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alexeimartov19 karma

Hi dheff, Martin Bradstreet (Alexei Martov) here. The most insane prop bet i've heard of is the one legendary internet poker pro Ashton Griffin made with his roommate after a night of heavy partying. After being out all night, he came back in the sort of state of mind that leads a man to extremely degenerate action, low on sleep and high on life. After passing out for 4 hours, he roused his roommate and told him he wanted some action on running 70 miles in 24 hours (he was previously a college wrestler but was out of shape). Having trouble getting action on the bet (as he is known to be a sicko but also exactly the kind of person able to conquer such an insurmountable challenge) he ended up having to deal out 3-1 odds on $300,000 to get any action (eg if he did not complete the bet he would lose about a million USD). You can read the results of the story at cardplayer here i believe: http://www.cardplayer.com/poker-news/10718-ashton-griffin-wins-six-figures-in-ultramarathon-prop-bet .

alexeimartov10 karma

In terms of my own life... maybe when i moved to San Francisco... my buddy and his brother were moving as well and we were walking home after watching the movie Little Miss Sunshine (which we all enjoyed immensely!). On the way home walking around Union late at night, there were plenty of people asking for change. My buddies younger brother, a lad of just 16, said he hated that they were spamming him, and i chastised him for lacking a humanistic view towards the poverty problem. Having mounted my high horse with ease, i proceeded to espouse the difficulties of being homeless and that he should perhaps have a little more empathy for those who face less fortunate times. I backed this up by betting him $500 he couldn't even be homeless for a night, totally talking out of my ass, as i imagine i was quite drunk. However, he stopped and said 'i'm taking that bet'. Having some kind of 'gamblers honour' i was now committed to actually putting this bet on, as i had used it to support my earlier point- $500 lesson learned i guess.

The boy was a smart kid, but new to the ways of the world, so i checked with his older brother and asked 'are you ok with this?', figuring that there might be something ethically wrong with me challenging a 16 year old to stay out in the winter, downtown, all night, the first night in the city, in his shorts and flip flops with no money, phone, or identification. His brother laughed and said he didn't care. The bet was on.

I went back to our hotel and played some poker then passed out, resigning myself to paying $500 to teach someone a lesson (that spending a night in the cold outside kind of sucks and wouldn't be much fun as a life style- anyone thats woken up in a park knows that!). Now this young buck on the other hand, in his words, immediately set to pan handling outside jack in the box, asking other homeless people for tips on strategy (as i said, he was rather new to the ways of the world). However, as the rock spiders crawled towards him with their back alley intentions, he grew more and more worried. Apparently "Steve" was particularly pushy. Around 5 am there was a bang on the hotel door "I COULD HAVE DIED" he said. Clearly standing outside for 8 hours for $500 was too much work for the young buck after all.

Also in my younger days, flipping actual coins for 10-20k a flip for 'biggest money figures' (no story just stupid 0 ev gambling).

alexeimartov5 karma

Seriously the way Tom talks about poker sometimes (clearly one of the best players in the world yet seems to have difficulty describing his thought process when describing a hand to other top players) sometimes i feel like he is just trying to hide the fact that he can indeed simply see through the souls of his opponents but doesn't want to let the bunny out of the hat.

alexeimartov3 karma

Hi 08849! Martin Bradstreet (Alexei Martov) here. The shooting went from 2010-early 2013. Re: following the subjects around, there were multiple shooting periods. My impression of the big issue that Ryan and the team faced was that originally the movies scope was more of a biopic in the vein of the short films "From Busto 2 Robusto" he had made ( my favourite one is here : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CK8OaYVjhTA ).

However, as the shooting evolved, a big problem but also a big opportunity emerged- the climate of internet poker massively changed, and so the scope of the film increased. Rather than being a kind of introduction to the world of poker through the eyes of 3 players, it became a story of Poker's rise and fall, it's downfall in the US, the political agendas of the people that caused this, and much more. In short, a much more complete story, but also one that required more shooting and a lot of hard work (for Ryan at least- up here in Canada things were pretty relaxed!).

Hopefully Ryan answers as his perspective is probably a lot more interesting than mine here.