On-the-Fly Rule Change at WPT Championship
“Show One Show Both” Is Now “Show One, OK, Cool, Fair Enough”

by , Apr 22, 2008 | 2:40 pm

I loved being a tournament director — training dealers was particularly fun at the Lodge, and I can think of no truer example of getting to be a benevolent dictator. You have some basic big rules to follow, and then lots of little rules that you can interpret in any number of arguable ways … but the ultimate determination is left to a supreme court of one — and there are no appeals, unless, of course, you decide to change your mind.

Bellagio tourney director Jack McLelland introduced a little democracy to the WPT today — responding to some complaints on Daniel Negreanu’s blog* — by putting his show-one-show-both rule to a vote among the remaining players, who overwhelmingly supported this seemingly sensible mid-tourney change. The short-stack lobby, however, was unsuccessful in persuading the Bellagio’s Dear Tourney Leader to lower the blinds.

From the WPT Live Updates:

Rule Change!
Tuesday, April 22, 2008 12:15 PM PDT

Before the start of play, Daniel Negreanu and Jack McClelland stood up on the stage next to the featured table to make an announcement.

McClelland talked about Negreanu’s blog, stating that Negreanu’s complaints about the show one card, show both rule may be valid, and that he would like to put it to a vote.

So he asked the room if they would be opposed to a rule change. The response was overwhelming to say the least. Nearly every person in the room voted to change the rule.

McClelland responded with, “In the words of Steve Lipscomb, “Ahh…. F#%K it,”” and just like that the rule was changed.

Players are still not allowed to flash a card in the middle of the hand, however. The rule only allows you to flash a card after the hand is over.

After McClelland gave himself a 20-minute penalty [for language], he did warn the players that he has been training the dealers for three years to turn both cards over, and that they should be patient with them as they learn the new rule all over again.

*NOTE: Still looking for a direct link to the post McClelland was referring to. If anyone has it, please pass along. Thanks.

9 Comments to “On-the-Fly Rule Change at WPT Championship
“Show One Show Both” Is Now “Show One, OK, Cool, Fair Enough”

  1. Kevin Mathers

    It’s been a longstanding complaint of Daniel regarding that particular rule that Jack has been against for a long time.

  2. Kevin Mathers

    Here’s a more recent version from back in February this year over at 2+2:


  3. Kevin Mathers

    To clarify (maybe), Jack’s has strongly been against the show one show all rule if a player shows only one card before mucking, something about how it’s not good sportsmanship, psychology, something like that. Daniel’s opinion is that it’s great for poker, and he’s also advocated that players show one card during a hand when the action is headsup.

  4. DanM

    Does anyone advocate taking it as far as only having to show one card to take down a pot if he other player mucks?

  5. BJ Nemeth

    I just wanted to make a quick clarification. Jack McClelland is the tournament director for Bellagio, and *not* for the World Poker Tour. The WPT doesn’t run the actual tournament; that is the job of the casino’s tournament staff. So Jack McClelland runs the Bellagio tournaments, Tab Duchateau runs the Borgata tournaments, Matt Savage runs the Bay 101 tournaments, and so on.

    I just wanted to point out that this isn’t a WPT rule, it’s a Bellagio rule. And since this is a Bellagio tournament, it will be implemented while the World Poker Tour is here.

  6. DanM

    Thanks for the clarification, BJ. I did not realize that this is how the set-up works. Will make necessary corrections. Now get back to work!

  7. ItsOverJonny

    Hopefully Jack will abandon this rule for ALL poker functions at Bellagio. This has been a long-standing rule at Bellagio as long as I can remember, and it’s one of the stupidest rules I have ever encountered. They do it in cash games too. Let’s say the flop brings an Ace – you bet, the other player folds, and you try to show one Ace to the player that folded. The dealer will snatch your second card and roll it over. I hope this change is permanent.

  8. David Rogers

    I keep reading about this rule change about show one show all. I know how the old rules are worded, but nowhere have I seen how the new rule is worded. You don’t just change rules and go home for the day. New rules have to be carefully thought out and worded. So, what is the new rule?

    Thanks, David Rogers

  9. DanM

    David, you bring up a great point. I’ll reach out to the Bellagio poker-room ops and see if I can’t get you an answer. (If you don’t read anything about it by the end of next week, nudge me again. You’ve got my email, right?)