World Wide Web Fights presents

WWWF Logo by Dan Willis

The Setting

As the commotion from Caine vs. Walker subsides, the bar patrons once again return their attention to the round table in the back of the saloon. A poker game is about to start. Both the stakes and competitors are of a magnitude never before seen this side of the Pecos. The stakes are $200,000 apiece, allowing the winner to walk away with a cool million dollars. Seated around the table are the following master card players:

Henry Gondorff, Paul Newman Bret Maverick, Mel Gibson The Sundance Kid, Robert Redford The Gambler, Kenny Rogers Coach Ernie Pantusso, Cheers
Henry Gondorff, expert con-man from The Sting Bret Maverick, champion poker player The Sundance Kid, cleanest poker player in the west Brady Hawkes, known as "The Gambler" Coach Ernie Pantusso, bartender at Cheers

The game: Five card draw. All play until their funds are exhausted. Who walks away with the million dollars?

The Commentary

BRIAN: Clearly, Coach will be out of money before the first hand is dealt as he foolishly makes change for Harry Anderson. Sundance and Gondorff won't have much of a prayer, either. Gondorff will be too confused trying to figure out why his partner Johnny Hooker is wearing a cowboy hat, and Sundance will will be distracted by Butch's annoying new cigar habit. Neither of their minds will be in the game. Hawkes would have a chance, but, unfortunately, he'll give away all his secrets when he starts singing his theme song between hands. Plus, if he ever breaks out into "Rudy," he could very well be beaten lifeless by the spectators.

That leaves you with the newest millionaire: Maverick. Why? 1.) He could cheat with the best of them. The only person there that could out cheat him is Gondorff, but, as mentioned, his mind won't be in the game. 2.) He's got experience is tourneys just like this. Do the others? We don't know. 3.) He's very lucky. 4.) He's every bit as fast as Sundance. No one would dare pull any guns with those two around, and if someone did, I like Maverick's chances. 5.) His "Ace in the hole" if you will: Dad. Not only did Maverick, Jr. learn from the original Maverick, James Garner, but he could very well have dad there to help out in some huge scheme to get away with the money no matter what the outcome at the table is. We're talking about Rockford here! Rockford + Maverick = $1,000,000.

MIKE: Brian, you ignorant slut. Maverick? I thought you were smarter than that. Not only do you make my own arguments for me, but you also have to resort to invoking Rockford to bolster your case...a sign of a desperate man if there ever was one. If my comments offend you, please bear in mind that I must adhere to WWWF Grudge Match (tm) Commentary Response Form #1 (tm), which requires me to insult my opponent as much as possible in Paragraph #1, then present my own inane arguments in Paragraphs #2-4.

You've named my winner for me...Gondorff. He's the one with the most experience in this match. Granted, his wits may have been dulled from numerous collisions in NASCAR races and from years of existing solely on salad dressing and spaghetti sauce. But, pulling a Con (tm) is like riding a never forget how to do it. And Gondorff is the second- greatest con man in history (the first of course being Neil O'donnell). Also, everyone else in this game is a one-shot wonder, with only one major title to their names. Gondorff's made a career out of pulling fast ones, in The Sting, The Hustler, and The Color of Money. Add to that the fact that everyone in the room is probably on his payroll, including the three big guys dressed in hockey outfits wearing dorky glasses, and there's no way he's not walking out of there with a cool million.

Sundance (aka Johnny Hooker) is the only one with a chance, but he's the student, not the master. The twin Mavericks and Coach are no match. As for Hawkes, he doesn't even live through three hands. In dire need of money for breast augmentation surgery, Dolly Parton bursts in and demands her share of the royalties from "Islands in the Stream." When he refuses to ante up, she ices him.

Gondorff in 6 hands, winning each with 4, I mean 4 jacks.

STEVE: I'm forced to go with The Sundance Kid by default. Coach will be out on the first hand. He'll be dealt four-of-a-kind and bet everything. Suddenly, Diane Chambers will come over to him and convince him that gambling is evil and wrong. Out of guilt he'll fold, and he's out of the game. As for Maverick, he gets distracted way too easily. Jodie Foster will come in and bat her eyes a few times. She'll seduce him into the nearby closet and lock him in there. She'll take his money and be gone before he knows it.

Now Brady might have a chance, but as he sits down to gamble, he catches the glances of six parentless children looking at him with puppydog eyes. He looks at the $200 grand he just got for selling them on the black market, and realizes he can't go through with it. His new family/pit crew is just too valuable. He withdraws from the game and hugs his "Six Pack".

That just leaves Mr. Gondorff. Sundance and Gondorff go at it for awhile. Of course, Sundance never cheats, and Gondorff always cheats. Sundance will start losing his shirt. However, as Brian earlier mentioned, James Garner is an important factor that can't be overlooked. Having a sharp eye, he'll quickly spot Gondorff's cheating ways. In momentary lapse, he thinks he's the sheriff running the game, and kicks out Gondorff for cheating. Only Sundance remains! He cooly walks out of the bar and quickly invests his winnings in a trendy cable network.

SAM: You each make a case, albeit flimsy and narrow minded, for your respective choices. The "hands down" winner, no pun intended, would be Brady Hawkes. Rather than focusing on why the others would not win; all are possible contenders, except for coach, I'll concentrate on why the Hawkeman will prevail.

This is so obvious. He knows when to hold'em and when to fold'em. He knows when to walk away and knows when to run. He won't be countin' his money when he's sittin' at the table. (That's what the evil midget from Wild, Wild West is for) Next, he has rage. This, as any Grudge Match (tm) follower would know, is crucial. Source of his rage: Lucille. After leaving, he had to put up whinning children and unharvested crops. He's no stranger to hard times, but her hurtin' won't heal. He's going to show that bitch that he's nobody's whipping boy toy. Come on, luck is on his side. Brian, you are right, he will sing his theme song, but it will not help his opponents. If anything it will drive them away from their gameplan and they will place foolish bets. There's no need to go on.

After conquering his opposotion, he will walk away with the million, buy the kids out of slavery, screw the crops, find a woman long on legs and short on wits, hunt down Lucille and introduce her to his friends, Smith and Wesson.

Thanks to Sam Roadman and Mike Petrich for serving as guest commentators

The Results

Bret Maverick (1186)


Henry Gondorff (466)

Brady Hawkes (284)

The Sundance Kid (223)

Coach (no voting)

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Voter Comments


You fools are overlooking one vital factor: Hawkes, the Gambler, is blessed with the gift of music that will set your mind a-swirlin' like the sweetest moonshine out of the gut of some guy selling quilts and corn by the side of the road, who is also in dire need of orthodontic work.

Just a few bars into "Reuben James" and the room will be full of hootin' and hollerin', knee slappin', and a sense of respect for the singer, because he so loves Reuben James - you know, even though his skin was black, he wasn't the one that turned his back. Then as he slides into "Ruby," the mood turns bittersweet, as he describes becoming impotent due to a war injury; his wife, a sex-hungry kitten who looks exactly like Daisy Duke, has become a floozie. As he sings "Ruuuuuby...don't take your love to town," everyone in the room bursts into tears and snot. In this melancholic madness, Kenny starts up "The Coward of the County." During the part about the gang molestation, he slows the tempo down, causing everyone to think about an important female in their life, weep, and gaze into Kenny's eyes with a look that cries "Why? Why? Why must there be bad people?" The effect is like having 10,000 withered drunk senior citizens line-dance on your skull. Composed and calm, Kenny suggests that everybody forget about gambling for the time being and visit Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. (Tourist tip: check out the statue of Dolly Parton in Sevier County). Everybody's having a ball, setting a new record for consecutive rides of the Blazing Fury, Tennessee's only indoor roller coaster, not realizing that Kenny has slipped out, returned to the gambling room, and taken all the dough that was just sitting on the table. Only when they hit the river rapids ride do they realize that they've been had - and they're drenched with water that has the odor of seven hundred hillbillies. The Gambler, my friend, knows "when to walk away."

- Ernest

ROTW (tm) Silver Medal Winner (tm)

The game will never be concluded. Midway through the first hand, Ross Perot and a band of his more rabid supporters will kick in the door and begin ranting at the bookies for disallowing any votes for the Coach. This is clearly an example of the rigged two-party system! Larry King and a camera crew will put in an appearance, and devote another five weeks to the candidate, during which Perot will reveal that the cards are marked and the game was rigged by a bipartisan conspiracy to ruin his godson Ernie's reputation, and that this had forced him to back out of the race and re-enter. Clinton and Dole will appear and contest this claim, and the building will collapse under the weight of the attending Media Mass. The presence of so much political baggage in the air will destroy the Rage of all the players with the more powerful Apathy, and all gamblers will decide that finishing the hand wouldn't change anything anyway no matter who won, and go home. End of story.

- Reverend Doktor Far Drastic, I

ROTW (tm) Bronze Medal Winner (tm)

The game starts late as Coach doesn't show up. Eventually Woody Harrelson enters the game, but is fleeced even faster than Coach would have been.

There is a territorial clash between James Garner and Mel Gibson, but Mel wins (with a little help from Roger Moore). Mel is the designated Maverick for the game.

Hawkes has no chance, as Maverick, Gondorff, and Sundance are simply in a different league: their movies are much better. As he walks out, impoverished, he is shot and killed by a laser bolt from outer space. "That's for `Six-Pack'," we hear Crow and Tom Servo gleefully cry.

Once it is down to three players, Gondorff reaches below the table and pulls out a gold statuette engraved with the words "Best Actor-1986-Paul Newman."

"Yes, this is the statue that you both crave," Gondorff says. "You both have one for directing, but not for acting, and you never will. But to sweeten the pot, this goes to the winner of the $1 million."

Sundance's and Maverick's carefully regimented con games break down as they are handicapped by Lust(TM) and Greed(TM) for the award statue.

Gondorff wins the $1 million which he uses to launch "Newman's Own" brand hummus.

- Geoduck

Magic certainly does figure in with Maverick. He played poker with the big dogs and won a ton of money and he NEVER LOOKED AT HIS CARD. Sundance, sure, he plays right and proper, but at least he looks at his cards and everyone knows that it's bad luck to look at your cards.

- H/BHS Class of 96

The only skill in poker is being able to keep the other guy guessing. The rest is random dealing of the cards (assuming a legitimate game). I defy anyone to have a clue what coach is thinking. Ever!.

My vote goes to him.

- Rick Pitz

Maverick will win hands down. Why? Because he had sex with Jodie Foster, and with luck like that, you can't lose.

- Dave Greco, University of California, Davis

After the first five hands, each player has won one hand. They all decide to increase the pot. Gondorff wagers all the money he's made off of salad dressing and hockey games. Maverick bets the big boxcar full of drug money that he stole from a dead South African drug lord with revoked diplomatic immunity. Sundance bets all the money in the republican fund raising accounts that he gained through the use of that little answering machine thingy. Hawkes wagers all the money he ever made selling fruit products. And to stay competitive Coach uses Norm's bar bill as collateral.

Gondorff wins the next two hands by cheating. Sundance and Maverick both win a hand each by fair-play. Hawkes "knows when to fold them" and loses two hands by default. Coach is in desperate straights.

With no options in site, Coach is about to quit and forfeit the last of his money, when Norm enters the bar. Everybody yells "NORM!!" this completely unnerves the other players. Allowing Harry the Hat to help out the Coach unseen. Coach is back in the game.

Norm finds one of three identical eye-glass wearing brutes in hockey shirts sitting on his stool. When the guy refuses to move Norm goes into convulsions. Tiny (aka Ogre from Revenge of the Nerds aka Dr. Death from that HBO football show), rehired by Sam due to all the recent fighting, grabs the hockey dude by the shirt and slams him into the bar. The dude's brothers begin pounding on Tiny. Maverick sees a fight going on and reverts to his Mad Max cop persona. Pissed at having to have done a sequel with Tina Turner, Max vents his angst at Tiny, the closest thing in the bar to a post apocalypse biker. In the ensuing bar fight, Hawkes gets hit in the head with a bottle and flashes back to singing the "Gambler" on the original Muppet show before collapsing. Sundance gets pushed one too many times, grabs a broken table leg and swings it ala the Natural. However his arm is jostled by a falling Cliff Clavin and BOOM down goes Gondorff. Max/Maverick and Tiny/Ogre are calling in reinforcements...Ogre calls in the Nerds (including the Carridine Bro who calls in his bro Caine), Max calls in the Goose and Glover, the guy who wiped out a predator. The triple hockey bros call in the rest of the team. Hawkes revives long enough to call in the big monster dudes from the Muppets. Total Carnage.

The results...Tiny: Dead..shot by Max. Max/Maverick: Dead...killed by Caine in retaliation. Caine: Dead... shot by Glover. Glover: Dead...pummelled by the three hockey dudes. The 3 hockey dudes: Dead...eaten by Muppets. Sundance: unconscious. Gondorff: unconscious. Hawkes: delirious. Cliff Clavin: Dead...offed by Carla in the confusion. And the winner due to obliviousness to his surroundings....Coach!!


I have to vote for Good Ole Kenny Rogers. I mean come on, who else could write such a great song that the Chipmunks (tm) sung it in one of their music videos (which of course I sung along with, hell I was 10 years old and the time and amazed by their musical talents.)

- Nathan

There is yet one factor unaccounted for in this game, and it is powerful indeed.


Officers of the gaming commission (hastily given the right to carry firearms in a last-minute Congressional session) will arrive on the scene to demand their cut of the action. After a (violent) misunderstanding, that leaves Maverick and the Sundance Kid face down in the dirt, and Coach will need a walker from now on, the gaming commission establishes an extremely popular casino in this run-down bar. By using money from foreign investors, the gaming commission turns the once seedy bar into a family oriented money pit. With kid-size 5 dollar slots, and craps and blackjack for the parents, the entire family can enjoy a night of fun (while at the same time throwing away Billy Bob's college tuition)! And by selling the Pay-Per-View rights to such violent contests like Caine vs. Walker, the gaming commission leads very happy lives until they are snuffed out by organized crime (to whom they've been skimming from).

All in all, a happy ending to an unhappy situation.

Or was it an unhappy ending to a happy situation?

- Brian Kutner

Kenny...sorry, "the Gambler" takes this one, for several reasons.

Butch and Sundance don't have anything to look forward to. They die in Bolivia soon. Coach is going to be replaced by Woody Harrelson, which is a fate worse than death. Maverick and the Gambler, however, always have the possibility of another sequel. This is the motivation factor in action.

The Gambler smokes cigars without looking painfully ostentatious. Coach can also do this. Butch, Sundance, and Maverick are in trouble.

Robert Redford recently made UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL, which sucked. Paul Newman recently made NOBODY'S FOOL which was good. Mel Gibson recently made BRAVEHEART, which was cool. Coach hasn't made anything recently. The Gambler makes great chicken.

So, the actual game goes something like this: It's down to Maverick, Gambler, and Coach. The tension is high. Gambler lays down his cards: four queens. That beats Coach, who only had a straight. Maverick hasn't even looked at his cards. As he flips them over, one by one: the ten of spades, the jack of spades, the queen of spades, the king of spades. Finally, he closes his eyes real tight and flips over his last card: the king of clubs. A lousy pair of kings, and I think he was lucky to even get that when he tried that lameass stunt again. Gambler walks away with the pot and promptly opens a chain of roast turkey restaurants.

- Christopher Bird

Nobody believes [Coach] can win, and that is exactly why he will win. Coach immediately starts by playing dumb, which isn't very hard for him. You might say it comes naturally. After losing three or four hands, and winning the confidence in his stupidity of the rest of the table, a loud BANG! is heard on the other side of the bar, set up by none other than Harry the Hat, who immediately starts screaming obscenities at some hapless dork with thick glasses on. While everyone else is distracted by Harry getting his ass kicked by a dork, Coach slides four queens up his sleeve for the next hand. After the commotion dies down, and the next hand is dealt, another distraction occurs- it's Diane Chambers popping up out of a cake! While the guys are laughing at her pathetic attempt to be sexy, Coach makes the switch. He goes on to up the anty and win the million. Afterwards, he makes change for Harry and comes out with $50. Diane got 3 cents in tips from the nerdboy that pummelled Harry.

- Phil

The others are going to be far too busy preening and checking their reflections in mirrors to have their minds fully on the card game at hand. Coach will see this and slip in a bluff or two when no one's checking. GO COACH!!

Heather, Hanover College >:)

If this is happening before Maverick the movie, he's stuck. He could barely cheat his way out of a game of Yatzee back then. But if this is happening after the movie...well, how are you supposed to win against a gambler who can pull an ace of spades with a thought. MAYBE Obi-Wan. MAYBE Merlin. God probably. But not the Sundance Kid.

- RJ500199, Hope College, Holland, MI

And the winner is... Coach! Due to the extreem quantum flux generated by the massive tachyon/vertion/bunkyon (pick one) field, Coach keeps drawing royal flushes, inspite his incompetent betting...

Ooops, sorry. Some pseudoscienticficgobbldygookium from the last grudge match slipped through and corrupted my vote. Sundance Wins.

- Nicholas C. Weaver

Why do you not accept my vote for Coach??? Poker does have an element of luck, thereby giving evan the Gumpiest (R) of players the best chance to win! Not only do you blow off my vote, but you subject me to the sight of that big-eared loudmouth pest!!!! Thanks for the shock. I'm reaching for the tequila! 10 years of sobriety down the drain......

- Itodidit

I think Coach will win because of the "double bluff". Coach will have the 4 of a kind in the first hand and he will bet it all but the others will think that he is bluffing...BUT WAIT they will then remember that Coach is an idiot and probably does have the good hand, but if that is true then he would not bet it all because he wouldn't know what a bluff is so they all call because they think he thinks he is playing Go Fish.---Coach wins the first hand.

- S. Unser

I voted for Maverick, but that's not important. What I want to know, while were talking about poker, is this. When playing against:

1) An android who can count every card in the deck and easily memorize it's position

2) An aggressive Klingon who never bluffs

3) A man equipped with a VISOR that allows him to peek at every player's hand

4) An empathic Betazoid who can read every player's emotional state

How in bloody hell does WILL RIKER manage to win all the time?????!!!????

Just something for your consideration.

- Dave Nelson

You are definately being exclusive. You need to look to the far east to find the best gambler there ever was. The God of Gamblers would annhilate the whole bunch very simply. Your oversight is painful, for the God of Gamblers kicks ass.

- Al D. Baran

This match is between Harry Gondorff and Brett Meverick. The rest of them are losers, who'll be relieved of their money before The Gambler finishes his first verse. The winner will be Mr. Gondorff. The deciding factor is simply... movie quality. The Sting is a masterpiece of American Cinema. Maverick is a cheesy western notable only for Ms. Fosters low cut dresses. Paul Newman is the greatest American actor of the twentieth century, while Mel Gibson, while starring in many a teen-aged girls wet dreams, is mostly known for formula action adventure films. The Sting even had a better score. Quality always wins out, and this game will be no exception. Gondorff in a rout.

- Horace

Gondorff: Ol' blue eyes. Not one to lose, even less likely to be outcheated. Reflexes honed on the track, hustling abilities honed in pool halls, etc.

Maverick: Maybe not as much star power as Gondorff, Kid. Prone to face painting, quasi-historical polemics concerning freedom, attempts at Shakespeare. But good hustling lineage, excellent head-bashing skills. Also fast enough to beat the snake.

The Sundance Kid: Probably only one really capable of stealing women from Gondorff. May have clean appearance, but knows all the dirty tactics of presidential campaigns. Once took on CIA, Max von Sydow.

The Gambler: "Knows when to hold 'em," etc. Friends with Caine, so his case is supported by WWWF precedent.

The Coach: Ok, so I stopped watching that show a long time ago. Back off man!

But it doesn't matter, they are all going to:
a) have Jodie Foster slip away with the winnings after the game.
b) have the "police" (i.e. Maverick's dad) confiscate the winnings.
c) give the money to save "Reba McIntyre"(Jodie Foster in disguise)'s
orphanage in the Yukon
d) try to use it to pay off Jabba the Hut (wait, wrong Grudge match).
e) pay off their respective alimonies/paternity suits
e) all of the above 
- Dave

Grinning widely, Gondorff eyes his final mark. Coach has picked up scraps from some of the defeated players, hovering around 250 grand, but it won't be enough. Once Gondorff gets the deal back, the pigeon is plucked. Gondorff takes a confdent swig from his glass ... and the room begins spiraling.

Over at the bar, Sam Malone frowns reprovingly. "Aw, Carla, you made him an 'Open Grave'!"

Carla cackles maniacally, sloshing the pitcher in one hand, and the pilfered tumbler of watery gin in her other. "And he leaped right in!"

Three hands later, Gondorff is staring at the underside of the poker table. Coach, meanwhile, is in the pool room with a shifty guy in a fedora.

"Gee, thanks for staking me the extra hundred grand, Harry. Nobody else gave me any chance with those guys."

"Well, I've got more faith in you, Coach, and faith is important. Now, let me split these winnings up niiice and even...."

-- Call me Shane.

P.S.: How DARE you shut Coach out? It's exactly the reverse of Perot: you let Coach into the debate, but not the ballot. Count this as my protest vote for Coach. Shame on you. Shame! (Not for mocking Perot, though. Thank you.)

Welcome to the WWWF Grudge Match Post-game Show. I'm your host, Izzy Dazzlynn. Well, what we saw here today was an unusual poker game with players as diverse as the four suits.

It all started with a no-show. Somehow, Maverick confused Henry Gondorff of "the Sting" with The Sting of the Police. Figuring that the police might arrest them for gambling, Maverick arranged for the game to take place in a different location--telling everyone except Gondorff of his plans. So Gondorff was a no show, which was no skin off his nose. He can always find someone to scam.

So the four remaining players decided to each add 50 thousand dollars to their reserves to keep the million dollars a million dollars.

After an hour or so, Maverick got up and walked around. "I'm not used to sitting this long. Usually, my movies have me showing off my bums to the camera." He paced around for a couple minutes and sat back down.

As it turned out, The Gambler didn't know when to hold them. He didn't know when to fold them either because five hours into the game he'd run out of money. Embarrassed that he couldn't live up to his nickname, Hawkes walked away. (Well, actually, he ran.)

Soon, Maverick got up and started walking around again. "Man, my heinie hurts. I'm gonna have to quit. It's not like I don't get 20 million a movie anyway. Have fun, boys. I've gotta be leaving."

This left two players: Coach and the Sundance Kid. They both agreed that this game was getting a little old and put the entire million in the pot for the next hand--winner take all.

Sundance delt the cards, and after the hand was over, they layed down their cards. Coach acknoledges that Sundance Kid's full house beats his own two pair. However, Sundance and his "clean" play forced him to point out Coach's two pair were actually four aces. Coach won!

Well, that's it for this exciting WWWF Grudge match. See you next week with Rambo vs. Rocky in shadow boxing. I'm Izzy Dazzlynn reminding you not to gamble unless it's a church sponsored or a government sponsored 1-in-a-million event. Good night.

- Mark Wentz, Rochester, MN

I feel coach would win for a few reasons...

1.His mind is filld with so many numbers such as batting averages, Rbi's etc... plus he would take bean balls on purpose... so his mind has been turned into Rain Man's, and therefore could count the cards as they came by..

B. He is also filled with pointless stories that he spouts off endlessly, which would undoubtedly throw off the competitions concentration...

and finally,

2. He is also a bartender, and could get them all so drunk that he could steal all the money after they pass out...

- Jeff Matson

Each contestant brings his own quality to the table:

First: The Know When To Hold 'Em Know When To Fold 'Em factor (TM). Nobody can touch The Gambler.

Second: The Poker Face: Gotta give the edge to the Coach. When he scratches his nose, it's only because his nose is itchy.

Third: Desire: Give this one to Henry "Money earned is not half as sweet as money won" Gondorff.

Fourth: The Intangibles: The Sundance Kid. He's a Natural(TM)

But the deciding factor will be: The ability to shoot any of your opponents who seem to be winning more than you are: Maverick wins. The Gambler and Gondorff get too eager and go home in a body bag. Sundance also gets shot, but the bullet lodges in his stomach until he comes back for a rematch twenty years later. The coach is still scratching his nose.

- Phillip A. Hahn

I have to go with the most crooked cheater of them all. If you're going to cheat, do it wholeheartedly and with a dastardly twinkle in your gorgeous blue eyes (sigh). And all I can say about The Gambler is that he's pathetic and I hope there's a shootout over the poker game results and he's caught in the middle and riddled with so many bullet holes, they become his orchestral backup as the wind whistles through them.

- lynnmh

After several hands, it becomes clear that Brady Hawkes is in trouble. With his funds low, it's his turn to deal. Sundance asks for the rules of the round. Brady simply smiles as suddenly, out of nowhere, appears Kermit the Frog:

"It's the Muppet Show with our Very Special Guest Star, Kenny Rogers!
[raise curtain and pump music]
It's time to play the music
It's time to light the lights
It's time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight...
Yes, one of the greatest hosts in Muppet Show history has returned, this time with some friends. The fellow poker players immediately get caught up in the act. Sundance cameos on Pigs in Spaaaaaace as an evil alien who propositions Miss Piggy for a million space bucks. Gondroff and Maverick accept Gonzo's challenge to a car race which ends prematurely when the weirdo's "Mad Maxine" feature ejects him through the roof. Coach gets to mix drinks - and destroy the set - with the one and only Swedish Chef "BORK! BORK! BORK!" And, of course, the final number is a reprise of "The Gambler" led by Brady Hawkes with all five players and Kermit sitting around the poker table and singing the chorus.

Then, as the curtain comes down...

Kermit    :  I'd like to thank all our guests tonight.  Just to ask,
             Brady, but who won the hand?
Hawkes    :  Well, Kermit, I did with a full house, sixes and sevens...
Fozzy Bear:  Wacca! Wacca! Wacca!  That reminds me of a great joke!
             Why was six afraid of seven?
Brady     :  [wincing] Why?
Fozzy     :  Because SEVEN EIGHT NINE!  Get It?  Seven ATE Nine?!
Brady     :  [semi-disgusted] DANG it, Fozzy!  That's the worst...

[Crazy Harry runs on stage with detonator]

Harry     :  DID SOMEBODY SAY 'BANG'!!!?
All       :  NO!!!!!

[The Muppets and Brady dive offstage]


Hawkes' opposition gets blown all the way to Fraggle Rock. The next day, the Jim Henson Memorial Fund gets an anonymous donation of $400,000. Like the gambler said "You gotta know when to run..."

- Paul Golba

P.S. Why do we always come here? I guess we'll never know. It's like a kind of torture to have to watch the show - Waldorf & Statler

All five players end up with four natural aces. Maverick by pure luck. The Coach by dumb luck. The Gambler and Gondorff by cheating. And Sundance, well, he just *does*.

They look for a referee and, being near Hollywood, the closest thing to a judge is a member of the Oscar board who gives Paul Newman the win out of, to quote the judge, "Pity, ummm, I mean, his years of service to his craft."

- Stuart Baum

I acknowledge the fact that i know nothing about any of these people, but i did see about 45 minutes (the last part, and happily, the most relevant to the question) of Maverick, so i'm voting for him. I mean, he can throw a card out in slow motion, and have it land right in front of the camera face up. That ain't no luck we be talking 'bout. He's got the Skillz.

- The Chizinator

Comon guys.....You are showing your media bias by not allowing votes for coach !!! Coach may not win, but this is still america and this is Texas and you are in New York !!! If Jim Carrey can be nominated for an Oscar, and Dennise Rodman is thought of as a basketball genius, and the US will elect Bill Clinton (and his wife) again, and the GIANTS continue to start Dave Brown, and the OILER$ are moving to NA$HVILLE but still play in houston (and people still pay to go to the game) then the idiots have spoken !! If I want to cast my vote for someone on the ballot, then dammit I should be allowed to !!! I cannot believe that you liberal-graduate students-media types are not allowing the Free american bored public that comes to your home site not to vote for a legal candidate. ATTICA !!!! ATTICA !!!! NO JUSTICE NO PEACE !!!!! NO JUSTICE NO PEACE !!!! POWER TO THE PEOPLE !!!! FREE MIKE TYSON (oops !!)

- TxWarEgle


Was Coach only included for a fifth player?

Gondorf will win, you ask? Well coach was only used for free cash for the rest. Kenny Rogers is a singer/songwriter/actor/Branson, MO Entrepeneur/gambler. Once you have three or more jobs seperated by slashes, you can't do any one of them real well. The Sundance Kid, while good, played Blackjack in the movie, if you recall...not 5-card draw.

This leaves Maverick and Gondorff. Mav in the movie said "I rarely bluff, and I never cheat." Gondorff will and does cheat. And in The Sting, one of the best movies ever made, Gondorff cheated Lonagan and Lonagan was a master cheat --- he should have seen it coming. Thus Maverick, who let's face it is good, but more lucky than good, won't catch it, and Gondorff will spend his retirement racing cars and making salad dressing.

- Brian P. Dunn

Gentlemen, unfortunately, you have set your contestants up to fail. Your contest guidelines clearly state that the winner must "walk away" with the money. Therein lies your error.

All of these characters are hamstrung by the very source of their power-the film and television industries. None of them will be able to hold onto the money! To show you my point, I've had the foresight to steal Quinn Mallory's cell phone-I mean, sliding timer-and use it to show you each of the five possible outcomes of this match:

Brady Hawkes, a.k.a. the Gambler. Even with my view into alternate futures, I see that there is no way that Hawkes can win this one. He has has more pound-for-pound screen time than any of the other players, and yet he still is unable to gain enough money to stop his unpleasant habit. If he did have enough, do you honestly think he would have been in a TV-movie with Loni "Career-Sinker" Anderson? I say thee nay! He is doubly screwed in this, for he has been marked for death by the late, great stand-up comedian Bill Hicks. In all possible outcomes, I see Hicks' ghost doing a Vader-esque TK strangle and making Hawkes fold-forever.

The Sundance Kid is a better competitor, seeing as how he has the Babe Factor (tm) working for him. He's ROBERT $^%#&* REDFORD! The waitresses are probably giving him complicated signals involving their cleavage and their room numbers that tell him what Gondorff has in his hand. Also, he has the Honesty Always Wins Principle (tm) on his side. Alas, both are overmatched by the one-two punch of Maverick and Gondorff, who both benefit from the Lovable Rogue Principle (tm), which clearly states that "the main character can do anything to win, as long as he is either cute, wickedly charming, or lovable doing it." The Sundance gives up a good fight, but he is toasted in short order in all outcomes of this match.

This leaves us with the two true competitors in this match, Gondorff and Maverick. However, peering into the future, these two gamblers, who have roughly equal chances of winning, both will encounter misfortune.

Gondorff, we can easily see, spends his declining years in a small Midwestern town somewhere, drinking, spouting irritable folk wisdom, and playing strip poker with Melanie Griffith. Not the act of a millionaire, is it? Obviously, Gondorff will lose the money in a very short period of time, perhaps in a failed investment in popcorn or spaghetti sauce.

Maverick, if he wins, will relax in a steam bath to clear his mind and his sinuses. However, while he is under the towel, Jodie Foster will sneak in and take the money. In at least one future, Maverick chases her and is blown away by a kid with a gun who is out to "impress" Ms. Foster; however, in another, he has the foresight to put $100,000 of the money into his boots. Given how Maverick lives in the 1800s, this makes him the winner by default.

Now, if that blond chick from "california Dreams" was involved...

- Thomas Wilde

Once Coach is eliminated (and I think we all know he will be), a mysterious albino who claims to be a Frenchman will ask to be dealt into the game, using a gold brooch as colateral for three dollars. Using an almost inhuman means of stacking the deck, counting cards, and determining the odds of winning a hand, he will soon find himself the recipient of 1,000,000 Big Ones. Of course, this man is Lt. Commander Data, of the Enterprise-D. Fed up with Star Trek characters losing every Grudge Match to date, he decided to try and improve the Federation's win/loss record.

- Mike Smith

... Brady Hawkes will leave the game early to prevent the board of health from closing down his greasy oven-roasted chicken restaurant, and Coach will be called back to the bar to help Sam Malone fight his drinking affliction for the eighth time this season. This will leave Maverick as the winner by default alone. Plus there's the James Garner factor.

- Marshall Layne

Of's all moot, cause to win the big pot, he'll still have to play blackjack...against Bug's Bunny.

- Jenni Grant

I voted for Brady "The Gambler" Hawkes, because the moment Sam said: "This is so obvious. He knows when to hold'em and when to fold'em. He knows when to walk away and knows when to run." I COULDN'T GET THAT SONG OUT OF MY HEAD FOR THE REST OF THE ENTIRE NIGHT! AAARRRGGHHH!

Anyone with a theme song that insidiously persistent has an edge that Vorpal Bunnies would die for. That's why, Sam, you shouldn't pay any attention to the strange sounds coming from that big parcel I'm sending you. It's only a trippin' rabbit on bad acid with a katana. Please open it. I promise, I won't feel a thing. ;)

- Shane 'know when to - AARRGGHH!

Mr. Maverick is going to win this thing hands down, and for one reason, and one reason only.

Recall every poker game you have ever seen in every western movie you have ever seen. What (or who) is hanging on every man's shoulder, watching his every move, inhaling his cigar smoke, seeing every card, and smiling like a Donny Osmond clone? A (gasp) *FLOOZIE* (gasp), that's what. And Floozies are going to decide this game.

They will unanimously decide that Bret Maverick is the best looking player in the game, and will, on that basis, decide he should win the game. They will then begin to use their own secret ways to communicate with the Floozie hanging on Bret and tell him what cards all the other players are holding, thus giving him a winning edge.

There may be one slight attempt at rebellion on the part of Sundance's Floozie, but she will be quickly taken care of by the leader of the Floozies, the immortal Miss Kitty.

- Katy Kaboom

REASONS that Coach would win:

1. Carla is his bodyguard. If she saw anyone cheating, she'd break their knuckles.

2. He's got the 'Forrest Gump' (tm) blind luck thing going. The opening hand will become an everything goes round. Coach will complain about having 'All small cards' that will turn out to be aces...

- Al

The Gambler wins. For the love of God, he's the Gambler. He Gambles. By definition, the gambling is done by him. Of course, now that I think about it, if he were gonna win, it wouldn't be a gamble. To gamble is to take a risk, and a sure fire win can't really be called a "gamble". Ahh, nuts. I shoulda voted for Gondorff. No way in Hell Hawkes can win.

- Joel

Rule #1 in running a (successful) con: Win before the mark even knows you're there.

Gondorf is a successful-enough con-man that "every bunko man in the country knows Henry Gondorf." And he's _still_ out there... Sure, he's old. Sure there's a lot of potential for confusion. Sure, there's the potential for god-knows-what kind of neuro-chemical strangeness from salad dressing/high-speed impact combinations. But if Gondorf is playing the game, he's already got the money. He kyped it well before the game even started, substituting wads of used tissues wrapped in "the foil" and jammed into discarded "Slap Shot" videotape sleeves...

- Brian Allbee

If you liked this match, check out these other past matches:

James Bond v. Indiana Jones
Forrest Gump v. Rainman
Other Movie-based matches

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