The poker world has been full of debates over the last few weeks. We have had the debate about whether the game of poker is dying since those words came out of the mouth of Joe Hachem and we have now recently seen a debate arise about the amount of Super High Roller events there now are today and the impact these are having on the game s a whole.
Dan Shak was the first to voice his concerns that not only are Super High Rollers now overshadowing Main Events on poker tours but also because many of them offer unlimited re-buys which can in effect turn the tournaments into flip-fests.
He feels that the winners of Main Events are not getting the recognition that they deserve for their achievements against much larger fields, whilst the same old high rollers see their profiles raised even further simply because they can afford to buy into the SHR events and fire as many shots as they like.
PokerStars Team Pro Daniel Negreanu who himself is a Super High Roller regular and in fact recently just fired five $100k bullets in the Aussie Millions $100k Challenge has now entered the debate in defense of these tournaments. He posted on FullContactPoker.com yesterday to air his views on the impact these events are having and takes an almost opposite opinion to that of Dan Shak.
“The reason these events were initially created is because there were some wealthy Asian businessmen who wanted to play some high stakes tournaments, but they didn’t want to invest a lot of time. They wanted to play a fast paced tournament, which in turn actually improved their chances of success slightly. These guys were also casino gamblers for the most part, so it was really a no-brainer for the Crown to offer these two events. It brought them to town, created some buzz for poker, and also brought the top pros to town to take part in these massive events.”
He feels that there is a good reason why these events are being heavily followed by the media and that is that the fans like to see familiar faces and the worlds very best players at a final table rather than that of maybe just a few in a Main Event and not knowing who anybody else is.
“There was criticism that the media coverage of this event overshadowed the main event. The argument can be made that this has held true for several years now. Coverage is based on demand, and if the super high rollers are getting more hits for the media, they would be foolish not to devote time covering them. I also think poker fans like familiarity, and you will see a group of familiar faces in all of these events, while in the main event final tables it’s rare to recognize more than three names.”
In general, Negreanu actually feels Super High Rollers are good for poker and are simply a natural progression.
We think that this debate could run and run as more people voice their opinions and we will of course try to stay on top of it all and bring them to you if they do in fact surface.