Those of you getting your 2006 WSOP Main Event fixes over the tube (via ESPN) are now getting a chance to see some of the table behavior that had a few people not too crazy about Jamie Gold, at least those that were there to see it first-hand. This was long before the now-famous lawsuit filed by Crispin Leyser, over the half of Gold's winnings alledgedly promised to Leyser as compensation for assistance in fulfilling the deal that allowed Gold to compete in the WSOP in the first place.
I predicted several weeks back --- actually, before the Leyser lawsuit was filed --- that Gold was well on his way to becoming the most reviled Main Event winner ever. While there's stiff competition (considering, as one example, Amarillo "Slim" Preston's conviction for molesting his granddaughter), the fact is that Gold's done a great job of putting himself out there as a poster boy for unethical behavior at the table, and in the poker world.
Really, while the WSOP tourney directors have come in for a lot of hell recently for other reasons (see posts here --- and everywhere else --- about the two-million-extra-chips controversy), I can't think of a valid reason why that coded table talk gets a pass during the last few tables of a big tournament. Gold's edited "top-top" comments to Lee Kort were just one example of what went on throughout. Early on in the tourney, where there are literally hundreds of tables going on at the same time, then complaints about inappropriate talk usualy degenerate into a "He said" pile of nothing, and no action is taken. Late in a big event, though, with all the cameras running and handfuls of tourney directors hovering over the players' shoulders --- and you don't see them, but they are there --- there's no excuse for not awarding the consistent violators, a la Jamie Gold, with a few trips to the rail as inducement to clean up their acts.