Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Poker Cheating Allegations Cloud Men Nguyen's Induction Into Poker Hall of Fame

Doyle Brunson is behind Men "The Master" Nguyen’s induction into the Poker Hall of Fame, but lots of fellow poker players say Men is a cheat and don't want to see him getting in. Nguyen has six WSOP titles and has been a big success as a cash-games player as well, but over the years several alleged poker cheat incidents have been tied to Men and his Vietnamese playing partners, or syndicates, if you will.

Nguyen has been accused of running collusion rings in cash games and chip dumping and chip stealing in tournaments. Famed tournament pro Daniel Negreanu has been at the forefront of excluding Nguyen because of his suspected cheating activity. Negreanu said, "I have stated publicly that Men Nguyen is a tournament cheat. I'm comfortable saying that because I KNOW that to be fact." Another big-time tournament pro, Justin Bonomo, has also claimed Nguyen is a poker cheat and had been banned from Foxwoods casino for stealing and dumping chips.

The late poker cheat Russ Georgiev, who had written some reliable stuff on the world of professional poker cheating, claimed that Nguyen was at the head of tournament chip-stealing rings populated by Asian players. According to Georgiev, these cheats operated by patrolling the tournament casino areas, picking up chips and passing them off to cohorts who had short stacks of chips in the tournaments.

My take: I have no direct evidence of Men Nguyen being a poker cheat--but I believe he is. There is just too much circumstantial evidence of it.