A thank you letter to Doug Ford from poker players in Ontario

Smiling Doug Ford
Last Updated
May 10, 2023

The rollout of online gambling in the province has been a major success, with the online poker market outsizing any other regulated market in North America and cash game traffic steadily increasing.

Many poker players were initially skeptical of what would happen to online poker in the province and lamented losing access to the global player pools. Since the rollout in April, our tunes have completely changed as the Ontario market has shaped up to be not only robust, but a throwback to our own glory days. Scores of online poker players that may have had difficulty squeezing out any profit in recent years has noticed their prospects and ROI have shot through the roof, as the level of play in our geo-restricted area is magnitudes lower skill than the global player pool (which I suspect has to do with not having to compete against the eastern euro bot farms). With the smaller fields in tournaments, variance is lower. With strong Ontario regulation, we can be as confident as we ever have been in the safety of our funds. For recreational players, although they miss shooting for the astronomical prizepools of the global player pools, likewise have a better chance to win and get more bang for their buck when playing in the Ontario fenced-in sites. Cash game recreationals who would be quick work on any of the global incarnations of these poker software's, have a fighting chance in the games now.

What this legislation has done for serious poker players in Ontario is a miracle. Many people I talk to have made more profit since April than they have in the previous 3 to 5 years playing online poker. Many of us have a new found source of income thanks to Doug Ford taking his own gamble in creating the opportunity for this industry to thrive for us. It's reminiscent of the mid-2000s poker boom. I've heard people refer to the new found profits as "Ford Bux".

There is a stark contrast between this effective rollout compared to the mess in Quebec when they tried to rollout online poker through their traditional provincial lotto corp. Ford made the correct decision in opening up the market to the major players and to keep OLG out of it and the proof is in the pudding. With Ontario raking in over 267M in Igaming revenue, up 64% from 162m in Q1, it's safe to say that the early results are exceeding expectations.

Who knows how long these specific conditions will last. As far as I am concerned, this is a gold rush and I need to take advantage of the opportunity as much as I can, while I can. It is really wonderful how much one's life can change on a dime due to a governmental decision. The Ontario government deciding to regulate an industry I participate in, and now my prospects are through the roof. it downright feels like an act of god. And I thank him too, because it very well may be. However, one thing I do know, is it was an act of Doug Ford's and so I am giving credit where credit is due. Thank you, Doug Ford.

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Ryan Fisler
Ryan Fisler

Ryan is a poker enthusiast and entrepreneur currently living in Kingston, Ontario.

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