WSOP 2011: A new take on a familiar story
What can you write about the poker player who has already had everything written about him again and again? Finding new angles for the Jason Mercier story is fast becoming a blogger's biggest challenge -- "Mercier wins again" looks like old news.
So, in search of a new perspective, I asked one of his official handlers for anything that might constitute new material. The best I got was something about chicken.
It seems you get to know things about someone when you work in close proximity to them, and while I discovered that Mercier frequently tries to smuggle Popeye chicken across international borders, that was it. That's all the new stuff I got.
So we're left with a renewed examination of what is an extraordinary career, one that started just three years and four months ago with an EPT trophy won on the Italian Riviera.
What came after has since become common knowledge.
Next up a win in the EPT London high roller event, then side events in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and then again in London. What's more Mercier's titles come in multiple forms of the game and against the very best in the world. Add to that two North American Poker Tour Bounty Shootouts and an EPT Champion of Champions title. You tell me how I'm supposed to make a Mercier victory sound original.
Jason Mercier on his way to bracelet number two
The latest chapter of Mercier page-turner of a resume came at this year's World Series. Already festooned with the spoils of a first bracelet win back in 2009, 16 days ago Mercier added a second WSOP title, winning Event #35, the Pot-Limit Omaha six-handed contest. It was the kind of result that overshadows four other cashes, including two further final tables. Mercier now has more than $6.3 million in live tournament winnings. Over 40 months since that first win in San Remo, Mercier has earned $158.753 a month.
"He also has the most tenacity and dedication," added the handler. I replied that "tenacity" isn't really a word that crops up much in my vocabulary, so instead I'd go with pluck; his dedication undoubted.
Apologies then for retyping a now familiar story; you may not have learned anything new (I learned about Popeye chicken), and it may seem like you've read it before somewhere (I changed a few words here and there) but the stage has been set. Stand by for another Mercier master class.
QUOTE OF THE HOUR
"I don't know what language he speaks, but he whistles in a different language." -- Player pushing the English-only rule as far as he can.
RAILGOURD OF THE HOUR
Young woman on the rail in the tan section dressed as a pumpkin. A sexy pumpkin.
ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF THE HOUR
Price of 20oz Diet Mountain Dew at the Rio: $3.50
Price of 144oz of Mountain Dew at Greenville, SC Public grocery store: $3.50
MOST SARCASTIC ADVICE GIVEN TO TEAM POKERSTARS BLOG OF THE HOUR
"Try the $2.50 bananas. They're great." --Customer of Rio snack bar still chafing from mortgaging his house for a piece of fruit
WHERE AM I OF THE HOUR
"Oh my god. I'm lost again." - Gentleman whizzing around the hallways on his motorised scooter.
ANCIENT BLING OF THE HOUR
The player in the orange section wearing not one, but three heavy chains with weighty gold accessories. The four chunky rings and a gold watch complete an interesting look for the gentleman... who is well over 50.
HORRIBLE HAIR OF THE HOUR
A Frenchman who has, for whatever reason, died his hair shocking pink.
iPAD USE OF THE HOUR
A quiet game of backgammon on the blue section.