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Post  Scrupboy on Thu May 01, 2008 1:13 pm

WTF?

http://www.cardplayer.com/poker-news/article/11931/wsop-main-event-final-table-moved-to-november

I can understand creating a buzz for television, but as a player this makes me crazy. A few things that just pop in my head:

-Heaters only last so long. If you were on a rush of cards coming to the final table, then made to wait a couple months... It would suck!
-Opponents would have time to research your past play... online or live if there is data that could benefit them or yourself for that matter.
-Not being able to spend money that you know you'll eventually have. A person that took 10th would already be partying while you have to wait a couple months.
-assassination plot? If I were chip leader, I may fear for my life as we're not playing for peanuts.

Anyways, just some random thoughts that went through my head when I heard of this announcement. Not like I plan to final table the ME of the WSOP anytime soon.
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Post  dexman1349 on Thu May 01, 2008 1:19 pm

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/poker/news/story?id=3375032

Does this mean that ESPN will be televising the final table live?

I was literally just copying the link over to a new thread when I saw your post.

From a TV standpoint, it's brilliant. From the player's perspective, it's horse shit. I always seem to take just a bit of a slide even after those hourly breaks on Pokerstars, I couldn't imagine waiting months.

I'll tell you though, if I was playing for ~$8mil, I'd figure out how to get back in the zone real quick.

*edit: as far as one player gaining an advantage over another leading up to the final table, they all have equal access to the same computers, TV's and other media devices.
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Post  ak1971 on Thu May 01, 2008 1:32 pm

The thing is, it will be a different final table, even though the people are the same.

I guarantee, if I was an am making it to the final table, I would dedicate all my hours to study, coaching etc before November. This could be a good thing or a bad thing. if you happened to get there on total reckless donk play, this could be bad, as you now you might tighten up and play textbook. Who knows..alot of the pros bitched when pocket cams came out..and that created an explosion
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Post  dexman1349 on Thu May 01, 2008 1:44 pm

ak1971 wrote:The thing is, it will be a different final table, even though the people are the same.

Very true.

Isn't there already a break between the 10th place and final table anyways? I thought they sat all 10 at one table played until they were down to 9. Broke for the night and started the official final table the next day. Any break longer than that would definately change the dynamics of the final table.
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Post  kkravec on Thu May 01, 2008 2:17 pm

I've been reading a lot of threads about the move and I think all FT players will get 9th place money since they are all guaranteed it. But it opens the door for many other concerns as Son pointed a few out earlier. Money shouldn't be an issue but coming back to the final table as a completely different player could have a huge impact b/c of coaching, tells, etc....
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Post  PoWdA on Thu May 01, 2008 3:15 pm

Yeah I think this is jsut going to ruin the hype of the whole thing. I have been reading about this too and I think it is just stupid.
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Post  idh78 on Thu May 01, 2008 3:31 pm

there was a heated debate about this on pokerroad radio.....

I think as long as everyone knows this is happening before they register for the main event then it's fine.....all of your points are valid, but I think that as long as there is some chance that this creates more mainstream interest for poker then this a GREAT idea....it might not but it's certainly worth trying.

What if these guys are all on Oprah or the today show etc...??? there is some potential for upside here if the media can turn these 9 guys into superstars....I'm hoping that the trend of at least one name pro at the final table continues though....gives me somebody to root for....although only Cunningham made it higher than what 8th??? Matasow was first out, Watkinson went out 8th or 9th.
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Post  idh78 on Thu May 01, 2008 3:42 pm

From Daniel's blog

So if you haven't heard, the WSOP final table will occur three months after the players make the final table. The final table will take place on November 10th, it will be edited down to a two hour show, and then it will air on the 11th. The show won't look all that much different than WSOP shows in the past.

There will be no pay-per-view live feed of the final table this year. Each player who makes the final table will receive 9th place money, with the rest of the money being invested. The players would receive interest on that deposited money, not Harrah's.

The reason for the three month delay is so that the WSOP broadcast schedule can air both the preliminary events as well as the lead into the final table. That many episodes takes about three months to air. There isn't time to air all of the main event episodes leading up to the final table so that an "almost live" final table could air immediately after that. The only way to do that is to delay the final table until after the ESPN shows air.

This decision obviously will change the dynamic of the final table, but it also offers some great opportunities for poker to get some more mainstream media
attention. The nine players at the final table will become quasi celebrities, much like reality TV stars. None of the players would be obligated to do any interviews or media in general, but if they chose to, the opportunities would be there.

The way the WSOP main event airs now, the public is usually already aware of who won. The final episode plays out more like a documentary, a la, this is "how they won." That will now change. Everyone will know who is at the final table, but for three months, the question will change to "who will win" which I think is more exciting.

You can't air this thing live on ESPN. They will NOT change the structure at all or hurt the integrity of the event, and if you signed a deal to air it live, you'd have to escalate the blinds quickly if it ran long. The closest we can get to live, is "almost live" so that the crew has time to edit the show and turn it around in less than 24 hours.

The final table will end very late on the 10th, so late that the outcome will miss the morning papers and media Tuesday morning. Wednesday morning, after the show airs on ESPN, it would hit the papers. Obviously if you go online you'll be able to find out who wins, but if you prefer to watch it "live" you can choose to wait less than 24 hours and watch it Tuesday night.

What this is supposed to do (we'll see if it works) is help to create more talk around the water cooler. It's supposed to build up more interest in the final nine players and that final episode where they play for it all.

Pros:
-more media attention
-more hype and build up for pokers premiere event
-better ratings for the final episode
-makes the WSOP final table more of a sporting event rather than a documentary
-follows even more of a reality TV model that has proven to be successful in attracting fans
-endorsement opportunities for the players

Cons:
-All players will have coaches. This can be seen as a pro depending how you look at it, as the play at the final table will be much better.
-could very well change the outcome of the eventual winner.
-When play starts back up, you'll have no reliable feel or reads on players who could play completely differently three months later.
-You could have a no show for various reasons.
-More time for players to discuss side deals (the penalty for doing this could be severe, but that doesn't necessarily stop all players from considering it)


I'm sure there are more pros and cons, but that is a decent list. All in all, I think this concept has the potential to be a really good thing for poker. If not, well, then we go back to the traditional format next year.

Things change. Formats change, tournaments change, sports change. Purists hated the idea of showing your hole cards to a camera, but look at what that's done for poker. Baseball purists hate inter league play, some hockey fans don't like the new NHL with less physical play.

Even the game of hold'em changed. It used to be played with just one blind, but that changed and a two blind system was created so there would be more action.

I think the poker world should support the efforts here to try and improve the WSOP main event and understand that if it flops, it's not the end of the world. We can always change it back next year. I say, give it a chance. It's a gamble, but hey, aren't we all poker players?
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Post  idh78 on Thu May 01, 2008 3:45 pm

okay I HATE that we only get to see the dumbed down edited version.....but I know that only poker sickos like us can actually watch the LIVE PPV with no hole cards....but if somebody tells me who won before I watch it, I will be so pissed!!!!

might have to not open up my email, internet, etc at all that day.
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Post  dexman1349 on Thu May 01, 2008 3:56 pm

idh78 wrote:
Cons:
-could very well change the outcome of the eventual winner.
-When play starts back up, you'll have no reliable feel or reads on players who could play completely differently three months later.
-You could have a no show for various reasons.

These are 3 very big cons. Obviously the second two will effect the first greatly. The last one is a huge possibility. How many people at the final table will be from Vegas? Probably none, which means they are all required to pay for a second trip back just to finish. Granted we are only talking a thousand dollars or so from their bankroll compared to the $10k buy-in and the fact they already have 9th place money...

I guess we will see how it turns out...


idh78 wrote:okay I HATE that we only get to see the dumbed down edited version.....but I know that only poker sickos like us can actually watch the LIVE PPV with no hole cards....but if somebody tells me who won before I watch it, I will be so pissed!!!!

might have to not open up my email, internet, etc at all that day.

x2
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Post  Scrupboy on Thu May 01, 2008 4:18 pm

Wow! There is some good points indicated in Daniel's blog. I didn't consider some of the pros that are talked about. This would create a lot of hype for this final table and by having it edited and shown the next day would bring a certain excitement to the game. These final 9 players would be able to really make the rounds to talk shows and such and with everyone getting some money up front the celebration would move forward. Also, you could plan on who you'd want to attend and possibly sell tickets to this event ala a championship game or major golf tournament.

Perhaps there are more pros then my initial reaction to this article.
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Post  kkravec on Thu May 01, 2008 4:43 pm

I think the play would be better at the FT after months of coaching, but then it's not the same players, it's the newer version after months of coaching/guidance. Does this hurt the integrity of the game?

I think the added hype might be good for the game and get some easy money back into the games too.
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Post  Wetdog on Thu May 01, 2008 5:34 pm

I think the added hype would mean that sites like Poker Stars and Bodog would have to pay more money to the players who are interviewed on talk shows to wear their gear. Players could wear shirts with so many patches they look like Nascar drivers.
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Post  idh78 on Thu May 01, 2008 6:05 pm

well Phil Hellmurs (another PRR joke) already does that pretty much...

alhough he drives more like Dick Trickle
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Post  PoWdA on Fri May 02, 2008 7:30 am

idh78 wrote:well Phil Hellmurs (another PRR joke) already does that pretty much...

alhough he drives more like Dick Trickle
Laughing
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Post  Stallion on Mon May 05, 2008 3:24 pm

They're paying for round trip airfare and accomodations in addition to paying each out at 9th place money prior to them flying back. I still think this screws with the dynamics and the purist in me is annoyed. I agree that it will create more drama and interest in the actual broadcast though.
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Post  korkskrew on Mon May 05, 2008 6:33 pm

It seems to me that this actually puts the pros at more of a disadvantage than an amateur. The amateur has much more he can learn about the pro than the pro can learn about the amateur. Certianly they will all hire coaches, but there is a record about how the pro's have played and a smart amateur/coach would be studying that ceaslessly. What can the pro's study that would give them a more significant advantage than they had in the first place?

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Post  ak1971 on Tue May 06, 2008 9:13 am

I still think it screws with the dynamics of the table. There are so many times which you are on a heater and that mental advantage carries you through. but hey..Harrahs runs the thing to make money, so if they want to have it outside again in the heat, they probably would if they could make money on it
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Post  PoWdA on Tue May 06, 2008 9:17 am

This is definetly going to shake things up is all I can say. Ians post brought up some decent posts as I was wondering wtf are they thinking when I first heard the news but it isn't all bad. I guess only time will tell what kind of effect this will have on the ME, the WSOP, and poker in general.
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