Monday, April 04, 2005

Wow, Amy over at Poker Pages mentions our lil blogging scene.
The Bloggers Code: Incest is best

Howdy all - I'm recovering from another lost weekend of poker. I returned home to some interesting developments in my email inbox - I'll be blogging these soon. BTW, I posted my email addy down there on the right hand side. I know it's been difficult to get ahold of me so I've finally relented and stuck it up.

But for now - amazing news on the Corporation versus Andy Beal - The Big Game.
Andy accepts with a few stipulations.

You can see the full article at Card Player or read Andy's response below.

And Doyle has already responded to Andy's letter. See below!
Read Barry's thoughts here.

Beal Accepts Brunson's Counter (Almost)


To: Doyle Brunson, Chip Reese, Todd Brunson, Jennifer Harman, Howard Lederer, Chau Giang, Barry Greenstein, Ted Forrest, Gus Hansen, Lee Salem, John Hennigan, Ming La, Lyle Berman, Phil Ivey, Johnny Chan, Hamid Dastmalchi

From: Andy Beal

Re: Friendly Game of Poker

All right, Doyle, I accept your challenge that we play a $40 million each freezeout with one modification and several clarifications that follow below.

I quit playing serious poker almost a year ago, but I am really tired of reading and rereading the same old exaggerated fisherman stories, where the fish just keeps getting bigger and bigger. I just read the draft version of a new book that repeats many of these stories, and this book even has Chip Reese claiming poker wins that absolutely never occurred. While my win of our two-day biggest game is reasonably accurately described, the win is materially diminished by ancillary stories that your side was hampered by players being tired or sick or drunk or whatever. Imagine that: little ol’ me against all of you in our biggest game ever and you’re supposedly unable to find players who are ready to play. So, I guess I can’t really beat you guys even when I really beat you guys?

Yes, I have an ego, too. I repeat my factual assertion that I am an overall net winner against a majority of the above-listed players (to be fair, I again acknowledge that my losses to a minority of the above-listed players exceed my wins from the majority). It seems that every story has as many different versions as there were people involved, and the most repeated, exciting, and exaggerated version becomes accepted as the truth. Fortunately, having multiple sources repeat the same story doesn’t make the story true. So, let’s play a new game that is bigger and better, and we can document exactly what happens. Hopefully, over time this well-documented new game will overshadow the fisherman stories from the old games.

Perhaps many people are asking themselves why anyone would play such a match? Isn’t there a much better use for the time and money? My first thought is the old quote about why people climb mountains or parachute from airplanes: “Anyone capable of even asking such a question could never possibly understand the answer.” But my second thought is to attempt to explain. It will be fun and exciting, and it will demonstrate that an amateur can take on the pros over a long-lasting game and either put up a real battle or win the war. It also seems more humane than the dueling pistol matches of the old days, where men defended their honor by taking 20 paces, turning, and shooting: I can defend my version of the fisherman stories without anyone getting shot. And to anyone actually asking the “better use of time and money” question, the best answer of all is: Approximately $15 million of the spoils will go to the largest charity in the world, the U.S. government, in the form of income taxes. If that doesn’t do it, then how about, we’re just a bunch of shmucks with nothing better to do?

The following single modification and several clarifications are fair to all. Your last proposal that you can substitute fresh new players at will in a musical chairs fashion is not a fair game.

Let’s play poker … as follows:

1. My initial challenge was to play for $100,000-$200,000 bets until “one of us runs out of money or cries uncle.” You responded that you wanted to play a $40 million each freezeout with $30,000-$60,000 bets with a conditional increase to $50,000-$100,000. I accept your proposal. Each side will post $40 million to be deposited in a bank that you may select, provided it must be one of the nation’s five largest banks. The depositors, the casino, and the bank will enter into an agreement that the account and all accrued interest will be paid to whoever wins the match.

2. My challenge was to play in Texas, and you responded that you prefer Vegas but that it was negotiable. I subsequently heard that you want the game to be played in a licensed casino. I accept your requirement that the game be played in a licensed casino. We will play the match in Shreveport, Louisiana, in a licensed casino that I select, and I will pay or keep any fees paid to or received from the casino to host the game. This is the closest licensed casino to Dallas.

3. My challenge was for you to pick six of the 16 listed players and I would pick who played from your six picks. You responded that you “will choose who plays and when.” I repeat, that it is not fair for me to have to play fresh players in a musical chair format. So, my single modification to your response is as follows: You get to pick who plays from the 16 listed players, but each player you select must play until they have won or lost $8 million. Any player winning will be excluded from any subsequent play. This last provision will ensure that you have to use at least five players to win the match.

The following clarifications are not expected to be controversial, but I wanted to get them out on the table for your agreement.

4. To maximize hands played per hour, the game will use three dealers and three different-colored decks of Kem plastic playing cards and three shoes. The three decks will be shuffled and one deck put in each shoe. Dealer A will deal from one shoe until that hand is complete and then swap the depleted shoe and played cards to dealer B or C for one of the other ready shoes. Dealer A will then deal the next hand from the new shoe while dealer B or C shuffles and reloads the depleted shoe. Having two “standby” shoes will minimize waiting for shuffling even with consecutive preflop folding.

5. We will play a minimum of four days per week and a maximum of seven days per week at my discretion. This seems reasonable, since there is only one of me, you have many players, and I have a full-time job.

6. On days that we play, unless mutually agreed otherwise, the game will begin at 10 a.m. and stop at 4 p.m.

7. The game will be videotaped, and all players will sign customary releases and I will pay all costs of same and retain all rights to same. You routinely play poker at tournaments where you receive no video value, so what’s the difference here? I know it sounds crazy after making these challenges in the leading poker publication, but I do not seek publicity with the general public and I do not plan to do anything with the video other than to document the match (I may change my mind if I win the match!). I only came out in Card Player magazine with my initial challenge last September because it seemed the only way to overcome the poker rumor mill. Ditto this challenge acceptance.

8. The game will begin April 10, 2005, and continue until one side has won.

9. Only players, dealers, officials, and camera personnel within 20 feet of the poker table during play. A quiet environment will be maintained and the game will take place in a room separate from any other activities. Spectators can view the game through glass windows, with the exception that each side can have a maximum of three observers in the room. If either player desires to enforce, observers may only approach their players to talk for periods of less than 30 seconds a maximum of four times per hour. Food and breaks can occur as reasonable and customary.

10. Player bets will not be pulled into the pot and will be left in front of each player until the hand is complete and the dealer has selected the winning hand.

Best personal regards,
Andy Beal


Doyle's reply:

The way I understand the latest version of your proposal for the big game, is if we can't be in Shreveport to play on April 11th, there can be no game. Even though we have essentially agreed on everything else, why is that date so important? We have waited months for you to respond and to wait 3 weeks more doesn't seem unreasonable. I personally will be out of the country until the 12th and when I return I am going to play at the Bellagio tournament.

If you want to wait and play, call me personally and let's talk. This is the last [at least for me] of these public challenges and negotiations. I feel this game is more important to you than it is to us. We gamble on an ongoing basis for more money than our part of the bankroll. Of course, there are a lot of us and only one of you, so it is understandable.

The bottom line is I feel this is getting out of hand and is making all parties involved look foolish. It is bordering on being ridiculous. Think about how stupid we must look to the average person. If we can't play now, come anytime to the gambling capital of the world and you WILL get played with. Lets ante up and play without all this fanfare.


Doyle [Sleepless in Shreveport] Brunson

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