1 year ago
"Straight Flush" concerns the rise and fall of the company AbsolutePoker, from an idea that six Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity brothers lifted from a site called ParadisePoker, to an online empire on the verge of a 10-figure IPO, to its flameout soon after April 15, 2011. That’s when the Justice Department seized its domain name, along with those of two larger sites, PokerStars and FullTilt, freezing hundreds of millions of dollars in the accounts of American players. One AbsolutePoker executive pleaded guilty to bank fraud and is currently in prison. The former CEO remains at large in Antigua with what are presumed to be millions of dollars, many allegedly “won” by cheating: namely, spying, or allowing friends to spy, on customers’ hole cards.

"Straight Flush" concerns the rise and fall of the company AbsolutePoker, from an idea that six Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity brothers lifted from a site called ParadisePoker, to an online empire on the verge of a 10-figure IPO, to its flameout soon after April 15, 2011. That’s when the Justice Department seized its domain name, along with those of two larger sites, PokerStars and FullTilt, freezing hundreds of millions of dollars in the accounts of American players. One AbsolutePoker executive pleaded guilty to bank fraud and is currently in prison. The former CEO remains at large in Antigua with what are presumed to be millions of dollars, many allegedly “won” by cheating: namely, spying, or allowing friends to spy, on customers’ hole cards.

1 year ago
Hold’em Odds Chart

Hold’em Odds Chart

1 year ago

Scotty Nguyen’s infamous 2008 World Series of Poker $50,000 HORSE Final Table drunken rampage. One of the funniest videos on Youtube. When I need to do a Vietnamese accent, I always go back to this video for source material.

Brian Koppelman (Rounders cowriter, Grantland contributor): In the last poker scene of Rounders, Matt Damon’s character — originally we had written it so that you didn’t see his cards, so that you didn’t know he had the straight that mirrored Johnny Chan’s straight. And the director said to us, “We should show the cards,” and I said, “No, if you know the cards it’s not going to be as interesting.” John [Dahl] said, “Let’s put them both up in front of an audience. The same exact movie. The only difference is in one version you can see Matt’s cards, and in the other version you can’t see Matt’s cards.” And we played our version, the one where you couldn’t see the hand, and it went great. The crowd was really surprised when the cards turned over — it was awesome. But when we played the one where you could see that Matt had flopped the straight, the crowd was on the edge of their seats hoping that [John] Malkovich would fall for it. They were completely engaged. It was exactly the hole-card phenomenon. They wanted to be inside Matt’s head. (via)
(Editor’s note: And if you want to get super nerdy about it, this write-up overanalyzing the final hand is a pretty entertaining.)

Brian Koppelman (Rounders cowriter, Grantland contributor): In the last poker scene of Rounders, Matt Damon’s character — originally we had written it so that you didn’t see his cards, so that you didn’t know he had the straight that mirrored Johnny Chan’s straight. And the director said to us, “We should show the cards,” and I said, “No, if you know the cards it’s not going to be as interesting.” John [Dahl] said, “Let’s put them both up in front of an audience. The same exact movie. The only difference is in one version you can see Matt’s cards, and in the other version you can’t see Matt’s cards.” And we played our version, the one where you couldn’t see the hand, and it went great. The crowd was really surprised when the cards turned over — it was awesome. But when we played the one where you could see that Matt had flopped the straight, the crowd was on the edge of their seats hoping that [John] Malkovich would fall for it. They were completely engaged. It was exactly the hole-card phenomenon. They wanted to be inside Matt’s head. (via)

(Editor’s note: And if you want to get super nerdy about it, this write-up overanalyzing the final hand is a pretty entertaining.)

2 years ago 3 years ago

"Players" portrays a community of 6 poker professionals who live among a larger poker community in Bangkok.  Playing poker is more just a way to make money than a passion for them, but the rules that govern their community follow the logic of the game. They use probability theory, the fundamental theory of poker, to ensure that they treat each other justly, and that everyone contributes equally.  The systematic and analyzed way these poker players look at everyday life may seem absurd, and their life style is easy to judge, but this shock might be more over their ignoring their original society than over the way they have built their own. By Pilvi Takala

3 years ago

Johnny Chan vs. Eric Seidel 1988 WSOP Finale