Will the nosebleed games return to Full Tilt Poker?

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Aug 04, 2012 Posted in Op-Ed | No Comments »

There was an interesting article in Cardplayer Magazine where high-stakes Limit Holdem pro “Kagome Kagome” said more than his money that has been locked-up on Full Tilt Poker since late June of 2011, “he really wanted the high-stakes action back”. While exploring the degeneracy of this statement, and subsequent statements in the article, would make for an interesting read in and of itself, I want to focus on the high-stakes games themselves, and what can be expected when Full Tilt Poker does return.

Unfortunately for the 22 year-old German who wants to play higher and higher stakes it’s doubtful that when Full Tilt poker returns the games will be as high as they were before Black Friday. Sure there will be a huge injection of $330 million into the poker economy once players are finally paid, but there are several other issues that will prevent the $3,000/$6,000 eponymously named Limit Holdem table from returning, or even the $2,000/$4,000 stakes that ran regularly on the site.

Issue #1: Several of the nosebleed players relied on Full Tilt Poker

After seeing the enormous payouts some Full Tilt Poker owners were receiving from the site one has to wonder just how much this money was driving the high-stakes games. I’m not talking about sponsorship dollars, I’m talking ownership dollars. And this extends beyond the player/owners themselves, as people like Erick Lindgren backed numerous players who may now be out of action.

Issue #2: A sizable chunk of that $330 million is going to leave the poker economy

Black Friday left a lot of poker players destitute, as some players saw massive swaths of their net-worth frozen in their Full Tilt Poker accounts. Because of this, a lot of the refunded money that hits the poker world will likely go toward paying debts and getting their lives back in order.

Issue #3: Players are still skeptical about leaving large chunks of money online

With everything that has occurred over the last year and a half it’s highly likely that some nosebleed players are going to be a bit more frugal and cautious with their poker bankrolls. PokerStars appears to be the real deal, but for some players the idea of another Full Tilt Poker shortfall will likely weigh on their minds.

Issue #4: A lot of players have “moved on” from online poker

For the most part high-stakes online poker was a young man’s game, and after a year away from the tables for some of these players they have moved on to other interests. Sure they will still play poker, but the popularity of the game is in decline, and several young poker legends have already moved on with their lives (the Dang brothers are a good example of this).


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