It has been an interesting year for Alex O’Brien. One year ago, O’Brien was the victor in the $100,000 Dan Bilzerian Birthday Freeroll, celebrating GGPoker’s signing of the controversial media figure (he certainly is not a poker player, by appearances). A year later, GGPoker has shown absolutely no action towards putting on this event, leading to an unlikely party stepping in to replace the reneging GGPoker and Bilzerian.

Is Bilzerian Scared?

Bilzerian was signed by GGPoker to an “ambassadorship” a year ago, at which time the trust fund baby was trashing poker player Vanessa Kade by calling her a “hoe (sic)” on his Twitter feed. Part of the “arrival” of Bilzerian to GGPoker was a $100,000 “Dan Bilzerian Birthday Freeroll,” in which the winner of the tournament would get the opportunity to play Bilzerian heads up, either live or online.

According to David K. Lappin of VegasSlotsOnline, however, GGPoker and Bilzerian have taken absolutely no action towards holding up their end of the deal, what is commonly known as “reneging.” Alex – or, better put, ALEXANDRA – O’Brien detailed out to Lappin that originally GGPoker was working with her in trying to set a date. She admitted to Lappin, however, that “there were long periods of non-communication which made O’Brien feel like the match was “hanging over [her] like a cloud.” The point of a poker promotion is to create excitement for the winner. Instead, this became the cause of stress that made O’Brien feel disregarded.” (Quote from Lappin)

As a final attempt, O’Brien even offered to GGPoker a way out of their predicament and perhaps a way for Bilzerian to salvage his reputation and save face. O’Brien suggested that GGPoker should make a charitable donation to five organizations that O’Brien chose. GGPoker said that they were amenable to this course of action, since it appears that their “stud” isn’t man enough to play the match against a woman.

Then another party joined the conversation.

America’s Cardroom Offers Match for O’Brien

Watching from the sidelines, America’s Cardroom decided to toss their hat into the ring. They offered O’Brien the match she was looking for against any of their roster of players. Up for grabs would be the same $10,000 that Bilzerian and GGPoker were either unable or unwilling to take part in. The winner of the heads-up match between O’Brien and whoever she chose to play would then donate the $10K to a charity/charities of their choice.

O’Brien chose a rather surprising opponent for the match – Kade, who had been disavowed by GGPoker just a year earlier, kicked off the site and had her affiliate contract terminated. Kade offered her opinion on why GGPoker and Bilzerian had reneged on the promotion, stating to Lappin, “A year on, it’s impossible to say if Bilzerian has a specific aversion to the likely result of losing to a female after his public comments about how women can’t play poker – something I suspect he feels would be a big public embarrassment that he wouldn’t live down – or if it’s unrelated to this and he’d have welched either way.”(Quote from Lappin)

The battle between O’Brien and Kade will be the penultimate moment of the book that O’Brien has been working on regarding the Bilzerian/GGPoker hoax. The book, tentatively titled The Truth Detective, will be released at a future date in 2022 that has not been determined. The story will be told, however, without supposedly one of the “best poker rooms” in the industry and their “star” ambassador.

To say this is not the way to run a promotion, to GGPoker, or to be a “poker ambassador,” to Bilzerian, would be a huge understatement. Hopefully, people will remember this embarrassment to the game, both the site and the “poker” player involved, when more stories about some “big event” comes along.

One Comment

  1. David W says:

    A fascinating and somehow inspirational story. Gives an interesting perspective on the world of poker, and how the skills and discipline of becoming a really top player also make one a better more effective person in practically all aspects.
    I would count Bilzerian´s reneging on the heads up match as a win, for Alex as well as for women´s place in the changing world of poker. In a way more humiliating possibly than if he were to play and lose. The tough guy macho jerk who chickened out of facing a woman at the table? Hahaha, I find myself rooting for Alex and women in general in that world.
    Well done and keep up the good fight. Keep winning, whichever way the games go, keep winning on other levels.

    A new fan

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