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Gossip Column: Controversial Ruling, Jeopardy Contestant & Junk Food Prop Bet Take the Spotlight at WSOP

Gossip Column
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  • Arpit Jain June 23, 2019
  • 4 Minutes Read

A lot has happened at the 50th annual World Series of Poker (WSOP) as we near the one-month mark. While the action on the felts has been undeniably entertaining and exciting, it has at times led to controversial incidents as well. For instance, on Day 3 of Event #35, the play was halted by the WSOP officials after the sixth-place elimination which immensely angered Shaun Deeb.

However, not all the week’s exciting news came from the on-felt action. Jeopardy trailblazer James Holzhauer recently announced that he would be participating in two bracelet events at the ongoing series, possibly teaming up with poker icon Mike Sexton for the Tag Team event. Can he replicate his phenomenal success from the game show at poker`s biggest stage? Only time will tell.

No WSOP can be complete without a few prop bets cropping up now and then. After his failed attempt to win the McDonald’s prop bet, Mike Noori was at it again. This time the prop bet was about how much Allen Kessler weighed. While Noori claimed he was the 180 lbs mark, Deeb said he was under. Who won? Read to find out

Shaun Deeb Not Happy With WSOP Decision to Stop Play on Day 3 in Event #35

Controversy and Shaun Deeb don’t stay too far from each other. If it’s not engaging in Twitter wars with Daniel Negreanu, then Deeb is ranting at WSOP officials for hurting his chances of bagging his fifth bracelet.

Shaun Deeb
Shaun Deeb

On June 16, Day 3 of Event #35: $10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed was halted with five players still left in the running. Initially, the event was supposed to play down to a winner, but following the sixth-place exit of Nick Schulman, the play was halted for the day.

After Schulman’s elimination, the remaining players were informed by WSOP Tournament Supervisor Dennis Jones that they would be playing seven more levels. Adam Friedman and Michael McKenna voiced their frustration on this, and when players returned from a break, Jones changed his decision and told players that they would be bagging for the day. There was a heated debate between the players and Jones, but Jones reinforced that this was the final decision.

Jones clarified that he had spoken to Vice President of WSOP, Jack Effel, who had relayed the message that because players were told that they would be bagging at six players at the start of the day, and since both Friedman and McKenna had objected to continuing to play, that play would end for Day 3.

Deeb and Matt Glantz protested, and Deeb stated that he would have done everything differently if he knew this was the outcome. He said he would have played the online event, and that he planned on playing the Stud Championship as well.

In an interview with Jamie Kerstetter, Deeb vented his frustrations stating, “Its rough getting up this early. We had ended early yesterday. There was an unfortunate bad ruling made by Jack [Jack Effel] to decide to go with the structure change as well as against what the majority of the players wanted. So now we are back today. I missed the online event, the DeepStack that I would have played. I am going to have to late register myself today. I also wanted to go back-to-back, and I want to multi-table a lot of stuff. We were given bad information multiple times throughout the day. So, they are just hurting my chances of going back-to-back. But I think it’s a good story for the World Series. They are obviously not trying to do favoritism, but they really just let two players bully them into getting what those players wanted.”

Nevertheless, irrespective of what Deeb thought should have been the right call, Friedman went on to successfully defend his title, along with claiming $312,417 in first-place prize money, while Deeb finished runner-up for $193,090.


Jeopardy Contestant James Holzhauer Will Participate in 2 WSOP Bracelet Events

After making his mark in the popular game show Jeopardy, contestant James Holzhauer has now set his sights on the 50th annual World Series of Poker (WSOP).

James Holzhauer
James Holzhauer

Holzhauer came to prominence for his 32 consecutive wins on Jeopardy that is second only to the 74-game winning streak of Ken Jennings from 2004.

A professional sports bettor, Holzhauer employed a unique method of aggressively playing in the Daily Doubles by risking large sums of money in hopes of running up a score so high his opponents had no shot at defeating him.

After 32 straight wins, he was finally bested at his own game by a 27-year-old librarian named Emma Boettcher. Holzhauer, however, will not be complaining having won a total of $2.46 million on the show.

It seems that now Holzhauer wants to try his luck at the 2019 WSOP. The WSOP announced that Holzhauer would be competing in a pair of bracelet events on June 24. Holzhauer is not wholly inexperienced when it comes to poker as he used to play online before he took to sports betting.

The Chicago native will first participate in the $1,500 No Limit Hold’em Super Turbo Bounty followed by the $1,000 Tag Team No Limit Hold’em where he is supposedly pairing with poker legend Mike Sexton. Holzhauer has also decided to donate half his winnings to charity.


Allen Kessler’s Weight Sparks Junk Food Prop Bet at the WSOP

Allen “Chainsaw” Kessler‘s eating habits recently led to a prop bet at the 2019 WSOP. On June 21, a Twinkie Truck parked at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino was distributing free cupcakes to players participating in the ongoing series. Taking advantage of the freebie, Kessler helped himself to a box and hobbled down the contents at the felt.

Allen Kessler
Allen Kessler

Accompanying the box of cupcakes was also a bag of Fritos, which led Mike Noori and Shaun Deeb to strike up a prop bet. After losing a previous prop bet in which Noori had to eat $1,000 worth of McDonald’s food in 36 hours, the former and Deeb bet on how much Kessler weighed with the line set at 180 lbs. Deeb had the under, while Noori took the over.

Explaining how the bet came about Kessler said, “It started with Deeb and Mike Noori because I was eating junk food at the table. I ate three cupcakes yesterday, and Noori was sure I weighed well over 180. Other people at the table started taking the under.”

On June 22, the official scale was set up by theAll-American Davefood truck and Kessler along with Joe Weinberger, who was serving as the official weigh-in referee, came to get the weighing done during a break from the WSOP. Kessler stripped off his belt, emptied his pockets, and kicked off his shoes before stepping on the scale and weighing in at 179 lbs!

“I didn’t think I was anywhere near that,” Kessler said. When asked how much he thought he weighed, he responded: “Like 165. It’s probably the most I’ve ever weighed in my life to be honest with you. I do eat a lot of junk food.”

It seems that Deeb and those who bet on the under actually came out on top. Maybe Noori should stop make food-related prop bets in the future; he certainly doesn’t have much luck with them.

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