Ylon Schwartz Speaks Out About the WSOP Layoff

Written by:
Guest
Published on:
Oct/30/2008
World Series of Poker

For the first time in the history of the Main Event, last summer's 2008 World Series of Poker did not culminate in the crowning of a new world champion. Instead, the crown jewel of the poker world left Las Vegas with a group of nine men, known as the "November Nine," to return during the second week of November in the hopes of becoming poker's newest world champion.

Though done as a means to build up excitement in the time leading up to the final table, the 100 day layoff has come under scrutiny by observers, media outlets and even some of the participants. In the past, since its inception, the World Series Main Event would continue daily until the winner was crowned. However, in this day and age of media hype and excitement, the winners were always known well in advance of the air date of the final table. To remedy this situation and to allow for months of promotion the decision to delay the final table was made, and the November Nine was born. Over the past 3 months, most of the players have been enjoying their new-found notoriety by obtaining sponsorships and becoming headliners in other tournaments they have entered.

It has recently come to light that one of the final table players is not exactly thrilled with the change in the format. In a recent interview, Ylon Schwartz was quite vocal about his feelings on the topic. He feels very strongly about the fact that the final table should not have been delayed. This is not simply a situation of sour grapes as Schwartz currently is fifth in chips.

For Schwartz, the layoff has been a bit of a nuisance as he finds himself being called all the time, being asked for loans and media interview requests. These things have done nothing but compromise his level of concentration as he prepares for the biggest day of his life. There are also integrity of the game implications here as well. Schwartz was quoted as saying that:

"It ruins the integrity of the tournament. The purity of old-time Las Vegas is gone. The antiquity and purity of the tournament have been liquidated into pure greed and capitalism. The beauty of poker is that no matter how greedy people get, though, it still maintains its artistic and psychological values. It's a beautiful game and you have to use your memory. Your soul comes into play and you have to live well away from the table. If you have no empathy and are shrouded in darkness, then you'll never win."

These are the strongest words to date against the new format. It begs the question as to how much value is gained through the added exposure versus what level of the purity of poker is lost. As this player emphatically argues against the change, it begs the question as to whether or not the new format helps or hinders the final outcome. The poker world will have the answers to these questions very soon.

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Source: www.aintluck.com

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