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ESPN’s Colin Cowherd says Poker is a Skill Game

by Jeremy Olson on August 23, 2012

For almost a decade, Colin Cowherd has ran the wildly popular ESPN radio show The Herd with Colin Cowherd. During this time, he’s managed to gain a very wide audience by presenting a number of interesting and controversial views on certain sports subjects.

Getting to the point, the latest subject he covered was whether or not poker is a game of skill. Now this argument is nothing new since lawmakers have been arguing this point for quite some time in many countries. However, the debate rarely makes it to mainstream TV and radio shows.

As for Cowherd’s take on the matter, he started by discussing how a New York judge ruled that poker is a game of skill. In a 120-page ruling, the judge made history by announcing that poker is based on skill - not luck as pretty much every other ruling states. After covering the back story, Cowherd said the following:

I think it’s great. I said this, there’s luck in all sports. I mean the NFL - Houston - bunch of injuries, unlucky last year. Giants, end of the year, no injuries. New England Patriots, Gronk, right before the Super Bowl, rips up his ankle - unlucky, never had an injury problem.

Cowherd then went on to describe several other incidents in NFL history where luck has had a deciding factor on the overall outcome of a team’s season/fate. He then went on to state how activities like sports betting and poker consistently see the same people win over a long period of time.

In closing, Cowherd talked about how Phil Ivey and Phil Hellmuth are consistently on the WSOP final tables, which shows how poker does involved a fair amount of skill. He also mentioned the judge’s ruling again by saying, “Finally, somebody gets it right.” You can see the entire segment below:


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