Antonio Esfandiari and Kevin Hart are preparing for an upcoming boxing match to be held sometime in April.
While Esfandiari is taller than Hart and outweighs him by around 30 pounds, he’s expecting quite a battle which could include a broken nose or a couple of ribs.
“We’re obviously going to have headgear, and I’ll be wearing a cup, so I’ll be somewhat protected. But I do think there is a very reasonable chance that I get hurt, for sure. I think that I’m probably a slight favorite to break a rib or my nose. But that’s the lay of the land, you know what I mean?”, Esfandiari said.
This won’t be the first time two poker players have battled it out away from the tables. In 2016, Olivier Busquet and JC Alvarado met inside an MMA cage to settle a six-figure bet. Also, Bertrand Grospellier battled Lex Veldhuis and Sorel Mizzi fought Brian Rast in recent years.
What could make this event more interesting? How about combining poker and boxing, as they have with chess? Chess boxing is a combination of the two; after a round of boxing the two players sit down for a round of chess. Now imagine Esfandiari and Hart battling it out physically only to sit down for a few minutes of poker. How would the physicality of boxing impact the mental game behind poker? Maybe one day we will find out.
We know that won’t happen in April. This boxing match will be just that – a boxing match. Preparing for it has given Esfandiari a fresh new opinion of the sport, saying “…But as soon as I started training, I realized just how intricate of a sport it really is. The footwork, cardio, and conditioning, reaction times, defense… it’s all part of it. I have a whole new appreciation for the sport.”
Who would you put your money on?