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Many professional poker players would jump at an opportunity to be a sponsored pro at a major poker site such as Full Tilt. Some would not mind bending over backwards in adhering to contractual obligations tied in with being the face of such a site.

But people in general and poker players in particular are quite different in the ways that they conduct themselves and go about their business. What may be important or pleasant to some may not be as crucial or enjoyable to others.

The recent split between Tom “durrrr” Dwan and Full Tilt Poker in which Full Tilt chose not to renew Dwan’s contract seems to bear this out. While a full explanation behind the parting of ways has not been forthcoming, observers can point to a few reasons why Dwan is no longer one of ‘The Professionals’ along with Gus Hansen and Viktor “Isuldur1” Blom.

Several of the possible reasons were touched upon about a week ago by, with the main reason perhaps being that Dwan lacked professionalism. This issue had been brought up by Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu in mid-2013 when Dwan was apparently several hours late to a match that pitted Full Tilt’s stable of pros against an equal number of pro players representing PokerStars.

“If you’re a sponsored player and you get paid, then you better do those things [show up on time] or you are disrespecting your organisation and the game,” Negreanu told “If you aren’t prepared to do that, then don’t wear the patch.”

Another reason may be what appears to others as an inclination of Dwan to steer clear of media interviews and promotional endeavors when possible. That’s not to say that durrrr did not live up to his contractual obligations in that regard. Let’s just say that pros that represent other sites seemingly do a bit more by way of promoting the poker rooms that pay them what many would consider a significant sum.

Money ties in with a third reason why Dwan was perhaps apathetic toward his Full Tilt sponsorship. That being, he simply does not need the steady income that a sponsorship deal provides. His prowess on the felt has been legendary and undoubtedly allows for more than enough in terms of financial gain.

While some would relish the chance to represent Full Tilt, such an arrangement may not have been a high priority for Dwan. A parting of the ways appears to make perfect sense for both sides. Though durrrr is one of the most recognizable and followed players in the game and his previous status as a Full Tilt pro may have enhanced that, players and fans will be no less riveted by his actions on the poker table without a sponsorship deal.



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Charles Rettmuller

Charles has been an avid poker player for a number of years, both live and online. He holds a degree in journalism and previously worked as a reporter for a Chicago-based newspaper. Charles joined the PokerUpdate team in early 2012 and writes daily news articles for the site.