Antonio Esfandiari Talks 2014 One Drop, Future of Poker

Published on 21 October 2013 by Pokerlistings 3104

Poker's leading all-time money winner Antonio Esfandiari is at the World Series of Poker Europe in Paris and he tells how he feels about the Big One for One Drop returning to Las Vegas in the summer of 2014. Esfandiari pocketed more than $18 million when he defeated Sam Trickett at the first One Drop and he joked that he plans to bink it again and really put the hurt on the high-stakes poker community.

I remember the one drop just for what it was. It was probably the greatest, well not probably, but it was definitely the greatest moment in my career and when I think about One Drop, I really think about my dad and how he was there and I gave him the bracelet and that moment that we had together. It's pretty exciting to have it back again. I like it because obviously there is a huge charity aspect to it and so a lot of money goes to One Drop, which is fantastic. But deep down, there's a little part of me that wished it never come back again that would be fantastic because then I can just hold the title forever.

But I think my plan is just to bank it again and then really hurt the poker players. Tilted at the 18.3 won't be the biggest prize ever, you know, but it's just like everything else, it has to grow. There's a few players, professional and non-professional, who want to try and play it this year. I know last year there was a few that really regretted not trying to play and I think that given its worldwide attention, a lot of players are way more in-tune to try and get in this year.

I mean I think it's great that poker in general has some staple events. The World Series of Poker, certain tournaments along the normal tournament circuit because certainly the market is definitely saturated. I mean, you could take any tournament off because the next week there's another 10k, another high roller.

And now there's this Alpha8 high roller tournament specialty I mean it's just out of control. So to have a couple of key events that everyone kind of focuses in on, I think is great. and so certainly the One Drop is something that I think the entirely poker world will again be tuned into. Also leading up to it, who's playing and all the little kind of drama building up to it as well.

You know, myself as a poker player, I am tired of traveling all over the world but I don't want to miss the World Series of Poker Europe because it's a bracelet opportunity. I workout every day, eat good and really believe that I'm going to win it. I haven't had that focus and that intention since I won the One Drop. And so I'm going to do some real work on myself before that tournament starts to really gear up for it. Because it would be history and I would love to do that.