Thursday, January 31, 2008

Revisiting Predictions from 2006

On October 3, 2006 I made some predictions about poker after the US Government passed the UIEGA and made transferring money to online poker sites illegal. I happened to stumble across my predictions while I was reviewing some of my tournament posts and I thought it would be fun to revisit my predictions and see how they turned out.

Here we go:
1. The World Series of Poker will have its participation cut by at least 60%.
a. The vast majority of the players in the Main Event satellite in online
b. Since no US citizens can satellite in via online poker rooms, the field will be less than 4000

The Main event went down to about 6000 players from over 8000 in 06. It seemed like the rest of the events had more players than 2006. I heard that something like 80% of the players that won online satellites into the Main Event, took the cash put it in their bankroll instead of signing up for the tournament.

2. A Foreign citizen will win since they will outnumber the US citizens

I was close. A Canadien came in second and Jerry Yang came in first. He is American but was born in Vietnam I think. Half of the final table was foreign.

3. Online poker will still be alive in the US, but just barely

I was totally wrong on this one. It seems like it’s as healthy as ever. Party Poker went away and Full Tilt and Poker Stars picked up all their players and continued business as usual. Now Poker Stars has over 150,000 players on their site in the peak hours.

4. The largest online companies like Pokerstars, Partygaming, and 888 will survive and make money in the burgeoning international markets and possibly China.

I got this one right. Their stocks have not recovered but they are still cash flow positive and making huge money in Europe and even Russia.

5. The stock of these companies will not recover to their previous highs.

I’m still right on this one.

6. I will only be playing poker in a weekly home game or in Las Vegas
a. My son is being born soon, taking up a lot of my poker playing time
b. I won’t be able to play online and feel my money is safe.
c. The rake in low limit casino poker is so bad, that it is near impossible to make money in the long term.

Thankfully I was wrong on this one. Since Poker Stars and Full Tilt stuck around, I felt my money was safe. Even though I did have a scare when Neteller went under. I play 6-10 hours a week online and lately we have gone to a once a month home game.
I hardly play any tournaments online anymore because I can’t get the uninterrupted time with Jake running around the house. It’s 90% cash games now.

I once saw the disintegration of the Internet industry in the stock market in 2000 and 2001. There were a lot of people with rosy predictions that their company would never go away. I often heard the quote of, "The internet is not going away". That took 2 -3 years to unwind.
This past weekend is the same thing, except it is all happening overnight. I would not be surprised to hear of a suicide of a top player who loses his sponsorship, players moving out of the country, or small poker sites taking off with their client's money.

Nobody has committed suicide. Some players have moved out of the US. The only name player I had heard of is Liz Lieu. Absolute Poker had a major cheating scandal, but they gave all the players their money back with interest.

1 comment:

play the money game said...

We cannot predict exactly the statistics but what we can definitely say is that there will huge followers of this game.