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Jarrett Nash Explains Decision To Skip Day 5 of World Series Of Poker Main Event

Chose To Pass On A Potential $8.5 Million In Order To Observe The Sabbath

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Nash's short stack before eliminationDespite the Main Event field shrinking on Saturday, the headline of the day was a recreational poker player electing to skip the day in order to observe the Sabbath. After repeated attempts at contacting Jarrett Nash in his Bellagio hotel room, he was finally reached.

Contrary to an original source, the religion isn’t Judaism. Nash told Card Player that he and his wife are non-denominational Christians who take a day of rest every weekend from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday. “No pleasures of the self,” Nash said.

One of those pleasures was making a deep run in poker’s most prestigious tournament, but Nash is certain of his choice and has no regrets of blinding off his stack of more than 500,000. He busted in 171st for about $45,000, money, he said, that “God has a plan for.”

Despite the $8.5 million first-place prize as a potential destiny, Nash is happy taking just $45,000. He said he picked up his prize money after 8 p.m. local time.

Nash came to Las Vegas strictly to play the Main Event. He said he has no problem reconciling his fundamentalism with poker, an activity that he calls “a clean game.”

Based on the tournament’s schedule, Nash was confident he could make the money before having to take a day off. (He left before play was over on Friday, telling tournament staff he wouldn’t return). However, he was hoping that his stack would still be around after Saturday’s sundown. Still, he isn’t disappointed that he was eliminated around 6 p.m. local time.

“I knew what was going to happen,” he said.

When asked what he would say to those in the poker world who might criticize his decision, Nash said he “would always tell someone to seek the lord.”

He comes from a family of mostly Baptists. He said they are supporting and understand his decision to pass up on a potential seven-figure payday in order to stay true to his beliefs.

Card Player originally reported on the story during the afternoon — while his chip stack was still alive — speaking with Nash’s cousin who knew some information about the situation. His cousin told Card Player that it was the faith of Nash’s wife, not his own, that was the culprit for his truancy. According to Nash, both are deeply pious, and it was always a joint-decision.

Nash, who has been playing poker for three years, said he will keep entering tournaments.

Follow Brian Pempus on Twitter — @brianpempus

 
 
 
 

Comments

John14
almost 2 years ago

I think it's great that Nash has been able to reconcile his principles and didn't sacrifice those principles for money. And in keeping to his principles, he made a $35000 profit! If he'd have stayed in the tournament he may have made $8 million or he may have gone out the very next hand. Kudos Mr Nash!

 
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Tahosa65
almost 2 years ago

I am a Christian. I am a poker player. I see no conflict between the two and I also see no reason to "take a day off" when playing a tournament. In fact, if a tournament plays or concludes on a Sunday, I still see no conflict. Especially if you are a recreational player. Sections of the bible tell us to to do no work on the Sabbath or in effect, take the day off from our labors. Poker is a game, not a "labor." It is, in effect, time off from our labors. So if I make day five, I'll be there, with bells on.

 
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Harry5
almost 2 years ago

Walter Sobchak: Saturday, Donny, is Shabbos, the Jewish day of rest. That means that I don't work, I don't drive a car, I don't f#$*@ing ride in a car, I don't handle money, I don't turn on the oven, and I sure as shit *don't f@#$%*g roll*!

 
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jungleungar99
almost 2 years ago

It will be the ultimate bad beat when he dies and realizes there ain't no God and he shoulda kept on playin!! What a goon!

 
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Izatnice
almost 2 years ago

All of you bashing him are bigots pure and simple, religious bigots. He has a right to do whatever he wants. He paid his entry fee if he wanted to move all-in every hand for the entirety of the tournament that is his choice.If wants to skip Day 4 Day 5 or the final table for that matter none of you paid his entry fee you have know say in the matter, except to show your hate and bigotry.

 
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lolatyouwow
almost 2 years ago

Oh hey look, its the same absolutely insane nutcase whos posting the same garbage on 2+2! Look, we get it, while the vast majority of America is made up of Christians and we have had every single president in the last 100 years belong to your religion, but you guys are constantly persecuted by all those religious bigots out there. Of course when a non-Christian runs for president it becomes a vitrolic hate campaign from the Christians, but theyre just "spreading the good word" and not being hateful bigots. When Christians try to force their decisions on others by passing pro-life laws or anti-gay marriage laws, theyre not being bigoted and hateful, theyre being uhhh "protective of a christian tradition"

No one is arguing that he has a right to do what he wants, people are simply expressing their right to free speech and calling a stupid action stupid. You keep starting these bizarre strawman arguments as if anyone on earth has suggested he's not allowed to play the way he wants. He can play however he pleases, but if he is an idiot people will call him an idiot. As much as you'd like Christians to be immune from ever being wrong or having people point it out, you guys only get to get special treatment 99% of the time, not 100%, sorry!

 
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WPS22
almost 2 years ago

How dare you bring facts into this sir. The poor Christians have it terrible in the US. I mean, we actually let other religions exist!!!

I don't understand how feigning religious persecution isn't a grave insult to any human being thats actually been persecuted for their religion.

All throughout history all over the world its happened. Yet, instead of just enjoying how good they have it and how powerful and worldly dominating their religion is they cry about being persecuted by people making comments online.

 
 

WPS22
almost 2 years ago

So if you think he's stupid for doing it you are a bigot?

I always thought I could have my own opinions of other peoples actions. I didn't know not agreeing with someone made me a bigot. Thank you for educating me, I will now agree with everyone.

What do you mean he has a right to do whatever he wants??? Of course he does. Did one singe person here even come close to suggesting otherwise? Why are you stating that like its some kind of counter point?

This is a comment section about something extremely interesting in the biggest tourney of the year. Having opinions and typing them here doesn't make us hateful or bigots.

 
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striike
almost 2 years ago

also, this notion that every story has two sides is bs. nazis are bigots, a large population of residents in the slave states are bigots, a large population of organized religion are bigots. to come out against these groups does not make you a bigot. it just doesnt work like that. and for those who claim there is some sort of validity to fundamentalist baptists, please read this. http://frstephensmuts.wordpress.com/2012/05/31/pastor-dies-from-snake-bite-during-serpent-handling-service/

 
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striike
almost 2 years ago

jgamba. you are completely missing the point. a bigot would say that Nash shouldnt be allowed to play or would try to change the constitution to take away his rights or hang him from a tree. simply making fun of him or pointing out that he has ancient views of the world does not make one a bigot. i don't think anyone is saying he shouldnt be allowed to play they are just saying they think he is silly. (as a side note, he made more money in the Main Event then anybody here who is leaving comments) One is entitled to base ones life on the teachings of nomadic middle eastern goat herders from thousands of years ago, but if one chooses to do so, then one should also be prepared for an onslaught of ridicule for believing in said beliefs.

 
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Izatnice
almost 2 years ago

You are completely missing the point. Being ridiculed, demeaned, or belittled, for ones race, sexual orientation, or religious beliefs is absolutely the textbook definition of bigotry. You obviously have a very small (bankroll) and Mr. Nash has done something i am sure that you have not, nor will ever do cash in the WSOP Main Event.Congrats to him. Please keep making comments like this Strike, it helps people on the fence about internet poker to see such wonderful representation of the poker community.

 
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WPS22
almost 2 years ago

I don't think anyone is ridiculing him for his beliefs. They are ridiculing him for the choice he made. The article was about the choice he made, and this is the comment section. Whether you think its the greatest thing ever or the guy is a moron, stating your opinion doesn't make you a bigot.

 
 

Wolfed
almost 2 years ago

Actually, Websters defines bigotry as "obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially one who exhibits intolerance or animosity toward members of a group". Which would make you one, based upon your above comments, which would also bring into issue your mental health....

 
 

striike
almost 2 years ago

oh and while this has nothing to do with the discussion. can you please name the freedoms that you had prior to Obama that you have now lost. I don't really follow politics or Obama but i would love to learn which freedoms have been stolen.

 
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striike
almost 2 years ago

izatnice. you really need to separate your response. race and sexual orientation are not a choice. choosing to believe in teachings written by nomadic middle eastern goat herders is a clear choice. and these teachings are the only thing on earth that has not evolved in the last several thousand years. so you cannot group, race, gender, and sexual preference with religious beliefs and while religious people (the people you are so blindly defending) will jump at any chance to take away rights, or publicly humiliate or even execute those they disagree with, we are simply saying we disagree with his antiquated views. we are not saying he shouldnt play or that he shouldnt be allowed to believe what he believes him. that action is reserved for the true bigots of this world who more often than not are the very same people who believe there is a man in the sky controlling the universe.

 
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striike
almost 2 years ago

WPS22. i understand what you are trying to say, but stating your opinion can certainly make you a bigot. The reason we are not bigots is because we are the right side of the issue. For example when Christians simply state their opinions about how much they hate other human beings or when Nazis simply state their opinion about how much they hate other human beings. It is not the opinion, it is the content. And as i mentioned before not every issue has two sides. there are such things as absolute positions. For instance we all know that the hate that spews from organized religion around the world is wrong. there is no justification for it. there is no "their side of the story". i have found a great litmus test for determining which side of an issue you should choose. Find out which side the residents of the slave states are on and choose the other. Historically they have made incredibly poor choices.

 
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