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Texas Holdem Poker an Olympic Event..? by Merwin
The Case For Texas Holdem As An Olympic Event
The Olympic Games seem to be missing something and I am sure that I know what it is, it is the Texas Holdem Poker Tournament.
This sport is "entry level" ready, its elimination process is easily understood and therefore observer friendly. Unlike many of the events of both the Summer and Winter Olympics it is extremely easy to follow and to know who is ahead in the standings.
It is truly an international sport with participating athletes in nearly every country, with dual season cross over potential, it could be the first sport seen, both at the Summer and Winter Olympics Games.
These games, being held indoors similar to gymnastics or ice dancing, would be beneficial to either or both seasons of play, appealing to the contenders as well as the observers. And then there is the added benefit of having the athletes constantly in training, the level of play even by the amateurs are at world class gold medal level. This sport is ready for the Games.
What's that you say..? Card Playing isn't a sport, there is no physical exertion, so it can't be an Olympic event?
Is that all you got..?
Texas Holdem Tournament events are usually, at the very least an all day episode of grueling, stressful, stoic postures of play. The WSOP Main Event is close to a ten day duration and as one may imagine toward the end, they that remain are physically spent.
And one might even question the innocence of Poker, compared to that which used to characterize the Olympic, amateur requirements for play. Any pretense of this was dispensed with years ago by the Olympic community. However I find it worth pointing out here, that Holdem Tournaments are regularly won by Amateurs.
Finally... you may complain indignantly, "I don't care about any of that! I still maintain that a card game can't be considered a sport!"
Really... why not? Card Game..? Heavy emphasis on "Game". Olympic "Games". Are we making a connection yet? A game that is easier to score and to follow the scoring of, than that of say... Ice Dancing, and, with no cheating by the Judges (French Ice Dancing Judge 10 - 15 years ago).
Not a sport? I gotta ask you... is Ballroom Dancing a sport? I don't think so. Subjective judging, questionably confusing scoring, similar to that of Ice Dancing, minimal interest by the viewers. And finally, do they have "Ballroom Dancing on ESPN..?
NO... they don't!
Can you watch Texas Holdem Poker on ESPN..? Well, yes you can!
SPORT? Ballroom Dancing..? NO. No - ESPN.
SPORT? Texas Holdem Poker..? Yes... it is on ESPN..!
"Sports" channel, ESPN.
Texas Holdem Poker... the first "cross over" dual season Olympic "Games" Event!
I am in training.