Online Poker

Possible Dwan vs. Ivey “Challenge” Fails to Excite

by Omar

The sound you have just heard was a collective yawn from online poker fans from all over the world.  Every weeknight a couple of hours after midnight, NBC airs a show called Poker After Dark in which some of the game’s top poker players square off in a high stakes cash game. Since its inception, it has steadily grown in popularity and viewership as it allows fans the opportunity to watch players interact in a cash game setting as opposed to tournament play which is by far the more common television program.
From time to time, something happens on an episode that sends poker fans into a frenzy, creating excitement and buzz normally reserved for rumors and innuendo.  For example, it is believed that the original Durrrr Challenge was discussed on air.  However, an episode that aired last night has had just the opposite effect.  If you have plans to watch the episode and have not yet done so, you may want to hold off reading the rest of this article until you have done so.
Last night, two of the featured players were Tom “Durrrr” Dwan and Phil Ivey, two of the most recognizable names in the history of the game.  The topic of conversation at the table eventually shifted to a potential challenge between the two players.  The parameters of the proposed contest were a bit hard to follow but essentially, the two would begin a match consisting of 100,000 hands of heads up $50K-$100K HORSE, a mixed game featuring hold ‘em, Omaha Hi-Lo, Razz, Stud Hi-Lo and Stud Eight or Better. Then there was a set of complications added.  Dwan would pay Ivey $40,000 just to have the right to start the HORSE match, which doesn’t seem to make much sense. If Dwan decides to go ahead and play the match, and if Ivey declines the offer, he would pay Dwan $1million, something he obviously would never do.  From there, Ivey is giving Dwan 5-1 odds on a $2 million side bet. After the hands are all played, if Ivey is ahead, Dwan would get 96% of his losses back. Ivey has the right to buy out of the match once it has begun but Dwan does not have that option. There were a couple of other parameters as well that only make it more confusing.
Once upon a time, a proposal like this would set the online message boards ablaze with anticipation and speculation.  However, given the states of the first two Durrrr Challenges, the first against Patrik Antonius which appears to be on permanent hiatus and the 2nd against Dan Cates which is moving along at a snail’s pace, there is not a lot of excitement anywhere.
Over on the message boards, a poster named BLAABAR perhaps summed it up best when he said, “maybe durrrr should finish his other challenges before starting new ones.”  In the thread which is already 7 pages long, just about all of the posters seemed to echo the same sentiment and an overall feeling of apathy on the news. Just about every poster was far from enthusiastic as most point to the aforementioned Durrrr Challenges that don’t end.
Perhaps it was all just table talk, a common practice at live poker games designed to distract one’s opponents from the task at hand.  However, if its true and actually does happen, right now it seems this is more of a private matter than one that the poker community would be interested in watching.

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