Season 1 Episode 1

The Game

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jan 13, 2005 on ESPN

Episode Recap

In the opener, Eddie, Clark and Miami are seated with other gamblers at a table. Suddenly, Eddie begins to throw insults at Clark. The fight turns physical as Don "The Matador" Everest catches a glimpse of the action.

But it was all for show. Truth is, Eddie, Clark and Miami are all in Vegas for one reason--to take The Matador down. Each has a personal vendetta against him, and the fight was just a bluff to make sure he won't realize their ploy if they ever get into a high stakes game together.

As the fight clears, a stranger from out of town named Lee Nickel is looking to get into a high stakes game of No Limit Texas Hold 'Em. He finds himself seated across from The Matador, who exercises mind control by warning Nickel that he doesn't need to see his cards to know his hand, and that he is swimming in very dangerous waters.

Meanwhile, after being thrown out of The Colorado, Eddie, Clark and Miami go to play at a club outside of town. Seymour Annisman, the mentor and mastermind behind the plan to take The Matador down, summons Eddie, Miami and Clark back to his room, where he reprimands them for being seen together. Seymour warns that The Matador owns Vegas, and unless they are careful at every step, he'll crush them.

Miami heads back to the and witnesses The Matador put Nickel on tilt by beating him with an inside straight. The crushed Nickel retreats to his room, where it's revealed that he's actually a police officer seeking revenge for the disappearance of his brother, a former sidekick of The Matador.

The next day, Eddie returns to the casino. Tropical Henry, one of The Matador's right-hand men, sees opportunity in him and tells him that if he plays along, he will be able to get a heavyweight backer. Eddie takes him up on the offer, seeing this as a potential way to realize Seymour's plan of infiltrating The Matador's inner circle.