From the Mailbox --- The WSOP and Richard Lee's SeKrit Accidental Bonus?!??
Psss-s-s-s-t... this is not the big story I'm working on, but rather, a little bon mot to let you know that my keyboard is indeed in working order.
I'm not going to name the reporter, but I was contacted on behalf of a San Antonio newspaper a week or so ago. The nature of the reporter's question was this:
"I read with interest your blog regading the chip scandal. I was wondering... have you heard any theories about the discrepancy that might involve Mr. (Richard) Lee? He earned $2,803,851 - close to the value of the extra chips, it seems."
So, anyhow, I explained to the nice man that there was no immediate connection between the two, despite the similarity --- one of the numbers had to do with tournament chips, while the other concerned prize-pool winnings. I'm quite sure he was disappointed that he had not uncovered a new scandal angle to report, but them's the breaks.
What I did point out, in a longer part of my response, was that Lee could have received a small portion of the $2+ million overage, but due to the way the color-up process works, it's unlikely that he was affected directly. That said, there's absolutely no doubt that the entire finish of the tourney was irreparable skewed by the presence of those chips, in a "butterfly effect" type of way, and I know that I, myself, have been waiting and waiting and waiting for Harrah's to issue their own report on who were the likeliest recipients of the extra chips. If nothing else, it's so we don't have to deal with questions from mainstream reporters as with the above.
There's a truism of human behavior at work here: The longer that incomplete explanations and unanswered questions are left to hang, the wilder the suppositions that will be created to fill that void. I tried to demonstrate this some months back myself... with admittedly mixed success.
In the midst of a live tournament, it's an uncorrectable error; what was done was done. But we still need to know, else the rumors will grow, warp and spread. I'm neither encouraging this or stamping it out; I merely note that, as human creatures, it's simply the way we are.