Sports broadcaster Nick Wright will not challenge Phil Hellmuth to a $100,000 rematch in the second round of High Stakes Duel III. With Wright declining a rematch, the vacancy became official, and it was filled by one of high-stakes poker’s most legendary players.
Wright, a co-host of “First Things First” on Fox Sports 1, tweeted last Friday that he would be officially sitting out of a possible second round rematch.
“I’m still not totally over the loss,” said Wright in the video he tweeted. “Because I feel like I blew it with some really poor play in the middle.”
“I can’t justify to my wonderful wife and kids laying out another $100,000 to take on one of the greatest players in the world,” Wright added. “Even though I really think I can beat him and I should’ve beat him.”
The 15-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner defeated Wright in the first round, extending his heads-up winning streak to seven after a three-match sweep of both Antonio Esfandiari and Daniel Negreanu in High Stakes Duel I and II. He is up $750,000 over the duration of the winning streak.
Per the rules of the show, Hellmuth must play another two matches before he can quit and pocket any profit.
PokerGO announced Tuesday morning that Hellmuth will battle Tom Dwan, known as ‘Durrrr’ in the nosebleed in the second round of High Stakes Duel III, where the duo will play a heads-up sit n’ go for $100,000.
If Hellmuth extends his current streak to eight with a win over Dwan, Dwan would have the opportunity to rematch Hellmuth for another match worth $200,000. If Hellmuth wins that match, he could leave and bank another $350,000 in profit.
If Dwan wins the first or possibly second battle with Hellmuth, he would be forced to play at least one more match against either Hellmuth, who would have the right to a rematch, or another challenger if Hellmuth decides to bow out.
In the scenario where Hellmuth wins the first match and Dwan takes the second, it would mark the first time that High Stakes Duel went into a fourth match, which would have a $400,000 buy-in.