Bodog Beat writes:
Proving that the NBC Heads-Up Poker Championship is definitely more of a TV show than a, well, poker championship, NBC released the list of participants and it included several players who are sure to bring in viewers if not raise the quality of competition.
TV stars Jason Alexander (Seinfeld) and Brad Garrett (Everybody Loves Raymond), movie star Don Cheadle (Ocean's Thirteen and Hotel Rwanda) and baseball legend Orel Hersheiser will all be at Caesars Palace on February 29 to take part in the 64-player single elimination tournament. In the "confused" category are several poker celebs who are now more well-known as poker players than for their on-screen careers including Jennifer Tilly and Shannon Elizabeth.
In Orel's defense, he reportedly crushes the $1/2 NL at the Red Rock Casino.
Can an invitational event ever really be a "championship?" An open tournament can be a championship, or even one with clear qualification standards (The Masters)... but a made-for-TV invitational where 7 of the 64 participants are celebrities, 4 are qualifiers, and of the remaining 53 many are chosen for their fame (e.g. Jamie Gold) or entertainment value (e.g. Sam Grizzle) rather than their skill?