Monday, October 29, 2007
Let's run with an Absolute Poker update, shall we?
Someone posted a recent interview with Mark Seif detailing his thoughts on the cheating scandal and his role as the spokesman. I won't go into the contents of the video, you can go watch it yourself, but he does threaten legal action against a poker message board poster. Hrmm.
Typically, Two + Two exploded into vitriol all directed Mark's way. Mark had unfortunately publicly defended the tourney play of uber-cheater, Potripper. And now he's feeling the wrath.
Here's the full thread: Absolute Poker Spokesman Mark Seif Video Interview
Someone else pointed out a NY Times article from this morning about AP: Publicity Firm Shames Client for Failure to Pay a Bill
Interesting, I just saw that Mark Seif responded in the thread. Here's his two cents:
Fair enough. But please understand, I am not authorized to speak on behalf of AP. I have not advised them of any recent interviews I have conducted, nor have I sought nor received their permission for those interviews or the statements here. I speaking on my own behalf, only. I don;t know what consequences, if any, may result from this.
1. I am shocked and appalled that this type of conduct occurred at AP. There is no excuse for it. I was never made aware of the situation, to the actual extent, or in terms of the person/s involved, until the same day the public was made aware.
2. I know that many of you have been cheated and that money has been stolen from you. I have been told and honestly believe that you will be made whole. That doesn't make it right, but it's a good first step.
3. I do believe whoever engaged in this conduct should be brought to justice. I am not in a position to do that pesonally, but I have recommened that and will continue to do so.
4. It is NOW clear to me that Potrripper cheated inasmuch as there has been an admission of such. I looked at approximately 80 hands after I was assured repeatedly that it was impossible to view opponents' hole cards and that he had not in fact done so.
I looked for a smoking gun. I found no pocket pairs folded preflop or other big hands when there were bigger hands out. I never found a hand where Potripper folded set under set, or a straight to a bigger straight or to a flush. I never saw a hand where he folded trips or a smaller full house to a bigger hand. I never saw a hand where he folded two pair or even top pair. Potripper, to the best of my knowledge and recollection, never even folded top pair. I agree he made some bizarre super-aggressive plays to make his opponents' fold. but, I have done the same, so has Phil Ivey, Gus Hansen, Daniel N. and other ultra-aggressive players. We've all seen them.
I was troubled when I saw him fold K-Q in an unopened pot in the cut-off or on the button, given the nature of his earlier play and when aces where behind him. I flagged that hand for further review.
But, I also saw hands where it made no sense at all to make the plays he made given the cards that were out. In one hand, I believe he entered a pot UTG with 8-4 off, perhaps even for a raise when there were several big hands and/or pairs out behind him. I placed a lot of weight on that hand and a couple of other similar ones, clearly too much. I was very troubled by the last hand of the tournament where Potripper called an all-in with 10 high. That seemed very strange but there are possible, albeit rare, explanations. A misclick, or just an amazing call. I have been called by an 8 high before in a huge pot and it was good. We also found a hand that was played on Full Tilt by two well known and respected players, where the board read somethimg like Q-6-2-6-Q. A player bet on the end with 4-4 and was called by a player holding 5-5. Yes, a 5 high! This was also a very big pot.
I also asked another very successful professional poker player to look at the hands. He too thought the plays were plausible, some were strange but that is not uncommon. Clearly, we were mistaken. But, I did not lie.
5. I feel very bad for those that, because of my public endorsement of AP, deposited money and played on AP and were cheated. I can't say that I am ashamed because I did nothing malicious or intentional. If I had, I would be very ashamed.
-- Mark Seif
Cliffs Notes per a follow-up poster:
1.) It wasn't me.
2.) They'll give it back. Promise.
3.) I just work here.
4.) I'm really, really, really bad at poker.
5.) It wasn't me.
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