Stop me if you've heard this one already --- it's about bringing a high-stakes, real-life cash game to TV.
As reported over at online-casinos.com:
"All In Sports, formerly known as The Poker Channel, will be bringing another game of high-stakes poker to television screens in the U.K. next year with the 'Million Dollar Cash Game.'"
Uhhh, yep. Succees does indeed bring imitation. Among the pros who are currently "expected to participate" (love that noncommittal loophole, there) on "Million Dollar Cash Game" are: Phil Ivey, Gus Hansen, Howard Lederer, Erik Seidel, Jennifer Harman, John Juanda, Mike Matusow, Erik Lindgren, Chris Ferguson, Marc Goodwin, and Tony Guoga. Mike the Mouth and Tony G at the same table? Okay, now that could be fun. But seriously, the derivative nature of this program is seen in this line: "... this is the first high-stakes cash game to be produced and televised in Europe, promising something new for poker fans."
Fans without digital or satellite access, perhaps, depending on how well the owners of "High Stakes Poker" are doing with syndicating their own episodes. But the only thing new under this particular sun is the fact that the sun itself is rising six or seven hours earlier, that being over Europe instead of the States.
Matter of fact, I'm thinking of pitching a series from Antarctica, called "High Stakes, Cold Cash." It'll be the first-ever high-stakes poker game from the land at the bottom of the world, with chip girls dressed like penguins and a stage set derived straight from the Ice Palace. Okay, I'm being silly. And despite how lame the initial pitch is, there's something more telling behind "Million Dollar Cash Game."
A visit to the UK version of pokernews.com hints at a Full Tilt connection behind this one; you'll notice that the roster of stars listed above are largely the "pros" or "friends of" for that major online site. And indeed, Ivey and Harman were two of the players whose contractual obligations with Full Tilt forced them to back away from the original high-stakes concept pushed by Mansion Poker, the Mansion Superstar Challenge. It's quite likely that this new program is plugging a perceived market hole, whether as a paean to the Full Tilt marquee players or not. Time will tell; right now "Million Dollar Cash Game" doesn't even seem to have its own web site. (Image source: fulltiltpoker.com)