Poker News

Poker pro Tony G may soon be funding the bankroll of Swedish online poker player Isildur1. The revelation, which appeared in a blog posted on TonyGPoker.com, comes at the same time as Isildur1 revealed that he may file a complaint concerning data mining on Full Tilt Poker.

Tony G explained in his blog that he had conversations with Isildur1 over the phone. In addition, he noted that the mystery Swedish player had only learned how to play Pot Limit Omaha eight months ago. The brash poker pro noted, “Anyway, it is likely I will stake him in some big cash games in the future, this is what I do after all. I like to give people a chance in life to do well.” Isildur1 stormed onto the high-stakes online poker scene on Full Tilt back in November, racking up as much as $5 million in earnings. However, he later crashed back down to Earth and currently stands with career losses of $2.6 million, according to PokerTableRatings.com.

Tony G had originally fingered Viktor “blom30” Blom as the man behind the Isildur1 moniker. However, to open December, Blom told Bluff Europe Magazine that he was not the man of the hour: “I am not the one you are looking for. Keep searching.” In a chat that appeared on Full Tilt at a high-stakes table, Ilari “Ziigmund” Sahamies addressed Isildur1 by name as “Viktor” and the statement went uncorrected. Perhaps due to stringent tax laws in Sweden, the real identity of Isildur1 may never be known. It remains a plot reminiscent of an episode of “Murder, She Wrote.”

The potential new backer of the Isildur1 empire gave his take on the poker world finding out the real identity of Isildur1: “I also have to say that earlier I was guessing and I will never reveal who he is from here on out. I think it’s more exciting for everyone, leaving the mystery as a mystery.” Guesses as to who Isildur1 is have ranged from Blom to Robert “Gulkines” Flink to Todd Brunson, even though the latter is American and a sponsored pro of the Cake Poker Network site DoylesRoom.

Isildur1’s career peek, according to PokerTableRatings.com, came on November 15th, when he racked up $5.03 million in earnings. Within a week, that number had been cut by 90% before a nearly $3 million losing day on December 8th sent his bankroll plummeting into the red. He told PokerNews.com that, despite the adversity on the virtual felts of Full Tilt Poker, he would make his triumphant return in 2010.

In mid-December, a $4.2 million win by Brian Hastings, a CardRunners instructor, at the expense of Isildur1 made waves after it was revealed that Hastings used hands compiled on the Swedish pro to his advantage. Fellow CardRunners pro Brian Townsend took the fall in the end and had his Red Pro status suspended for one month.

Hastings gave credit to Townsend for his performance, telling ESPN columnist Gary Wise in a December 14th interview, “Honestly, I give most of the credit to Brian Townsend here. I mean, Brian is honestly the hardest worker I know in poker. He analyzed a database of heads-up hands that Isildur1 had played and constructed ranges of what Isildur1 was doing in certain spots. In a way, I feel bad that it wasn’t Brian who got this win instead of me.”

Tony G was the final table bubble boy in the $40,000 buy-in No Limit Hold’em tournament commemorating the 40th running of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in 2009, earning $172,000 for his 10th place finish. His demeanor in the World Poker Tour’s (WPT) Grand Prix de Paris earned him a spot among the bad boys of poker.

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