Gossip Column: Charlie Carrel’s Tweet Reopens Old Wounds Between JNandez & Doug Polk in Upswing Poker Dispute

Gossip Column April 27 cover
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis April 27, 2023
  • 5 Minutes Read

Three professional poker players are currently engaged in a heated exchange of words on Twitter. The primary point of contention is Fernando “Jnandez” Habegger‘s legal battles with UpSwing Poker, owned by Doug Polk. These legal issues date back five years and have resulted in significant tension between the parties involved.

This old controversy was reignited following a tweet from poker pro Charlie Carrel, who took a jab at Polk, causing a chain reaction of responses. The Twitter war has since escalated, with all three players fiercely defending their positions.

Before we get to why Carrel reignited the dispute, here’s the history behind what happened.

About five years ago, Upswing Poker and Jnandez had a major falling out, resulting in the poker pro leaving the online coaching platform under adverse circumstances. Jnandez accused Upswing Poker management of underpaying him and removing him from a private Facebook group without notice. The poker coaching platform`s owner, Polk, retaliated by claiming that Jnandez attempted to steal customers. This led to an irreparable rift in their relationship, and they engaged in a prolonged legal battle with claims and counter-claims.

Fernando ‘JNandez87’ Habegger
Fernando ‘JNandez87’ Habegger


Jnandez asserts that he successfully obtained a favorable outcome in the dispute over his unpaid commissions. He received a payout of five figures and approximately $150,000 in legal fees. However, Habegger was slapped with a defamation counter-claim from Polk, further contributing to the already significant financial burden of the US legal system.


Carrel recently revealed some details about the case to his followers, prompting Polk to launch a vicious attack on JNandez. In response, Carrel released a three-minute video criticizing Polk’s behavior and accused him of intentionally publishing SEO content to damage JNandez’s reputation online. Carrel’s video also highlighted Polk’s aggressive tactics towards JNandez for legally breaking their contract.


Carrel stated that JNandez believed taking legal action against Polk was necessary to both receive the money owed to him and protect his reputation. As things panned out, Upswing Poker lost the case and was required to pay JNandez a six-figure settlement.

Charlie Carrel
Charlie Carrel


However, Polk contested this narrative and clarified that he initiated the legal proceedings.


One of Polk’s more remarkable claims was that Habegger had stolen the ‘Play and Explain’ poker video format from Upswing Poker.

Doug Polk
Doug Polk


That will be news to 99% of the poker community, who have enjoyed similar content almost since poker and the internet met two decades ago.

It appears that Polk’s mathematical calculations were challenged and deemed insufficient in court. The court found that the amount owed to Habegger by Upswing Poker was significantly more than what Polk claimed.

Habegger shared numerous tweets about his experience working with Upswing Poker and the subsequent fallout, offering a vastly different perspective from Polk’s version of events.


Recently, Habegger appeared on Matt Berkey‘s Only Friends podcast, discussing the entire feud and the aftermath of Polk’s highly publicized criticism of him.


Polk is yet to respond after Habegger’s podcast interview, and things can only get steamier once he does!

This is a developing story, so keep following PokerGuru for more updates!

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