Special Poker After Dark This Week

High-stakes Durrr vs. Ivey + Everyone Else cash games

by , Dec 8, 2009 | 2:07 am

The Poker PROducers showing they can feed the poker die-hards:

This week, and next, Poker After Dark is forgoing its usual $20,000 short-handed sit-n-go (yawn) for a Full Tilty high-stakes cash game with a $100k min and $250k max buy-in. (No rebuys maybe? Not sure … ). The players: Tom Dwan, Patrik Antonius, Phil Ivey, and Gus Hansen + Daniel Negreanu (representing PokerStars) and Phil Hellmuth thrown in for good measure.

I’m guessing Mori Eskandani doesn’t know who Isildur1 is either?

While PAD generally makes solid stumble-upon viewing, it’s been a while since they’ve assembled such a unique game that should play as real what everyone’s been watching on their computer screens lately. Sounds like there should be a lot of interesting (big) hands … and you gotta wonder just how much at least four of these people really want to give up about their cash-game play under the watchful eye of the hole-card cam.

I also wonder: would they ever do a similar show with the game being Omaha? The biggest hands (in history) these days seem to be playing out mostly in PLO … but conventional poker wisdom says, supposedly, that non-Texas hold’em doesn’t play well on TV.

13 Comments to “Special Poker After Dark This Week ”

  1. KenP

    All but Daniel recently were part of the Million Dollar Cash Game. Daniel played HSP every year. If they were worried about showing their play it was in the distant past.

  2. Kevin Mathers


    These episodes were taped over a year ago.’

    Matchroom Sports in the UK did the FTP Durrrr Live Challenge with PLO in some of the matches

  3. Spaceman

    “…conventional poker wisdom says, supposedly, that non-Texas hold’em doesn’t play well on TV.”

    I can understand being gun-shy about showing PLO during prime-time, such as during the WSOP – you’d have to go back to the days of “this is how you play the game…” and who wants to do that? But really, how many people watching poker on TV at 1:30 a.m. aren’t actually poker players themselves? I think that of all the poker programs on TV, PAD is in the best position to give Omaha a shot.

  4. DanM

    *** These episodes were taped over a year ago.’ ***

    Really?!? So they were just being fortuitous? Does everyone know how they turned out already? Yikes, I feel so out of the PAD loop.

  5. Losty

    Is Anybody watching poker at 2 AM not a poker player period? PLO would be interesting.. Heck, was ill and watched the replay of the (’07?) 7 stud WSOP, and that was enjoyable..

    But put these 6 at a PLO table, or if Phil H doesn’t play much PLO pull him, or have him sit on the couch, and occasionally do Lodden thinks or get him in the props and find isildur, or Benyamine to play? Must See TV..

  6. DanM

    Indeed, I’d think two weeks of hardcore, high-stakes Omaha would become must-study TV for a lot of players, as it would be the first time we could watch something on Video really showing us how to play. (Would love Gabe Kaplan to do the announcing though, so maybe save it for HSP?)

    As long as we’re at it, I’d also like to see heads-up multi-tabling. Seeing the players run between tables would add a Price is Right game show element, too. And then mix in some leftover slime from the set of Double Dare … yep, now we’re talking a prime-time winner.

  7. BJ Nemeth

    The lack of Omaha on TV is more than just let’s-educate-the-viewer segments. No-limit hold’em has a lot of built-in drama, which is the lifeblood of television.

    Even if Omaha players are all in preflop, nobody is ever really dominated, which makes it seem much more like random gambling to the layperson. And with all the draw possibilities, it’s rare to be dominated post-flop too. There’s little drama in watching 60-40 situations over and over again.

    Because of the complexity of four hole cards (where you *have* to use two), it delays a lot of the instant thrills that hold’em provides. When the flop comes out, it takes everyone a few seconds to determine who has what. (In hold’em, it’s usually instantaneous.) The same thing happens during all-in situations and showdowns — even the best players in the world take a few seconds to figure out what everybody has when the cards are flipped up.

    None of that translates well to TV.

    Remember, “Poker After Dark” isn’t intended to bolster the industry or educate fans on different games, or even provide entertainment for the hard-core fans. It’s on TV to get the highest ratings possible for their sponsors and advertisers. PLO just doesn’t make that cut.

  8. DanM

    Yeah, I hear ya, BJ … I’m just thinking that for two weeks, with this crew of players, and enough critical discussion during think-time (Gabe AND Ali maybe?) … it would immediately become the pre-eminent instructional Omaha video out there.

    I thought the purpose of Poker After Dark was to sign up players for Full Tilt?

  9. BJ Nemeth

    That’s what I said — “get the highest ratings possible for their sponsors and advertisers.” Whether or not Full Tilt can translate those eyeballs into new players is up to them.

    From a business standpoint, if you wanted to create the pre-eminent instructional Omaha video, this wouldn’t be the way to monetize it.

  10. Marvin C

    I watched Monday’s PAD. It sucked. These players are more interested in prop bets than playing poker. They appearred bored. Hellmuth is out of his league in this game; he wants insurance all the time which slows down the game. Unfortunately using the same players all the time makes the game suck. There is very little good poker being shown. Running it out for five days makes for too many boring hands. They could edit it down to one night with the most action hands; but this doesn’t fill five nights.

    The problem if they showed PLO, which I have always said was the best and most action game, is that if you don’t play it, you won’t understand all the possibilities. And since the announcing is terrible and there is only one announcer, they won’t be able to inform the viewers.

    My sister-in-law taped it and called me today asking what all the prop bets were. It would be nice if Ally understood the bets and explained them. He also has to learn or the producers have to learn not to speak the obvious over the players.

  11. Marvin C

    Last night they were playing blind hands for $100,000 each. Next they will be playing Indian Poker.The real problem is that Ally wasn’t explaining what was happening or why it would loosen up the game. Hellmuth, who didn’t play the blind hands, was left to give a quick explaination. And, he loosened up his play. Mori has to change the name to, “Prop Bets After Darl,” since very little poker is being shown.

  12. Marvin C

    Obviously Mori doesn’t read this site; he should. I taped the last two nights and watched them while waiting for an online tounament to start. I counted the hands played, one night it was 17 and last night they showed 12. He has the slowest lineup they could get. Hellmuth is afraid to play at this level and Durr takes forever. BORING!!!

  13. earl turner

    Re helmut why on your show do the other players have to put up with all his curseing & temper tantrems I wiLL bet all the other players started with there own money ( Not Daddys ) like he most likeley did He referd to Thoms education the other night and no matter if he Helmutt is still in school ( He still dont know anything ) He won the bracelets when texas holdem first started What has he won sence Tom and the rest of the players have more CLASS when there sleeping Then helmutt will ever have KICK HIM TO THE CURB WHERE HE SHOULD BE ( He is to cheap & scared to play at the big tables ) Earl Turner