According to Daniel “jungleman12” Cates, Tom “durrrr” Dwan has paid him somewhere between $700-$800k in penalties since stalling on the 50k hand $200/$400 NLHE 50,000 hand challenge they started way back in 2010.
Cates made the revelation whilst on Doug Polk’s podcast last night and it throws a whole new light on the situation. For the past few years Dwan has been delaying finishing off the match in which he has $1.5m up against Cates $500k as to who would be ahead after 50k hands.
They played a fair bit on Full Tilt in 2010 but the sessions slowed down dramatically up until Black Friday, after which the match went on hiatus as online poker was no longer an option in the USA. They played a few more hands after Full Tilt reopened in late 2012, but for the last four years there has been nothing from Dwan, and he is currently down $1.2m in the challenge with just 20k hands played.
Above: With the $1.2m he’s lost in the challenge added to the $700-800k he’s paid in penalties, Tom Dwan is so far $2m down in his challenge against Dan Cates
Many people have expressed their dissatisfaction with Dwan’s efforts to finish the game, going so far as to call it a ‘scam’, especially jungleman’s host for the podcast, Doug Polk. However, it does seem somewhat strange that throughout this whole debacle that up until now Cates has failed to mention that Dwan has been consistently paying him penalties for his lack of participation in the challenge, an apparently those penalties have reached somewhere between $700,000 and $800,000.
Although Cates did say that large penalties had been discussed with Dwan some time ago, this is the first time he’s ever made it clear that these penalties had been honoured. Apparently Dwan actually asked Cates to make this known as he felt that he had been getting rather too much flack for “scamming” jungle, when in fact he had at least been paying substantial penalties all along.
It is looking more and more likely that Dwan will buy out of the bet, although Cates did say that up until now he has insisted that he wanted to continue the challenge. This would seem a strange move considering Dan Cates has been working on his HUNL game against the best online players in the world over the past few years while Dwan has been playing for bigger stakes, but generally against weaker opposition in the Asian super games. It would seem likely that Cates would now have an even bigger edge that he did 7 years ago when the challenge started!
Cates seems to think that one way or the other the longest running heads-up match in poker history will be over “by the end of 2018” and was even willing to take bets on that date.
Whatever the final result (and I think we all know who’s favour it will be in), it is good to hear that Tom Dwan has been playing this one with a little more integrity than many of us suspected.
You can see the entire podcast below: