Let’s face it. It just hasn’t been the best of weeks for World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event champions. Just days after we reported that Jerry Yang was having his WSOP bracelet sold at a public auction – after getting on the wrong side of the IRS – Greg Raymer goes one better after being arrested for being involved in a prostitution ring.
It was March 15th, that ABC WTVD first broke the news that Raymer was one of six men who had been arrested in a prostitution sting, at a Wake Forest hotel earlier this week. The initial reports that were disseminated around the world stated that it was a ‘male prostitution sting,’ but the word ‘male’ was later removed and replaced by the word ‘female’.
Raymer, who won $5,000,000 when he defeated David Williams on his way to his 2004 WSOP Main Event victory, recently hit the headlines after taking down four Heartland Poker Tour tournaments in a single season. His feat promoted him to the annual ‘Top 10 Stories of the Year’ piece that PokerNews run, and he may just be making a consecutive appearance in the 2013 list.
The man known as ‘Fossilman’ has hired Wade Smith as his representation, and he issued a statement to ABC11 before the weekend began.
‘Mr. Raymer is very sorry for this lapse in judgment. He regrets deeply the pain he has caused his family, friends and fans. Mr. Raymer is grateful for the many expressions of support he has received.’
One of those areas of support comes from his good friend, and WSOP Media Director, Nolan Dalla. In his own personal blog Dalla wrote: ‘What f***ing business is it of yours (or mine) who is having sex with who? And if you’re really that interested in details, then why is this so? Is your own sex life so utterly unfulfilling that you must project your natural curiosities upon others — more specifically those who are more successful that you are? Please tell me — what does this say about you?’
Dalla’s blog post has received both support and damnation, and I guess it depends on your relationship with the 2004 WSOP Champion. The main poker forums are rife with the usual petty pokings that you would expect over such a news story, but there are also a few descentors that believe they have a different viewpoint that deserves airing. On the famed 2+2 forum, for example, there is a separate thread reminding everyone that Raymer sits on the board of the Poker Players Alliance (PPA).
‘This is not about prostitution, this is about a public trust that the PPA perpetually compromises.’ Stated the forum poster before continuing, ‘Mr. Raymer, …Greg, …how can you expect the poker playing public to trust that you don’t put your personal motives, deceptively and selfishly ahead of those who’s behalf you speak on?’
‘He lives in a country where the President was proved to have extra-marital sex, lied about it to the whole nation on TV, and retained his office.’ Was just one of the replies.
Then for every poker player, and random follower of the news, that seem quite liberal about Raymer’s behaviour, there are also those that believe his daliance with prostitutes has a much wider implication for society as a whole.
Greg Raymer is a well-known Libertarian, who even once suggested that he would run for vice president of the United States as a candidate for the Libertarian Party, so it’s assumed that his views on prostitution would also be liberal. But these are not thoughts that will be shared by everyone, and no doubt the social media will maintain the flow of debate over the coming weeks.
Everyone will have a view on this one. What’s yours?