Bodog Adds Bonomo, Boots Arieh

by , May 7, 2008 | 4:44 pm

Bodog Poker announced this week that Justin “ZeeJustin” Bonomo has been signed to its roster of pros that comprise Team Bodog. He joins David Williams, Evelyn Ng, and Jean-Robert Bellande.

Where is Josh Arieh? According to his stats, he’s doing well. His Hendon Mob stats show that he has over $4.5 million in lifetime tournament earnings thus far, including two WSOP bracelets. In 2007, he made close to $200k, and he stands at $71,682 for 2008 so far. But he has been dropped from the Bodog roster because the company wants to move in a “different direction.” Quite possibly, that direction is away from married guys with kids, which probably doesn’t fit the definition of living the so-called Bodog lifestyle.

In the meantime, Evelyn Ng stays on the team. Her lifetime tournament earnings are… wait for it… $301,957. And in 2008 alone, she has made nothing. Nada. Zip. In 2007, she made $17,457.

Bonomo is a good choice for Bodog. He’s taken his online poker successes to the live circuit and done well with over $1.1 million so far. Yes, he was embroiled in a bit of a scandal during his younger online days, but he has made a sincere effort to overcome that stigma and become a respected member of the poker community.

What leaves me shaking my head is the decision to drop Arieh and keep Ng. If anyone has an answer other than, “She’s pretty,” I’d love to hear it.


  • Kevin Mathers

    Besides the fact that she’s pretty, earlier this year she became the face of Bodog’s online presence for the Chinese: http://www.bodoglife.com/promotions/chinese/cs/

  • Kevin Mathers

    Just to add, I don’t know if that’s still the case at this moment, I’m sure Oliver will weigh in with his opinion.

  • olivert

    Ng is the face of Bodog’s Chinese-language campaign in North America.

    Bodog currently does NOT have any licenses to legally operate in Chinese-speaking markets in Asia.

    One reason why Calvin Ayre announced that he was “retiring” (even though anyone who has read the Bonomo article in PokerNews.com would know that the announcement is nothing more than a ruse) is because Bodog wants to apply for those licenses in Chinese-speaking markets.

  • Ben Matlock

    cuz she’s really really pretty?

  • Ben, thank you.

    Seriously, though… I can understand why Bodog would want Evelyn to be the face of their Chinese campaign, but is there no one else – maybe a player with an impressive resume – of Chinese descent?

    I really hate to knock her because I’ve heard she’s quite a nice person. But without results of any kind, I just don’t understand how someone stays sponsored for so long when there are so many deserving players out there with no deals.

  • Scott Chaffin

    how someone stays sponsored for so long

    Pretty, a good start on advertising to an untapped market, and a nice rack? Nah, it can’t be — sex never sells.

  • ***there are so many deserving players out there with no deals***

    Are there really? I can think of a lot of vietnamese, but not many Chinese. Maybe Johnny Chan’s alleged card-marking mistress? I mean after all, it’s not like past cheating transgressions follow you forever in the online sponsorship world.

  • No kidding, Jen. You would think that to be sponsored by such a big site, they would need to be as successful as someone like Clonie.

  • Son of Sue… Ooooh. Nice one.

    Dan, as to players from China, I guess there are only a few. The only ones I recognize are David Chiu (Full Tilt Pro), Johnny Chan (his own website still running?), and Chau Giang.

    I guess there is value in Bodog keeping Evelyn on the roster. Fine.

  • Ed

    hey…isn’t justin that cheating cock from like a year ago?

    if that is why the name sounds familiar…great…i guess we see where bodog stand on that issue. will still keep money on there for now because I usually make money on there.

  • Jason B

    The obvious reason is she has name recognition and she’s a female player. Its the same marketing push that PokerStars is doing with the advertisement of likes of Isabelle Mercier and Katja Thatcher. In the pst few years there’s been numerous articles written about her in Bluff magazine.

  • And that’s what the sites are investing in … player futures, essentially. If they sign a player that continues to win-win-win, then it’s a huge score for them. But I suspect the value of all sponsorship deals have gone down of late, as the sites realize that there are more Pete Incaviglia’s than Cal Ripkens.

  • Maria Ho speaks Mandarin as well as perfect English. Bodog signed her
    during her good run in the WSOP ME last year but did not offer her an
    extended contract.

    Lynette Chan is also bilingual. She is a Full Tilt pro with even less
    earnings than Evelyn.

    Michelle Lau is another with Chinese blood.

    Strange decision to sign an internet cheat and let someone with Ariehs
    impressive record, including a recent win at the Wynn Classic, go so
    close to the WSOP.

  • Ed and Steve, Justin did admit to cheating several years ago, but he has since apologized AND done quite a bit to repair his image. I think enough time has passed, as well as efforts on his part, to say that he has changed.

    I think there’s a vast difference between Justin, who is humble and has really tried to make nice with the poker community, and Sorel Mizzi, who says he’s sorry but is cocky and feels like he somehow DESERVES to be forgiven immediately. Different situations in my book.

    Steve, I completely forgot about Maria Ho. She at least has results…

  • Scott Chaffin

    What’s with the hating on Pete Incaviglia?

  • chaugiang

    I’m Vietnamese, not Chinese…stupid American

  • No hate … just saying that Incaviglia was a relatively brief thrill.

  • Chau Giang, is that really you? In almost every bio I’ve read about you, you’re listed as being of Chinese descent.

    My apologies! (No need to call people stupid, though.)

    BTW, you may want to correct sites like Hendon Mob and Wikipedia.

  • Jen, any non-racist would know that Chau Giang is obviously a Chinese name, not Vietnamese.

    By the way, did you know the word “gook” means “people” in Korean?

  • UPDATE: Apparently Sang has led me astray. (Nice eggroll, Kim Jong Ill Communication.) From The New Nixon Blog:

    Korean Speaker on March 27th, 2008 3:21 pm
    @TJ King

    Sorry, “gook” doesn’t mean people in Korean, it means “land” or “country.” So, China is “Joong-gook” (middle country) and the US is “Mee-gook” (beautiful country.)

    Which, of course, raises the question of how ‘gook’ became a racist term for Koreans (which was then transfered to the Vietnamese.) The best story I’ve heard so far is that it was pretty common for Korean kids to line the roads when the US Army would drive by and shout “Mee-gook! Mee–gook!” (If you don’t get it, say it out loud.)

  • ***stupid American***

    And Fake Chau, Jen is not a stupid American … she is a blonde Californian.

  • Awww, thanks Dan… I think.

  • Haley

    I still want to hear more about Pete Incaviglia.

  • tinyb

    Son of Sue is funny.

  • Jenn

    Evelyn Ng is a huge f***ing stuck up bitch who thinks she’s God’s Gift To Poker even though she only plays AA, KK and AK suited. No wonder she never wins. What a joke to give her a sponsorship. She has no accomplishments and is not that good. The only reason she’s a pro is because Daniel supported her and gave her money to get started and then she became famous for being his friend. Everyone and their grandma thought she was the best player ever. It’s so pathetic.

  • Wow, Jenn, tell us how you really feel! Not that your point may not be valid …

    Do we know each other?