Summer showdown: Tice vs. Becker bet adds extra spice to 2024 WSOP

Mo Afdhal
Posted on: February 20, 2024 10:20 PST

The World Series of Poker kicks off in 98 days and with last week's release of the full event schedule the buzz has fully engulfed the community. In particular, everyone is talking about a crossbook bet between LandonTice and JeremyBecker, appropriately dubbed Tice vs. Becker: Battle of the Young Guns.

DanielNegreanu announced the details of the wager on X and included a poll for the community to throw their support behind either Tice or Becker. The genesis for the crossbook has roots in the GTO vs. Exploitative strategy discourse--with Tice, known as "The Child of the Sim", representing the former and Becker, who has never used a solver, but possesses an abundance of live experience, the latter.

Negreanu's announcement brought with it dozens of interested third parties, all chomping at the bit to get their own action down on one of the two sides.

The community-driven narratives for the wager are one thing, but the actual story is best heard directly from the sources. Unsurprisingly, both Negreanu and MattBerkey took to their podcast platforms this week to dissect the bet and share their own perspectives.

Then there's the perspectives of the two horses in this race. Tice's past high-profile poker showdown didn't end as he would have wanted it to, but now he has a chance at redemption. Becker, on the other hand, cut his teeth in the Las Vegas live tournament streets and will look to continue his dominance this summer.

As Becker told us, "For a week or two Daniel didn't like how Berkey was acting on Twitter so they started to beef a little bit. Daniel's a genius, that's why he is where he is today. He knew that if he put this tweet out, Berkey/Landon wouldn't be able to help themselves. Obviously, with Daniel backing me he believes in me and would happily take a bet [on] me vs. Landon."

Aside from light-hearted needles, there doesn't seem to be any bad blood between Tice and Becker--yet. Hopefully, the two of them can leave the personal attacks on the sidelines and focus solely on the results. "I have no beef with Landon," said Becker, "We get along and realize we're just two young kids coming up, trying to make it. He was chosen by Daniel because this is how he can get Berkey, potentially for a big number."

Becker's confidence might be at an all-time high--and with good reason. He's on the run of a lifetime over the past year, putting up results that speak for themselves. Plus, the belief of long-term winners like Negreanu, ChanceKornuth, and JesseLonis has him all the more assured.

"When I see Daniel risking hundreds of thousands of dollars on me in this bet, how does that not give me even more confidence?" Becker told us, "Not to mention two of the best live poker players in the world ( Lonis and Chance) publicly coming out instantly, saying they’re looking for action on my side as well. How could I not have all the confidence in the world now?"

The Tice vs. Becker bet will be an ongoing story in the lead up to the WSOP and, of course, throughout its duration.

Check back with PokerOrg to stay updated with all the latest on the Battle of the Young Guns.