Weekend Side Bet: Duffman Bluffs, Ivey's Lucky Hat, Miss RFG

The Royal Flush Girls
Brittany Bell

The PokerListings Weekend Side Bet is a quick roundup of the week's most notable and/or humorous off-the-felt happenings.

There's always a poker connection in there somewhere but you definitely won't find the latest tourney results.

This week we pay a visit to Homer Simpson’s home game, hear about a ridiculous ruling against Phil Ivey and celebrate Miss Universe Guam Royal Flush Girl Brittany Bell.

1) Hank Azaria: People Think You Have Shit Cards

He's Moe Szyslak, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Chief Wiggum, Comic Book Guy, Disco Stu, Superintendent Chalmers and Duffman, among others. He's also a winner at poker.

Hank Azaria
More chops than you might think.

Hank Azaria has been with The Simpsons since 1989 and done somewhere around 100 different voices for the show.

He's also been a semi-regular at the World Series of Poker where we've had a chance to watch his play over the years.

With a salary of around $300,000 per episode, Azaria could easily sit down in high-stakes games and play with the big hitters.

He's smarter than that, though, and instead has a regular home game where he plays with a handful of friends. Still, Azaria considers himself an above average player who could maybe even make a living playing poker if he needed to.

In a new interview for the October issue of Esquire magazine, Azaria revealed the lessons he's learned from poker and the unholy connection of bad beats and baseball.

"I do love the game. I love learning and studying it, breaking it down and figuring out what betting patterns mean and how to read people. And I found having an understanding of bluffing to be really helpful in negotiations…

"And learning that people don’t know what cards you’re holding. You think people can read your mind and know that you have shit cards in your hole – they can’t. In fact, they tend to overcredit you. They tend to think you have something stronger than what you have.

"It’s nice to have a hobby. And it’s something I can do – a bunch of guys, male-bonding game. The Mets game is usually on. I swear to God, it feels like I’ve spent half my life taking bad beats at the card table while the Mets are losing."

Read the full interview here.

2) Ivey Guilty of Lucky-Hat Wearing

Of course you've heard by now that Crockfords Casino in London won its edge-sorting case against Phil Ivey and won't have to pay him the roughly $12.3m he won at Punto Banco in 2012.

Ivey Poker
Lucky hat hasn't worked as well for IveyPoker.

Ivey also has a very big pending case with the Borgata in Atlantic City, only this time the casino actually paid the money to Ivey and now wants it back. To aid its case, the Borgata naturally asked for the full details of the decision in the UK courts.

They got it - and, as it turns out, things might hinge on Ivey wearing a lucky hat. From the official British ruling as forwarded to Borgata:

"Crockfords maintain that the claimant practiced deception upon them by pretending to be superstitious when he was not, for example, by making a fuss over lucky Crockfords hats, which he and Ms Sun wore, and by asking for lucky “cards” and for a Chinese croupier on the ground that he got lucky when playing with Asian women."

Now Ivey’s luck with Asian females are entirely his – and their – private business, but wearing the casino’s lucky hat and then actually winning? How dare you Phil. Read the full ruling here.

3) Royal Flush Girl Brittany Bell Wins Miss Universe Guam

Brittany Bell is 26 years old, a Royal Flush Girl with the World Poker Tour and, as you might expect, stunningly beautiful. She also calls a little paradise in the South Pacific -- Guam -- home.

The tropical island in the middle of the Pacific is the main island of the Northern Mariana Islands and, also as you might expect, looks like a picture postcard. (The rapidly growing population of the Brown Tree Snake has unfortunately killed off almost all bird life on the island, but you can’t win them all.)

Despite the snake/bird crisis Bell took part in the Miss Universe Guam pageant last week and won every category to take the title undisputedly.

It's not her first pageant crown, either, as she won Miss Arizona in 2010 while she was in college. Bell has now qualified to take part in the annual Miss Universe pageant in January 2015, where she will represent her home country.

Poker fans don't panic though - she'll still travel the WPT circuit. Winning pic below:

royal flush girl grittany bell

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