Doug Polk offers heads up terms to Bill Perkins

Jon Pill
Published by:
Posted on 07/16/2021

Bill Perkins may have another heads-up challenge on the books soon. Doug Polk has entered into serious negotiations with Perkins over the handicap he would be willing to accept in a heads-up match between the two.

Perkins offered 6 big blinds per hundred hands. Polk countered with 3bb/100. 

This is substantially lower than the odds Perkins negotiated against Tice. For the heads-up match with Tice, Perkins managed to get himself an edge of 9bb/100.

The initial offer came from Perkins. “Ok @DougPolkVids you got me. How about 6BB/100 after WSOP?” Perkins tweeted.

Usually, Polk dismisses such challenges out of hand. He’s retired from poker, so there has to be a compelling reason to pull him back into the game. With Daniel Negreanu, the combined expectation of turning a tidy profit while putting a long-term grudge to bed was sufficient. With Perkins, the motivation is slightly different.

Perkins and Polk are friends away from the poker table. Both are businessmen, and Perkins likes to surround himself with high-stakes poker celebrities. That friendship might be enough to make the game fun for Polk. Though his aim is still clearly to turn a decent profit.

Polk countered Perkins’ offer, saying: “I’m not in the business of laying odds to get action. However, this is a little bit of a dif situation. I’ll lay you 3 bb/100.”

To sweeten the deal, Polk reminded Perkins that there is always a greater fool. Polk told Perkins that he was sure he “can get a better rate on the secondary market to get your overall spot closer to 6+.”

Perkins’s art of the deal

This is not the first time that Perkins has negotiated himself into a victory against a better player. The coals over which he roasted Landon Tice are not yet cool.

With Tice, Perkins was dealing with a young, inexperienced, and well-backed player. Getting 9bb/100 was a reflection not of Tice’s edge, but his inexperience.

At 9bb/100, Tice would have paid Perkins $720,000 over the course of the 20,000 hands the pair were scheduled to play. In the end, Tice’s backers pulled the plug, buying their way out. It cost them a pretty penny, but may have saved them bank in the long run.

You would think that after beating Negreanu handily in a recent challenge, Polk would be thrilled to take on Perkins at almost any odds. But Polk is a much tougher negotiator than Tice.

Not only is Polk a better player, he has very little to prove, and he will be entirely backing himself. People with skin in the game fight tougher. Perkins is lucky to get the offer of 3bb/100. Plus, Polk’s getting hitched and is trying to factor in some time off for his honeymoon.

Polk told Perkins that it was fine if Perkins couldn’t get good enough odds on his side bets. Polk explained, “I’m getting married in Nov and if I spend the honeymoon on a remote desktop pio server it might be a quick marriage.”

Polk clearly hasn’t considered the favorable impression a $1.2 million dollar dowry might make.

Featured image source: Flickr by WPT