Posts Tagged ‘Russ Hamilton’

December 20, 2012

Russ Hamilton Working at Aruba Poker Room & Sportsbook

Special @Donkdown cold call confirming defamed WSOP champ's new employ

Check out this I just made call to Chris, Poker-room manager at The Occidental Grand Aruba Casino. I was told by a confidential source that Russ Hamilton has a piece of the sportsbook and poker room there, and as a hard-hitting news organization I did the digging. Now real publications go clean this up:

Posted by at 11:54 am

November 17, 2012

Cash Game Grinders Want Lederer Banned from Vegas Tables

Aria rebuffs DiVella effort to circulate petition in poker room

Fully Tilted? Nick DiVella is still waiting for his roll from a player sometimes seen in the Ivey Room at Aria.

Howard Lederer might be re-emerging in the nosebleed cash games of Las Vegas, but some players are so upset about the former Full Tilt leader’s return to the felt that they began circulating a petition to get him banned from live poker.

“We believe the casino has a moral and ethical obligation to bar Howard Lederer from playing in the poker room and should Aria casino fail to take immediate action we, the poker playing community, will be forced to boycott the poker room,” the petition reads.

Local pro Nick Divella, 24, crafted this plea to fellow players at Aria, asking them to boycott the room if Lederer was allowed to play there again.

Aria management, however, had “a long talk” with him explaining why they had to remain neutral and couldn’t allow him, or anyone for that matter, to solicit signatures on their property.

DiVella, a regular in the 5/10NL and 10/20NL games, said he had talked to upwards of 50 players who already had agreed to sign it, and has since taken his cause online.

Read the petition here.

“It tilts me to no end,” explained DiVella, who says he loves playing at Aria but but doesn’t want to see the disgraced Full Tilt empresario sitting behind big stacks in his favorite poker room, as it would almost certainly have a negative impact on his own non-Ivey Room play.

More…

Posted by at 5:32 pm

December 2, 2011

Cheating Is as Cheating Does?

DGLP Summit in DC and Beyond the Table flashback episode

russ hamilton full tilt wsop
Badge of Dishonor? Once upon a time the idea of Russ Hamilton wearing the scarlet triangle of Full Tilt Poker seemed laughable.

There seems to be a big gaming conference somewhere in the world every other week. iGaming, iPoker, internet gambling, eGaming … whatever you call it, lots of people seem to want to know how this real-money internet gaming thing is gonna work, or should work — and they apparently have specific questions about online poker.

Thus, a handful of policy-minded pokeraticos are headed to Washington DC next week for the Digital Gaming and Lottery Policy Summit. I’ll be speaking on a panel with Dan Cypra from Pocket 5s and Stephen Davis, CEO of IT GlobalSecure. Our topic (moderated by eGaming broker Sue Schneider):


Cheating:
Assessing and Addressing the Danger

As interactive gaming and gambling products become more sophisticated, so do fraudsters. Here panelists look at cheating in poker (particularly player collusion and the use of poker “bots”), the danger to players and the potential devastation of operators; how fraud is being effectively dealt with; examples of attempts to cheat (both successful and unsuccessful) and how they were detected/why they were not detected.


The basic premise I’ll be addressing is that not all cheating in online poker is the same. Ghosting, multi-accounting, soft-play, superusering, collusion, etc. are all different offenses, and a one-size-fits-all-but-friends approach to bankroll seizure and account suspension probably ain’t gonna cut it moving forward. (At least that’s what I’ll be pushing for various regulator and lawmaker types in attendance to consider.)

Our ole pal Tom Schneider introduced me to the idea back in 2007, when we left the recorder running for a Beyond the Table aftershow. Sorrel Mizzi was the hot name in cheating at the time … but Tom didn’t think his MAing with Chris Vaughan FTW was too terrible a crime, and certainly not the worst of all shenanigans beginning to emerge in online poker. This was shortly before Russ Hamilton had been discovered and subsequently vilified without getting any days in court, and LOL some of the things I say revealing that I still clearly subscribed to the soon-to-be dated belief that online poker could do no wrong.

beyond the table crew tom schneider karridy askenasy dan michalskiBeyond the Table (Extra)
December 9, 2007

Posted by at 7:03 pm

June 29, 2011

Alderney Suspends Full Tilt’s Gaming License

Beleaguered online poker site down for good?

The Alderney Gambling Control Commission has suspended the gaming license of Full Tilt Poker and Vantage Limited dba FullTilt.com. The AGCC says they must stop any and all operations from the UK Crown Dependency immediately.

Is this a final nail in the coffin for the once almighty poker dominion belonging primarily to a man named Jesus?

EGR had it first, and promises more play-by-play.

Alderney is one of three eight “white-listed” regulatory jurisdictions in the UK — along with Isle of Man and Gibraltar — meaning their licensees can advertise freely and enjoy the benefits of fully legitimate, properly taxed corporations.

full tilt maintenance

Alderney also partnered with Nevada back in January — as the Nevada Gaming Control Board looked to study effective online gaming regulation and assess the suitability of 888, which partnered with Caesars for online poker operations related to WSOP.com.

No word on whether or not the WSOP plans to remove Chris Ferguson’s main event championship banner as they have with Russ Hamilton’s.

For now Full Tilt is apparently down for “scheduled maintenance” … and your money is safe and secure?

UPDATE: Here is the AGCC’s official statement.

Posted by at 5:05 am

March 8, 2011

License Plate Degens

It’s been too long since we shared with you the greatness of Nevada license plates. Fortunately, I don’t believe I’ve surrendered my claim to being the Top Parking-Lot Correspondent in Poker (even without a Bluff Award for that category). Especially since getting an iPhone … and in part thanks to Pokeratizens with their eyes on the road.

Here’s doozy from @PokerVixen. (Thanks, Lori!) We’ll have to take her word for it — because really, it is hard to drive and photograph* — but supposedly it says DGENRAT. LOL, is that a Mustang?

Meanwhile, here’s one I got — not sure it’s a poker player, but hey, it’s more likely to be Russ Hamilton than OJ Simpson driving this Jetta on Russell Rd., heading toward the south end of the Strip.


* WARNING: Pokerati supports safe driving, and encourages you NOT to photograph poker-related license plates while operating a motor vehicle. However, if you insist, please snap multiple shots and check later to see if you got one in focus. You should also wear your seatbelt just in case.

Posted by at 3:33 pm

February 25, 2011

Merchdawg’s Weekly Podcast Roundup

Travis Makar/Ultimate Bet Scandal Updates

Alright everyone, I usually give you all three podcast to listen to, but since one of the shows has a run time of four plus hours we will only be bringing you two shows. This week we are bringing you some of the newest information from the Ultimate Bet scandal.

Rabbit Hunt:

Our friends over at the Rabbit Hunt started off this weeks show with some news but the part we are all interested in starts at the 16:00 mark. The guys got mookman5, who is a wealth of information when it comes to the Ultimate Bet scandal, to come on the show and discuss the latest Travis Makar bomb that was dropped the week before. They discuss reasons why Makar would be coming out at this point and speculate on this lawsuit that he made mention to throughout the interview. Take a listen to the show on either the Cardrunners site or download it directly from iTunes to listen to this interview.

DonkDown Radio:

I usually do not repeat shows in back to back weeks, but these guys are at the center of the poker podcast world this week and have came back from last weeks bombshell of a show with a followup show that has a run time of over four hours. Do not be worried though, we will tell you where to skip ahead to so that you can save some time.

  • 22:30 – Bryan Micon starts to discuss his meeting with Travis Makar, where he discusses some of the documents that he saw during the meeting.
  • 45:10 – Brad Booth joins the show to discuss being cheated by the super-user accounts.
  • 1:20:00 – Micon starts to break down the Addressing a Few Rumors on the UB Blog.
  • 1:41:00 – Haley Hintze joins the show to discuss who may have actually made the payments to Zoltan “Brainwashdodo” Rozsa.
  • 2:35:35 – Travis Makar calls into the show to ask Booth some questions, the first of which is how does he know that Russ Hamilton actually cheated him.
  • 2:48:00 – Booth ask Makar what it is that he is truly looking for from bringing this information public.
  • 3:19:36 – Dustin Woolf joins the show to discuss how he was cheated.

You can listen to the show at the DonkDown site or subscribe and download it via iTunes.

Finally, keep an eye out for a new episode of The Micros tonight, as it was posted on their Facebook earlier today that a new episode should be up tonight at around 9PM PT or 12AM ET.

Posted by at 1:32 pm

February 22, 2011

DonkDown Radio Transcript of Travis Makar Interview

New UB scandal dirt

This past week in the Weekly Podcast Roundup we highlighted DonkDown Radio due to an interview they had with Travis Makar. For those of you that do not know who Makar is, head over to our Wicked Chops Poker and read Part II of the Ultimate Bet Super-User Cheating Scandal.

The guys were nice enough to publish a transcript from the interview that can either be found in their forums. Here are a few of the highlights from the transcripts:

  • Makar says he knows where the missing hand histories are.
  • According to Travis, Russ Hamilton is taking the fall for others.
  • Not all of the names used to cheat have been released.
  • Annie Duke borrowed money from Hamilton to buy a house but has never paid the money back.
  • Company people were accessing random high roller players accounts, playing on them, and transferring any winnings. If they lost they lost.
  • Travis is going to try and meet up with Micon to show him some of the documents.

We will keep our eye on this story and bring you all the new information as it becomes available.

Posted by at 3:14 pm

February 3, 2011

The Difference Between Online Casinos and Fully Legal Land-based Gambling Halls

A sign seen in the new Aviator Casino, in Delano, California, reminding me of a difference between casinos regulated in lands we know well and virtual establishments based out of places that may or may not exist beyond our poker imaginations:

More…

Posted by at 5:43 pm

January 31, 2011

Winners, Losers, Coinflips (January 2011)

Breaking down the month’s movers and shakers into bite-size chunks

The format that seemed to work so well in describing the action at the 2010 WSOP November Nine is going to get the full treatment now (and because I think the daggers that Dan has been sending me with his eyes have finally worked and I need to write something.)

A word about the “scoring system”: This year I want to keep track of how well (or poorly) a player is doing in a given year. +1 point for being a winner, -1 for being a loser, -3 if you have the misfortunate of winning my Screw You award, +3 for being my Player of the Month, and nothing for getting a coinflip. That’s what happens when you have a 50/50 chance. In the long run you just break even.

Winners

  • Daniel Negreanu (1): My feelings about the All-time Money List aside, Daniel has hit the ground running in 2011 with his second place finish in the $100k Super High Roller 6-table SnG at the PCA. Pocketing a cool million a few days into the year has got to make you feel good.
  • Erik Seidel (1): Sure, it’s aided by a $2.5 million score in an obscene $250,000 buy-in event, but Seidel won even more money than Daniel, $3.4 million for the month of January.
  • Hendon Mob (1): For acknowledging the All-Time Money List is kind of turning into a farce and doing something about it by having options to remove Super High Roller SnGs and restricted tournaments.

Losers

  • Viktor Blom (-1): If this guy actually owes $149 MILLION dollars to Swedish tax authorities, it will be safe to say that signing with Pokerstars was the worst thing to happen in his life. Going 2-1 in his Superstar Showdowns isn’t gonna be enough to cover that bill.
  • Prahlad Friedman (-1): A man has got to pay the bills, I’m not going to get into a “is he a sellout?” conversation. That said, the fact that the forums and media are ablaze about his decision to join UB is probably not a good sign for him. His “brand” is likely to have taken a hit and his words about not joining the man have certainly come back to haunt him.
  • The All-Time Money List (-1): Pretty much everyone has been dumping on this lately with the increase in buy-ins reaching astronomically stupid levels. Hendon Mob addressed this and that’s why they are one of the winners, but the list itself still seems like a wasted statistic.

Coinflips

  • Annie Duke/Jeffery Pollack: I like the idea of a new Professional Poker League, but I am soooooo skeptical as to whether they can even pull it off. Also, not letting online play count in your formula looks to me more like laziness than anything else, and removes any player that is in the current generation of contenders.
  • Phil Hellmuth: For someone that’s got to be the biggest free agent in poker by a country mile, his lack of a sponsorship had better be a calculated decision. Or its just that Phil isn’t as marketable as people thought? OK…that’s a stretch.
  • Results from the Bluff Reader’s Choice Awards: Congratulations are in order for The Poker Beat winning its second consecutive RCA, this time in the “Best Web Based Poker Show” category. Still, would be nice to have Pokerati win Best Poker Blog and Cardrunners win Best Poker Resource. Ah well, there is always next year.

The “Eff You, Sir/Madam” Award


Every month there is bound to be at least one player/entity/whatever that deserves special mention for being an idiot for a particular month. It doesn’t have to be rational, its likely to get some flak, and is going to definitely almost always be a mindless rant. So without further adieu, the winner (loser?) is:

  • Russ Hamilton (-3…not including negative karma): This month, I’m going for the low hanging fruit and giving this to Russ Hamilton. In fact, I’m tempted to name the award after him. He made the news earlier this month for flying off the handle at a Florida poker room as he was getting jeered about how bad he was when he couldn’t see the hole cards. He then proceeded to call his opponents “fucking dicks” and that “You do not know what you are talking about; you were not there. You just read about it and think you know.” No, Russ, they do know what they are talking about, because everyone from UB to the poker media to 60 FUCKING MINUTES said that you did it. And you did. So the fact that you grace us with your presence at a poker table anywhere on this Earth should come with the caveat that you are going to get verbally abused. And you should just take it or quit. No one remembers you for your WSOP win, they remember you for being the “fucking dick” who screwed people out of $20 million, and just maybe also for receiving the inaugural Pokerati “Fuck You” award. Maybe.

Player of the Month
The Player of the Month is taken straight from the winners list, and is given a coveted 3 points instead of 1 toward becoming the 2011 Pokerati Winners, Losers, Coinflips player of the year. I suppose. We haven’t really worked out all the details yet.

  • Erik Seidel (3): Anyone that manages to wade through shark infested high roller waters not once but three times and cashes every single time more than deserves to be named Player of the Month. It was a nice progression too, from going 4th in the PCA SHR to 3rd in the Aussie Millions SHR to winning the “Full Tilt proving they can have a bigger buy-in than Stars” event. Very well deserved, and we’ll see if Erik can keep up the momentum in the coming months. If he is not ranking in ESPN’s “The Nuts segment I’d be pretty shocked. (EDIT: He has, just barely. Erik is ranked 10th this month.)
Posted by at 1:40 pm

January 25, 2011

Russ Hamilton Spotted and Professional Poker League

The Rabbit Hunt

Episode 34
Rabbit Hunt is back and its an all-news podcast this week. Spartanfox and Tyresias discuss Russ Hamilton’s blowup in Florida, the $100k Challenge at the Aussie Million, Annie Duke and Jeffrey Pollack’s new poker tour, and more!

Posted by at 7:56 am

September 27, 2010

RE: Russ Hamilton Playing 1/2 at MGM

More from-the-felt footage

More confirmation of what we suspected all along upon seeing this video … here’s additional video of the OJ Simpson of Poker playing 2/5 at MGM a couple weeks earlier.

And here’s an amusing video of the other Russ Hamilton, which makes you realize how shafted some people’s legacy can be in Google, particularly for a cultural renegade who sang about the desire to “make love” out of wedlock to a teenage girl in 1957:

Posted by at 6:33 pm

Russ Hamilton Playing 1/2 at MGM?

Unconfirmed … so you make the call: Is that everybody’s favorite online poker supervillain Russ Hamilton in the 3 seat?

(Of course it is, but surely that can’t be a silver main event bracelet he’s wearing, right?)

This video was shot at MGM yesterday, about 9:30. (That’s the lion attack exhibit in the background.)

Again, without saying this is for certain any one specific person who has never been formally accused of any crimes yet still finds himself living something of an OJ Simpson retirement … Hamilton has apparently resurfaced from poker exile in the Nevada amateur pub leagues and has been showing up at the MGM about once a week for the past month or so to in put in some hours on the low-stakes grind.

(Check it out, pretty much the same type of crumpled visor Hamilton wore in the notorious Raw Vegas vid.)

Supposedly this player was noticeably a bit tilted by the lingering camera, and quickly got up to put his name on the 2/5 list as “RR”.

UPDATE: RH said in ’08 he keeps his bracelet in a safe, only to be taken out for the World Series. Thinks obviously coulda changed since then, but that was his answer almost three years ago. [Video interview]

Posted by at 11:49 am

June 20, 2010

Russ Hamilton Seen at WSOP Seniors Event

Oklahoma Johnny Hale was scootering around the record-setting WSOP-Seniors event last night once they got down to about nine tables … he was splashing pots with $5 commemorative chips from Palace Station honoring members of “The Seniors” Poker Player Hall of Fame.

The chip plausibly stimulating additional action on the table I happened to be watching bore a familiar mug … none other than disgraced poker pioneer Russ Hamilton, which presumably could make for quite the collector’s item.

Jack Ward has only seen his fortunes in the WSOP-Seniors event improve since taking down the pot with a Russ Hamilton Hall of Fame overlay.

The winner of that pot, btw, and the hotly desired piece of poker memorabilia, was Jack Ward, from Gulfport, Miss. Not all the Johnny Hale splash pots happened to feature Russ Hamilton chips … there were also some Vince Burgios, Johnny Moss’s, TJ Cloutiers, and others. But since taking down the Hamilton coin, Ward jumped from about 50k in chips to 519k, which had him on the verge of elimination in Day 2 starting Day 3, today, in 7th position with 23 players remaining.

En route, Ward also happened to take out Berry Johnston, a current member of the Seniors Hall of Fame, who lasted longest amongst that group and finished in 39th place.

UPDATE: At this moment there are currently 13 left, with Team Pokerati’s Tom Schneider out in 14th, and newfound fan favorite Jack Ward in 10th.

You can follow the chip-for-chip action here.

Investigations into Hamilton Role in UB Cheating Scandals Ongoing

Meanwhile, Wicked Chops seem to be getting onto the multi-part longform-narrative bandwagon, perhaps realizing that’s the really the only way to tell the full story of the biggest poker cheating scam in history, and possibly a multibillion-dollar black eye to an online poker industry still struggling for legitimacy.

Be sure to read Part 1 of WCP’s The Ultimate Bet Super-User Scandal, as they piece together initial Nat Arem discoveries, Haley Hintze’s continuing investigative research, and their own original reporting to weave together a tale of how “Russ Hamilton pulled the strings to develop a super-user ‘tool’ that cheated friends, associates, and UltimateBet customers out of millions of dollars.”

While it seems like Wicked Chops may be putting together something more akin to the Warren Report while Haley nails down the dirty details of Umbrella Man, it seems clear that before all is said and done with Cereus, we’ll be looking at a true-crime aga of online poker shenanigans that goes far beyond any one man on a single chip playing dirty.

Posted by at 4:53 pm

September 21, 2009

Joe Sebok Joins UltimateBet as Media & Operations Consultant

Seeks to Release Scandal Hand Histories & Cheater Names

Didn’t really see this one coming, but Joe Sebok explained in great detail why he made the decision to join the UltimateBet team. His latest blog post on PokerRoad starts with his skepticism about joining UB when he was asked on previous occasions, and it ends with the reasons he not only agreed to be a sponsored player but a consultant for the company in charge of media and operations.

The stipulation for joining the team came with wanting to ensure that the company moves forward – away from the scandal – in a positive direction and maintains a spotlessly clean reputation and record. Feeling responsible to the poker community that is part of PokerRoad, he wanted to be sure that he will represent a company that he believes in and one that the poker world can again trust. And to show that UB is willing to be as open as possible, the company has agreed to let Sebok’s first priority be the release of all hand histories associated with the scandal and the names of those paired with those accounts. Though KGC wanted no part of releasing the names of Russ Hamilton’s 31 co-conspirators, UB seems to have changed its mind on the subject.

Sebok wrote:

The first order of business with my position at Ub has been to help aid in the release of not only ALL of the hand histories from the super-user scandal, but also the accounts that were used to perpetuate the scandal itself and the actual physical names of those individuals who we believe to have been directly involved in disparate ways with the actual cheating. As most of you know, two-thirds of this has now been accomplished. Please take this as a first step in showing that things will be different at UltimateBet moving forward. I commend Paul and the management team over at Ub for being open to this release and making it happen at my insistence . They deserve all the credit in the world today in taking these first steps in ensuring that this case gets closed, and closed correctly.

Posted by at 9:30 pm

September 11, 2009

KGC Spokesperson Says List of Hamilton Co-Conspirators Will Not Be Released/Leaked

As soon as the Kahnawake Gaming Commission released its final decision in the UltimateBet cheating scandal, the questions started hitting. Most of them concerned the secrecy around the list of 31 names said to be associated with Russ Hamilton. A discussion with Chuck Barnett, member of the Board of Supervisors of Mohawk Internet Technologies, provided his reasons for not releasing that list of names.

Mr. Barnett first told me that implicating Hamilton in the scandal was not a problem, as it was “very clear” that he was directly connected and responsible for the crimes being alleged. The names of the 31 individuals associated were another story, he says. The Commission had lengthy discussions regarding the release of those names and ultimately consulted their legal team and law enforcement officials.

On the legal front, they deemed it a civil liability issue, as the suspects are directly linked to Hamilton or the 117 accounts listed BUT there is the possibility that they had no knowledge of the scheme. If they were accused and found to be completely oblivious to or innocent of the crimes, there would be liability in falsely accusing them. There is also some question as to each person’s level of culpability, which can’t be known until they are questioned by the proper authorities. And per law enforcement, naming the individuals would impede a criminal investigation, as anyone named may be able to flee the country, hide, etc. With all things considered, the KGC made the decision to withhold the names.

When asked about the law enforcement agencies involved, Mr. Barnett wouldn’t say much. Legally, all he said he could say was all information from the KGC investigation was turned over to “law enforcement,” which had expressed a distinct interest in pursuing the case. He could not say, however, whether those were Canadian or U.S. authorities, only that there were discussions with “regional and national” agencies.

If/when indictments are handed down or prosecutions are made, or if some other permission is given by law enforcement, the KGC will make public the names – and be happy to do it. Until then, based on overwhelming advice, the list will remain a mystery.

Posted by at 6:03 pm