To be a kid in 2006 meant growing up with the Internet. A group of smart, resourceful teens used it to master the game of poker. Taking advantage of online poker’s lightning-fast pace and lackluster efforts at age verification, they earned, in just a few months, the kind of professional gambling experience that used to take a lifetime.
The Ship It Holla Ballas were the most successful cards crew to come out of this new world order. With handles like Good2cu, Apathy, and Raptor, they communicated through message boards and online chats, comparing hands, sharing advice, and working together to develop new strategies. Emerging from dorm rooms and basements in places like Fort Worth, Texas; Okemos, Michigan; and Toronto, Canada, they joined up in Vegas, parked themselves in a mansion, and stuck it to the poker establishment—winning tens of millions of dollars before most of them were old enough to set foot inside a casino. Along the way, they did what any red-blooded teenagers with mountains of cash and no responsibilities would do: partied like rock stars, transforming themselves from Internet nerds with zero life skills into legends.
This is the twisted and incredible true story of the rise and fall of Internet poker, seen through the eyes of its most unlikely stars: teenage college dropouts, united by social media, who bluffed their way to the top of the game.