Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Props to Good WSOP Coverage

Other than the usual media outlets, and of course Dr. Pauly's excellent coverage year-in and year-out from the Rio, I thought I would give some props today to a blogger who has been putting out quality content almost every single day here during the 2010 World Series of Poker -- F-Train. I've been a reader of F-Train's blog for some time, but probably never so much as I have become over the last few weeks since the WSOP started. In a world where so much is made of every single poker tournament played at the Rio over a six-week period, many of which are openly referred to as "donkaments" by those in the know, in largely shallow-stacked events where luck predominates over skill in the eyes of anyone who really understands how mtt's work, F-Train has had very little trouble finding something interesting, well thought-out and well-reasoned to say about the Series almost every single day.

One thing F-Train has been doing is keeping track of the number of players this year as compared to last year in the corresponding WSOP events. A couple of weeks back when F-Train started tracking this, a disturbing trend appeared -- and one that surprised me to be honest, given the (somewhat) improved economic situation both in the U.S. and abroad as compared to last year -- each of the first five events of the 2010 WSOP was down in participation from the corresponding events in 2009. In fact, 8 of the first 12 events saw a drop in attendance since last year. I was really surprised -- even having just been out in Vegas, at the Rio in fact, and remarking here on how incredibly slow Vegas was in general as compared to prior years in the summer -- because I just didn't get how fewer people could be playing in the Series this year given the general improvement in the global economy over the past 11 or 12 months. Last year, the WSOP started just two months away from those disgusting March 2009 lows in the stock market, and just a month or two away from the four and five hundred thousand jobs lost every single month, and in general the market was what, a full 35% or so lower than it is today? How could more people have plunked down between $1500 and $10,000 on a luck-dependent poker tournament last year than this year?

Well, I was less surprised to see F-Train's recent updated post on this topic, where this strange trend seems to have reversed itself, in line with all logic and reason. Since Event #14, 11 of the last 12 WSOP tournaments have recorded increases in attendance since the same event in 2009. What started out as a strange, somewhat inexplicable dropoff in participation has proven to be just a slow start to the 2010 WSOP, and it appears now that we are going to come in I bet between 5 and 10% up for WSOP participation overall this year as compared to last. So far F-Train is the only real media outlet I have seen keeping close track of these numbers, and it's been an interesting angle that has made for some interesting posts and thoughts during the WSOP this year.

Similarly, F-Train had some excellent coverage on the scandal with the WSOP Ladies Event this year, a nice post detailing the truth about the behavior of Men Nguyen when he won his 7th bracelet earlier this month, and of course some excellent reports of the Tom Dwan circus when Durrrrr managed to steal the center of attention from the entire Amazon room when he played his way to heads-up in Event #7.

As I mentioned above, F-Train has found a way to provide interesting content related to the WSOP on a daily basis to a poker tournament loving guy like me. You should check it out if you haven't been already.

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Blogger BLAARGH! said...

I don't know that it makes sense that more people would be entering hoy. Even though the economy is somewhat recovering, lots of folks are still losing jobs, or worried about losing jobs, and tons more are in debt up to their eyeballs. Common sense would dictate not spending your hard earned cash, and socking it away while you can. Of course, common sense would have kept us out of the depression in the first place.... But I know next to nothing about economics....

And you're right, F-Train has been doing a great job - he, Pauly and Shamus are my first reads every morning.

10:04 PM  
Blogger pokeroso said...

Just added a subscription to f-train on my google reader. thanks for the heads up.

2:35 PM  

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