By now, you've probably heard that Mike Matusow won a $100,000 weight loss bet with Ted Forrest. What you may not know is how this bet came to be, and how close Matusow came to losing the bet. At the time, Matusow weighed about 241 pounds, according to an article that was recently published in the New York Times. As the 2008 World Series of Poker drew closer, Matusow appeared to be headed for a sure victory.
The NY Times article (link below) goes on to say that Matusow asked Forrest to settle the bet for $70,000, so that Matusow could enjoy himself on the cruise. On June 3rd, 2008, Matusow weighed in at a svelte 179 pounds, winning the bet by a full two pounds.
The cool, calm and collected, multiple World Series of Poker bracelet winner, Ted Forrest, embroiled in a Twitter row with Mike ‘The Mouth’ Matusow’s brother over an unpaid $2m prop bet. Imagine how pissed off you would be, if you nearly killed yourself over a prop bet, and the challenger never paid up. That’s exactly what seems to have happened in the infamous Ted Forrest v Mike Matusow weight loss bet of 2010.
During dinner, at the Commerce Casino, four years ago, Forrest told Matusow that he could lose 48 pounds in weight and drop under the 140-pound mark.
The only stipulations were that Forrest couldn’t take any diuretics, amputate any part of his body or undertake any form of surgery. So far, there has been no response from The Mouth but his older brother has leapt to his defense by stating Matusow owes him nothing because Forrest failed to submit to a drug test.
After nearly starving himself to death, in order to win the two milly, Forrest’s response to the drug accusation is comedy gold. It seems that Forrest’s ire has been exacerbated because just prior to the bet, Forrest had paid Matusow $100,000 after he had successfully shifted his weight from 250 pounds to 181 pounds in a year. After I won the bet mike said that he was going to wait six months before paying me anything to see if I would die. And yet despite the beef, Ted Forrest continues to be a man of extreme integrity after declaring that Matusow still deserves to be inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame.
Now let’s all get together and vote for the pair of them so we can have a heads-up battle of a different kind come Poker Hall of Fame night.
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Unlike the situation with most professional poker players, when you ask if Mike Matusow is broke, the answer may depend on what day you ask. And in fact, in 2014, Matusow has just around $12,000 in tournament winnings while telling Kaplan he has lost $300,000 for the year.
To be fair, Matusow was frequently backed by Full Tilt into many, if not all of the tournaments. Again, Mike says $2 million off the top was lost to Russ Hamilton, leaving $7 million in tournament winnings (before taxes and expenses). Other evidence of Matusow’s net worth (or lack thereof), comes a Twitter war that erupted between high stakes professional poker player Ted Forrest and Matusow over a long-standing debt Forrest says is owned to him.
Forrest claims that the Mouth still owes him $1.7 million from a weight-loss prop bet the two made four years ago at the Commerce Casino. According to Kaplan’s interview, Mike currently grinds live poker games in Las Vegas, and San Diego, of all places. So while some of the flimsy net-worth speculation sites out there put Mike Matusow’s net worth at $8 million, that figure is nowhere close to reality.
Well there is a serious health issue with losing huge amounts of weight like that in a short period of time. It was no secret that Matusow was packing on the pounds - he seemingly weighed more with every passing tournament.
During a 2007 WSOP tournament, Matusow casually mentioned that he used to weigh 181 pounds. He only needed to drop eight pounds in 19 days to win the bet - a drop in the bucket for a 6'0 man who needs to drop weight in a short period of time, especially with six figures on the line. Forrest, surely seeing an opportunity for Matusow to pack on the pounds and miss making weight, said no.
He gained a whopping seven pounds over just seven days, which left him just nine days to lose 15 pounds. According to Matusow, he didn't eat for five days, did a "master cleanse" (whatever that is), and "spent time in the Jacuzzi". Many people at the WSOP remarked that Matusow looked like a walking skeleton, but don't worry - the pounds are quickly coming back on.
Believing the bet was impossible, Matusow accepted a wager that would cost him $2m if Forrest lost the weight. At his peak, he was walking 16 miles per day, spending six hours per day in the gym, and then he fasted between July 4 and July 15 to make sure that he would get below the 140-pound mark. Matusow has only paid Forrest $70,500 of the $1.8m he still owes in in the past four years. Speaking to ESPN contributor Gary Wise, in the aftermath of the $2 million prop bet, Matusow told Forrest, “I don’t have the $2 million to pay out. All profit generated from this site goes to support initiatives of the Calvin Ayre Foundation.

Prior to his Full Tilt sponsorship, he had other backers, with whom he split both cash game and tournament winnings. And given his love for sports betting, it is reasonable to assume most, if not all of the remaining $7 million (again, before paying backers, expenses and taxes), has since been lost at the sports betting window. Matusow has said in his great autobiography Check Raising the Devil, that Matusow could own a piece of the company for a $50,000 investment.
Until he makes a big tournament score (which he has done plenty of times in the past), or until he moves up in cash game stakes, it is likely that Mike Matusow’s net worth (including his home), is under a half a million dollars. This fact was not lost on others, who usually took every opportunity that they could to razz Matusow about his ever-expanding waistline. Somebody mentioned that there was no way Matusow would ever weigh that again, especially considering the fact that he seemed to gain more weight every month. However, Matusow was soon going on a cruise with his girlfriend, and wanted to enjoy himself. According to the article in the Times, Matusow conducted the telephone interview while sucking back a 20-piece Chicken McNuggets meal.
He exercised like a maniac, cut out sugar, ate a ton of raw and organic vegetables and cut right back on his meat intake. I made the bet because I didn’t think it was feasibly possible.” I realize this was the time that the Full Tilt Poker gravy train was at full steam, but $2 million? He did, yet claims that in the four years after losing the bet, Matusow has paid him just $70,000.
He also claims to have quit sports betting after a brutal losing run of football losses in November of 2013. Ted Forrest and Matusow quickly agreed on a bet - if Matusow could get down to 181 pounds by the beginning of the 2008 World Series of Poker (June 3rd, 2008 to be exact), then Forrest would pay Matusow $100,000 (actually $60,000, as Matusow already apparently owed Forrest $40,000). Erick Lindgren apparently bet Matusow that he wouldn't weigh under 200 pounds by the start of 2009. Considering Matusow won $2 million between the two tournaments in 2005, the assumption is that he lost at least $2 million just to one player on Ultimate Bet.
It seemed like an outrageous bet (especially to Matusow), as Forrest didn’t appear to be particularly overweight at his initial weight, and at a height of around six feet, many saw that goal as unrealistic.
Instead, an agreement was apparently reached in which Matusow would pay Forrest $5,000 a month until the entire bet was paid out.
If Matusow had kept to that schedule, he would have paid out around $250,000 by now.Twitter War Highlights Fight Over PaymentBut Forrest took to Twitter last week to announce that Matusow had only paid off about $70,500 of the total bet.
Matusow claims that Forrest asked for $500,000 to cancel the bet, which he then refused.Matusow apparently believed he could make the monthly payments out of his Full Tilt paychecks.

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