Sorel Mizzi Accused Of Cheating Again

Sorel Mizzi has always been a controversial player, but that hasn’t stopped him from succeeding as a pro. Despite being banned from the two largest online poker rooms in the world, Mizzi has dominated at both live and online poker tables. His successes have been so large and consistent that in 2010 he was named Bluff Magazine’s Player of the Year. Just a few days ago, Full Tilt Poker also lifted what was previously believed to be a lifetime ban of the player.

Now, though, Mizzi’s own colleagues have questioned his integrity via a thread on the popular poker forum TwoPlusTwo. The allegations aren’t anonymous, either. Such high profile players as Shaun Deeb and John Racener have publicly called the POY out. Why can’t Mizzi catch a break? Here’s a brief summary of both his sordid past and the present charges.

Sorel Mizzi’s poker career started off with a bang. Not only was he a dominant online force from very early in his amateur efforts, but he posted his first live tournament cash in 2006 and followed it with five more the following year at such high profile events as the WSOP and the WPT World Championships. Unfortunately, 2007 also saw the first of Mizzi’s more serious cheating allegations. After he admitted to purchasing and playing Chris Vaughn’s account – ultimately to a tournament win worth $200,000 – he was banned from Full Tilt Poker.

News of the ban spread rapidly, and poker fans were quick to chime in on Mizzi’s dishonesty. Many players felt that if he was ok with multi-accounting then he could very well be ok with colluding, too. As a result of the negative backlash, PokerStars also banned Mizzi from playing at their site for several months. Through it all, Mizzi remained humble. He kept his head down, signed a sponsorship deal with Titan Poker, and continued to demonstrate his real skill at live tournaments around the world. Thus far in his relatively short career, he’s acquired seven live tournament wins and 51 cashes with all of it culminating in his 2010 Player of the Year title.

Now Mizzi’s feeling the heat once again after Shaun Deeb started a thread on 2+2 alleging that Mizzi had cheated at the PCA in a side game of Chinese poker. The source of those allegations was actually WSOP Main Event runner-up John Racener. Yesterday Racener gave a live interview with In it he re-affirmed his allegations that Mizzi had been bottom dealing and went on to suggest that Mizzi had also attempted to impair Racener’s judgment by encouraging him to get drunk.

Mizzi himself joined the Two Plus Two thread to say his part. You can read his full statement here. Basically, Mizzi admitted that his shady past had made him vulnerable to such charges but firmly denied any wrongdoing in his game against Racener. In all fairness, Mizzi has proven many times over that he doesn’t need to cheat to win. While it is unlikely that Bluff will strip him of his 2010 POY title, the rampant allegations of both live and online cheating no doubt cast a long shadow on an otherwise very bright career.

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