A List of Players Who Should be Barred From WSOP?
2015 is around the corner and rumor has it that we may see some faces we haven't seen there in a while. Daniel Negreanu
ran down a list of six people who some have argued should be forever barred from the World Series of Poker. As he put it, "I've always been of the position that unless people have been found to actually cheat at poker, they should be allowed to attend."
Russ Hamilton and Mansour Matloubi:
I'm grouping these two together since they are guilty of the same crime, using a God mode program allowing them to see their opponents hole cards online. While this isn't a case that has been ruled on in the court of law, the evidence is overwhelmingly one-sided that at the very least, these two men were involved in cheating players out of millions. There isn't concrete evidence that these players have cheated at live poker. I have heard rumors, but they aren't enough to incriminate.
The question is: should cheating at online poker cross over to the WSOP deciding if it will allow these players entry into their tournaments? This year, the WSOP is offering a online poker bracelet, and while the cheating didn't happen on their site, should that matter? Also, what level of cheating is worthy of a ban? There are plenty of online players who have admitted to cheating/multi-accounting, but I don't think that warrants a ban from WSOP live events. Players like Dan Coleman and Justin Bonomo are just two examples of players who have admitted to multi-accounting in the past.
I think what Russ and Mansour did is obviously a much worse crime and neither should be allowed entry into the WSOP for life. Not that they care.
Next up for Negreanu was former Full Tilt Board member Chris Ferguson
, whom "Kid Poker" had some pretty harsh words for: "He was essentially MIA when FTP was trying to find a buyer so they could pay back the players… He essentially hid under the covers hoping it would all just go away." However, Negreanu concluded that Ferguson should not be banned from the WSOP since he never cheated anyone at the tables.
Negreanu then turned to former Epic Poker League heads Annie Duke
and Jeffrey Pollack
. The former was also involved in UB, but Negreanu didn't argue that point. Instead, he honed in on the failed Epic Poker League $1 Million Freeroll, but did not advocate for a ban: "As wrong as I think it is to not even acknowledge this debt or make any strides towards making the players whole, I still don't think it warrants a WSOP ban."
was Negreanu's final case. Despite some Full Tilt players still being separated from their funds, Negreanu would be accepting of Lederer playing in a future WSOP. The PokerStars
pro stated, "I think it's clear that he should have every right to play in WSOP events. Aside from players having been paid now, to my knowledge he has never cheated at poker, nor have there ever been rumors about him doing so."
There you have it. Do you agree with Negreanu?