Phil Ivey –

Walking The Line Between Edges And Ethics

It’s the poker headline of the week: Phil Ivey Loses £7.7m Crockfords Casino “Edge Sorting” Case

Some though look at that headline and believe that Ivey, the general consensus #1 poker player in the world, in fact “cheated” Crockfords and that’s why he lost his case. But did he? Or did he get the short end of the stick?

In what is a very nice read over on ESPN, famous blackjack card counter Jeff Ma, talks about the ethical line between advantage play and outright cheating and why he think that Phil Ivey caught a bad beat in court.

Read: Why Phil Ivey Got A Raw Deal

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But casinos also have an obligation in this agreement. They get to create the game and set the rules — all of the rules. They can refuse service to you. They can kick you out. They can change the rules of the game. They have all the power. What they don’t ever say explicitly is that in their minds, part of this agreement is that you (the gambler) will lose.

So when someone figures out how to beat the game that they created, how can that be unethical?

It’s not just Ma who thinks that Ivey is the one who got cheated. You didn’t have to look far to find some members of the poker community taking to Twitter to express their displeasure over the verdict as well.


While we wait to see if Ivey appeals his loss in the Crockfords case, he will be forced to fight a similar lawsuit in the U.S. against the Borgata, this time though, if the results come out similar, instead of not collecting the cash, Ivey may be forced to return it.

What do you think? Did Ivey get freerolled or is he getting his just desserts?

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink


DraftKings –

A New Millionaire WIll Be Made This Weekend

Fantasy Football contest pays $1 million for first place, $2.2 million in total.

If you’re an NFL fan you absolutely cannot miss the opportunity to score the $1 million first place prize at Draft Kings this weekend. All it takes is a little luck and the $27 entry fee. Hell, even if you’re not an NFL fan you are going to want to try to claim a part of the $2.2 million guaranteed in this weekend’s Millionaire Maker contest.

It’s real simple guys, just click this link sign up and quickly create an account. Pick a team of players within the salary-cap guidelines provided on the site, that’s really all you have to do. Super simple and easy to do.

Okay, okay – We know what you’re saying: “So, what players should I choose?”

Well, I’ll point you in the direction of one game I think you should target.

Since it’s a good idea to choose players that are playing against poor defensive teams, take a look at the Chicago-Atlanta game. Neither one of those teams plays defense very well, and both have highflying offenses that can put up tons of points.

I like Matt Forte at the Running Back position, Matt Ryan at the Quarterback position and almost any of the starting Wide Receivers on either team should perform well. Also you may want to consider Martellus Bennett at the Tight End position.

If you take that shot, let us know how you do (we’ll compare notes). If you happen to bink that Milly you’d better invite us to celebration, otherwise we’ll be hurt. But don’t wait because it would really suck to be shut out of this contest as all the spots fill up quick!

Sign up for Draft Kings right here.

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Phil Hellmuth

Takes Aim At Bracelet Number 14

Man at work.

Even though the turnout at the WSOP Asia Pacific (APAC) events haven’t likely been what organizers would have hoped there’s still be some interesting story lines coming from the Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia.

Jeffrey Lisandro captured his 6th bracelet, the WSOP Player of the Year will be decided and now, The Poker Brat himself, Phil Hellmuth, is making waves by headlining the final table of Event #7, the $2200 6-max NLHE event – which means he’s in striking distance of bracelet #14.

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WSOP.com notes that Hellmuth’s return to a WSOP final table marks his 51st time and also his 108th WSOP cash. While Phil currently sits 5th in chips, there’s not too much distance between the top 5 chipsstacks, so it’s anybody’s game.

Wanna watch Phil go for it tomorrow? Check out the WSOP APAC Live Stream which starts at 12:10 local time (9:10PM ET…we think)

Read: WSOP APAC Live Streaming Schedule

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Calm, Cool, Collected –

The Real Traits Of A Winning Poker Player

New study shows that emotional stability is key to success in poker.

Hellmuth – calm under pressure. For now.

When the two-outer hits on the river, the demeanor of a professional poker player is usually apparent.

The best in the world don’t berate other players, fall to the ground or complain about variance. OK, maybe Phil Hellmuth does. In general though, according to a newly published study from the University of Helsinki, the real pro is as calm and unflappable as they come.

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The results indicate that a predisposition for emotional stability—that is, lower scores on emotionality—is linked to high levels of poker experience. Thus, in order to become a successful and experienced poker player, it helps to be able to “keep cool” under pressure.

Pacific Standard online also notes that the study also determines that those poker payers who play mostly online are, not shockingly, likely to be introverts while those who play live for a living score higher on “extroversion and openness to experience.”

Either way though, if you plan on making poker your primary source of income, you better learn how to keep those emotions in check.

“Higher emotional stability predisposes poker players to continue playing poker,” it writes, “whereby they are likely to accumulate poker experience and skill.”

Read: The Personality Of A Poker Player

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

PokerStars Uses Grand Theft Auto

To Pimp New Spin And Go’s

Edgy shift in image for the usually clean cut PokerStars.

Watch this video while it’s still available…

Update: As expected, this video is no longer (currently) public. Comments have been removed…hope you caught it.

Update #2: The video is back…it’s no longer on the official PokerStars YouTube channel as it once was.

Update #3:Sorry gang, PokerStars shut down the bootleg version of their video under copyright infringement ground. Hope you had a chance to check it out.

Here’s a promo for PokerStars that Sheldon Adelson would love.

In their latest video to promote their new Spin and Go tournaments we enter the world of Grand Theft Auto, where the most heinous things imaginable are commonplace.

Here, the police are happy to overlook speeding, reckless driving, a hit and run and solicitation of prostitution just so they can get their fix of PokerStars brand online poker! It’s that good!

Of course, this could also be a future projection of what New Jersey will soon be like.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen police officers care more about online poker…remember this filmed incident of the real police playing poker on patrol?

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink


Poker Pro Matt Smith

Binks A Major…In Fantasy Football, Wins A Milly

Poker players are crushing the Daily Fantasy Sports sites.

Maybe you’ve noticed from the banners on F5poker, but it’s pretty clear that poker players and fantasy sports are a match made in heaven. The daily fantasy sports sites (DFS) run their fantasy tournaments not unlike a MTT and poker players are using their superior logic skills (well, WE think it’s superior) to basically annihilate the competition.

Case in point – pro poker player Matt Smith. Matt Smith, this past weekend, won DraftKings 'Millionaire Maker’ and for his $27 buy-in is walking away with a cool $1M…for playing fantasy football.

Matt wasn’t the only pro poker player in the mix when Monday Night Football came around. Brian Hastings, Tony Dunst and Aaron Jones were near the top of the leaderboard and Brian had a real shot at the million.

The Draft Kings tournament was so huge and such a hit that Draft Kings is running another Milly Maker this weekend and for just $27, someone else is going to become a millionaire…for drafting a fantasy football team.

If you’d like to take your shot at DraftKings 'Millionaire Maker’ – it’s super easy, and you can sign up right here.

Wanna multi-table this fantasy sports thing? FanDuel is holding their own massive tournament with a $1.75M guaranteed prize pool. Get in on the action with FanDuel by clicking and signing up here.

It’s the next best thing to having Sunday online poker tournaments and, as you probably know, it’s 100% on the up and up.

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey

Loses £7.7m Crockfords Casino “Edge Sorting” Case

The court declared Ivey to be a “truthful witness.”

It turns out, Phil Ivey was dealt the losing hand.

According to iTV News, Ivey was ruled against by a High Court judge in his case against the Crockfords Club Casino in his bid to retrieve £7.7m in “winnings” he accumulated through the use of “edge sorting.”

Ivey argued that “edge sorting” was a technique he used to gain his edge on the house while Crockfords argued that by doing so he “defeated the premise of the game and therefore meant there was no contract between Ivey and the casino.”

The court declared that Ivey could not lay claim to these won funds and a “pleased” Crockfords issued the following statement:

“We attach the greatest importance to our exemplary reputation for fair, honest and professional conduct and today’s ruling vindicates the steps we have taken in this matter.”

Through a spokesman, Phil Ivey has also issued the following statements:

“I am obviously disappointed with this judge’s decision. As I said in court, it is not my nature to cheat and I would never do anything to risk my reputation.”

“I am pleased that the judge acknowledged in court that I was a truthful witness by saying that ‘I am entirely convinced that Mr Ivey did not consider that what he was doing was cheating.”

Ivey continued “I believe that what we did was a legitimate strategy – we did nothing more than exploit Crockfords’ failures to take proper steps to protect themselves against a player of my ability – clearly today, the judge did not agree.”

Additionally, it looks as if Ivey was denied the ability to appeal, but they “can renew their application to the Court of Appeal directly.”

More on this story as it develops.

Read more from pokerfuse Crockfords Casino Stalls on Phil Ivey £7m Casino Win

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Daniel Colman

Continues To Crush, Wins WPT Alpha8 London For £600,000

Womp, womp.

He’s at it again folks.

Another high roller tournament, another massive score for “Mr. Dark Game” himself – Daniel Colman.

This time it was the World Poker Tour Alpha8 from London where Colman, who still currently sits 3rd on the All-Time Money List, bested a field of 23 runners to take home the healthy £600,000 ($ 957,396) first place prize.

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The tournament featured all the big boys who have yet to make it down under for WSOP APAC. Philipp Gruissem, Fabian Quoss, Daniel Cates, Sorel Mizzi, Sam Trickett and Erik Seidel all ponied up the £ 60,000 to play in this small field Super High Roller, but all of these notable names failed to make their mark (or their money back).

With yet another impressive score, just short of 7-figures, Colman surges his 2014 winnings to over $22M. Again, over $22,000,000…in a calendar year. Technically, it’s only been since April…that’s only half a year. Just stupid filthy.

Well, while Colman winning is the big story, he’s not the only person who got paid. Here’s the final payouts for the WPT Alpha8 London.

1. Dan Colman – £600,000
2. Max Altergott- £350,000
3. Talal Shakerchi – £224,000
4. Isaac Haxton – £160,000

More Dark Game: Daniel Colman Crushes SHRPO For Over $1.4M, Surges To 3rd On All-Time Money List

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Jennifer Tilly

Puts Her Old License Plate In Her Rearview Mirror

Tilly no longer takes pride in being a degen.

Today bone fide movie star turned bone fide poker pro Jennifer Tilly sent out this photo of her once held vanity CA license plate “DEJEN.”

Some would say that is cute and even clever, but for long time fans of F5 you may remember that there’s a reason that this is no longer the plates on her car. In case you missed it, here’s a part of the audio conversation with Jennifer where she talks about why she no longer proudly drives around repping the DEJEN plates.

Listen in: Her Biggest Loss, Poker Rehab and The End of “DEJEN”

Wanna listen in order? Check out Part 1 from the WSOP right here.

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Gambling Partners

Exploit Loophole In Video Poker Machine, Las Vegas Makes Them Pay

Tale of gaming, greed and pressing the magic buttons.

Is it wrong to exploit the flaws of a casino when it goes against the house?

Just as Phil Ivey begins his “edge sorting” trial comes this fantastic article from Wired Magazine about a couple of guys who discovered a bug in the Game King video poker software and went to work collecting on it.

Read More »

They could play anywhere and beat the house wherever they went. Nestor, who’d been scraping by on a $1,000-a-month welfare check, saw a whole new future unfolding: home ownership, an investment account, security, better clothes, and gifts for his friends back home. For his part, Kane was already well on his way to erasing the massive losses he’d suffered since moving to Sin City.

Of course, when you win in Las Vegas, Las Vegas takes notice and if you think this tale ends with a couple of down on their luck gamblers, finding an edge, exploiting it and riding off into the sunset – well, you’ve got another thing coming.

While it’s a longer read than we usually direct you to, we think you’re going to really enjoy this well-told tale of thinking you’re in a dream but waking up in a nightmare and how a ton of cash can tear apart a couple of time-tested friends.

Read: Finding A Video Poker Bug Made These Guys Rich – Then Vegas Made Them Pay

More Video Poker Action: Paul Newey Loves Slots

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Ultimate Poker Asks

“What Do You Love About Poker?”

25 people share their ideas on why poker is the nuts.

25 People, 1 Question.

The thrill, the rush, the adrenaline, the freedom and, of course, the people who play it. These are just some of the reasons that make playing poker one of the world’s favorite pastimes.

In this short video, from the Red Rock Casino in Las Vegas, the Ultimate Poker production team asks 25 individuals, including Team U pro Dan O’ Brien, just what it is that they they love about the game of poker. Everyone gets the same question, everyone has their own reason.

So, what do you love most about poker?

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Doyle Brunson

Recovering From Surgery, Doing “Much Better”

Updates from his daughter indicate good news.

Earlier this month, the Godfather of Poker, “Texas Dolly” Doyle Brunson travelled to San Diego to have, according to the man himself, his 11th lifetime surgery. Accompanied by his poker playing daughter Pam, Doyle he was set to undergo a procedure on his gall bladder…plus some other stuff.

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Earlier this week, as posted on the Two Plus Two Forums, Pamela gave an update on daddy Doyle’s condition and things are looking good for the 10-time bracelet winner.

Dad is doing MUCH BETTER this morning. The Dr. came in and said there were a bunch of surgeons in and out of surgery observing. It’s extremely rare they can get huge bile duct stones out and reroute the bile duct lapposcopically. He also had a hernia repair. The hernia was causing lots of problems. I’m SooO excited as I KNOW he is gonna be feeling SO MUCH BETTER once he’s healed from surgery.

Thankfully, it looks as if Doyle is in fact resting peacefully hopefully giving chatbox tricksters many more years of false alarms.

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Leo McClean

Is Living The Poker Dream

The former project manager is now busting superstars and chasing titles.

In the latest PokerStars profile video we get a look at the emerging career of young Leo McClean.

You may remember Leo from his 3rd place finish at EPT London in Season 10. Clad in his, now trademark, yellow hoodie, the satellite winner went on a dream run and cashed for over $400,000.

Now, 11 months later, on the back of that finish Leo is living the dream of being a pro poker player. He’s traveling the tour and playing online on a daily basis having put his previous 9-to-5 behind him.

Check out the story of McClean and see why he thinks that your key to breaking out into poker is saving your money and playing those sattys.

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Aaron Massey –

Two Months, Two HPT Titles

Massey puts a stranglehold on the HPT POY race.

Aaron Massey is putting on quite the show on the Heartland Poker Tour.

Massey, the sometimes brash, never-censored poker pro went into the final table of the HPT’s latest event at the Club One Casino in Fresno and emerged with the victory and over $77K in first place prize money.

To make it even more impressive, it was under two months ago that our pick to play Rob Stark conquered a different HPT event. Massey took down the HPT Ameristar East Chicago, his hometown, in late August for a separate $177K score.

With his 2nd outright victory Massey, who was already ahead in the HPT Player of the Year race, takes a commanding lead.

Indeed you do Aaron.

Here’s the rest of the results from the Club One Casino Final Table:

1st: Aaron Massey – $77,760
2nd: Danny Gonzalez – $48,384
3rd: Dee Timmons – $29,376
4th: Jed Hoffman – $21,600
5th: Billy Huynh – $16,128
6th: Chris Taylor – $13,248
7th: Mario Sequeira – $11,664
8th: Sean Drake – $10,224
9th: Kevork Vorperian – $8,640

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

MLS Star Michael Harrington

Uses His Hands At The Poker Table

Stoking the competitive fire away from the pitch.

Soccer stars already understand “the flop.”

In order to be a professional athlete one needs to have the thirst for competition inside. It’s not uncommon to see both current and retired pros from just about every sport take to the felt in order to supplement their need for a little extra adrenaline.

In this piece, not-so-well-known defender Michael Harrington for MLS’s Portland Timbers travels down to PDX’s Encore Poker Club to take a shot at a local tourney while talking about what it is about poker that allows him to both be competitive and also “just one of the guys.”

Watch the piece after the jump.

Read More »

Other soccer/poker crossover stories —

More soccer/futbol stars talkin’ 'bout poker: Manchester United Stars Have Late Night Poker Talks

Also don’t miss this: Rumors that Chelsea FC's owner Roman Abramovich lost his yacht in a poker game.

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Poker Night In America –

Glantz and Baker Clean Up For The Camera

Special guest appearance by Michael Phelps.

It’s time again for another made-for-tv episode of Poker Night In America featuring the talkative talents of David “ODB” Baker, Gavin Smith, Greg Merson, Jason Somerville, Tom “DonkeyBomber” Schneider and Parx Poker ambassador Matt Glantz.

Read More »

The $25/50 (with $100 optional straddle) NLHE game is still coming to you from Maryland Live! Casino and in this episode both Glantz and Baker get a little one-on-one time with the camera crew to let their personalities and poker philosophies shine.

Looking for more PNIA? Check out episode 12 right here.

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Brian Hastings

Looking to Score $1 Million Playing Fantasy Football

on DraftKings

Can I get a pick 6?

Professional poker player Brian Hastings, best known for his dismantling of Victor “Isildur1” Blom to the tune of $4.2 million in December 2009, has a shot to win $1 million playing fantasy football.

Playing under his familiar moniker Stinger88, the Pennsylvania native currently sits in third place in the NFL 2.2 Millionaire Maker on Draft Kings which guarantees a $1 million first place prize for a $27 entry. As it stands, Hastings is in good shape to make $50,000, and needs only one third of a point from the Seattle defense to move into second place where the prize is $100,000.

It will take a big game from DeSean Jackson, Percy Harvin, Marshawn Lynch or a monster game from the Washington defense in order to overtake Hastings. The closest team with a player at one of those positions is about 21 points away.

If you have a DraftKings account, you can follow all the action here. If not, you are in luck because you can sign up for an account right here.

The closest team with a player at one of those positions is about 21 points away.

There are other teams that are closer, such as World Poker Tour commentator, Tony “Bond18” Dunst who also has a defensive team left, but since the contests are very top-heavy, Dunst and the others have a better shot of making a big score by playing the favored Seattle defense.

Hastings started the night 16+ points behind the current leader who has nobody going tonight.

So what does he need from the Seattle defense to secure his seven-figure fantasy football score? Here is the breakdown for the defensive scoring:

Defense/Special Teams will accumulate points as follows:
Sack = +1PT
Interception = +2PTs
Fumble Recovery = +2PTs
Kickoff Return TD = +6PTs
Punt Return TD = +6PTs
Interception Return TD = +6PTs
Fumble Recovery TD = +6PTs
Blocked Punt or FG Return TD = +6PTs
Safety = +2PTs
Blocked Kick = +2PTs
0 Points Allowed = +10PTs
1-6 Points Allowed = +7PTs
7-13 Points Allowed = +4PTs
14-20 Points Allowed = +1PT
21-27 Points Allowed = 0PTs
28-34 Points Allowed = -1PT
35+ Points Allowed = -4PTs

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink


“King” Dan Smith –

The Heir Apparent, His Father’s Son

Columnist fondly remembers Dan’s dad, “Smitty.”

Before he was a poker great, he was his father’s son

The #1 ranked player on the Global Poker Index, Dan Smith, wasn’t always the “king”.

Before, he was just a son with a father that was known for being good-natured fun and spontaneous, as remembered in this touching piece by Ken Hoffman in the Houston Chronicle. It’s a quick read and well worth it.

Read: Smitty Had An Ace Up His Sleeve

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Pure Speculation –

Is Michael Phelps Headed To Choice Center?

Poker playing Olympian prepares to enter a “program.”

Phelps hanging with Choice Center grads Antonio Esfandiari and Jeff Gross

Last week, poker playing 22-time Olympic medalist, Michael Phelps, was charged with DUI after what was previously reported as a multi-hour gambling stint at the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore.

Having taken to social media to apologize to his fans, this weekend he announced that after a few hard days that he would be “entering a program” to help him better understand himself.

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Could this “program” be the “personal development and leadership education” of Choice Center in Las Vegas?

The Choice Center program has been a fad among poker’s elite for the better part of the past couple years with many high profile players taking their turn and investing their time and money in it. Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, John Juanda, Chino Rheem, David Williams and Kristy Arnett are just a few that have been through and praised the process. As has the Michael Phelps connection – “professional best friend”, Jeff Gross.

Gross, a super high roller tournament pro and cash game player, has always been well-known as being an inner circle friend to Phelps. Phelps, of course, outside of swimming, has taken a shine to playing a little high level poker himself.

Could Gross’ influence perhaps lead Phelps into the leadership program over at Choice Center? It’s no secret that Choice Center certainly encourages their graduates to do whatever they can to spread the word, and it’s likely that Phelps has gotten an earful in the past.

Media beast TMZ, along with a number of other news outlets, say that Phelps is going to “rehab” and that certainly may be true. Heading to rehab after an event like a DUI, would make sense on a personal level and also could cynically be seen as a move to obtain a little leniency in the eyes of the court.

But the above tweet certainly doesn’t say rehab, it talks about better understanding oneself, a property that many of the Choice Center grads speak of when reflecting on their time in the program.

Whether it’s Choice Center or traditional rehab, it looks as if Phelps is dealing with his issues head-on.

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink

Former PokerStars Boss Isai Scheinberg

Crushes The Competition All Over Again

Former PokerStars boss wins UKIPT Isle of Man High Roller.

Future Poker Hall of Famer Isai Scheinberg (right) is a boss.

As if he didn’t already have all the money poker has to offer, the founder and former owner of online beast PokerStars went ahead and scooped a little more by winning the UKIPT Isle of Man High Roller Tournament this weekend.

That’s right, Isai Scheinberg, still currently wanted by the US Dept. of Justice, actually played a little poker this weekend and ended up taking down the biggest event on the Isle of Man schedule, the £2000+£200 High Roller.

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While it’s not the high-rollingest of high rollers and, according to The Hendon Mob, there were only 15 total runners, having the well-liked mastermind behind the world’s biggest online poker site win a PokerStars tournament in front of his former employees is still a pretty cool story.

For his efforts Isai pocketed some loose change in the form of £13,850 ($22,253) to go along with the nearly $5Billion dollars that Amaya recent paid for PokerStars.

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published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink


Martin Short

Remembers Johnny Carson’s Original Hollywood Home Game

Comedy legends play a little poker.

When you think of the Hollywood Home Games nowadays names like Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio and Ben Affleck come to mind. But former Saturday Night Live cast member sit and talks with the amazing Conan O’Brien about one of the original high-stakes home games…at Johnny Carson’s place.

Big names of the day like Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Neil Simon got together to play a few hands and a young and nervous Short was enticed to attend by being promised he couldn’t lose more than $600.

It may have been a different era, but attracting fish to the game is still the same.

published 2 years, 8 months ago • by permalink