Phil Hellmuth bets $16,000 on his tennis abilities
We hired two pros to serve to us on Monday. I bet $7,000 (so far) I could hit an 80 MPH serve back into play given 20 attempts. Further, I bet $2,000 to $16,000 I could score a point on one of those serves against the pro. I am a rank amateur, but I believe I’m a big favorite!
— phil_hellmuth (@phil_hellmuth) November 5, 2018
The man who boasts 15 WSOP gold bracelets has put his money where his mouth is with a series of prop bets, with $5k on the line if he can return an 80mph pro serve!
Not noted for anything resembling sporting prowess, the 54-year old is also offering odds of 8-1 that he can win a point off the serve off one of the two pros he has hired for the challenge…
Betting $5,000 that I can hit just 1-out-of-20 80 miles-per-hour tennis serves back in play. Also, my $2,000 to $16,000 that I can score one point off of the serve (against a pro tennis player)! I am a rank beginner, but thinking of betting more…Will send out videos Monday!
— phil_hellmuth (@phil_hellmuth) November 3, 2018
With big Phil Hellmuth promising to share footage of his attempt to master the finer points of what could be an amusing affair, the connections between poker and tennis are already well-documented.
Patrik Antonius holds court
Finnish poker hero Patrik Antonius was once the rising star of his nation’s tennis scene –until injury forced him off the green grass and onto the greener felt of poker.
It turned out to be a serendipitous move, Antonius going on to become an icon of the poker scene, with $11 million+ in live tournament cashes. A matching profit in the online poker cash games has him at number two in the all-time list.
Not that he completely gave up his love of the racket and ball game. A $300k prop bet match against fellow poker pro Brandon Adams caught the imagination of fans of both games – Antonius easily winning 6-0, 6-1. Here’s what Hellmuth can expect at the very least in his own challenge.
Boris Becker swings the other way
An absolute legend in his days of Wimbledon glory, German tennis star Boris Becker made a move to the poker tables after his retirement.
He couldn’t match his 6 tennis Grand Slams of course, but he has accrued over $111k in tournaments. Add to this his high-profile signing as a Pokerstars ambassador and you’d have a decent 2-way prop bet with Patrik Antonius right there.
Best of the Rest
Russian tennis star Yevgeny Kafelnikov also turned to poker after his career on the court came to an end.
Although again he would never match his on court earnings – some $23million+ – he has a decent record on Hendon Mob. Almost $200k in cashes, including a $100k payday at the Pacific Poker UK Open back in 2004.
Rafael Nadal, one of the all-time best tennis players in history, is also no stranger to poker, an interesting chat with Vanessa Selbst and others about the similarities between the games.
Of course, we wish big Phil Hellmuth all the best in his challenge, but won’t be holding our breath for a winning backhand lob anytime soon!
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