Poker Pro Tony Miles Advances To Second Round Of NBC’s American Ninja Warrior

Tony Miles, who finished runner-up in the 2018 World Series of Poker main event for $5 million, made his second appearance on NBC’s American Ninja Warrior Monday night in an effort to collect on a prop bet with fellow poker pro Shaun Deeb.

Miles had a chance to win big from Deeb if he completed the challenging obstacle course, hitting a buzzer within a three-year window. The Orlando, Florida resident got 25:1 on his $5,000 bet for the first year, 20:1 on the second, and 15:1 on the third, meaning he was running for $75,000 at the 2021 Tacoma, Washington qualifier.

Miles was able to make it on the show in 2019, which in itself was no easy task with upwards of 100,000 applications each year. He completed the first two of six challenges before falling on a balance obstacle called Block Run. The pandemic derailed any chances of winning the bet in 2020, and Miles had to overcome torn ligaments in his shoulder to get back on the show this season.

Despite his injuries, Miles was able to make it much further this time around. He made it through the first four obstacles, eventually hitting the water on a challenge called Pretzel Twist.

Even though he didn’t hit the buzzer, Miles was able to make it “far enough, fast enough” to finish 29th, making the top 30 and advancing to the next round. If he gets through that, he’ll be invited to compete in the season 13 finals in Las Vegas. The semifinals will air in August.

The 35-year-old’s run was featured as the no. 1 moment of the episode by host Akbar Gbaja-Biamila, joining co-host Matt Iseman in “making it rain” with Miles “lost” $75,000.

*Photo credit: Tony Miles




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