Scandal Fizzles with Perkins Allegations and Cates Apology

Scandal Fizzles with Perkins Allegations and Cates Apology

There are few scandals that grab hold of the poker community as a whole, that rock its foundations and shatter what many people knew and believed. The UltimateBet scandal was one of the big ones, complete with superuser accounts. The Full Tilt meltdown after Black Friday was another, as was Black Friday itself in many respects. The Postle cheating scandal is the most recent one, still building up to its court cases.

Bill Perkins took to Twitter last weekend, though, with a bombshell. It was bigger than Postle. Huge.

And it all went downhill from there. There were bits and pieces of scandal as the story began to unravel…but it ended up being a mix of online account ghosting and high-stakes players making accusations about each other.

Let’s just say it wasn’t a Postle-level situation by any stretch.

Perkins Overplays the Hand

It started with a tweet from high-stakes poker player and businessman Bill Perkins.

Oooh. Intriguing, no?

Soon after, Perkins clarified that Jason Koon was the person in the unknown situation that acted with integrity. But Perkins remained mostly mysterious.

The next tweet from Perkins inspired much debate on Twitter about integrity, as a participant in the “situation” seemed to have bargained to keep his or her anonymity. And the information in that tweet seemed to further alienate some in the poker community from caring. Someone played on another person’s account in a private game in an app amongst high-stakes pros.

And then Perkins followed with this:

More High-Stakes Pros Join In

Enter Dan Bilzerian, an “internet personality” with inherited wealth who plays in some private high-stakes poker games. He tweeted, “This c**ksucker Sina Taleb cheated me, @bp22 and others outta money on Fun Ocean poker app by having @junglemandan play on his account.”

That message was quickly deleted, but it indicated that a player named Sina Taleb cheated him, along with Perkins and others, by recruiting Dan Cates to play for him.

Cates responded on Twitter to say that he’d never played a hand of poker with Bilzerian. However, he claimed that there was “rampant” ghosting on the site but couldn’t discuss “for legal reasons.” Two days later, he posted a very long response.

He admitted to playing “very few hands” against Perkins in a game that he understood was “rampant with professionals who were ghosting.” For that reason, Cates felt it was acceptable to play. Nevertheless, he admitted that it was wrong and apologized.

Further, Cates expressed that many more in the poker world are guilty of the same, but his punishment should be disproportionate because he is a “role model for the poker community.” He also said that he normally holds himself to a “high standard of ethics.”

Perkins tweeted that Cates did the right thing and that “part of the story is out.”

More Information to Come?

Considering that the scandal wasn’t much of a scandal, it is unlikely that most people in the community care to hear more about it. Private games in which high-stakes players toss around money in pots that amount to more than what most people earn in a year don’t exactly tug at players’ heartstrings.

If more information does emerge, we can expect much of the same thud with which it started.



About Jennifer Newell

Jennifer began writing about poker while working at the World Poker Tour in the mid-2000s. Since then, her freelance writing career has taken her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas and back to her hometown of St. Louis, where she now lives with her two dogs. She continues to follow the poker world as she also launches a new subscription box company and finishes her first novel. Jennifer has written for numerous publications including and has followed the US poker and gaming market closely for the last 15 years. Follow Jen on Twitter

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