With more than 60,000 Twitter followers, is it safe to say that Doyle Brunson has transcended the world of professional poker to become a bona fide Internet sensation? Or are there just a ton of people out there who like dumb blonde jokes?
That’s a huge number of followers, and, surprisingly, most of them have been gained over the past month. Brunson now has more followers than many Hollywood celebrities, and more than other big name poker pros like Phil Hellmuth.
Brunson himself doesn’t quite know what to make of it. In a recent statement, he said that his appearance at the WSOP Europe Main Event and at the Budapest Affiliate Conference may be the reason … or maybe (and more likely), it’s because poker players are becoming more and more famous in the general culture, and he represents them at their most successful and respected.
Face it: Poker pros are becoming celebrities. BIG celebrities. Not just because of their personalities, but because they embody something a lot of people envy: The ability to become filthy rich by playing a game.
A couple of poker player ladies, both WSOP veterans, are currently appearing on the reality TV show Amazing Race. ESPN The Magazine recently featured a (joke) pictorial featuring popular poker pros Daniel Negreanu, Jennifer Harman, Phil Hellmuth and Scotty Nguyen sitting topless at a poker table.
This week, the Chicago Tribune printed a column about how Chris Moneymaker deals with a flush draw. A new TV show about poker is probably on the way. (Hopefully it does better than the last few.) And, on a less favorable note, there’s this Boston Herald article about how World Series of Poker players are trying perhaps a little too hard to become celebrities.
Expect this trend to continue. And it’s certainly not bad news for online poker affiliates, who are likely to enjoy more traffic and search engine hits because of all these famous poker celebrities and the news they’re making. Remember, the more that people see poker in the news, the more likely they’ll be to want to play a few hands online. And that’s where you come in, affiliates.
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