Guest commentary by Hayden James of www.PokerListings.com
Did you hear the resounding “Oh My God” that recently went through the poker world? The World Series of Poker Main Event final table on hold for four months! Among all changes we’ve seen during the long history of the World Series of Poker, this ploy certainly must be the most startling of them all. There is a fear that the greatest of all poker tournaments is about to be razed.
Are Harrah’s and ESPN hopelessly lost in the hands of marketing gurus and short-sighted economists, or is this a move that will blow new life into the somewhat less booming poker boom?Opinions are divided, and of course we can only speculate. Poker Listings blogger Steve Wong launches some pretty strong poker-related criticism in his blog.
People in forums offer really worrying security concerns, bringing up the increased possibility for collusion, chip dumping and other forms of illicit deal making, or worse still, the possibility of players suddenly disappearing before the match and being blinded off on “almost live” television.
On the other hand, some people consider that this will be great for the involved players as well as for poker. The final table players will get the opportunity to really be in the limelight for a time, to carve out some valuable sponsorship deals, and possibly brush up on their poker skills a bit before the poker game of their life.This may goad the general interest of poker to heights never seen before, and as a consequence bring hordes of new, soft players to the tables, both online and live.
Be it this way or the other, this surprising change is a fact. We can only enjoy the 2008 WSOP and see where things end up in the future.