WSOP Preview | Is Poker Changing Face with ‘Action Selling’?

The poker industry is humming with excitement and strategy as the World Series of Poker 2023 approaches, not just for the players but also for those eager to buy a piece of the action. This fascinating phenomena, known as selling action, has arisen as an intriguing feature of modern poker, adding a new layer to the game. While the world waits to discover who will win the most coveted WSOP bracelets in 2023, many are betting not only on the green felt tables but also on the selling action.

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For those unfamiliar with the concept, selling action has become a significant force within the poker industry, one that reshapes how players approach high stakes and how spectators can become active participants.

What Does it Mean to ‘Sell Action’?

Poker players that engage in ‘selling action’ provide a percentage of their prospective earnings in exchange for a predetermined amount up ahead. This is analogous to investors purchasing stock in a company with the expectation of receiving dividends if the company performs successfully.

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How is Selling Action Changing the Poker Landscape?

Surprisingly, selling action has instilled fresh energy in the poker field. It enables players to participate in larger games and tournaments that they would not otherwise be able to afford. Furthermore, it has enabled poker aficionados to participate in the action without actually being at a table.

Players reduce risk by selling action. They spread their potential losses among a large number of investors. Similarly, investors can diversify their assets over numerous players, reducing their risk to a single player’s bad performance. This design makes high stakes games less intimidating for players while raising investor enthusiasm.

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Why do Poker Professionals Sell Action?

Even the finest poker players, despite their expertise, are at the whim of variance. This element of unpredictability is essential in poker. Pros use selling action to mitigate the danger of a protracted losing run that might deplete their bankroll dramatically.

This method is more than just a safety net. It’s a smart move that will allow participants to compete in more expensive events. By doing so, individuals boost their chances of earning bigger incentives, resulting in a rise in their overall revenue. Thus, the discipline of selling action is about more than simply risk management; it is also about expansion and growth.

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What Influence does Selling Action have on the Game?

The selling action has an unavoidable influence on the game’s dynamics. Externally sponsored players frequently use different techniques than self-funded players. Knowing they have a safety net encourages them to be more active in their games, pushing the boundaries. As a result, the games become more unexpected and hard.

There is also a potential effect on the game’s fundamental psychology. Players are competing not just for themselves, but now also for their supporters. This added pressure may influence their decision-making process, influencing the whole gameplay.

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Who are the Biggest Beneficiaries?

Interestingly, the top-earning poker professionals might not always be the ones sitting at the tables. Many astute investors buy action in top players, earning significant returns when their ‘horse’ performs well. This ‘backer’ strategy has turned the poker world into a fascinating marketplace, akin to the stock market, where returns can be astronomical.

Is Selling Action a Double-Edged Sword?

While selling action is exciting and potentially rewarding, it is not without risks. It may put a lot of pressure on players who suddenly have to answer to their investors. Furthermore, athletes may become involved in legal and financial conflicts with their backers, which can be damaging to their career.

There is a risk for investors in backing a player who performs poorly. There is also the possibility of fraudulent conduct, in which participants misrepresent their abilities or intentions.

Example of Selling Action Gone Awry

Although selling activity can create good possibilities for both poker players and investors, it can also go wrong. Constant Rijkenberg’s case, which serves as a cautionary tale about the risks of selling action, is a well-known example that has made an impression on the poker world.

In 2009, Rijkenberg, a talented Dutch poker player, took part in a European Poker Tour (EPT) tournament in San Remo. Prior to the competition, he opted to sell action to fund his participation. Rijkenberg, on the other hand, carried this practice to an extreme, selling 120% of his action, which is more than he would receive even if he won the tournament.

When Rijkenberg did indeed go on to win the tournament, he was crowned as the champion and pocketed the €1.5 million first prize. But the joy of his victory was short-lived.

As news spread about the oversold action, controversy quickly surrounded Rijkenberg’s win. His investors felt betrayed, sparking outrage and disappointment within the poker community. Rijkenberg’s reputation took a severe hit, and he was widely criticized for his lack of integrity and transparency.

Final Words

As the game of poker evolves, selling action is surely becoming an important element of the poker world. The notion of selling action in the future World Series of Poker 2023 aims to add another layer of excitement and complexity to the event. The pros selling their action and those investing in these players are preparing to navigate the thrilling highs and lows of the WSOP and other tournaments.

Selling action, in some ways, exemplifies the exquisite contradiction of poker: even as individuals play their cards, the game then becomes, at its core, a shared experience.

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