Sorel Mizzi, Foul Play?5 years ago
Yet more noise about unethical behaviour were heard from the direction of the Two Plus Two forums, in the month of February. Sorel '1mperium' Mizzi, one time Pocketfives MTT leaderboard king, stands accused of reverting to his dark past.
Same Old Story
For those of you who have been around a while, you will no doubt be aware that this isn't the first time that Mizzi has stepped out of line. Sometimes it's the same old names that keep on cropping up.
Over on Two Plus Two, a new account recently sprang up, making serious allegations concerning Mizzi. The author alleged that one of the players who reached last years WCOOP final table, on PokerStars was in fact Mizzi playing from his home in Las Vegas by using a VPN. The account in question was 'bindernutnut' who eventually went on to finish in ninth place for a $100,000 prize.
Whoever wrote these allegations repeatedly stressed that he did not have any proof, but told us how it has been common knowledge in Vegas high stakes circles for the last few months.
The thread was shut down after only three days, as nothing but speculation was being offered, but there was more to the story, according to the original poster.
One of the other final table players was Rory Brown (Mr.Kingball), from Ireland, who is apparently a friend of Sorel Mizzi. Before the final table started play, Brown had spoken to Mizzi about reads and strategies on all of the players left, and Mizzi offered to assist him with preparation, and during live play.
If this part does turn out to be true, then it's particularly bad due to what is supposed to be a genuine friendship between the two.
Brown joined in with the thread to make it clear that he was unable to confirm or deny that the new accusations were true, but refused to go into any real details, saying he would assist PokerStars with their ongoing investigation.
The one point that he did elaborate on was that Pokerstars Pro Liv Boeree had been accused of knowing all about this, but didn't inform her employers. Brown said that he had contacted Boeree in November when the rumours first started, as she was a mutual friend of theirs. There was an inference that Mizzi had some kind of serious health issue from late October, which may have affected his actions since then, but there was no defending of Mizzi from the accusations surrounding him and the WCOOP.
Brown finished by saying he had also contacted Mizzi, and was told that he had been coaching 'bindernutnut', and nothing more.
It's Not the First Time
Sorel Mizzi has been linked with more than a couple of scandals in the past. The hot shot from Toronto, Canada has been one of the game's best players for years. Very highly regarded by his peers, he has now ramped up his live tournament winnings to over $10 million.
However, back in 2007 the first glimpse of a shadier side to his character was unveiled when it was revealed that Mizzi had paid for the use of a friend's account during a late run in the Full Tilt Poker Sunday Million. This was after he had already busted out himself.
After cruising to victory, the deception was picked up by Full Tilt Poker and Mizzi was stripped of his prize money. Of course, account sharing is one of the most grave violations of terms and conditions a player can commit, particularly a high stakes regular. The advantage for a player at that level, to be playing incognito is enormous.
Around the same time frame, Mizzi's Pokerstars account was banned for allegedly similar account selling violations. Not exactly a stellar character reference, is it?
Fast forward to 2011 and he was back in the spotlight during a Chinese poker match versus 2010 WSOP Main Event final table contestant John Racener.
Racener claims to have seen Mizzi deliberately deal from the bottom of the deck, and following a denial, then an argument, Racener refused to pay however much he was currently down.
And there's more...
Returning to the present day, there was one more allegation of noteworthy interest. While our anonymous poster was adamant that the information discussed so far was fact, they also let on that there was around the scene about Mizzi multi accounting on a regular basis through a network of VPNs.
While the odd incident or scandal of this nature makes the headlines, that's not the same as the possibility of the online tournament scene being infested with multi-accounters playing anonymously. How many more of the best MTT players are resorting to these tactics? It's a shocking thought.
But Still No Tangible Proof
It's unfortunate for so manyallegations to come out into the public domain without anything solid to back it up. The identity of the original poster still remains a mystery, but many suspect them to be a fellow high stakes tournament player, well known enough to want to hide behind anonymity.
Many readers will think that it is wrong to be discussing this further without fresh evidence, but the cat is out of the bag so to speak. It is also not an everyday occurrence that something like this becomes public knowledge, so it's only natural that we want to get to the bottom of it.
For now, the thread is still closed, but we await with interest any new developments.
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