Anyone reading magazines, newspapers or websites in the last month has been inundated with lists covering notable events of the last decade. Fair play, it’s fun to reflect. But a new decade should also be the time to discuss potential and guess what the next ten years will have in store.
Pot Limit Omaha Will NOT Overtake Hold ‘Em In Popularity: It’s become common to see people predicting that Hold ‘Em is dying and that Omaha is bound to become the popular game of choice. Sure, the high stakes games have largely moved to Omaha, but that’s not an accurate reflection of what the general poker audience is into, and I don’t see PLO overtaking Hold’em for a number of reasons. Firstly, PLO doesn’t look as good on TV. It’s not as easy for the average viewer to look at hole cards and keep track of people’s made hands and draws, even with on-screen percentages. Secondly, people know Hold ‘Em. The vast majority of folks interested in poker are still developing their Hold ‘Em skills. Even though a lot of the top pros and online cash game gridners have switched to PLO, that doesn’t reflect the playing practices of most regular people.
Online Games Are Not Going To Dry Up (unless UIGEA dictates otherwise): Sure, it might get tougher to pull in six figures or more by clicking a mouse, but it’s still going to be possible for serious players to get games, and earn a living, online.
PokerStars’ North American Poker Tour Will CRUSH The World Poker Tour: Let’s be honest, the WPT is well past its glory days. While the pros still make it out to play, the tour hasn’t been grabbing the attention of poker fans. Last year’s television coverage was terrible, and that was after the WPT struggled to find a home. As for the NAPT, it has the enormously deep pockets of PokerStars behind it, ESPN on board as a broadcaster, and the ability to have huge fields directly entered through online satellites.
Records Will Continue To Be Set: I believe we’ll see a WSOP Main Event with a record field, as well as an online tournament with a record number of entrants. We’re going to keep seeing nosebleed games with unbelievably enormous pots on the Internet. When you think about it, Full Tilt has really established itself as the home for high stakes cash games. It’s in their interest to keep these tables going, and we all know that some of their pros don’t mind dropping the buy-ins to take part.
Oh, and my most important prediction is…I’ll win a few major online tournaments.