Everest Poker Sues WSOP

2010 World Series loses on-the-felt sponsor

by , Apr 2, 2010 | 7:01 pm

Everest Poker, the biggest on-the-felt sponsor for the World Series of Poker, reportedly told Harrah’s officials yesterday not only that they are pulling out of a three-year sponsorship deal with the WSOP, but also that their parent company, Ultra Internet Media, is suing the WSOP’s parent company, Harrah’s, alleging breach of contract.

Fun! Now we get to see the types of numbers that Harrah’s, as a private company, would probably prefer to keep private … and we get to watch our friends at WSOP headquarters scramble for a new sponsor while, two months before the 2010 Series, they learn that an $8.4 million check they were expecting is not going to arrive.

From the Las Vegas Sun:

UIM says that in 2008 it agreed to sponsor the World Series of Poker for payments of $6.2 million for the 2008 tournament, $7.9 million for the 2009 tournament and $8.4 million for the 2010 tournament that begins May 27 at Harrah’s Rio hotel-casino in Las Vegas.


UIM says in the lawsuit it paid the amounts due to Harrah’s for the 2008 and 2009 events, but that on Thursday it notified Harrah’s it is pulling out of the 2010 tournament.

UIM said that’s because in previous years Harrah’s breached the sponsorship deal when ESPN broadcasts of the tournament by an affiliate in France, television channel RTL9, failed to display Everest’s name and logo and instead featured the name and logo of Everest competitor Full Tilt Poker.

French TV has caused poker troubles before. Previously an unresolved matter of translations supposedly resulted in Daniel Negreanu’s removing himself from the Poker After Dark line-up … the problem being that the French television station airing the show was claiming that Negreanu played exclusively at Full Tilt, when in fact he is clearly a PokerStars guy.

Meanwhile, Pokerati now knows we saved $7.899992 million getting our logo on the WSOP felts in 2009 … and thus we’re not too pissed that this image has not yet made it onto French TV:

UPDATE: New reality show idea … 2 Months, $10 Million … the Harrah’s crew are ready to put on the biggest show in poker after having promised to just give away money to their top players, but then a French TV dispute leads to what poker players would call a “bad beat” … can Team WSOP pull it all together and save the Series before cards go in the air? Tune in next week to find out. A

UPDATE: Funny take on it all + a photo of the French TV shenanigans at the center of this WSOdisPute.

12 Comments to “Everest Poker Sues WSOP ”

  1. Kevin Mathers

    Regarding Negreanu and PAD, PokerStars wouldn’t allow their players to appear on the show during last year’s taping of episodes because of this dispute.

  2. Bill Rini

    Something tells me Harrah’s won’t have any problem getting Full Tilt or Stars to pay even more than what Everest is paying.

  3. Kevin Mathers

    Even with Nevada’s Gaming Commission considering clamping down on .net sites being involved with poker tournaments?

  4. compncards

    The claims are true. I just pulled up video that was posted online from the 2007 WSOP.


    A screen cap of a flop from one of the hands can be seen at the following link:


  5. compncards

    This case has some merit. Check out the videos at this link:


    If you watch the WSOP broadcasts ripped from the station, you can clearly see that the Everest logo has been replaced.

    We have a screen cap of one of the violations here:


  6. DanM

    “Considering” is an interesting word. Wonder how long it takes to consider something, and whether or not that time frame would take into account the November Nine.

    I woulda said no-way at first to Bill — too much tension+legal uncertainty between Harrah’s and Stars/Tilt. But now, w PokerStars.NET sponsoring NAPT and other tourney series (like the HPT) … why not have it be a Stars event?

  7. DanM

    hey compncards … i actually posted a link to your post before i saw your comment(s), which I now just found in the Pokerati spam filter. Sorry for any confusion. Great stuff, btw!

  8. BJ Nemeth

    This post is an excellent example of valuable comments. I’m glad I can finally see them from my iPhone!

    Oh, and I think we have our first segment for next week’s episode of the award-winning Poker Beat.

  9. compncards

    Thanks Dan. We posted another link to the story on our Facebook too.

    I personally wouldn’t be surprised to see someone like Bwin step up and try to buy sponsorship. Not saying I wouldn’t mind Stars or Tilt sponsoring again, especially if we get a cool hangout lounge like we had in 2006.

  10. DanM

    It will never be like 2006.

  11. compncards

    Shhh, don’t disturb my pipe dream. 🙂

  12. Kevin Mathers

    Update on Everest v Harrah’s: