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This is a bit of reflecting about Poker and where it’s going, for better or for worse. Sometime earlier this year, one of the tourneys I watched on TV made some mention of a gigantic poker tournament to be held around June 2006 in Australia or some such, and for which the prize pool would be $60 mln. Top prize would be $10 mln, and entry would be a cool mil.
Well, the fact is, I got it all wrong. It’s even nuttier than that. It’s 2 minutes after midnight where + when I’m writing this, and it’s July 13 (Eastern time, N. America). The big game was on July 12th, from Melbourne, Australia – so it’s likely over, expected to be 6-10 hours in length. The Fox Sports network won the deal to broadcast the tourney for 3 years. Now are you sitting down? Well, if you’re a poker player or poker blogger, you might already known this, but the grand prize is $60,000,000, not $10 mil. The latter figure is the buy-in!! Can you imagine staking your skills on that much money? It’s winner-take-all; no other prizes.
Inside Edge points out there is no other sport that has ever paid that much money to a single person in a single event. KRON4’s website says that the same tournament will have the pot at $75 mil in 2007 and $100 mil in 2008. This type of payout borders on the movie star level. Heck, even ultra-popular comedian/ actor Jim Carrey was only getting paid $20 mil per film.
It’s true: there’s no Cbetcasino game like poker. On the other hand, I can’t think of a sport where a participant has to pay $10 mil just to get in on the game. And it’s a game of skill, no matter what some people might say. It’s become so popular that even up here in tiny (population-wise) Canada, in the past week the number of TV stations broadcasting poker matches in the general Toronto area has actually doubled to about six or seven – for a region serving maybe 6 million people. Unfortunately, without a cable/ satellite TV plan, I only get to see old tournaments, sometimes over 2 years old.