Heartfelt Move by Poker Community to Buy Terminally Ill Player into the WSOP Main Event

Michael Graydon wasn’t looking for a free way into the WSOP Main Event, not by any means. When he first posted about the Main, he was offering to sell a % of his action with zero mark up to the poker community. 

It is very common for players to sell for this and many other WSOP events, often charging a “mark up” on the sale of action according to the skill edge they believe they possess against the (admittedly very soft!) field. Graydon, as others do from time-to-time, chose the very friendly approach of offering his action at zero markup, meaning at face value. He just wanted to play, he explained in his much-loved Tweet that he was suffering with an inoperable brain tumour, and that his current aim was simply to play the WSOP Main Event this year.

Before Graydon could sell out, however, MJ Gonzales, who coached Negreanu for Heads-up play recently, generously reached out with an offer to buy him in for the full game and leave Graydon with 100% of his own winnings. Jonathan Depa then came in to split the cost with Gonzales, and Maria Ho offered to fly him to Vegas for the event!

What a spirited move by the poker community, and a beautiful gesture of support for a player who’s seeing such hard times. 

We have other recent plays in this direction in the poker world, such as Philip Nagy’s Tweet in October offering to buy six random players into the Venom $2,650 online event on the Winning network, set up so that half the winnings would go to the players and the other half to breast cancer charities.

It’s wonderful to see charitable plays in the poker scene, but this particular gesture of solidarity from the community during WSOP is just a tremendously personal one, and very touching. 

The whole poker world will surely be watching with interest and support for the rail of Graydon’s journey through this WSOP Main Event. We certainly will be here at PokerDeals, and we wish him the absolute best. 


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