The Muck: Accused Chess Cheat Hans Niemann Seems to Think Poker is Immoral
Hans Niemann, accused of cheating in a major chess tournament by long-time world champion Magnus Carlsen, doesn't think too highly of those who promote any form of gambling, including poker.
In our latest edition of The Muck, we focus on a Twitter spat between the chess pro and fellow chess star Alexandra Botez that was sparked over some judgmental tweets written by Niemann, who recently denied using vibrating sex toys to defeat Carlsen in the Sinquefield Cup one year ago.
Niemann, along with his attorney, appeared on Piers Morgan Live to discuss the year-old allegations brought forth by Carlsen. He vehemently denied any wrongdoing.
"Have you ever used anal beads while playing chess?" Morgan asked the chess prodigy.
"Your curiosity is a bit concerning, you know, maybe you're personally interested," Niemann replied. "But I can tell you no."
Hans Niemann Rips Alexandra Botez
Shortly after the interview, the 20-year-old who isn't even old enough to legally gamble in most parts of the US, went on X to judge those who promote poker for a living, most notably Botez, an avid poker player.
Niemann, who appeared combative and defensive at times during the 20-minute interview, fired off an unprovoked tweet attacking Botez's character, and it caused a stir within the poker community.
"Yeah, I think that as soon as you get 1 million subscribers, that's when you should start promoting gambling, poker, making money off of that. I think that's a very responsible thing to do for your brand is to promote degeneracy and help people get addicted to gambling," the judgmental Niemann sarcastically said about Botez.
Niemann, multiple times accused of cheating in chess, then took aim at Botez for, as he claims, using her platform to promote poker to a young demographic. Botez politely responded to the character attack.
"I get that you’re upset at the world for how everyone responded to the cheating accusations. Always down to discuss any issues you might have with poker or otherwise if you want to actually chat. If it’s just for clickbait and views, then you’re no better than everyone you criticized for piling on you," Botez wrote.
Poker X Fights Back
Niemann's attacks on gambling and poker didn't sit well with many within the poker community. On X, numerous poker players fired back, including Daniel Negreanu.
"Wait, aren't you the dude who allegedly stuck buzzing anal beads up his a** in a chess match? That is you right? The anal bead guy? Pokerais a strategy game you clown. So is chess. You can gamble on either. Or you can play either for fun," Negreanu responded.
"Big words from the bead guy Lmfao," @TheSaurus831 wrote.
"Why does this still seem like gambling to you Jo? I mean why do you think the same five guys make it to the final table of the World Series of Poker EVERY SINGLE YEAR? What are they the luckiest guys in Las Vegas? Oh wait," Mike McDonald joked, making a reference to the iconic poker film, Rounders, which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary.
"This is such loser energy, to put it charitably," Chris Baud (@RealChrisBaud), a journalist and poker player responded.
"Hans with all due respect, shut up. I'm happy to see you back in chess and it's great how much your platform has grown, but that doesn't give you the right to trash other creators on a fake moral high ground. Learning poker can be just as beneficial as learning chess, and who are you to mock a creator for using content sites to engage with their audience? This is nothing more than low quality drama baiting, do better," chess Woman Grandmaster and poker player Nemo (@akaNemsko) fired back.
Many chess players take on poker as a side hobby or occupation, so it's a bit strange that Niemann is coming down so hard on the poker and gambling community.