Chicago – Rush Street Productions announced recently that it is launching a one-of-a-kind TV poker experience with its new televised poker series Poker Night in AmericaTM (PNIA). PNIA is the brainchild of former Heartland Poker Tour co-founder, and current Rush Street Productions President, Todd Anderson. Anderson recently partnered with Chicago-based Rush Street Gaming, one of the fastest growing gaming companies in North America, to form a production company that is creating something new and exciting for poker TV.
“We are looking to film the biggest and the best poker events at premier venues,” said Anderson. “We’re going to bring a fresh approach to how poker is shown on TV, making the show relevant to the average viewer. We think the world is ready to watch poker in a whole new way.”
Besides showing the game itself, PNIA will emphasize fun, variety, entertainment, and interesting story telling. PNIA will garner broad appeal with its plans to shoot “made for” events featuring poker pros and/or celebrities. Viewers will also be engaged in a whole new way through interactive play-at-home components. They will be encouraged to participate and play poker online for a chance to win prizes and even a TV appearance.
Blair Hinkle $121,177 – WSOP-C Council Bluffs Main Event
Roger Campbell $131,681 – Heartland Poker Tour St. Louis
Terry Fan HK$1,771,000 – Red Dragon Main Event
Daniel Pidun €880,000 – EPT Berlin Main Event
A historic day here in the States for online poker with the live launch of the Station Casinos/UFC backed Ultimate Poker. The client was opened to the public this morning and the first hand was dealt shortly after 9am Vegas time. Which prompted someone to immediately complain about a bad beat after busting on that very same hand. Welcome back online poker to the States!
Some questions have been answered about the process involved with the Nevada based site. Players do not need to be located within the state to signup and create an account, thus preventing another unprofitable hack from stealing the AlCantHang username. Players can deposit on the site from outside Nevada, which will allow them to load up on the site before traveling and play as soon as they are within the state lines. Deposit options include MasterCard, echeck, real check, bank wire, and the option to walk up to the main cage in any of the 16 Station Casinos in Nevada.
It seems the only downside so far, besides the small player base currently offered, is the system judging a player’s geographic location based on their cell phone signal. Verizon customers are unable to access the site and word is coming out about other smaller carriers being blocked as well. I can only assume these issues are being dealt with to allow everyone access.
All things considered, it’s a pretty big day for online poker back in the US. The first step in the process which includes interstate compacts and hopefully Federal regulations as quickly as possible. WSOP grinders can start loading up their accounts because they now have a legal online solution for playing away from the Rio.
In non-online poker news, poker good guy Blair Hinkle won his 2nd career WSOP Circuit ring at the Council Bluffs Main Event. He became the first player to win the same Circuit event twice with the first ring coming there in the summer of 2010. This 2nd ring will go along nicely with his WSOP bracelet for 2008, setting him nicely for a big run at the 2013 WSOP.
Tweet of the Day – Ultimate Poker pro Antonio Esfandiari tweets a screencap of the first hand played on the site. For the record, I want to play every one of these min-raising (redacted) online players.
Duke on Decisions – Seems my former Epic Poker boss has been making her rounds on the corporate speech circuit. Short-stack Shamus has a run down of a recent article about Annie Duke’s latest appearance.
PokerStars Blog turns eight years old – I remember running off to the Bahamas years ago to provide a little moral support to Otis during the PCA (and cause myself severe liver damage) and now the PokerStars blog has turned 8 years old. The site has long been a strong supporter of the poker writing community and deserves all the kudos they receive.
Phil Ivey is God – A deleted scene from the upcoming BET RAISE FOLD documentary, this one all about Phil Ivey. It’s good to see a flashback to Gloria Balding on camera along with Dr. Pauly and Jesse May.
Ruben Visser £595,000 – EPT London Main Event
Justin Schwartz $112,582 – Foxwoods Poker Classic
Matt Hennig $57,709 – HPT Iowa-Prairie Main Event
Turned out to be a very interesting few days with some big runs and one impressive comeback. Allen “Chainsaw” Kessler made the HPT Iowa-Prairie final table with as much applause as the fanboys could muster. Unfortunately he was eliminated in 9th place for a quick exit. I’m sure his table banter has improved and it would have made for some interesting television.
Ryan Eriquezzo continued his nice run over the last few months with a final table appearance at the Foxwoods Poker Classic. He finished runner-up to Justin “Stealthmunk” Schwartz who earned another 6-digit payday, moving one step closer to owning a big boy wardrobe.
The most compelling story recently was the return of Danish poker legend Theo Jorgensen to a tournament field. Jorgensen and his family were the victim of a vicious home invasion last December where he was brutally beaten. After some long stays in the hospital, he returned to the game for the EPT London Main Event and picked up right where he left off. He finished in 4th place for a nice £183,000 welcome back bonus. Howard Swains has the excellent Theo Jorgensen comeback story over on the PokerStars Blog.
Caesars Fined for Role in 2007 Gambling Spree – Man tears through $120 million on a Las Vegas gambling spree and the state of New Jersey fines Caesars Entertainment for it’s part in letting it happen. Seems reasonable, congrats New Jersey.
Joseph Mckeehen $174,147 – WSOP-C Caesars AC Main Event
Teresa Hemingway $226,463 – HPT Golden Gates Casino
It was a good weekend for the mid-stakes, local friendly Heartland Poker Tour. Their Golden Gates Casino event in Black Hawk CO ran at the same time as a World Series of Poker Circuit Main Event, then proceeded to outdraw them despite bad weather and the fact it was located in Black Hawk CO.
The HPT event was hampered by severe winter weather and drew less entrants than the same event a year earlier but still managed to create a 7-digit prizepool. The WSOP-C Main Event was probably hampered by it’s location in Atlantic City and the number of entrees was down to 540 from 635 in 2012.
Teresa Hemingway became just the 3rd woman to win a title on the Heartland Poker Tour but she picked up one of their biggest prizes after getting in the event on a $360 satellite seat. Next stop for the HPT is somewhere in the middle of Iowa while the WSOP-C takes their turn in Black Hawk, CO at the Lodge Casino. Let’s see if they can match the HPT success in the area.
Tweet of the Day – Negreanu still having fun with the whole joining a cult by accident thing.
8 oz of Kool-Aid, lamb blood and cayenne pepper- breakfast of champions! Off to play the 10k 8-Game should be fun!
Winamax Poker Tour : les résultats complets – My knowledge of the French language is limited to what I remember from that high school French class and what dirty words Benjo taught me. The important take away from this link is the World’s Greatest Poker Trophy in the Entire History of Poker. Also, god bless hyperbole.
Paul Klann $1,004,090 – 2013 WPT LA Poker Classic
Jonathan Tamayo $206,020 – WSOPC Palm Beach Kennel Club
Rodger Johnson $182,315 – 2013 LAPC High Roller
Jon Turner $27,750 – 2013 LAPC 6-Handed PLO with rebuys
The 2013 LA Poker Classic wrapped up it’s Main Event last night with Paul Klann overcoming a big chip deficit against Paul Vople. The WPT LAPC drew 517 entrants this year which is another annual drop, from 549 a year ago, at one of the biggest stops on the tour. Klann collected over $1,000,000 for the win which includes the WPT Championship buyin, but 7-digits is much prettier than 6.
Next big tournaments on the schedule include the popular WTP Bay101 Shooting Stars event, the WSOP-C series at Caesars in Atlantic City, and the always huge Heartland Poker Tour in Blackhawk, Colorado.
Tweet(s) of the Day – Not everybody is in love with the Commerce Casino, David Bach is isn’t the first or last player to comment on some of the shadier aspects of playing there. I still standby the breakfast burritos at the Cafe.
I say this with reservation: because of course there are plenty of honorable people in poker. But…. This Commerce Casino is the:
Epic Anniversary – One year ago FS+G filed for bankruptcy killing Epic Poker along the way with a bunch of unpaid invoices (yours truly included). It’s still a touchy subject with some of us but Short-stacked Shamus has a nice recap. Check back to his site later for some of his article I published on the Epic website
A Look at Poker’s Falling Fortune in Las Vegas – The sky is falling, the sky is falling! It’s either that or the Vegas poker rooms are feeling the crunch of the online poker crackdown. We’ll see what happens when new players can be pulled in via online poker when it returns.
Pretty Broad Podcast – Three favorites from PokerNews (Kristy Arnett, Lynn Gilmartin, and Sarah Grant) started their own website PrettyBroad.com. It’s a fun concept from a fun group who get to travel to great places around the globe. Give them a look and listen to their first full podcast.
Several one-time charges and costs associated with the opening of a hotel-casino in Baton Rouge, La., caused regional gaming operator Pinnacle Entertainment to suffer a net loss in the fourth quarter.
The Las Vegas-based company said Wednesday its net loss in the quarter that ended Dec. 31 was $42.4 million, or 72 cents per share, compared with a profit of $25 million, or 40 cents per share, a year earlier.
The largest charge Pinnacle took in the quarter was a noncash write-down of approximately $25 million related to the company’s investment in a casino project in Vietnam. Pinnacle also reported one-time charges surrounding casino expansion projects in St. Louis and the opening of the L’Auberge Baton Rouge in September.
Marcel Luske $18,500 – 2013 PCA H.O.R.S.E.
John Dibella $69,780 – 2013 PCA NLHE Turbo
Vladimir Zakharau $68,200 – 2013 PCA PLO Turbo
Christopher Frank $55,720 – 2013 PCA NLHE Bounty
The 2013 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure is well underway with the Main Event down to 30-ish some players depending on when/if you read this. Owen Crowe is the big name up on top of the leaderboard with Joe (don’t you dare call me Sebok) Serock and Eddy Sabat among the names on his tail. The Main drew 987 entrants this year, down a bit from last year which drew over a thousand, and the winner will have to figure out how to get $1,859,000 out of the Bahamas.
The next big tournament stops include the WSOP Circuit events at Choctaw, a WPT Regional event somewhere in Florida called Coconut Creek, and the return of the WPT big production to the Borgata Winter Open. Things are definitely back in full swing with the new year.
Tweet of the Day – The Heartland Poker Tour made the big announcement today, their structure for the upcoming season has been updated by none other than Daniel Negreanu. The new structure is a great tweak to an already fantastic tour, but no word from top shelf nit Allen Kessler.
Ravi Raghavan $1,268,571 – WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic
Marcin Wydrowski €325,000 – WPT Prague Main Event
Paul Berende €119,974 – PokerStars Hold’em Challenge
Dan Murariu €110,000 – Unibet Open St Maarten
The World Poker Tour and all those who call the shots must have been really happy as the WPT Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic field played down to its final table and saw the names remaining. Just missing out on the TV table were Jon Aguiar, Jason Somerville, Yevgeniy Timoshenko, Freddy Deeb, Greg Mueller, Andrew Robl, and Scott Clements. They all crashed out on the final two tables but Antonio Esfandiari, Andrew Lichtenberger, and Shawn Buchanan will once again see themselves on the small screen.
Ravi Raghavan, recently of the Borgata Fall Open Main Event final table, was the last player standing as he knocked out Buchanan in 2nd place to increase his bankroll by nearly $1.3 million. Thanks to some structure tweaking and reasonable PR by the Bellagio staff, there was far less complaining about this year’s Five Diamond event as last year. Baby steps.
‘Isildur1’ Bests Dwan in $400k HU Match – Full Tilt Poker is back which means we now have the platform to witness huge HU matches between the biggest names in poker. This weekend it was Viktor Blom slicing off a piece of Tom Dwan.
The Micros: The Lost Episode – They’re back! At least for one episode but tell me you didn’t miss the opening tune. Seems this episode has been steeping for awhile during the PokerStars/Full Tilt negotiations but it’s now ready for your viewing pleasure.
Greg Raymer has been tearing it up on the Heartland Poker Tour. With four wins out of the last six HPT events, it’s starting to get hard to see why the other players even bother to show up. We take a look inside his historic run with this graphic.
Greg Raymer $106,030 – HPT Championship Open
Jordan Scott $168,210 – LAPT Peru Grand Final
Emil Olsson $230,036 – WPT Copenhagen
Cary Marshall $139,260 – WSOP-C Lake Tahoe
Team Pokerati Scores
John Harris $2,160 – WSOP-C Lake Tahoe #12
Greg Raymer seems to have found himself a nice, comfortable home among the regulars on the Heartland Poker Tour. When the 2004 WSOP Main Event champion won his first HPT event in July, it was an interesting side note. When Raymer won his 2nd HPT title in St. Louis on his next bullet, people began paying a little more attention to Raymer on a heater. One month later, another HPT title in Iowa gave him the hat-trick of titles and now everyone in the poker world waswatching.
Now Raymer is just showing off after winning HPT Championship Open for his 4th title on the tour, beating professional Jacob Bazeley heads up, to complete an incredible few months. His $371,967 earned put him atop their all-time money leaderboard and he’s the only player with 4 titles with just a few months effort. It’s unlikely he will miss many HPT events next season.
Nate Silver: it’s the numbers, stupid – Anyone with a least a little knowledge and awareness of things around them already knows about Nate Silver. The former online poker professional turned GOP pundit destroyer looked into the matrix and told the world how the U.S. Presidential election would go. The Guardian has a nice bio piece on the wunderkind.
Cash Game Grinders Want Lederer Banned from Vegas Tables – You might have missed this interesting nugget from Dave Ferrera this weekend. Players seem to have grown tired of having their money locked up by Full Tilt in the DoJ only to watch Howard Lederer stroll into the poker room with a nice chunk of change.
Noah Schwartz $402,970 – WPT bestbet Jacksonville
James Carroll $104,253 – HPT Palms Las Vegas
It was a fine weekend for a couple of young poker veterans at tour stops swapping locations. The World Poker Tour not-televised event was playing a small room in Florida while the televised Heartland Poker Tour made it’s return to the Palms in Las Vegas. James Carroll shortstacked his way to the final table and worked his way up the board until he was the last player at the table. The HPT had a nice uptick since their last Vegas event, even after professional nit-monster Allen Kessler tweaked the structure.
Noah Schwartz began the WPT final table in Jacksonville in a different position than Carroll, holding more than half the chips in play at the 6-handed final table. He was playing his 4th World Poker Tour final table, the most recent being a 4th place finish at the LAPC, but nothing stopped him from picking up the elusive title to boost him near $3,000,000 in career earnings. Other notables at the final table included Lee Markholt, Hans Winzeler, and Byron Kaverman.
Tweet(s) of the Day – PASSION TO WIN! (except in cases where I degen it up, lose some money, and slep through it)
People asking why @realkidpoker & I playing WPT-Jacksonville when long flight, no TV, & small prize pool: PASSION TO WIN! #Loveofthegame
The WSOP crowned its newest champion this week, but that doesn’t mean tournaments around town are done for the year.
Heartland Poker Tour makes its next stop at Palms. The tournaments run today (Friday, Nov. 2) through Nov. 11, culminating with a $1,650 main event.
This is probably a good series of events for those who want to try their hand tourneys, or players like me who don’t want to spend a bunch on donkaments. It’s essentially a group of at least 7 satellites every day leading up to the big one.
There are single-table sit-n-go qualifier tournaments that start as low as $60 and a $120 “nightly turbo,” all the way up to a $375 “last chance qualifier.”
With former 2004 WSOP champ Greg Raymer winning 3 HPTs already this year, it should be interesting to see how many other well-known pros turn out to give the series a shot. We know from Gavin Smith’s twitter that he’s a lock: “It seems like every day I get one day closer to @HPTPoker at the palms, it is kinda like Christmas only this Santa is real!”
Ante Up Magazine’s new poker tour starts later this month at Thunder Valley Casino Resort near Sacramento, where the main event comes with a $200,000 guarantee. They’re also hosting events in Minnesota and Oklahoma leading up to a world championship at Hard Rock Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Man, tournament players might have a higher variance grind, but at least it can be exotic.
Ante Up also announced its next Vegas event would be held at Red Rock Casino from Jan. 21-27. The event schedule has yet to be released, but the series will culminate with a $1,100 main event with three Day 1s, which will “spill over into the Rocks Lounge,” according to the magazine. Sounds like they might have more than a few splashed pots.
They didn’t give a reason for the shutting down, but cash games there were often hit or miss, and staff members told me that some of their regulars had been rounded up by nearby Club Fortune Casino.
And it wasn’t the only locals poker room on the outskirts of Las Vegas to close this week.
The former Aliante Station, now Aliante Casino and Hotel, also shuttered its poker room after being taken over from Aliante Gaming LLC. The North Las Vegas casino was sold as part of Sations Casino bankruptcy and reopened under the new name Thursday.
I never played in their poker room, but if they ever decide to re-open — a la Silverton — I might have to check it out.
Vanessa Selbst $90,693 – Festa Al Lago $5,000 NLH
Melanie Weisner $41,289 – WPT Johannesburg $1,000 NLH
Amanda Musumeci $31,851 – WSOP Hammond $580 NLH
Greg Raymer $72,089 – Heartland Poker Tour Iowa
It was a very good weekend for the fairer sex* at the poker tables, with three of the top women poker players earning victories within hours of each other.
Online grinder Melanie Weisner picked up her first open tournament victory in the $1,000 No Limit Hold’em side tournament at the World Poker Tour South Africa event. East coast grinder Amanda Musumeci won her first WSOP Circuit ring at the Hammond Horseshoe, defeating Wendy Freedman heads up to collect. Finally it was uber-grinder/mad poker machine Vanessa Selbst casually winning the $5,000 No Limit Hold’em tournament at the Festa Al Lago series against a few decent players like Negreanu, Justin Young, Andrew Lichtenberger, Dan Shak, and Chris Bjorin at the final table.
* – Yes, I am a knuckle-dragging, mouth-breathing, neanderthal
Their success overshadowed another top result for 2004 WSOP Main Event champion Greg Raymer, again capturing a title at a Heartland Poker Tour stop. He topped the 185 player field in metropolitan Altoona, Iowa for his third HPT title in his last three attempts. Not a bad batting average. Raymer’s last four results:
1st place Heartland Poker Tour Albuquerque – $71,875
35th place The River Poker Series – $1,288 (slacker!)
1st place Heartland Poker Tour St. Louis – $121,973
1st place Heartland Poker Tour Iowa – $72,089
Tweet(s) of the Day – The twitter world got their haunches up when a Mr. Howard Lederer decided to play Festa Al Lago at the Bellagio. Christian Harder was the first I saw mention it, including standing next to him in line, but word spread quickly. This is the first time he has been seen in a tournament room, although Lederer has been seen playing cash games recently.
Howard Lederer is in the building, rumor is he will play. — Christian Harder (@realcharder30) October 23, 2012
Howard Lederer is next to me at the cage. Just asked if you sign up for the tournament here so I’m guessing we will see him in there. — Christian Harder (@realcharder30) October 23, 2012
And Howard appears at my table. — Christian Harder (@realcharder30) October 23, 2012
Sorry, Mr. Online Poker. Nobody Cares About You – Most have already put eyes on this article but it’s worth a rehash. PLO expert Jeff Hwang penned this article DailyFinance.com looking at the real numbers behind possible online poker legalization/regulation.
EU tightens up online gambling controls – Looks like the European Union will turn the screws a little more, all in the name of “money laundering” and “match-fixing”. Tough to feel bad for our Euro friends since they can still access PokerStars.
Full House with Johnny Chan – This trailer for a new poker show with Johnny Chan is horrible beyond words, not even the good kind of unintentional comedy horrible.
Benjamin Spindler €288,000 – EPT San Remo High Roller
Andy Denick $138,187 – HPT Daytona Beach
Karim El Rharbaoui €44,000 – FPS Sunfest
‘Twas not a terribly exciting weekend in the poker world but there were a few results around the world including the Heartland Poker Tour in Daytona Beach, San Remo High Roller, and the French Poker Series in Morocco (on a different continent not far far away from France). Our friends at HPT had another great turnout at the Daytona Beach Kennel Club and Poker room with a 35% increase over their last event, the winner Andy Denick with a nice 6-digit win.
The rest of the poker world stood by with baited breath as the poker world’s greatest ambassador* Daniel Negreanu promised to publish another rant** about all things Full Tilt Poker, Howard Lederer, Erick Lindgren, and everything else causing the slightest angst among the poker players of the world.
Instead we have this calm, clinical breakdown on his thoughts about just Lederer.
* – Not really
** – If that was a rant, Negreanu needs to adjust his meds
Full Tilt Poker affiliates won’t get paid – It’s a big, but not completely unexpected, punch to the gut of former FTP affiliates after the new company comes out with a statement saying “not my problem” when it comes to back payment.
Full Tilt Poker Signs Tom Dwan and Viktor Blom as “Professionals” – They haven’t even launched but FTP is already getting things lined up for those massive nosebleed cash games again. Dwan and Blom were two of the game regulars and neither has a whiff of controversy so this looks like another no-brain signing after Gus Hansen.
Official FTP (Pre)Relaunch Thread – Anyone who knows me will bear witness to my feelings about poker forums, but I suppose it’s about time to link up the 2+2 FTP Relaunch thread which contains some interesting information from Shyam “formerly FTPDoug” Markus. Surrounded by endless posts by mouth breathing nit-monkeys.
South Point Poker job openings – Want a job with a U.S. based online poker company? Your options are pretty slim out there but now it seems South Point Poker is hiring for a few positions. The “Poker Investigator” job could be interesting. Click the link to check them out.
The Final Table – Episode 2 – Another episode of The Final table with Russell Thomas and his November Nine prep team led by Jason Somerville.
Greg Raymer $71,875 – HPT Route 66 Main Event
David Allan NZD$110,600 – ANZPT Snowfest Main Event
Dan Sun $77,103 – BLUFF MSPT Meskwaki Main Event
All hail our new PokerStars overlords. As Dan posted earlier (and you’d have to be living in a cave or passed out to not have noticed), PokerStars reached an agreement with the Department of Justice to pick up Full Tilt assets in exchange for backing up a dump truck full of cash. This opens the door for Stars to pay out FTP bankrolls, reopen Full Tilt for play, and take over the online poker world.
Stars stated they will release bankrolls for non-US players within 90 days but US players will need to go through the DoJ to collect. This might open up a huge can of crap for players but it’s a step in the right direction.
With all the online news, the latest Heartland Poker Tour champion is pushed below the fold. They wrapped up their 200th episode and none other than 2004 WSOP Main Event Champion Greg Raymer captured the title. HPT could not have asked for a better result coming through their Epic disaster and new ownership. Allen “Complainsaw” Kessler, Kathy Liebert, and former HPT champion Rob “veeRob” Perelman we also part of the 131 player field.
Tweet of the Day 2 – Todd Terry has lost his damn mind. Why stop at thanking the DoJ? Why not thank Bill Frist, Jon Kyl and everyone else who sat on their hands while UIGEA was rammed through Congress?
All thank yous should be directed to Preet Bharara and the DoJ. They’re basically distributing $ they could keep to FTP’s victims. — Todd Terry (@toddbterry) July 31, 2012
PokerStars FAQ for Full Tilt Players – Almost everything you want to know as a player on FTP including turning the lights back on within 90 days. Also, thanks but no thanks to France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Belgium and Estonia.
A Statement by Nolan Dalla – It’s great to see Nolan Dalla back to writing on his site (plus using Twitter!) and here’s his take on the Full Tilt/Poker Stars news. Now if he would just change the white text/dark background format so my retinae don’t burn out.