Tale expands beyond traditional poker world
Major media outlets, including ESPN, The Ringer, and CNBC, have picked up the story of alleged cheating by California poker pro Mike Postle for over a year in poker cash games streamed by Sacramento’s Stones Gambling Hall.
The increased public attention adds weight and urgency to the developing situation, which has also seen Stones suspend its “Stones Live” streams while announcing an internal investigation into the situation.
he may have profited over $800/hour during the streamed $1/$3 and $5/$5 cash games
Postle, a Mississippi native and current California resident, is a veteran gambler who stands widely accused of obtaining knowledge of his tablemates’ hole cards. Postle’s collective profits in the streamed games were as much as $300,000. Numerous elite pros examined complaints made public by a former player and commentator in the streamed games.
The poker pros determined that Postle’s “correct play” frequency and overall profits diverged wildly from what even the best pros could expect.
One summation posted on a prominent forum calculated Postle’s livestreamed sessions, indicating he may have profited over $800/hour during the streamed $1/$3 and $5/$5 cash games.
Postle blasted on prime time
ESPN became the first mainstream outlet to visit the Postle tale with a prominent SportsCenter segment that was over three minutes long. Late-night SportsCenter host Scott Van Pelt, in his “One Big Thing” segment, boiled down the allegations to basic concerns any non-poker-playing layman could understand.
“If a guy were able to cheat his way to six-figure gains playing cards and it goes solved by a bunch of poker sleuths on the internet, is that a story that interests you? Because it did me,” Van Pelt said.
The well-known SportsCenter host also wondered why such a super-successful pro would play small stakes in a modest poker hall. Such skill, he noted, would serve him well in some of the richest games on the planet just hours away.
The feature-length read begins with a suspect hand from one of Postle’s most profitable sessions
At least two other large mainstream outlets visited the Postle saga as well. Soon after ESPN’s take, prominent sports blog The Ringer offered a deeper, more personal take. The feature-length read begins with a suspect hand from one of Postle’s most profitable sessions, then leads readers to an inevitable conclusion: Postle cheated.
Then came CNBC. The network’s summary offered little new, but it appeared on a generalized news outlet, one not dedicated to sports and other pastimes.
Postle appears on Matusow podcast
Meanwhile, Postle has declined to respond to most outlets, including CNBC. However, he did accept an invitation from veteran poker pro Mike Matusow to appear on Matusow’s “Mike the Mouth” show.
Matusow aired one-hour interview segments on consecutive nights, but received widespread poker-world criticism for his lack of diligence and preparation in conducting the interview.
Instead, Matusow (who is believed to be a long-time poker acquaintance of Postle) offered what listeners described as a rambling screed, allowing Postle to serve up a tale of personal woe that lacked any direct “I did not cheat” statement.
comparing the allegations against Postle to supposedly unfair attacks made against US President Donald Trump
Matusow admitted looking at only a couple of the suspect hands involving Postle, though the strongest claims require large-scale aggregation. He also went on tangential screeds, comparing the allegations against Postle to supposedly unfair attacks made against US President Donald Trump, who Matusow avidly supports.
Interest continues to swell as internet sleuths pursue a true smoking gun, meaning definitive proof of Postle’s cheating in any single hand. Most theories involve the help of one or more co-conspirators in the employ of Stones and who were part of the livestream production team. That potential legal exposure hastened Stones’ reopening of its investigation into the alleged cheating after finding nothing earlier this year.