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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Mike Matusow and "High Stakes Poker" on Game Show Network

For those of you that haven't yet seen "High Stakes Poker" on GSN, it's a popular show that gives you a glimpse into the high bet, high risk world of cash game poker. Also called ring games, it's the polar opposite of a tournament game (which most often is shown on television). You see, in a tournament the typical buy-in even on the high side is 10K, some go as high as 25K but nothing comes close to this shows game.

To play as a guest on High Stakes Poker, the player must buy in for a minimum of 100K and the blinds are 300/600 with a 100 ante! This is truly high stakes as pro player Phil "The Unabomber" Laak summed up after taping the new season of High Stakes Poker, "The biggest no-limit game a normal, working pro will see on a semiregular basis has blinds of $100 and $200," Laak concluded- and even games at those limits run infrequently, often in conjunction with a major tournament such as the annual World Poker Tour Championship at the Bellagio.

So after missing his chance to appear on the first season, Mike shows up in season two. Taping of the show just concluded at the Palm in Las Vegas last week. Early reports from insiders tell us to set our Tivo and make sure we don't miss this new season!

A good portion of the first few hours of taping revolved around ranking the top five poker players in the world, with Las Vegas pro Mike Matusow maintaining he belongs in that elite group.

Fellow Las Vegas pro Daniel Negreanu begged to differ, saying Matusow wasn't even one of the top five players at the table. " I'd say Mike is the worst player here," Negreanu said, fully aware that his comment would set off Matusow's fuse.

"I want to play Daniel heads-up for the rest of the night," Matusow fired back, prompting Negreanu to label such an arrangement his "dream" matchup.

Fellow pros Daniel Alaei, Sam Farha, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Harman, Doyle Brunson, and Phil Laak joined the others at the high stakes table for taping.

"I want to play no-limit hold 'em with every one of you for the rest of my life because you don't know shit!" Matusow boomed at one point in response to even more needling from his opponents.

In an effort to dig even deeper into Matusow's fragile ego, Daniel requested a dose of Ritalin be brought to the table to calm Mike down at one point.

"Everyone knows each other, so of course they're going to give each other a hard time," said Alaei, a regular on the tournament circuit for the past three years who also played in Season 1. "It's nothing too personal."

Make sure to tune in and check out the second season of "High Stakes Poker" when it airs. We will report on the broadcast dates and times as soon possible.


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