Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now


Archive for the ‘Poker’


Poker in 2017 compared to 1800′s 0

Posted on October 17, 2017 by Jeremy Biberdorf

poker-2While there is much speculation in regards to its exact origins, what’s clear is that poker has been around since the days of the Wild West. Today, over 60 million people play poker in the USA alone. Around the world, more than 100 million play regularly, making poker even more popular than tennis and golf! Today we look at how the game has evolved since the gun slingin’ days of the 1800s to now.

Firstly, let’s just say the safety of the game has improved considerably. Back in the Wild West, it was not uncommon for a game to end in a gun fight! If you were caught cheating, chances are you may have even been hanged for your indiscretion, or at the very least, driven out of town. Nowadays, things tend to be a little more respectable, and a lot less life threatening.

Over the years, poker has taken on many forms –straight, stud, draw, Omaha, even Strip Poker!  All these disciplines have enjoyed their time in the sun. Arguably the most significant change to the game itself came upon the creation of Texas Hold’em, which began in Robstown Texas in the early 20th Century. Texas Hold’em, which is popular due to its ease and the fact it allows players to think tactically, didn’t hit the mainstream until around 1967. The game was taken to Las Vegas by Texas businessmen but was initially only played in one dingy casino miles away from The Strip. The game’s big break came following a tournament in the lobby of The Dune Casino, one of Las Vegas’s top spots. When a number of High Rollers won big, Texas Hold’em was catapulted into the poker limelight. Just a few years later in 1970 the World Series of Poker was established and since 1971 the Main Event of the tournament has always been a no-limit game of Texas Hold’em. Read the rest of this entry →

Game Changer: The Bleed-through of Analytics in Traditional Sports and Poker 0

Posted on December 23, 2016 by Josh H

pokerThe argument about whether poker is sport or not has been going on for a while now. There are strong arguments from both sides. Some call poker a game of luck. They believe that’s what it is and that’s what it always be. Others see it as a competitive activity resembling traditional sports, minus the physical activity.

While the lack of physical activity in poker can’t be denied there is another point of intersection that certainly exists. We’re talking about the application of analytics that’s present in both traditional sports and poker. Some of the best sports teams out there heavily rely on crunching numbers to prepare for upcoming games. They use the gathered data to set up their formations, figure out the best lineups, and much more.

Serious poker players do the very same thing. When not at the tables they crunch numbers. They are trying to locate weaknesses of their opponents and areas where they could improve their own game. Like with traditional sports, the bigger the sample the better the results.

Traditional Sports and Analytics

Numbers and statistics have a prominent role in nearly every aspect of modern-day sports. However, their application is best visible in the process of drafting players. This is when data experts need to shine and show what they know.

The market for players in popular sports is a huge one. Finding the right fit for the team of one or two players that will fix the biggest leaks can be a painstaking process. Without the help of analytics most of it is just pure guessing and gut instinct. With analytics there are concise numbers demonstrating one’s abilities in different areas. No longer will teams spring out big money for the proverbial cat in a bag. Before they bring someone in as either a free agent or a draftee they want as much reassurance about what to expect.

Apart from drafting players, analytics are also very useful when it comes to determining a team’s efficiency. This can best be seen in the NBA where several cameras installed in nearly every arena track movements of every single player. With this information teams can figure out what needs changing and how efficient particular players are during the game. From speed to passes and shot trajectory everything is converted to numbers and graphs. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Follow Us Online

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Bulldog Turner: Two-Way Star
      November 12, 2017 | 8:52 am
      Bulldog Turner

      Bulldog Turner

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was a two-way star for the dominant Chicago Bears teams of the 1940s.

      Though Hardin-Simmons College in Abilene, Texas was not known as a football power, legendary head coach George Halas could find great players anywhere and chose Clyde “Bulldog” Turner with the seventh pick in the 1940 NFL Draft.

      Read more »

    • RSSArchive for Vintage Athlete of the Month »
  • Sign up for Email Updates

    Sign-up to get daily updates of all the great articles and information on Sports Then and Now.

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Check out the best free bets at freebets4all. Learn how to convert online bookmakers free bets into guaranteed cash using the matched betting technique.

  • Affordable Satellite TV Great prices on Dish network packages.

  • Gear up for your next trip with new North Face Backpacks from SportsUnlimited.com. Shop great Field Hockey Sticks from Grays & Gryphon.

    Football Jerseys

    8mm film to digital
  • Current Poll

    Will we see the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals Again?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...
  • Post Categories



↑ Top