Men Crash WSOP Ladies Event Once Again

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Nick Getzen was one of a handful of men playing this year's WSOP Ladies Championship.

The Ladies Championship began today and just like every year a few men flaunted convention by playing, although some were harder to spot than others.

Nick Getzen eschewed the typical hoody for a neon wig and retro-homemaker dress and shades combo, somehow deflecting his tablemates’ scorn with his outlandish getup.

Getzen traveled here from West Virginia to play in the World Series of Poker.

“I could never get away with this in West Virginia but I figure Vegas is the only place in the world you can walk around in a dress and no one even notices,” said Getzen.

“And surprisingly the reception has been very warm,” he said. “I’m sure everyone will cheer when I go out but somehow because I’m dressed like a lady they totally like me.”

This faux-controversy has been a perennial talking point at the WSOP for the last few years, and garners an amount of attention completely disproportionate to its importance.

According to Getzen, who will be studying law in the fall at Lewis & Clark Law School, he’s just here to have fun and if his personal rights allow him to play, he’s going to take full advantage.

“I think it’s fine if they want to have a ladies event but I still respect the rule of law, the same laws that prevent workplace discrimination or a private golf club discriminating against say Black folks,” said Getzen.

“So if those same laws apply here and allow me to play then I’m going to go ahead and have fun and surround myself with ladies playing poker instead of the same stinky men,” he said.

A Long Tradition of Men in the Ladies Event

A self-described semi-professional poker player, Getzen joins a proud tradition of men dressing like women to play in the Ladies Championship. It’s a list that includes Shaun Deeb in 2010.

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Getzen tries to blend in.

In 2009 Greg Sessler won a WSOP Circuit Ladies event and just last year Jonathan Epstein made the final table of the $1,000 WSOP Ladies Championship, busting ninth to volleys of jeers and boos hurled from the rail.

In 2010 WSOP Communications Director Seth Palansky called men in the Ladies event “scumbags” and threatened to issue WSOP bans to anyone who crossed the gender line and played in the ladies-only tournament.

While no penalties have been given out for men playing the Ladies event, it’s generally frowned on by the poker community at large.

Some players, like David “Doc” Sands, have been very vocal about the issue.

“I will not speak to or buy action from any man who plays the ladies event for the next 12 months. Also I will slow-roll you whenever possible,” Sands tweeted earlier this week.

Keep an eye on our WSOP 2012 Live Coverage section for more.

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