Ready for another trip to the World Series

Published: Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at 05:10 PM.

Who would’ve ever imagined poker becoming a spectator sport? Nobody playing in the regular Saturday night game at my house ever had such a thought. But over the decades, technologies came together in a cyber storm that made it so.

The central catalyst was the imbedded popularity of the game. Like baseball and apple pie, poker was — and is — part of American fabric.

My dad taught me using toothpicks for chips. Way before television entered the house, we listened to radio programs while playing cards at our kitchen table.

Mom liked canasta, but Dad and I preferred poker. I don’t know why it wasn’t Mom’s favorite also because she typically beat the tar (toothpicks) out of both of us.

Fast-forward 60 years with poker a huge sport as measured by the numbers of spectators and piles of money attracted to the activity. However, poker has one very distinct personal advantage over all other spectator sports making it unique.

Spectators watch professional sports with the sure and certain knowledge they personally couldn’t compete against those players on fields, courts or tables. That’s untrue of poker.

Poker successes are a blend of skill and luck. Every successful tournament player will concede that any win requires some random lightning strikes of pure, unadulterated luck.

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