Chris Ferguson Issues Brief Apology Ahead of 2018 WSOP

Chris Ferguson Apology

Since Black-Friday, Chris Ferguson has limited his public tournament appearances to just the World Series of Poker (WSOP) on account of his being ostracized by the poker community for his involvement in the Full Tilt Poker scandal.

A former executive at the site, Ferguson was accused along with the firm’s other owners, Howard Lederer and Rafe Furst, of feathering his own pockets and mismanaging player funds, leaving customers high and dry after the US Department of Justice pulled the plug on their operation in 2011.

Adding to the poker community’s frustration, Ferguson has also refused to issue an apology over his part in the debacle, and last year the 55 year-old pro rubbed further salt into their wounds after topping the WSOP Player of the Year (POY) leaderboard. With this year’s Series in Las Vegas about to get underway at the end of the month, however, Ferguson has surprisingly decided that now was a good time to offer his own apology on the matter, but its fair to say that the apology he delivered was as underwhelming as it was brief.

42 Second Apology

On May 23rd, the former Full Tilt executive posted an apology on his Vimeo channel entitled “Chris Ferguson reaches out to the poker community.” Nevertheless, if he was hoping that the 42 second video he supplied might help to create some goodwill towards him then he is likely to be severely disappointed as his message has been dismissed as wholly inadequate and vague by the poker community. Here is a full transcript of Ferguson’s apology:

“Hi, it’s Chris Ferguson.

I’d like to take this brief opportunity to address the poker community which I love and have been part of for a long time. I deeply regret not being able to prevent Black Friday from happening. After Black Friday, I worked relentlessly to ensure that all players got paid back, and I sincerely apologize that it took as long as it did.

I also realize it has taken me a long time to make any sort of public statement and I appreciate my fans and the poker community as a whole for the patience and support. One day, the Full Tilt Poker story will be told, and like many of you, I look forward to that day.

I hope to see you all at the World Series of Poker this summer. Thank you and good luck.”

Too Little, Too Late

Needless to say, the immediate reaction to Ferguson’s apology has been largely negative, with one of the first pros to launch an attack on the player being the game’s foremost spokesman Daniel Negreanu, who posted the following response:

Other pros expressing incredulity as to his brief video includes Patrick Leonard, who tweeted


Meanwhile, Mike Schneider pointed out that red pros like himself received no refunds post-Black Friday and that the scandal left them all out of pocket, while Eric Froehlich blamed Ferguson for effectively ending his poker career and completely changing his life forever after losing much of his net worth.

Other industry workers offering their reactions included Joey Ingram, who tweeted “Seriously, wtf”, and Lance Bradley, who wrote:

WSOP Beckons

Few would deny that Ferguson’s apology was clearly designed to smooth his reception at this years WSOP in Vegas, with Howard Lederer having issued a similar type apology in 2016 via Daniel Negreanu’s poker blog ahead of the prestigious tournament series. That year, both Lederer and Ferguson subsequently made their first appearance at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in half a decade, but the following year Ferguson stunned the poker community by taking down the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year award.

Ferguson managed to accomplish the feat after cashing in at 17 tournaments in Las Vegas and 6 in Europe, including reaching three final tables, and winning a 6th career bracelet while playing the WSOP Europe €1,650 Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better event for €39,289.