A lot has happened in the poker gaming world in the past 17 months—the Epic Poker League and the $1 Million Big One for One Drop were played and 128 talented poker players won prestigious World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets. However, the most exciting event of them all is the acquisition of Full Tilt Poker by PokerStars, which also repaid Full Tilt Poker’s ex US players.
At the same time, key people associated with Full Tilt Poker—Chris Ferguson, Ray Bitar, Rafe Furst, and Howard Lederer—have not made many public statements during the past 17 months.
On September 8, Saturday, Lederer interacted with Matthew Parvis of PokerNews for around 7 hours. This week, PokerNews is releasing edited versions of this interview. Called The Lederer Files, PokerNews published the first two parts of it recently. Poker players definitely would not want to miss The Lederer Files.
Toward the end of the first part of The Lederer Files, Lederer says,
I hadn’t seen any of it … Maybe I was losing a little touch. Maybe it was getting too big for me … On the other hand, I felt like Ray Bitar had a pretty good handle on it.
Lederer candidly shares an incident in which he visited a pub with an employee of Full Tilt Poker in Dublin in Ireland when the employee tried to bring his attention to the fact that there was a huge rift between American and Irish employees at FTP. Lederer, however, knew nothing about it and admitted that he “was losing a little touch” since he was concentrating on “internal marketing.”
Lederer also said that the Full Tilt Poker community was not that fond of Ray Bitar, with Team Full Tilt Poker member John Juanda leading an anti-Bitar campaign within the community. He also revealed that Perry Friedman had resigned from the FTP board because he couldn’t approve of Bitar’s policies. Unfortunately, the anti-Bitar campaign was too weak; otherwise Bitar could easily have been removed from the board. However, Bitar remained on the board, and although Friedman did not like Bitar, he continued to support Full Tilt Poker.
When speaking about Ferguson, Lederer became very defensive. He stated that Ferguson had never desired funds from Full Tilt Poker.
PokerNews will be analyzing The Lederer Files next week and will also be including opinions from noted poker players, some of who were closely associated with Full Tilt Poker.