge vs. Brandon Adams in progress
The Galfond Challenge has been a great redemption for Run It Once founder Phil Galfond having snagged three wins and one stalemate match out of his four previous duels. The most recent game in the high stakes series is currently in progress with American pro Brandon Adams attempting to give Galfond his first defeat. The said match started in a live game setting for a supposed duration of 40 hours of gameplay but latest updates reveal an unfortunate dispute across the four earlier sessions and led things to take a different turn.
I am down 48k with 15.5 hrs remaining. @PhilGalfond is changing strategy, as expected, but he is also using the clock to maximum advantage, taking full time for every decision on every street.
— Brandon Adams (@badams78) July 29, 2021
Settling the issue once and for all, the pair agreed to relaunch the match on online poker client WSOP.com, with Galfond keeping his $16,500 in winnings. So far, 20% of the challenge has played through, recording a total of 2,200 hands with Galfond holding a steady lead for $145,000. After a busy 7-day marathon and a huge downswing for Adams, the Galfond Challenge in progress is scheduled to take a break for a few weeks and resume on the 22nd.
+$110k on Day 3 of the online challenge! We’re going to take a break for a few weeks and resume on August 22nd.
— Phil Galfond (@PhilGalfond) August 2, 2021
Daniel Negreanu’s controversial tweet faces backlash
It appears GGPoker ambassador Daniel Negreanu can’t stray far from the poker spotlight whether it be thrilling matches, impressive victories or the latest to be a controversial social media post. Earlier this week, the six-time bracelet winner took to Twitter to post an debatable poll asking public opinion regarding one’s vaccination status.
Thoughts on this policy:
Hospitals will no longer accept voluntarily unvaxxed patients suffering from severe Covid symptoms.
Are you for this policy or against it?
— Daniel Negreanu (@RealKidPoker) July 31, 2021
While it was merely suggestive that Negreanu was for the proposed action, numerous followers including prominent characters Mike Matusow, Jason Mercier, and Patrik Leonard, were quick to voice out their negative opinion about the sensitive matter.
You do know this is Hitler shit! My body my choice if morons want to die who gives a fuck! Your asking to let people die who live in free country and have there constitutional right to not get vaccine https://t.co/fcPNVfIXjU
— Mike Matusow (@themouthmatusow) August 1, 2021
“Imagine tweeting this poll as if “for it” is even an acceptable answer”, replied Mercier.
This is just actual murder/manslaughter no? Guy takes illegal drugs and overdoses he’s not allowed in either? Guy attacks somebody on street and gets beat up he’s not allowed in either? Guy steals car and crashes it, let him die aswell?
— Patrick Leonard (@padspoker) August 1, 2021
With backlash pouring in the Canadian’s thread, Negreanu heatedly replied to a fan saying, “When you assume you make an ass out of you and me. Don’t make assumptions.”
King’s Resort’s Leon Tsoukernik files lawsuit against Facebook
Over three months have passed since King’s Resort’s Leon Tsoukernik filed a lawsuit against Facebook for illegally advertising an online game application under the brand name. The advertisement was immediately met with a complaint but resulted with no action for a number of weeks. This led the unresolved issue to proceed with a case filed by Tsoukernik intending to claim a sum of CZK 500,000,000 (~US$ 23.1 million) for the damages.
Initial results saw a partial success towards King’s Resort’s argument, as reported by local newspaper Hospodářské noviny. Further investigation also found the allegedly illegal advertisement to have missed including a reference to gambling addiction prevention – a ruling in which all Czech casinos are required to do so. To date, the case remains open while waiting to see how the social media giant will face its pending legal challenges.