Tom Dwan makes rare interview appearance on No Gamble No Future

Geoff Fisk
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Published: May 26, 2021 4:40 PM EDT

PokerGO series chats with the elusive poker legend in latest episode

Some poker legends are tougher to land for an interview than others. The DAT Poker Podcast brought in one of the most elusive poker superstars on the list just a few weeks ago, with Phil Ivey stopping by for a full-length interview on the show.

Perhaps the only other poker icon that can rival Ivey’s mystique made his own televised interview appearance. Tom Dwan made a virtual visit to PokerGO’s No Gamble No Future show, with the episode dropping on YouTube Tuesday.

Hosted by Jeff Platt and Brent Hanks, Episode 16 of the show featured a nearly half hour interview with Dwan. We last saw the longtime fixture of the poker circuit on Season 8 of High Stakes Poker, with Dwan ending up as the only player to appear on every episode of the season.

While High Stakes Poker ran a few quick interview clips from Dwan throughout the season, No Gamble No Future engaged in an exceedingly rare proper chat with the poker icon. While the player formerly known as ‘Durrrr’ struck a ubiquitous presence on the poker shows of the 2000s, the now 34-year-old Dwan doesn’t make many appearances on U.S.-facing poker shows.

What has Tom Dwan been up to?

Dwan appears on the show in front of the backdrop of a cloudy sky, with the ocean shore just behind him. Platt opens the interview by simply asking what Dwan has been up to.

Dwan reveals that he didn’t get the chance to play much poker during the COVID-19 crisis, and spent seven months in Hong Kong during the pandemic. He came back to the U.S. just before High Stakes Poker Season 8, and he’s still on American shores today.

After telling a few tales of tow surfing with Rick Salomon, Dwan goes into what’s coming next on his poker calendar. That endeavor comes in the form of the WPT Heads Up Championship, presented by Poker King (a Winning Poker Network skin not available in the U.S.).

Dwan and Ivey headline the 32-player, single elimination tournament, which runs online June 18-22. The $25,000 buy-in tournament features a best-of-three format for each round, and includes players like Brad Owen, Landon Tice, and Nick Schulman.

While Dwan mentioned that he’s not particularly excited for the event, he does think the unique format of the tournament is good for poker.

“I think it’s still neat to try out,” Dwan said. “I just did this long interview – I don’t think it’s out yet – with Joey Ingram. We were talking about – we both really like when people are trying to push limits, or push boundaries in poker.”

“I think Poker King is trying to do that in a bunch of different places. GG tries to do that some. And I think that’s really cool, you don’t want stuff to get stale. And there was little seven or eight year period there where poker felt pretty stale.”

Will Dwan challenge Phil Hellmuth on High Stakes Duel III?

Dwan reveals in the interview that he thought he would be challenging Phil Hellmuth on High Stakes Duel II. Daniel Negreanu currently fills that seat, with Round 3 of the highly hyped heads-up challenge set for June 23.

“I thought I was playing next,” Dwan said. “Then all of a sudden Negreanu swoops in and steals my spot. But Hellmuth taxed him for it.”

Hanks asks Dwan what he thinks of Hellmuth’s current run as the High Stakes Duel champion. After downing Antonio Esfandiari in three straight matches on the first chapter of the show, Hellmuth is now up 2-0 on Negreanu in High Stakes Duel II.

“I don’t think it’s that crazy. It’s just 5-0,” Dwan said.

While he’s not all that impressed with Hellmuth’s heads-up run, the poker community at large would almost certainly tune into a potential Dwan vs. Hellmuth matchup, should Hellmuth retain the High Stakes Duel championship.

Hanks goes on to reveal that a High Stakes Poker Season 9 is scheduled for filming soon, and that we can expect Dwan to once again make regular appearances on the show that he seems always to dominate.

The full interview with Dwan is available on No Gamble No Future Episode 16, with Dwan’s segment beginning around the 20-minute mark of the episode.

Featured image source: YouTube