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Mar 14, 2014

Weekly Flop: Ivey Invests in Boxing | Schleger Smoked Out | Shot Clock is Hot

By RTR Dennis

Shane Shaniac Shleger Rake The Rake

Shane Shaniac Shleger RakeTheRakePhil Ivey has dipped into the boxing and entertainment industry, and he's already off to a great start... Shane 'shaniac' Schleger has been openly discussing his 15-year crack habit, and people have been furiously ripping him for it... Out with the talk about young poker pros needing to be ambassadors and in with the new shot clock debate. Find out what's hot in the poker world in the Weekly Flop.

Phil Ivey jumps into the Boxing & Entertainment Promotion World
Unlike other ex-Full Tilt pros who lost a sizable amount wealth from the Black Friday ordeal, Phil Ivey has refused to fade away. He's gotten IveyPoker off to a strong start after launching training videos featuring himself and other top pros. And now he's co-founded a boxing and entertainment promotion company called All In Entertainment.

Ivey's partners include Dallas Mavericks shooting guard Monta Ellis and Washington D.C. businessman Jeff Fried. The group are already promoting rising welterweight boxer Dusty Hernandez Harrison (20-0) as well as Andre Ward (27-0), the WBA title holder and 2011 Ring Magazine fighter of the year.

This company isn't relegated to just boxing either since they also promote Denver Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson, NBA Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas and famed NFL broadcaster James Brown. Judging from the clientele, Ivey is proving to be far more than just a poker player and continues to expand his business empire outside of the game.

Shane Schleger opens up about Crack Use, sparks Heated Discussion
After excelling in the online poker world for years, Shane 'shaniac' Schleger has been devoting more time to his marriage and writing lately. Speaking of the latter, he penned a controversial piece on Slate.com about his varying crack use over the past 15 years. Schleger discussed how he was first introduced to the drug, why crack continues to fascinate him and how he'd like to cut down on his crack use in 2014, though he doesn't expect to totally be off the drug.

As explained in the article, he's not trying to get attention or shock people by openly discussing his habit. Instead, Schleger aims to "forge a truthful, direct discussion about drugs before we can comprehend addiction, much less effectively treat drug abuse or hope to implement rational drug policy." He adds that his greatest fear is that society isn't even close to achieving this honest dialogue.

Even reading a small portion of the 1,000-plus comments under Schleger's Slate article, you can see that his prediction is right. Many of the commenters accuse Schleger of being self-deluded, a junkie, and using gambling (poker) as another "high." Nobody would argue that crack use is a healthy habit that leads to more success. But all Schleger is trying to do is start an adult conversation about recreational drug use without people jumping down his throat and immediately labeling him an addict.

Shot Clock is Poker's Latest Hot Topic
Throughout the early part of 2014, the poker community was fixated on whose role it is to make poker more fun and interesting to general audiences. Now, thanks to the WPT's surveys, we've moved on to the topic of whether or not poker should feature a shot clock.

According to WPT surveys distributed at the LA Poker Classic, 80% of the players were in favor of a clock. PokerNews also did a poll that shows over 80% of the voters would like a clock. Taking these results into account, it's pretty clear that live tournament players are tired of seeing others tank for five minutes before mucking 8-3 offsuit.

However, some pros like Marvin Rettenmaier and Jonathan Little have publicly voiced their disapproval over a shot clock. Little expressed the opinion that a clock would discourage recreational players. But while this may be true, the vast majority of players voting in favor of the shot clock probably means it will become a reality in the WPT.