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‘Loose lips sink ships’ as they say, and Sam Trickett’s slip of the tongue may just have given away the fact that Australian poker pro Matt Kirk has 66,000Bitcoin to his name, making the young high-roller’s net worth about $600million at today’s prices!
Rumours doing the rounds that ‘a high stakes Australian pro’ is swimming in the best-known cryptocurrency were given a lot more credence after Kirk faced off with fellow high-rollers in partypoker’s ‘Big Game’ last week in Montreal, Kirk and Trickett joined by casino owners Leon Tsoukernik and Rob Yong among others for an epic three-day PLO fest which saw some of the biggest pots of recent years.
With Kirk leaving the game almost $3.9million down, questions were being asked how he could afford to play and lose so much in a weekend – and then the ‘66,000Bitcoin’ question made much more sense, with one eagle-eyed 2+2 poker forum poster doing a bit of detective work to follow the rumour up.
“There was something very interesting that happened in the game,” wrote dan_polk, referencing a Reddit thread discussing the moment Kirk shushed his fellow high-stakes pro Sam Trickett…
From the Reddit thread:
'During a hand, Matt Kirk had complained about how stuck he is, as he was doing the entire night. This warranted a response from Sam Trickett who stated 'Bitcoin just went up so you're pretty much even'. Sam also added 'it just went up $100', the camera pans to Matt Kirk where he makes a gesture of 'keep your lips shut', even John Duthie had to comment on the odd moment.'
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The 2+2 poster did the maths on the Bitcoin rumour, explaining:
“At the current price of BTC, if he does indeed have 66,000 of them, it puts the value at $592,034,190..yeah, a hair under $600 million! And when it was at its peak of ~$19.5k in December 2017, his (rumored) holdings would have been worth a staggering $1,287,000,000..$1.287 billion on the nose!”
That, of course, would go a long way to explaining his ability to play at the live nosebleed stakes, but doesn’t quite equate with the legal wranglings Kirk and Tsoukernik have been embroiled in over the past year.
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Although the pair seem to have kissed and made up judging by the past weekend’s Montreal Big Game, it was pretty much accepted Kirk was back by Bobby Baldwin for his heads-up encounter with the Kings Casino owner - which ended in serious acrimony after Kirk came out $3million up but was forced by his mysterious backer to reject a deal.
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If Kirk does indeed have 66,000 or so Bitcoin to his name, there are a few good reasons he’d want to keep it quiet - with tax and fear of being targeted by robbers top of the list. It would also put him close to the top of the list of the world’s wealthiest poker players, only mega-wealthy amateurs such as Guy Laliberte, Bill Perkins and the like coming close.