Posts Tagged ‘freeroll’

Rakeback is out, Massages and MegaBeats are In

by , Jan 16, 2013 | 2:00 pm

All Caesars poker rooms across Nevada launched the Mega Beat Progressive Poker Jackpot earlier this month. It started with $200k to be paid out if some luckbox got his quad aces cracked. For every $100k more dumped into the drop, the qualifying hand also drops. So at $300k, all you need to lose with is with quad kings, at $400k quad queens …

I tried to hit it last week — flopped quad bullets at Planet Hollywood with two fish betting into me — but couldn’t lose to win.

After I relayed the story to a math-minded pro friend who told me that, because of the board, there was no possible hand that could have beat me and I should have raised at some point prior to the river.

Meanwhile, Yahoo Answers told me the odds of losing with a hand as weak as quad eights (see: $800k on the Mega Beat scale) are “not good.”

Mega Beat JackpotBut for this new Caesars Megabeat Jackpot, it doesn’t have to be you: 20 percent of the jackpot goes to the player with the losing hand, and 10 percent to the player with the winning hand; But 70 percent is distributed to players at all Caesars properties in the state. Because of this promo, they’re not offering high hand bonuses. Which means I was a few days late for being good enough to actually win with quads. Is that a bad beat?

Goodbye Rakeback
For most of last year, poker players in Las Vegas could find at least one place to earn something of an hourly wage on top of the chips they collected at the table. But that trend has all but vanished in 2013. Poker rooms have essentially stopped encouraging grinders to fold all day long.


Play Online Poker, Win an IPad

by , Jun 7, 2012 | 1:12 pm

This time we mean it … true freeroll, open registration. Come play for kicks on the new Face-Up Gaming poker site … minimal info required to sign up and play. This will be the first ever blogger tourney with live video interaction capabilities … as our blog-friendly pals at Face Up Gaming want to see their software in action with rough-and-tumble users. Seriously, not to get all tech-geeky, but think of the new dimension of trash talk we can enter with this.

To make it worth your while, Face Up has thrown together some prizes, including a cruise to the Bahamas, some sunglasses, and some swag. Yay, cool … but the real prize, I think, is in the lasts-longest they’ve made special for readers of Pokerati (and Pocket 5s, Ante Up Magazine, and That’s an ipad for each, if I’m understanding things right. We’ve come a long way since the days when people played for an iPod Nano.

More info here.

Date: Saturday, June 9
Time: 13:00ET
Game: NLHE
Buyin: Freeroll
Password: BATTLE (password is case sensitive)

Face-Up Gaming is showing they mean business in the online space by doing more than Full Tilt could do and actually paying out players. They recently had an interesting $10k freeroll where 60 percent of the 316-player subscription field won real American cash prizes, including a $2,500 payday for the winner.

Register here. (And enter ‘Pokerati’ to beat me out of that iPad.)

November Nine Reunion Underway at Foxwoods

by , Feb 8, 2011 | 12:04 pm

Greetings, Pokerati faithful. I’m coming to you live from Foxwoods somewhere deep in the Connecticut wilderness. Today’s reunion of all nine members of the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event final table is the first of its kind in modern times. For the first time since the inception of the November Nine, the entire group has gotten together to play in the same event, along with 18 very lucky Foxwoods winners.

They’re playing a $15,000 freeroll, and its been rumored that there might be quite a bit more on the line for the November Niners. In order to keep things interesting and competitive, there are last longer bets and a few other interesting props that I’ll try to keep track of.

The tournament just got underway, and with 30 minute levels and a 10k starting stack, this freeroll looks like it will take quite some time.

Stay tuned for a couple of updates throughout the day here, as well as a comprehensive post of the Tuesday’s events coming up. To keep up to date with the action, as well as watch a live stream featuring Joseph Cheong, Michael Mizrachi, Matt Jarvis and Lon McEachern, head on over to Foxwoods Live.

WSOP Revamps WSOP-Circuit schedule

Televised $10k regional championships, $1mm freeroll National Championship bracelet

by , Jul 12, 2010 | 11:05 am

The WSOP Circuit has had its share of ups and downs (mostly downs) in recent years as its relevance has waned a bit in the past few years with small fields in their $5,000 main events at various Harrah’s properties across the US.

The announcement of the 2010-11 WSOP Circuit schedule today brings about several major changes done to push the tournament series back into relevance. Changes include a drop in the buy-ins of the Circuit Main Events to $1,500, four $10,000 buy-in “regional championships” that will air on national television (ESPN?), and a $1,000,000 freeroll tournament at Caesars’ Palace in May 2011.

More information found in their press release on below:


Biggest Poker Tournament in Texas History This Weekend?

Dallas Cowboys fundraiser offering WSOP main event seat to freeroll winner

by , Feb 4, 2010 | 5:33 am

There could be 1,000 players or more gathered in South Dallas this Sunday, just a few blocks from Dallas Police Headquarters btw, competing for a WSOP main event seat in what’s being advertised as the biggest “True Freeroll Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament” in history

The event is technically a charity fundraiser for the much-respected DallasCAN! Academies around a Super Bowl viewing party. Tons of non-poker stuff and prize giveaways going on — and the freeroll poker tournement just happens to be part of it.

It took them like 6 years to figure out how to pull this off in a fully legal way, Big ups to all things Texas poker for this. Though like a McDonald’s Monopoly game, no purchase is necessary, they do offer a VIP upgrade that includes, among many things, extra chips for players in the tournament.

It all goes down at Gilley’s, which has much experience pulling off large poker events, though possibly never one this size before, featuring current Dallas Cowboy stars and tea legends:

Join celebrity athlete hosts and Dallas Can! Academy the 2010 DFW Big Game Watching Party!

Door prizes, spirits, food and legendary athletes all come together for the kids at the Can! Academies.

Hosted by:
Jason Witten,
Randy White,
Drew Pearson,
Stephen McGee and
Jay Novacek.

Sunday – February 7, 2010
Gilley’s – 1135 S Lamar St
Dallas, TX 75215

Fan Fest: Noon – 4PM
Game Watching Party: 3 – 10PM
Doors open to VIP at 3PM

Click here for the official

Click below for details on the poker tournament itself — going around my old hometown stomping grounds via email. Should be a pretty fascinating mix of amateur poker types and major players in the Dallas area trying to win their way (via an arguably soft field in a challenging blind structure) into the other Big Game this summer:


Tao of Pokerati: Champions Invitational

by , Jun 4, 2009 | 3:28 pm

As you may or may not know, Dr. Pauly skipped town for a few days to go “see a band” (WTF?) … That left Benjo and me to report on the final table of the Champions Invitational: Tom McEvoy beats Dan Harrington and Robert Varkonyi to win himself a Corvette and, of course, the plausibly coveted Binion Cup … providing him sellable items should he ever need a little bankroll stimulus. And we hear about Phil Hellmuth’s oddly graceful 10:1 hands-shaken to hands-played ratio as he, like Pauly, makes an early but not-so-unexpected exit at the WSOP … temporarily derailing an Angry Frenchman’s plans to stage a potentially violent coup.

Tao of Pokerati at the 40th WSOP
Las Vegas, NV

Episode 11.14: Early Exits

Brought to you by Phish Coventry and psilocybin.

Wynn Poker Room $50,000 April Free-Roll Tournaments

by , Mar 25, 2009 | 3:56 pm

The Wynn Las Vegas Poker Room is hosting $50,000 worth of Free-Roll Tournaments coming up in April.   To gain entry to one of the four weekly $12,500 Free-Roll Tournaments players must log at least 12 hours of live poker during the qualifying periods.  You can earn extra starting chips by playing more hours in the poker room, 12 to 16 hours of Live play start with 4,000 in chips, 16 to 20 hours get 5,000 in chips and 20 hours or more start with a 6,000 chip stack. For more information call the Wynn Poker Room at 702-770-7654 or visit

Tournament Dates & Qualifying Periods

Monday, April 6th at 12:00pm – Qualify between March 30 – April 5
Monday, April 13th at 12:00pm – Qualify between April 6 – April 12
Monday, April 20th at 12:00pm – Qualify between April 13 – April 19
Monday, April 27 at 12:00pm – Qualify between April 20 – April 26

April Free-Roll Payout Structure:

1st Place: $5,000
2nd Place: $2,000
3rd Place: $1,2 00
4th Place: $1,000
5th Place: $800
6th Place: $600
7th Place: $500
8th Place: $400
9th Place: $300
10th Place: $200
11th – 15th Place: $100

Poker vs. Pie

Battle for American(a) Values

by , Dec 11, 2008 | 3:27 pm

Who says poker and pie can’t peacefully co-exist in Branson?

The frontlines in the the War on Poker (or maybe now we should start calling it the War for Poker?) are always shifting … but currently there’s quite the firefight going in what might seem the most unlikely of places: Branson, Mo., which you may recall from an episode of The Simpsons, is “like Vegas … if it were run by Ned Flanders”.

At issue is what to do with upwards of a quarter-million dollars designated for a PR event to bring positive exposure to Branson tourism. With instructions from regional officials to think “outside the box”, the leading contender right now is a three-day “Great American Pie Show”. But the editor of the Branson Courier is calling instead for a squeaky good-clean $150,000 No-Limit Texas Hold’em freeroll.

What if that hand were playing against a hand that held one of the largest non-alcohol, smoke free, and free Texas Hold-em Tournaments ever, with a minimum of $150,000 in prizes? The governing word here being “free,” no pay to play. Given the same level of funding, promotion, and community effort as the pie show, in terms of the potential number of people that the event could bring to Branson and the value of the PR Branson could get, which ranks higher, the pie show or the tournament?

Nice! At first I was gonna kinda joke/be serious in saying they should definitely go with the pie. But then I kept reading what The Ole Seagull had to say (awesome name for an editor, btw), and realized this is an incredibly good sign when some of the most conservative folks in Americana (and poker’s opposition’s base) are starting to consider the game in the following context:

Now let’s not get all emotional, hostile, and judgmental about the morals of gambling and how it will destroy our community. We’re only talking about one three day event. Besides, isn’t gambling used for charitable purposes by some organizations within the Branson community to further the good works and services performed by them? That brings two things to mind.

The first is, “Would these organizations use gambling as a method to raise funds if they thought gambling was morally wrong, after all, what kind of example would that set for the community?” The second is, “Why base a charitable event around gambling in the first place?” An Ole Seagull would respectfully answer, in order, by saying, “No” and “Because it’s a fun entertainment thing that people like to do and helps attract people to the event.”

Last Chance to Run Good in the Run-Good Challenge

by , Dec 6, 2008 | 9:52 am

Missed the first week due to a PokerStars blog commitment and blew my second chance last weekend. Though I wasn’t the first one out of the PokerListings Run-Good Challenge v2 on PokerStars, I didn’t last long, as Liz Lieu took a good number of my chips, and Benjo finished the job. I asked them both to do something positive with those chips, and Benjo went on to win the thing.

Today is my last chance to qualify for the final tournament next weekend. There are three spots open, and I’m going to have to run goooood to make it there. I am donkey, hear me hee-haw. Wish me luck!

UPDATE: Out in 11th place. No finals for me (obv). Pokerati mate Dan put the biggest dent in my stack when he moved in with pocket sixes on a 7-4-3 board, and I called with pocket tens. Of course, the 5 hit on the turn, and I was hurtin’. It wasn’t long before I had to move with K-10 for my last few chips, and Short-Stacked Shamus took me out.

Thanks to the PokerListings guys for a fun challenge!

Head in the Game

Shrinky-dink takes down PLRGC2Ev1

by , Nov 24, 2008 | 1:49 pm

We love the guys at PokerListings more and more … not only do they bowl well and generally produce quality poker content, but also, they get it: They can buy a blogger’s affection by throwing freerolls with quality cash prizes at stake. Brilliant, as the British would say.

In the first go-round of the Run Good Challenge, the guys hosting the event dominated. Oops, not very hospitable. But they rolled the money over and then the ladies started winning, including Change100’s victory in the Grand Final. But in event #1 of Run Good Challenge 2: Electric Boogaloo, the one only semi-employed male in the field with firsthand memories of Bobby Riggs losing to Billie Jean King took it down — kudos to Dr. Tim for making a stand on behalf of chubby white bald men who, frankly, needed the inspiration to know, Yes We Can!

The Shrink won $600 for his Sunday-morning skills, fending off attacks from his writing partner Amy Calistri ($300) and longtime Pokerati fave Michele Lewis ($100).

California Jen, Liz Lieu, and Lacey Jones apparently missed the starting bell, but yours truly woke up to his PokerStars alarm this time — seriously, you get a rousing beep on the first hand if you register for the tourney pre-sleep and leave Stars running overnight — but couldn’t get his head fully in the game before pushing all-in with his Q3o vs. the eventual winner’s Q8s (on a flop of Q-8-x) … damn, finished 11th out of 14, which seems about right for how I played almost into Level 2.

Big Tourney Weekend

by , Sep 12, 2008 | 1:21 pm

There’s a lot of action going on, now and into this weekend …

First off, in the online world, the WCOOP (World Championship of Online Poker) is going on on PokerStars. You can rail it live as an observer on PokerStars itself, of course, or if you’ve got an offline life you can follow it semi-live on the PokerStarsBlog in the capable hands of our own California Jen and some of your other favorite bloggers (Change100, Tuscaloosa Johnny, Otis).

Believe it or not, they’ve also got “TV” coverage of these big online tourneys — they’re about halfway through 33 of them. Check it out right here if you’ve got a half-hour to kill:

The new PokerStars TV will also be all over the EPT Barcelona, which just got underway — including some live video coverage viewable on the internet, along with more traditional blog-coverage and chip updates.

On the salty side of the pond, the Borgata Poker Open is getting heated in Atlantic City. That’s where Pauly’s at. And he’s covering all the action (along with the ever-illustrative Tropical Steve and poker-media journeyman Michael Friedman) on the official Borgata Blog. The WPT main event kicks off on Sunday. The WPT has their own blog-crew coverage, too — something called “The Muck”.

Meanwhile, I’m stuck here in Vegas, where it’s a Freerollin’ Saturday for me:

I start the day in Event #2 of the PokerListings Run Good Challenge. Supposedly we’re having some blind-structure issues with PokerStars, but regardless, it will be a chance to redeem myself from my lackluster Event #1 performance.

Then, later tomorrow evening, it’s the grand-opening tourney at the Hard Rock, where I’ll be playing against Phil Hellmuth, Anjela Brunson, Rick Fuller, Scott Fischman, Scott Ian (of Anthrax), Jeremiah Smith, Andre Agassi, Montel Williams, Randy Couture, Jermaine O’neal, Paul Pierce, and others for an important motorcycle. Will be texting in updates via CSR should you care to follow my quest against a field that should be a combination of great and terrible, with a less-than-skill-friendly blind-structure.

Click below for more detailed info on the event itself, and the motorcycle.

It really is shaping up to be a Good Poker September.


“It Feels Good to Run Good!”

Or so I’ve been told …

by , Sep 10, 2008 | 6:15 pm

While Jen was slaving away covering the WCOOP on the PokerStarsBlog this weekend, I was extremely busy playing in a $1,000 freeroll on PokerStars (12 players max). I’m sure it won’t make her extra-happy to know that I overslept for this special-invite tourney and logged in with an M < 1. But that's what it took to make the final table -- playing tighter than ever. My stats en route to finishing 9th:

During current Hold’em session you were dealt 122 hands and saw flop:
– 0 out of 21 times while in big blind (0%)
– 0 out of 22 times while in small blind (0%)
– 2 out of 79 times in other positions (2%)
– a total of 2 out of 122 (1%)
Pots won at showdown – 1 of 2 (50%)
Pots won without showdown – 0

The series of events is called The Run Good Challenge — mad props to our friends at PokerListings for putting it on. 10 independent typists and two professional bloggers from Listings … duking it out in a game of online hungry-hungry hippo for real American cash:

Event 1: NLHE, regular Stars Structure (Sept 6)
Event 2: NLHE, turbo structure (Sept 13)
Event 3: NLHE/PLO, regular structure (Sept 20)
Grand Final: NLHE Deep Stack structure (Sept 27)

For the three prelims the top three spots will pay: $600, $300, $100. Grand final will consist of top five performers from external bloggers plus best of Dan or myself and will pay all six spots: $1,000, $650, $400, $200, $150, $100.

Sweet, no? Be sure to click below for “live” chatlog coverage from the feature table — kinda interesting to see how entertaining poker can be when you eliminate the hands. (And gives you disturbing insight into the sick minds of bloggers competing in a tournament that couldn’t happen at the WSOP without the entire final table being sent to the penalty box.)


Pussycat Dolls & Poker

by , Jul 28, 2008 | 11:51 pm

I think I had you at the first five letters…

Evidently, the Pussycat Dolls are being paid enough to like to play poker, and they are willing to do it with the winner(s) of this contest on bwin poker. The first two winners will fly to a mysterious place called PokerIsland to spend the weekend at a luxurious villa with the Pussycat Dolls from August 16-19. It seems that every week, two more freeroll winners will make the trip, all leading up to a grand finale of some sort in October, the winner of which will be a year-long sponsored player of the bwin team.

1. Has anyone had any experience with bwin?
2. Did anyone read anything I wrote after Pussycat Dolls?

Sounds like a fun contest. And if you can take a guest, consider Dan, who just might need a vacation from his vacation per his CSR posts.

UPDATE: PokerIsland seems to be in Ibiza, Spain.

(Way) Outside the WSOP – (Day 33)

by , Jul 1, 2008 | 7:32 am

What’s been happening at the WSOP since last night, while Dan Michalski anxiously awaits his attempt to make good on his $300 All-In “investment”:

The $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha final table has been set, this group of 9 faces the hot lights of the ESPN cameras:

Seat 1: Kido Pham 1,080,000
Seat 2: Brandon Moran 1,286,000
Seat 3: Peter Jetten 492,000
Seat 4: Michael Mizrachi 1,767,000
Seat 5: Billy Argyros 729,000
Seat 6: Greg Hurst 637,000
Seat 7: Tom Hanlon 192,000
Seat 8: Marty Smyth 1,068,000
Seat 9: Richard Harroch 372,000

The other final table scheduled for today and the other tournament action on the next page:

Dan Freerolling his way into the money

by , Jul 1, 2007 | 4:10 pm

Ok, so it doesn’t compare to any of Tom’s 3 2007 WSOP Final Table appearances, but Dan talked his way into (apparently name dropping Tom Schneider helps) won his way into a freeroll tournament with total cash prizes of $12,000. Dan is was the chip leader with 8 people left when he texted the following update:

Lost the chip lead. AA – no action. Next hand AA again – cracked by 88. Fold the next hand.. KK next – loses to AQ. Medium stack now. 8 left. Glad I took the guaranteed $1,200. Top 4 get more.

Sounds like Dan ran into some incredibly horrible bad luck, but he’s still in the hunt to take the top prize.

Update from Dan:

4 left. I am short stack. Guaranteed $1,600. Winner will get $600 more.

Final Update:

4th place, but because of multi chops I won the most money – $1,600. James Earl Jones was also in the top 4. His voice is almost as good as Karridy’s.

Dan learned an important lesson today: Resistance against Darth Vadar is futile.

If Dan can cash in another event he’ll he recoup his Blackjack losses – good luck with that.

posted by proxy via SitNGoSteve