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TelevisionWeek's new blog by World Poker Tour boss Steven Lipscomb marks this publication's second blog by a member of the television industry. As the founder of WPT, Steve often is credited with starting the televised poker boom. He's also known to say a controversial thing or two.

Just as Rich Goldfarb, senior VP of sales for National Geographic Channel, offered candid insight into the upfront advertising selling period, Steve plans to pull no punches in discussing the people, practices and pitfalls of the television business.

And remember: TVWeek.com encourages you to respond to what you read here. So feel free to post comments on Steve's blog.

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World Poker Tour



History, Baby . . . History!

March 6, 2008 7:33 PM

Wow, what a week on the World Poker Tour:

Last week at the Commerce Casino, Phil Ivey made it to an historic eighth final table (more than anyone – ever) and proceeded to win the title (and the $1.4 million that went with it). Phil is often referred to as the best poker player in the world – and he probably is. A remarkable stat surrounding his final table run is that Phil has never cashed in a WPT event in which he did not proceed on to the final table.

That’s incredible – freaky even.

Then, you talk to the old guys who remember (five short years ago) when there was only one million dollar first prize event a year. They know that no one has ever come close to a million dollar repeat at that event. And, it’s like that for a reason . . . it’s hard to get there . . . and even harder to seal the deal once final table play begins. To make it there eight times is a clear indication of how talented this guy is.

But I think the most impressive moment of the season for Phil Ivey will be what people see in the first WPT episode that airs on GSN Monday March 24th at 9:00 p.m. I don’t want to ruin it, but it shows why Phil is such an amazing player . . . and why we feel honored to have him as a WPT Champion.

Then, just two days later (again at the gigantic Commerce Casino in LA) at the WPT Celebrity Invitational, Van Nguyen became the first woman in history to win a World Poker Tour event. Her husband, superstar player Men “The Master” Nguyen, discovered that it’s harder to sweat a player than it is to play yourself – by far. Several times we thought he might keel over as Van’s chip stack vacillated on the way to the final table.

Even with the numbers skewed so heavily in favor of male participants, six years is a long wait for one of the great women players to get over the hump and break the curse. So, now we expect to see the women out there in the winners circle to continue to grow.

And, I have to give a shout out to all the celebrities, players and VIPs who attended the Invitational. It’s such a great party. We wait for it every year . . . and there’s just something special about it.

We’ve already begun planning next year’s extravaganza. Not sure it can get much better, but we’re going to try for sure . . .

REMEMBER: WPT Season Six begins airing Monday, MARCH 24TH at 9:00 p.m. on GSN – go to WPTonGSN to find how to get it in your area.

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Comments (3)

DeeDee Mashburn Little:

Wow... just amazed at all you have done. I'm a blast from your high school past. Looking for you on the day that George Carlin died....merely because you were the first person I thought of when I heard of his passing. I know how much his humor meant to you some 30 years ago. No idea how to get in touch with you, but found this blog *cough* that has not been touched since March. Come on Steve..... get with it. *wink* Sounds like life has been amazing for you and you have been amazing for many other's lives. Congratulations!!

Gary Lileikis:

Have you been to Cobalt lately?

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