Is the Game Show About to Fold High Stakes Poker?

by Lou on May 17, 2008

The word on the street, or at least the word on popular poker blogs like Pokerati and Wicked Chops, is that High Stakes Poker (HSP)—a favorite of many poker aficionados (and yes, that includes me)—will fold what thus far has been a winning hand. Pokerati quoted HSP co-host A.J. Benza this way:
“Far as Gabe and I know … the show isn’t coming back. The network is going to go in a different direction and that ain’t good news for our show, especially since we skew a higher-aged audience.
Never mind that we’re the network’s No. 1 show. Still and all, no one calls us from the network to say squat. Only Kevin Bellincoff checks in periodically, but it just don’t seem like good news … They’re treating us like s**t. All we ever did was make them a bunch of money.”
High Stakes Poker soared to popularity because it featured big-name professional poker players, like Doyle Brunson (pictured), Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Sammy Farha, Jennifer Harman and others buying in with $100,000 of their own money and trying to best each other in a high stakes, no-limit hold’em cash game. The show, which features Gabe Kaplan and A.J. Benza as commentators, has been the top rated show on the Game Show Network.
But all that took place before the departure of GSN’s president Rich Cronin, who stood foursquare behind poker shows on GSN.
Now if you’re in a speculating kind of mood, riddle me this: If GSN drops High Stakes Poker—their most popular show—where does that leave the World Poker Tour?

{ 3 comments }

gtycoon May 17, 2008 at 2:37 am

If they were to cancel HSP on GSN it would be a big mistake for them. High Stakes Poker is my favorite poker show. Nothing beats the quality of poker being played anywhere on TV.

If I was another station out there I’d be waiting like a vulture waiting to scoop it up for my station.

NBC is doing well with Poker after Dark and the Heads Up Championship. Perhaps they’ll try and land this and fit it in their line up somewhere.

Dantana May 18, 2008 at 9:21 am

Poker after Dark is a “time buy” — very different. It’s basically an infomercial for Full Tilt.

AJ Benza May 19, 2008 at 11:26 pm

Hey Lou….this is A.J. Benza, and I just want to thank you for your support, pal. Maybe GSN will come to their senses and make a move to get us back on soon.
Ciao
AJ

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