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Annie Duke Heads New Pro Poker League

The New League Will Be Limited To Top 200 Pros

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Annie DukeFederated Sports and Gaming has partnered with the Palms Casino Resort to introduce a new professional poker league in 2011. Annie Duke has been announced as the league’s commissioner and will oversee a schedule of four rake-free tournaments and an additional championship event in Las Vegas. Duke recently left UB to pursue other interests.

“A unified league is something we have been talking about in the industry for years and I’m really looking forward to bringing this vision to life,” said Duke.

The new league will only be open to the top 200 players in the world, determined by a “ranking system based on an eligibility formula that is driven by mathematics and proven historic achievement.” The exact details of the ranking system are not yet available.

Duke will be working with Jeffrey Pollack, former President and Commissioner of the World Series of Poker and the brains behind Youbet.com, Michael Brodsky, David Goldberg and Jeffrey Grosman.

Jeffrey Pollack“I’ve long believed that the top professional poker players create enormous value for the industry and are skilled in a way that is worthy of star treatment,” said Pollack. “Our new league will celebrate poker professionals like never before and provide tournament experience at the Palms that is first-class at every turn.”

The new league has also gained the support of eight-time WSOP bracelet winner Erik Seidel. “It’s has been a long time coming for a poker league on par with other professional sports,” he said. “I am looking forward to true excellence in the game being rewarded.”

Eligible players will be able to compete in four televised tournaments with overlays runnings from August to December. The championship even will take place in January of 2012.

 
 
 
 

Comments

deuceplayer
over 10 years ago

This is a horrible idea. It is an affront to the thousands of other people in the world who are truly poker professionals. Who died and made Annie Duke the decider of who is a Poker Pro?

 
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ncg33
over 10 years ago

The WPT tried this years ago with something called the PPT. It didn't last... neither will this. I agree deuce, who made Annie Duke the most qualified to run this??

 
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littleze
over 10 years ago

Annie Duke is not even close to the top 200 in the world, what a joke

 
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ElPadroni510
over 10 years ago

Such a joke. She's trying to run the BCS of the Poker world. We obviously know what everyone thinks of them. Good luck you dumb ****

 
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narucy
over 10 years ago

Don't need poker pro licence, this game is not golf.
Poker pro defalcation is simple, play and win in high stakes.

I hate WSOP 2010 Tournament of Champions concept.
where from 1 million prize?

 
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SevenKidsPoppy
over 10 years ago

Re Erik Seidel, let's not let facts get in the way of spreading the hate, Rich. Some of what he's done in recent years:

2011: 3rd place in PCA Event 12 in the first two weeks of the year

2010: 1st place in Aussie Millions Event 15; 2 WSOP final tables (3, if you include Ante Up For Africa); 2nd place in the NBC Heads Up championship (for a quarter mill)

2009: 2 WSOP final tables and a televised WPT final table

2008: 2 WSOP final tables, a televised WPT win, and a 2nd in the Aussie Millions main event

2007: Seidel's 8th WSOP bracelet and 4 other cashes there; 2nd place in the Aussie Millions high roller event

He's cashed in NLH, PLH, PLO, PLO-8, NL 2-7 SD, HORSE, SHOE, and 7-card stud events.

Tournaments winnings, he earned:

> $500,000 in 2010
> $400,000 in 2009
> $1.9 million in 2008
> $1.1 million in 2007
> $125,000 in '06 (a tough year for him)
> $880,000 in '05

With more than $5 million in the last six years, he's more than holding his own.

 
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SevenKidsPoppy
over 10 years ago

There's no way Seidel was in the red during this time period.

Let's say he bought in for two $10K tourneys every month for those six years. That would be $20K/month. Let's say he spent another $13K/month on travel, hotel, and food. That's $33K/month or roughly $400K/year. (Seidel's style? LOL.)

If he averaged $835K per year, that would be... A PROFIT!

Tack on whatever he makes from his Full Tilt sponsorship and side games after he busts out, and that would make it unlikely that he would care about $1K WSOP events or who wins them. Since when do established pros complain about the presence of amateurs in poker tournaments? Now, is he capable of that kind of misjudgment by not grasping the value of attracting more players to poker? Yes, he is, since he was one of those who didn't like hole cameras, not appreciating how they were contributing to the poker boom.

Open $1K bracelet events were commonplace in the '70s and '80s but phased out in '88 and '89 except for ladies' and seniors' events. They returned in 2004 with 2 open events, '05 (5), '06 (5), '07 (5), '08 (2), '09 (1), and six in 2010. I hope there are even more this year. If he's complaining about the WSOP opening things up to amateurs (or struggling pros) in this way, it doesn't make sense.

 
 

usclawpoker85
over 10 years ago

I guarantee that mathematical equation will somehow allow each big name old school pro to get a seat, and leave out the many more deserving. I like the idea; except why deny access to the thousands of other pros that are the real driving force behind the game. The World Series of poker should be rake free. That is the time people come to celebrate the game and to find out who is the best in the world.

 
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TheFly
over 10 years ago

This seems like just another weak attempt at packaging a "Made for TV" tournament series. This idea of "Pros" only was tried years ago in the PPT and failed badly.

The problem is, I think what the TV viewing public likes is that at any final table you can have well-known pros alongside an unkown amateur who maybe happened to satellite his way into and have a great run in the tournament. It's where the whole "Moneymaker" effect came from, an unknown acheiving glory versus well known pros.

Having a "Pros" only tournament series just seems like an also-ran snoozefest which will hardly be distinguished from what we already have on TV, including WSOP, NAPT, WPT, HSP, PAD, etc., etc.

 
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jkc67
over 10 years ago

I would like to know why this would work better than the PPT, which did not. I am not sure why the PPT failed, but I am not opposed to the idea. While I like the idea of pros and amateurs competing alongside one another, you would stil have that. This idea will not change the WSOP or WPT. It is like in golf you have Open events (i.e. U.S. Open, British Open, etc.) where any one can play if they qualify. Then you would have pros only events like the Masters and other invitationals. There's nothing wrong with that. And I don't mind having Annie Duke run it. She is the commisioner, not the one who makes the final decision on who makes the top 200. A commissioner is really an administrator, not a dictator. And really, to disrespect Erik Seidel shows a complete lack of knowledge of poker. As much as any pro he has shown an ability to succeed in the pre-moneymaker era, the post-moneymaker era, and the current online era. So get your facts straight before you trash talk someone like Seidel.

 
 

jkc67
over 10 years ago

@richenough... like bmpek you are just another loser hater who has nothing better to do than spew BS and your stupid rants. Could you at least spell Seidel's name correctly you iliterate idiot? It is people like you that give poker a bad name.I know you do not know what a commissioner actually does and that is par for the course, you are just another un-educated poker moron. You revert to frat house insults like calling someone a "balls sucker" when you are presented with the facts. Whether or not Seidel is bitter about WSOP changes or whatever is not relevant to the first stupid thing you said, that he could not keep up with the game while his results clearly show that is not true. I know when people like you lose your argument on the basis of the facts, you revert to profanity and homophobia. You hope it will provide a smoke screen so you can exit and what do you know... your last post says you are out of here. Good idea before you say anything else that is proven to be wrong and makes you look like an even bigger idiot. Although I am not sure that is possible.

 
 

SevenKidsPoppy
over 10 years ago

@jkc67: You left out "innumerate and immature." This guy is not a man yet and leaves us no hint as to when if ever he'll grow up.

A man admits when he's wrong. Emotional pubescents like Rich turn to absurd, profane imagery and cower away, hoping their garden variety would-be shock talk will cause others to forget that he had no idea what he's talking about when he asserted that Seidel was bitter and wasn't keeping up with the younger players. All it did was reveal (or confirm to those who read his idiocy) Rich's own bitterness and ignorance in things poker-related.

Rich, you asshole -- I'm the army veteran with seven kids, and you're the boy with mixed proclivities.