EPL Done but Hate Not Needed
Federated Sports + Gaming, the parent company of the Epic Poker League, announced on Wednesday that it is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Chairman Jeffrey Pollack and EPL Commissioner Annie Duke are both saying it is primarily a debt restructuring and that they expect the league to continue and to complete the first season.
Poker Junkie blogger Compncards explains why he thinks it is indeed the end of the league as it was and why he's disappointed some people are gloating over the league's demise.
End of the EPL as We Know It
When the announcement came out on Wednesday, many took the immediate position of "this is it, the EPL is dead."
Pollack and Duke both came forward and gave the standard corporate line of "we expect to rebound from this situation" that you would expect in this matter.
At first, I sat back and waited for more information as not every company that closes shop goes under.
However, after talking to a couple of folks, I think this is pretty much it for the EPL. My sources tell me that further updates or articles for the website will not be happening and that they have been told to submit their final invoices and the courts will decide payment.
My only response to that is that unless the company is sold, it's over. If the company doesn't have the money to pay their contractors, what chance do they have of holding the final event?
Granted, the company could still be sold and things work out to complete the season. Even so, it will not be the same league as it was.
This is the end of the EPL as we know it.
What Worked For the EPL
The EPL had many strong points that I would love to see a future league continue with should the EPL indeed not be purchased.
First, I liked the qualification system and that only the fina- table participants of the Pro-Am were wild card entrants.
Next, from everything I am told by both players and contractors, the EPL treated both groups better than most any other poker tour out there. By and large, the only people to really gripe about the league just happened to be people who didn't play in the league.
I also like the alternating formats of the Main Events. This kept things fresh and put players to the test at each event.
While there are things that I think the EPL did wrong, today I am just focusing on what they did right. It was a league with a lot of potential, just lacking a solid business model.
People Love to Spread the Hate
As expected, many came out of the woodwork to gloat over the apparent failure of the league.
Daniel Negreanu couldn't help but get his own form of an "I told you so" in:
The funny part was after a reply to Daniel saying that "I told you so's" were not helping, he had the balls to reply:
@RealKidPoker @WriterJen you won't hear any "I told you so's" but you will hear further warnings about trusting shady people with shady pasts.
Of course, what do you expect from Daniel. Haters are going to hate. Look up hater in the dictionary and Daniel's picture will be there.
Oneouter spoke the truth in reply to a comment from Katie Dozier who isn't a fan in people rejoicing in Epic Poker's failure and thinks "I told you so's" were tacky:
While I am not a fan of this statement, it rings true for many. A lot of the animosity towards the league stems from the fact that Annie Duke is associated with it.
Whether or not you like Annie Duke, or whether or not you liked the EPL, the concept was good for the game.
Courteous is Better Than Being an Ass
A lot of people lost their jobs Wednesday. People should have a little more courtesy. Then again, this is poker and courtesy is considered weakness by some.
Call me weak if you want, but I prefer to be courteous and weak than be an ass.
The demise of the Epic Poker League wasn't totally unexpected. I agree with that. However, many had hoped that the league would find a way to survive.
Unfortunately it did not and unless it is purchased by another company, all we can do now is look back at what it was and wonder what could have been.