Posts Tagged ‘Possibly’

Story of John Hesp Possibly to Become Feature Film

 Story of John Hesp Possibly to Become Feature Film

This summer at the World Series of Poker, Englishman John Hesp had perhaps the run of a lifetime. In the WSOP Championship Event, Hesp played his cards well enough that he made the final table among the chip leaders in the tournament before bowing out in fourth place for a $ 2.6 million payday. That amazing story has caught the attention of the movie industry, whom Hesp is stating is now courting him for a biographical feature film.

According to the Hull Daily Mail’s Alex Grove, Hesp was called by Tinseltown before the Championship Event even ended. “I got contacted by two or three producers when I was out in Vegas, including some Hollywood names, but I elected to go with a U. K.-based company,” Hesp admitted during a ceremony at his home casino, Napoleon’s Casino in Hull. “The offer is formalized in writing and I’ve just got my legal team sorting things out. It’s about 90% through.”

The story of Hesp is one of those stories that, if it were written as fiction, would be tremendously difficult to believe. The grandfatherly 64-year old Hesp had played poker for decades, but only around his home casino in the U. K. His highest ever cash in a tournament was at Napoleon’s earlier this year in June, when he walked off with a $ 1000 prize (£785) for winning a £10 rebuy tournament.

That was until the WSOP, however. In the $ 10,000 Championship Event (by far the largest tournament Hesp had ever participated in), Hesp went on a magical run over the fortnight. Wearing a “coat of many colors” (actually of piecemeal materials that clashed horrendously) and a Panama hat, Hesp captured the visual attention of many in the WSOP tournament arena. His chip stack, which he kept increasing over the span of the WSOP Championship Event, only seemed to further the “legend” that was being born.

By the time the final table was set, Hesp found himself in second place (behind eventual champion Scott Blumstein) and immediately took over the chip lead on Day 8. Were it not for what even he admitted was a bit of a blunder in a hand against Blumstein, it is possible that Hesp would have marched all the way to the World Championship. Instead, Hesp became a legendary figure like 2008 WSOP Championship Event final tablist Dennis Phillips, a player who didn’t win the event but was more notable than the person that did.

It’s arguable that Hesp is having more of an impact since he’s become famous for his WSOP exploits. He has returned home – not hit the international tournament circuit – and assisted his family with some of the $ 2.6 million in winnings (by law, there is no taxation on British citizens for U. S. casino winnings). According to Grove, Hesp recently was feted at his home casino for his WSOP performance, but he would like to do more for the place where he honed his poker game.

“Bridlington has suffered in recent years with the decline of the mining and steel industry,” Hesp noted to Grove. “I want to help…I think it would be great to bring a major poker tournament to Bridlington. It’s firmly in my mind and there are a few people working behind the scenes but I can’t just wave a magic wand.”

Whether the movie gets off the ground or not is irrelevant. The story of Hesp – even without further documentation – is what is inspiring. For those outside the game, the “underdog story” of a grandfatherly man making it big is the major draw. For poker fans, his inspiring run towards poker’s ultimate reward is a story that they believe they can emulate. For Hesp, those are things that cannot be adequately told in a simple movie.

The post Story of John Hesp Possibly to Become Feature Film appeared first on Poker News Daily.

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Is Online Poker On A Downswing? SEO Metrics Say Possibly, But Opportunities Are Present

 Is Online Poker On A Downswing? SEO Metrics Say Possibly, But Opportunities Are Present

Here in the United States, we are well aware that poker isn’t the “hot thing” that it was a decade ago. The aftereffects of “Black Friday” – now going on five years ago – has put a pretty serious dent in the popularity of the game. But what about on a worldwide level? Is poker on a downswing? According to research conducted for iGaming Business, it is definitely a possibility.

In an article entitled “SEO:  Where Have All the Poker Players Gone?” iGaming Business enlisted the aid of Luke Ormerod, the director of Blueclaw in the United Kingdom (a company that analyzes companies and their reach through search engine optimization (SEO) reviews), to look into the history of poker, at least online through its searches. The original searches were for “poker” and “online poker,” with poker overall peaking massively in 2007 while “online poker” showed a slight uptick that same year. Since that point, however, the picture painted is a dismal one.

By 2015, searchers for “poker” have become miniscule compared to their 2007 peak and “online poker” basically doesn’t exist. Blueclaw and iGaming Business then set out to figure out where these players went – a sizeable bloc of people just don’t dry up and go away – and the team found some other interesting data.

In looking for particular disciplines of poker (such as Texas Hold’em), the research showed the same predominant peak of search engine results pages (SERPS) in 2007 and a similar decline to 2015. The Blueclaw/iGaming Business team then decided to look at the major players in the arena – PokerStars, Sky Poker and 888 Poker – with the interest peaking in 2011 (perhaps because of “Black Friday?”) and declining through 2015 (PokerStars has been able to maintain about half of its peak interest since 2011, but searches for both Sky Poker and 888 are way under their previous highs).

With the advent of cellphones, the researchers thought that maybe “mobile poker” was where everyone had headed. After not even registering in 2006, the search for “mobile poker” rocketed out of the gates in 2007 and has been on a steady decline ever since. The research began to take a turn, however, when Blueclaw and iGaming Business started looking at today’s world.

Initially the partners found that the search term “sit and go” had kept its numbers fairly steadily since 2009, with wavering numbers over the past six years indicative of possible marketing trends. Looking a bit deeper, Blueclaw and iGaming Business looked into the PokerStars lottery style “Spin and Go” development (a traditional sit and go where the players do not know what they are playing for until the single table tournament starts). This is where the numbers started to change.

In reviewing the statistics, Blueclaw and iGaming Business show that the popularity of the “spin and go” poker format has gone through the roof since the beginning of 2014 and completely reverses the trend in other poker search metrics. Currently, the “spin and go” format is extremely popular not only at PokerStars but at any of the popular online rooms in the international online poker industry.

The news is also good when it comes to another search metric whose true potential may not have been totally tapped yet. In searching for “poker twitch,” Blueclaw and iGaming Business found a tremendous spike in searches since 2013. It is also demonstrating that this metric is still on the climb, especially over the 2015 calendar year. Not coincidentally, Twitch has become a popular platform for poker players to reach their fans directly and for companies and poker tours to broadcast their content directly to a waiting audience.

So what does the research from Blueclaw and iGaming Business state? The online poker sector will likely never return to its pre-2007 glories but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still opportunities to be exploited,” the researchers state. “Instant ‘Sit and go’ games are proving that there is still an eager market out there and it will be interesting to assess whether brands are able to leverage the rising popularity of poker on the Twitch TV platform by converting that interest into new signups.

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