Now it's over, let's take a look. But wait, I hear you cry, it's not over yet. Well, it is for me. Frankly if you gave me 45 pictures and 45 names I'd be shooting entirely at random trying to match them up. Why should I be interested in who wins ? Friedman maybe, as we have swapped the odd comment on various blogs, and he might do another anti-Bush speech, but I still couldn't pick him out of a lineup. Richie G was the last hope, and fair play to him for going out like a lion. Never mind what might have been mate, $150K and a buzz like that can't be bad.
As the dust settles, the temptation is to slate Harrah's, not particularly for the fact that they're primarily trying to make money out of the thing but, as DY pointed out to me recently, more the fact that they cut so many corners with customer service. Cheap cards, rude floor staff, liberties with changing structures, stuff like that. Someone ought to tell them that every buck spent on good customer service comes back in many times over in the long run.
All the same I find it hard to sympathize with the Negreanus and Demetrious of this world. The fact is that because you're so desperate for recognition in the form of bracelets, Harrah's have you by the balls. This is what they were counting on when they bought the thing. They could charge 20% juice next year and I think they'd make more money . Sponsored players would still play because someone's picking up the tab. 60% of the field don't understand how juice works and think they're "paying $1500 anyway so what difference".
If you want to blame anyone, blame Becky Binion Behnen Biatch. She's the one who fought and scratched for control of the Horseshoe and then ran it into the ground through sheer incompetence, forcing the sale of the WSOP brand. If Harrah's hadn't bought it, some other suits would have done. Do you think Jack Binion would have let it slide like this ? I don't.
Anyway, next year, well we shall see. It depends how I do between now and then. Strangely, the less well I'm doing, the more likely I might go. If I can make a comparable rate at home to what I'd expect in the single tables, there'd be no point going. But if I'm getting the absolute cake, I could go and spunk off 10 in the main event. I think it's unlikely I'll be doing that well ... but if I do go, the plan's clear enough. First three weeks, single tables. Then go home and treat the main event separately, go or not. The value kind of dies in the middle. And at the end of the day, it's just another poker game. Especially for a pro like me :-)
 Don't tell them I said that though.Update :
Scrub what I said about Friedman, the one I'm thinking of isn't the one who's still in. A bit like Kevin O'Donnell/Kevin O'Connell that has confused one or two.