His Poker Wins Defied Logic. Rivals Think They Know Why

Allegations of cheating against Mike Postle roil the world of poker
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 22, 2020 2:41 PM CDT
Updated Sep 27, 2020 7:11 AM CDT
His Poker Wins Defied Logic. Rivals Think They Know Why

He was a decent but unspectacular poker player, but then Mike Postle went on an epic hot streak. The problem? As Brendan I. Koerner reports in a fascinating story at Wired, Postle's Texas Hold 'Em strategy defied logic. He folded when he shouldn't, stayed in when it made little sense to do, and yet he just kept winning and winning. Sure, poker players can get lucky. But over the course of thousands of hands, such betrayal of game theory is bound to catch up to them. With Postle, it never did. Rumors began circulating, and they culminated in public accusations of cheating by fellow player Veronica Brill. She first voiced skepticism as a commenter covering one of Postle's unorthodox victories on a livestream from Stones Gambling Hall in Sacramento last year. “It's like he knows," Brill said in her commentary. "It doesn't make sense. It's weird.”

Brill followed up with a series of tweets laying out her accusations, and the resulting scandal has roiled the world of poker, writes Koerner. Brill and others filed lawsuits, accusing Postle and accomplices at the casino of cheating. Essentially, they accused Postle of knowing what the down cards were, the ones that get broadcast to viewers watching livestreams. This "involved Mr. Postle's cellular telephone being grasped by his left hand while concealed under the poker table and/or Mr. Postle's baseball cap being imbedded [sic] with a communications device," per Brill's suit. Postle denies all of it. The suits have been dismissed, though not for reasons that cleared Postle. Meanwhile, he has stopped playing and is promising to address his critics. But one says there's an easy way for him to clear his name: Start playing again and win cleanly. Read the full story. (More poker stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.