After coming back from spending seven weeks in Vegas for the WSOP I was thrilled to take off from playing tournaments for 3 weeks. I got to do some things around the house, not the least of which was spending time with my beautiful wife and daughter.
Alas, all good things must come to an end and it was August so it was time for the Legends event to begin at the Bicycle casino in Los Angeles, so back to work I went. I made my 45 minute trek up to LA from the OC and was pleasantly surprised to see 800 players for a 300.00 event
This is when the reality of playing in L.A. hit me again. I’m not sure why I forget what it’s like but it takes less than the first round for me to see. Cheating in L.A. is rampant and off time it’s blaring. So visible that it might as well be in 30 foot letters scanning 42nd street and Times Square.
I hear quotes like:
I didn’t want to bust you so I bet small
I could have gone all in there but you’re a friend
Our home game wouldn’t be the same if I busted him
Words in Farsi after a hand between two participants
Words in multiple languages in fact, Vietnamese, Pilipino, Chinese, Hebrew Etc.
The words in English are offensive enough to me, merely because I understand the implications.
What they are all saying is, I don’t want to bust out a friend, a clan member and home game buddy, my backer etc…In other words CHEATING!!
Cheating is rampant in LA, not that this kind of cheating isn’t happening elsewhere, I know it is, but maybe because L.A. is such a vast community that all gather at either the Bike of Commerce that I find it so visible.
Worse is the notion that these players don’t even think they’re cheating!
When I ask ‘why wouldn’t you bust him”?, the answers are un-real:
‘Well he’s the host of my home game”
“Hey sorry, I’m not busting the guy who backs me”
“I want to keep him in because we drove together”
“I would have beaten you with my pair, but I folded because it was you that raised”
and many more unbelievable answers…
Worse come from the guys that know they’re cheating but have a hard time with their justifications. From these guys I hear:
“Hey I never slow play, but I’ll make a big bet or move all-in to let him know where I’m at”
“I won’t lay down a big pair, but I probably will not go for that flush or straight draw”
Ladies and Gentleman, you are all cheating and you should be penalized, thrown out and should never be allowed in poker tournament.
Aren’t you being to harsh here Warren?
NO, I’m not, this is no different that passing chips to a friend in the bathroom
Soft playing is cheating
Not betting your nut hand in last position is cheating
Keeping a friend or a backer or a horse in an event when you can bust them is cheating
I hope someday that those who do this are dealt with properly and those who are now getting away with it will stop
Hope that helps