Posts Tagged ‘WSOP-2006’

October 25, 2006

From the Dept. of: Um, Excuse Me?

Just got my official form letter from Jeffrey Pollack — telling me the 2007 WSOP will begin June 1 … and with the main event starting on July 17, we’re looking at a Pokerpalooza* that could last a full two months.

I also just read this AP article, about how that new law we all love to hate may hurt the WSOP. The issue, of course, is not just the absence of thousands of players previously sent by the likes of PartyPoker, but moreso that Harrah’s — in an attempt to prove compliance with the UIGEA? — has said they will not take third-party entrants this year. Hence the predicted decline in the biggest historical indicator of poker growth … total entrants into the main event of the WSOP.

(Speaking of … check out the new poll on your righthand side. What do you think we’re lookin’ at?)

OK, anyhow, so the most peculiar thing I found in this article was from WSOP media honcho Gary Thompson:

Tournament spokesman Gary Thompson said since 2005, organizers have not accepted third-party registrations for the $10,000 buy-in main event from online gambling companies with U.S. operations, and that hasn’t stopped it from attracting record fields.

Uhh, no third-party registrations since last year? I think about 6,000 competitors in the main event this year might disagree. (Can anybody get confirmation of this? I seem to remember hearing that about 2,600 players paid the $10k straight up … but can’t find a good blog-fact on it.)

While we love to give the suits at Harrah’s lots of hard times, some of which are occasionally deserved, Thompson is actually a pretty good egg … not one to feed you just the corporate line, and generally open to semi-constructive criticism. So he’s not one you’d expect to purposely spread disinformation. Reading on …

“In 2005 and 2006 we had record fields each year. We’re confident again that 2007 will be the best one ever,” he said.

Thompson suggested that a loophole that allowed players who qualified online to pay their own entry fees directly, after being given the fees by online poker companies, would continue to pass muster with regulators.

Ahh, OK, so now it makes sense … Harrah’s is speaking semi-vaguely, hedging bets, not overly committing to anything. And/or are finding a way to back away from previous insinuations that online players were not longer going to be part of the WSOP game.

* I’ve got dibs on that phrase.

Posted by at 6:47 pm

September 8, 2006

Extra Chips at the WSOP: The 5th Down of Poker?

Tim Lavalli and Amy Calistri just put up some pretty good investigation of the $2 million worth of extra chips that mysteriously appeared during the main event of the WSOP. Must read. They narrow it down to 22 minutes where the badness comes into play — and though I have only skimmed parts 2 and 3, apparently they also dismiss the possibility of cheating.

You’ll also find continuing discourse on the subject on PokerBlog. Dr. Tim says:

I wanted to give you a heads up on this before it hits the net. Amy & I have been working on a series of articles about the 2 million extra chips on the table in the WSOP Main Event. In about an hour Pokernews.com will be putting up the first three articles, this got a bit rushed because Harrah’s has figured out that we have them by the short hairs and they were going to make a statement. There will be two or three more articles in the next week or so.

Everything that pokernews is too chicken to print will go on PokerBlog and I intend to start the discussion on PokerBlog as soon as the articles go up.

Seriously, can you believe this guy has a Ph.D?

Posted by at 1:32 pm

September 5, 2006

More Leftover Pokery Podcasts

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Over at PokerBlog, I put up another “lost archive” — an interview with Tuscaloosa Johnny and Jay Greenspan, author of Hunting Fish: A Cross-Country Search for America’s Worst Poker Players about some of the most horrendous play seen at the WSOP.

I also recently came across this pokery podcast/podcasty poker by Dallas’ own Manny “the Minnow” Mendoza, recorded during his debut outing to the World Series. Seriously, how could the Morning News have let him go.

And Manny, if you are looking for work, please know that Pokerati is hiring!

We offer $0 a year and no benefits — not too different than Belo! I really hope you consider this opportunity. Others are welcome to apply, but be sure to click the above link so you know what kinda competition you are up against and where we set the bar.

Posted by at 5:36 pm

August 30, 2006

WSOP Nice-Guy Responds

Here’s the latest on Richard Lee … who shows why, regardless of what crime he may or may not have committed, he’s probably a good-guy.

Compare Lee’s first public statement on his legal troubles to that of Jamie Gold … who hired a PR firm to spew a bunch of yadda-yadda bullshit.

Posted by at 1:16 pm

WSOP nice-guy getting home seized?

This just in … a few hours ago police in San Antonio raided the home of Richard Lee — 6th place finisher in the WSOP.

Click here to see the TV news report.

Police reportedly were executing a warrant that allowed them to seize everything inside his estate in the tony Shavano Park neighborhood … because cops claim possessions inside may all be ill-gotten gains. According to a police spokesman, this was not a raid to arrest Lee, but it was part of an investigation into a “major” online gambling ring.

Wow wow wow.

Of all the final tableists, Richard Lee was arguably the nicest guy there. The anti-Jamie Gold. After he busted out in 6th place (winning $2.8 million), I asked him:

You’re the only one at the final table not wearing anything from an online poker site. Why is that?

His answer:

“I don’t need the money, I have plenty of money, and I decided that I wasn’t going to endorse anyone but God, my family, and San Antonio, Texas.”

Yee-haw! I screamed on the inside. I looked over at Nolan Dalla, because he knew what I was getting at with my question, and being a Texan, he, too, likely felt the internal whoop.

Anyhow, it was an impressive statement by Lee. Supposedly the going rate to wear an online poker site’s gear at the main event final table was $500k. (As opposed to $50k at other televised final tables.) But if what police are suspecting is true, then huh … wonder if there wasn’t some other reason he didn’t want to attach his name to any semblance of an online gaming site.

(Mean Gene can add another one to his entertaining POKER: CSI line-up.)

UPDATE: Here’s the San Antonio Express-News on the investigation.

Posted by at 1:22 am

August 28, 2006

What’s Wrong with This Picture?

I got a very kind email from Ed/Stan the other day, along with a copy of his bankroll-management graph. He apparently has done rather well at the microlimits with $20 he deposited on Titan (for the Pokerati Inaugural Online Invitational?). He says:

Just wanted to share with you my Aug sessions so far. I think I owe you and the friends who I have played/talked poker with over the last year. This is the best I have done yet and it has not even been a full month. The sessions were mixed too. Mostly .05/.10 PLH but I played a few .05/.10 NL, some SnGs and a couple $10 tournaments that I lost.

Here are the results of his sessions over time, with G/L meaning gain/loss, based on an individual session:

click to enlarge

Wow, very well done, Ed! Seriously, impressive slow-and-steady build — just like you’re supposed to do it. Not sure I deserve any credit, however, as you’ll see my final tally for table play during the WSOP looks similar, but different:

But hey, I guess that’s just “variance,” right?

ALT HED: Leading by (Bad) Example

Posted by at 6:49 pm

August 21, 2006

Hour of Power

Appeared on Hold'em Radio's "Beyond the Table" with Tom Schneider last week. Semi-interesting stuff as this WSOP final tableist and I discuss Harrah's and the corporate influences in the World Series of Poker; how Tom did; life in the $400/$800 mixed game; how I did; life in the $3/$6 mixed game; and bad beat deadbeat stories when it comes to loaning money.

Part 1
early audio troubles, WSOP sponsorships, limit hold’em shootout structure, $1,500 rookie, $50k HORSE temptation / structure


MP3 File

Part 2
high-stakes cash games fun, bad dealer tips from presumably good people / Tom, bad business decisions ==> bad service, challenges to Jeffrey Pollack


MP3 File

Part 3
the art of loaning money, high-stakes Roshambo (with Iggy), good friends and bum deals / dog poop


MP3 File

Posted by at 12:37 am

August 18, 2006

No Tip for You!

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Defending champ Jamie Gold’s first reported not-good: He supposedly promised the dealers a $1 million tip if he won, and he did, but he didn’t deliver. First, we have reports from a WSOP dealer on Pokerati, and now “coonie” has put up his first-person account of stiffage on PokerBlog.

Bad form, to say the least. But a complete final-table snubbing? Either poker players are assholes as a race, or they are making collective commentary. When “the house” (Harrah’s) is already taking an over-substantial vig … and selling the shit out of everything in the near vicinity, it’s understandable — not necessarily right, but understandable — that the players decide, you know what, we’ve given enough … I earned this money.

With dealers reporting a huge pay decrease and veterans declaring their disinterest in returning and players already complaining about the quality (and quantity) of dealer scabs … this is probably one of the very first issues Pollack & Co. will have to look at. And how they handle it … well 2007 will be the real test of corporate poker influence, and whether it will improve or corrupt the game.
More…

Posted by at 9:50 pm

August 16, 2006

“Yo, T, What’up biznatch?”

Tune in to “Beyond the Table” on Hold’em Radio tonight (7 pm central) and you’ll hear me joining Tom Schneider to talk about our impressions of the WSOP. I’m really looking forward to it — because we were both there for a long time, but experiencing it from different perspectives. (He made it to only one final table.)

He’ll also be a good person to ask why the high-stakes cash games dissolved so quickly at the WSOP. One day I watched Scotty Nguyen and Ming Ly yammering at the chops (in Vietnamese) waiting to get in on some $400/$800 action with Tom, Andy Black, and Sean Shiekhan … the next day there’s just about nobody there. Stuff like that.

Should make for good chit-chat. Click here to listen live. (We go on in a few minutes.)

P.S. Buy Tom’s book, because somebody needs to.

Posted by at 6:43 pm

August 11, 2006

Breaking News: Free Feels at the WSOP!

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eddie1.jpgLAS VEGAS–OK, this woulda been breaking news had I gotten it up yesterday, but I did not — you know, main event and all — so for now, just pretend it is yesterday, with about five players remaining at the final table …

One of the Sapphire girls just got new breasts! She’s very proud of them, and according to Eddie Williams (of “Bad Beats” on AM-1300 The Zone in Austin), she is more than happy to let journalists “try them out.”

“Very niiice,” Eddie reports.

Meanwhile, Pokerati has its fact-checkers on the case.

Posted by at 8:41 pm

Go (Kinda Sorta) Dallas Poker!

LAS VEGAS–So the WSOP is over. I am tired(ish). $12 million yadda yadda. Fuck you all for caring.

Jamie Gold is the winner — seriously, I’m not a fan of Johnny Chan, so is this guy an ass? (He’s undoubtedly no Greg Raymer.)

Second place went to David Williams Paul Wasicka. CardPlayer said he’s from Minnesota. Bluff Radio kept saying he was from Dallas, and other people say he was from Colorado. So I asked him directly: Where are you from?

He said he was born in Dallas and lived there until he was age 7. Now he considers himself a Coloradan. OK, we’ll take it. I also invited him to come play with the Batfaces, and he looked confused.

Posted by at 6:18 am

August 10, 2006

Coach Johnny Chan — feeding Jamie Gold and Allen Cunningham tell

LAS VEGAS–Johnny Chan has been trying to help his super-stacked protege Jamie Gold win. And right now he’s reportedly a little perturbed that Gold has been taking on Allen Cunningham in the wrong way. Steve Rosenblum reports that Chan has supplied Gold with info on a big Allen Cunningham tell, one that he may or may not have failed to exploit.

(I think … am a little confused, because the tell Rosenbloom references would require Gold to go into the tank to pick up on. But apparently Chan wants Gold to put Cunningham to the test … which is pretty much straight-up poker, of course.)

Posted by at 10:10 pm

Not Quite the Jimi Hendrix of Poker

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LAS VEGAS–One of my many unpublished posts-in-progress was called "Pokerstock." Get it? Like the WSOP is the Woodstock (in all its incarnations) of Poker. Brilliant, I know.

Anyhow, click below to have a listen to the opening National Anthem at the WSOP 2006 main event final table today — performed by former Aerosmith and Rod Stewart guitarist Jimmy Crespo, who currently plays in a band called Phoenix (performing nightly at the "Big Apple Bar" at New York, New York) with his pal Tony Davich:


MP3 File

Posted by at 9:40 pm

Jamie Gold’s Horseman

LAS VEGAS–So everyone is talking Jamie Gold. He’s been dominating since Day 3. Turns out there’s an interesting story on how he got into the game. He’s Johnny Chan’s agent, of course — we all know that — and the inspiration for some character on “Entourage,” a show I don’t watch. (But all that leads me to believe he might be an asshole.) Anyhow, he was negotiating with Bodog to get some celebrities seats. As part of the negotiation, he wanted two seats — one for himself and one for a friend.

This is where my info gets a little foggy, but basically he got one seat … and I’m not sure how he and his buddy figured out how who got to play, but in the end, he took the seat … and now, of course, is guaranteed multiple millions.

But he’s only got half of himself. The other half of whatever he wins will go to — inside sources say — WPT Boot Camp instructor Crispin Leyser.

Posted by at 8:37 pm

A few other places to follow the action

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LAS VEGAS–While Pokerati is working hard to bring you some semblance of coverage of the WSOP main event final table — damn, one of my Iggy horses just went out in 8th place (Boo, Swedes!) — and trying to direct the coverage on PokerBlog … there’s another place where you can find some well-written semi-live blogging of the final table … perhaps shockingly, via the Dallas Morning News.

Check out Manny “the Minnow” Mendoza as he discovers that watching 18 hours of poker and trying to cover it may or may not be very exciting.

Another new journo blogger I’ve met is Russ Scott from Moline, Ill., and blogging at Lucky Dog Poker. I get the sense from his early posts that he will be a welcome new voice in the poker blogosphere.

My other new favorite blogger here at the WSOP is fellow Andy Bealophile Michael Craig. He already knows greatness when he sees it.

Posted by at 7:59 pm