Posts Tagged ‘Jackies’

Best Poker Lawyers?

by , Oct 29, 2008 | 3:26 pm

Big Chris the Commenter went to trial yesterday for his presence in the Aces bust in Dallas (June 2006), and he’s requesting an attorney recommendation.

I’ve gone ahead and passed on the name and number of Brady Wyatt, in Dallas, mostly because my fellow high school alum is the one accomplished poker attorney — president-elect of the Dallas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and undefeated in the Jackie’s cases he represented — who’s contact info I had handy. (Brady also played a little nickle-dime-quarter mixed games with me back in the late ’80s/early ’90s.)

I know there are others though, some with even much more experience handling poker cases in Dallas and elsewhere around the country. I figure we might as well start compiling a list … so if you have any poker attorneys to recommend, or if you are one actively taking on poker cases, please let us know here.

UPDATE: The PPA has a litigation support network for its members.

Lee Rousso has handled some of the bigger poker cases out there, most recently online issues in Washington state. We’ll add him to the list.

Breaking News: Dallas Poker Bandits Strike Again

by , Apr 11, 2008 | 9:53 pm

Another North Dallas poker room apparently just got robbed about two hours ago — the gunmen making off with more than $10,000 in cash, watches, cell phones, and at least one bracelet.

The 15/30 Omaha game had just broken a little after 10 pm central and a full 2/5 NLH table was going strong when players heard Smash! Crash! “What the fuck?!?” one player screamed.

“I know what that is,” another player answered as he ran toward the back room and others followed. It sounded like a police raid — we all remember how the cops busted through the walls at Jackie’s on semi-live TV — only this time it was robbers. Two armed black males wearing ski masks and hoodies came busting through glass windows and sheet rock to enter through the smoking room. Players looked for an escape in the seconds that followed, but there was no back door. This game – located in an office building near the Galleria – was relatively new … had been open just a few months … and seemed plenty secure with a two-door entry system monitored by cameras.

“Where’s the fucking money at?” the lead thug shouted as he emerged from the smoking room into the main area and made his way to the gace.

“There are a couple 50s beneath the drawer,” on of the room operators said.

Four or five players had crammed into a supply closet in the back room and locked the door behind them. Huddling together in the dark, they scrambled to find places to hide their wallets. One player had wedged his in some plastic wrap behind a stack of plates just a few seconds before the robbers realized there were people in there and ordered them out. They were told to lay on the ground with their faces to the floor – all complied – at which point the other robber frisked them one-by-one for their valuables while his accomplice made a quick check of the closet but apparently found none of the stashed goods.

The whole robbery lasted just a few minutes … as of last night, no decision had been made about whether or not to call the police, which you can suspect whoever is behind this latest string of poker robberies is partially banking on.

Comfort Food

by , Feb 23, 2008 | 12:00 pm


North Texas fireworks kingpin Ran Nelson brought his tight-aggressive Dallas game recently to the Mandalay Bay.

Though I haven’t been writing much about anything it, I have been hitting the tables here in Vegas. Have sampled a handful of rooms and action … spreading the lore of the Hammer and the Sang all along the way, of course, as I seek to replace the competitive camaraderie of the Batface home game perhaps with something akin to Jackie’s back in the (Dallas underground hey)day.

That came easier than usual this week, when TBR-bro-in-law Patrick came to town. He was staying at the Luxor, so we met up at Cathouse for a drink. (Cathouse is basically like the Lodge without the nipples, and Celeb-chef Kerry Simon in place of Jose Luis.) A couple Lagavulins later, we walked over to Mandalay Bay, where we took two seats together at a $2/$4 no-limit table. This was bigger stakes than either of us had been playing, but hey, we were feelin’ half-drinky good, and it seemed a better option than waiting, as the room was totally full and festive on a Thursday night. A familiar face was seated with us – Ran Nelson, a very good Dallas player whom I hadn’t seen since the days of Jackie’s – what a delight. He had a new cardmarker, a square block of acrylic with his little Stuey guy inside of it, surrounded by chips from the various important poker rooms to Ran, including WinStar in Oklahoma and the old Sixth Street in Dallas.

I was playing great – more-than-doubled up in about an hour by trapping a well-stacked opponent in classic Dan-style … but then was back to square 1 a few hands later when I got unlucky on the turn … and back to square 0 when I don’t remember what I did but I am pretty sure it was stupid, starting with playing the likes of [cards]qs 4s[/cards].

Mandalay Bay
$2/$4 NLH
Buy-in: $300
Cash out: $0
Food: starved
Drinks: $28
Net: -$328


Poker in the Courts

by , Jul 30, 2007 | 11:09 am

Today’s a big day for poker in Dallas County. Sorta. Some cases from JB’s/Goodfellows are at the Dallas County Courthouse right now. I don’t have many details — perhaps some of the defendants can fill us in as their cases get postponed/settled/dismissed (or otherwise adjudicated, of course).

Perspective forthcoming …

UPDATE: All cases against players dismissed. Charges against dealers and room operators put on deferred adjudication … meaning if they can stay clear of running a poker room for 90 days, all problems will go away.

Cash Game Report

by , Jul 29, 2007 | 8:15 am

LAS VEGAS–Funny how being in Las Vegas has put me so out of touch with all the poker news. I think there are some big tournaments going on, online poker execs in the courts, business deals shaking down, but I’ve got little to report other than poker being played. Still, it’s been kinda interesting to see who you run into at the tables around this town:

The first notable I ran into was OREL HERSHEISER, who apparently just moved here to Las Vegas and sat to my left in a 1/2 NLH game at RED ROCK — fresh after being denied selection into the baseball HALL OF FAME. I tried to play the not-knowing-who-he-is thing — “You lost a vote? Were you running for city council or congress or something?” — but he would end up busting me out when I tried to run a little STOP-N-GO. As I pushed all-in, he asked, “How much money do you have?”

“Um, I’m all-in. About $140 more,” I said, pointing to my stacks.

“No, I mean other money. Because we can make a little side-bet away from the table,” he said, upon showing me THE NUTS.

Red Rock seems to be the OFF-STRIP place to be. On my second post-WSOP outing there, I ran into GARY THOMPSON — World Series of Poker media master and tournament overlord. He was wearing comfortable jeans, loafers, and a button-down shirt while playing 2/5 NLH. With about $800 in front of him, he said he was “down a couple hundred.” But it wouldn’t take long for him to grow his stacks, and a few hours later, he had moved up to the 5/10 game and had what looked to be about $2k.

On that same day, I saw A GUY I BUSTED at the Rio. He was a good player who went with the whole BLACK HOODIE and SUNGLASSES kinda thing, while saying almost nothing and acting with stoic (but angry) CHRIS FERGUSON-like motions. He was playing 1/2 NLH and nursing about $200.

Over at THE VENETIAN in the 2/5 game, I found myself up against a WSOP Dealer — SHAI the ISRAELI GUY. He was sick when I pushed all-in and convinced him to fold his top-pair-top-kicker that would turn into TOP BOAT … only to see the guy who took down the pot from me win with KING-HIGH. A couple hours later I was playing a goofy hand with K-6 offsuit in late position, the flop came K-7-K … he checks, I bet, he raises big, I call. Turn is a 6, he pushes all-in, I call … at which point he shows his POCKET 7s. The table cheers for a FOURTH SEVEN, but it doesn’t come and I send him to the ATM.

One table over, KARINA JETT’S MOTHER was playing — beyond her typical quiet game, she was practically falling asleep at the table (at 3 AM) while nursing about $400. She may not remember this, but she won a $15 PROP BET from me once over a RULES DISPUTE. (My bad … I thought I knew stuff.)

abraham1.jpgBack at RED ROCK a couple days later, I ran into ABRAHAM, and he really deserves his own post, because he tilted the table unlike anything I had ever seen — and even managed to invoke mockery from a cute young girl who wasn’t playing. Basically imagine the worst personality and poker characteristics of ME, TIM ROGERS and EON MARSHALL all wrapped up into an obnoxious kid who graduated from high school in 2003 and is well aware that he looks like STU UNGAR. Then give him a lot of chips. (His behavior and play was so table-altering it had me interrupting TOM SCHNEIDER’S vacation in ST. THOMAS for some emergency coaching … who advised me well until I played back without paying attention to a guy to my left who had pocket kings.)

I really wanted to KILL THIS KID, or at least make him cry. And so did everyone else — especially the old (presumably) gay man who he busted by calling a $260 raise pre-flop with 2-3 suited only to flop two threes. But he can’t be all that bad, because without provoking from me, he at one point shouted, “THE HAMMER!” with glee. Hey kid, if you are reading this, what I told you at the table after you “bluffed” me with pocket-5s and then taunted (it took me a good five minutes to lay down Ace-high) still applies: “I look forward to seeing you get your education.” Punk-ass. Like seriously, you had at least two of us at the table contemplating how one might go about rolling you in the parking lot.

One of the cool things about Red Rock is that when you need to shake off a bad beat or just step away from a dipshit the table to refocus, you can go BOWL A GAME 24 hours a day — for $3 +$3.50 for shoes. That seems like positive EV.

The picture above is from a day I didn’t actually play poker … but I did walk through the poker room just for funsies after bowling, and whom should I run into but NOLAN DALLA, longtime Dallas poker expat and WSOP media guru, legendary sports handicapper, and Stu Ungar biographer. He was wearing CARGO SHORTS, a frumpled shirt, and seemed pleasantly drinky while playing 5/10 NLH with a couple old friends from POKERSTARS.

“I’m stuck $800 but having a great time!” he screamed upon embracing me with a BEAR HUG. “Isn’t this a great casino!?! Hey everybody, it’s Dan from Pokerati!”


“Oh, right …” Nolan said. “Didn’t mean to blow your cover.”

I also ran into STEVE HALL one night at Red Rock, too. He was playing PENNY VIDEO SLOTS. He had a big hit of some sort of crazy picture combinations that won him about $60.

And then to top it all off, I went to CAESAR’S PALACE with DON JONES (of Rounder Club fame), LEIGH & BRIAN from the Poker Atlas , DOCTOR STEVE, and former Absolute Poker marketing chick JEN TIDWELL to play in their 50-player-max $65 tourney. We all had 10 percent of each other, which proved irrelevant as our top player would bubble.

I was the first to bust out (of the tournament) and would take a seat playing some 2/5. Of all the poker tables in Las Vegas … what are the chances that DAN BALLENGER (aka HONG KONG SUE, father of SON OF SUE) would get seated at my table? It would take more than a full orbit before he realized he was sitting with a fellow BATFACE. He bought in for $500 and cashed out a couple hours later for a little less than that. HKS got most of those chips from me … calling a $100 bluff with second-pair-no-kicker (what was I THINKING!?!) … and then bluffing me out of a $400+ pot on the river, getting me to lay down aces. He mucked at the time, but told me as he left that he pushed all-in for his remaining $135 with an underpair. Wish I hadn’t asked, because it had me semi-tilting for a good 30 minutes or more. I know he was just trying to be nice, but still …

Then JASON from JACKIE’S (in Dallas) and “RICKY ZILEM” showed up. They were just walking through checking out the action. Fancy running into these guys here. Chris/Ricky, said, “I did what nobody does when they first land in Vegas and took a nap.”

Ah, indeed.

Small world. Good times.

8 Texans … ship it!

by , Jul 14, 2007 | 7:25 pm

LAS VEGAS–Throughout history, the WSOP has been dominated by Texans and Jews. At least one side is doing its part to keep that up this year, as eight Texans made it through to Day 5. One guy who probably didn’t get the coverage he deserved is Jared Hamby, known both live and online as “The Waco Kid.” Like Josh Evans, he too happens to be a Jackie’s alum. (Funny to me how reminisces of Jackie’s sound the same as non-Texan reminisces of PartyPoker. Ahh, yes, the good-old-days [of 2006] … )

Anyhow, mad props to Hamby, who finished in 88th place, winning $82,476.

Pokeratizen Watch

by , Jul 13, 2007 | 3:44 am

LAS VEGAS–Play has ended for the day, and Josh Evans is alive and well with exactly 400,000 chips — a still comfortably above average stack a slightly above average stack (briefly forgot they started with 20,000 this year), but way behind the chip leaders. (Ten players are already above a million.) He was into the 600s for a while, but gave a healthy chunk to the guy on his left. “I hate this table,” he told me. It had on it the aforementioned big stack, Humberto Brenes, Tobey Maguire, and an online phenom/Jackie’s alum I am learning more about named “The Waco Kid.”

Fortunately for Josh, his table was broken as players bagged their chips for the night … so we’ll see where he starts the day tomorrow — 337 players remain.


by , Jul 11, 2007 | 4:40 pm

UPDATE (4:39 pdt): JOSH EVANS still kicking ass. 300k in chips puts him near the top.

LAS VEGAS–Day 2b action is well underway about to get underway. In fact, it probably already will be so by the time this post is finished. It rained last night in Las Vegas — I knew it would!

Today, like yesterday, is all about the serious, “somber” poker. Most of the folks who got chips early by getting lucky will be getting knocked out. Short stacks will consistently be all-in. And serious players with a real chance of going deep will figure out if they’ll be nursing their chips into the money or making moves to put them in a position to really contend.

2007 WSOP Player of the Year TOM SCHNEIDER, by the way, is out. Happened a few hands after the dinner break, at which point he told me he was so beat down from the World Series that he didn’t really care if he got eliminated, because it would mean he could go home. Shocking with that attitude that he didn’t win.

Perhaps RANDY BROWN will do better. He starts today with 67,000 chips.

UPDATE: TBR is out. Lost every hand he played, he says. Got it all-in on the button, pushing with pocket 9s into a single-limped pot. The small blind woke up with Kings, the big blind with Aces. The BATFACES officially go 0-fer in the 2007 WSOP, but win the award for best hats.

Better luck next year, “The Big Randy.” You seem to have Day 1 figured out, but can’t make it through Day 2 with terrible cards unless you have a tiny, tiny stack.

TBR, by the way, was sitting virtually back-to-back with SHANNON ELIZABETH throughout Day 1. Nice! Go Poker!

Oops, zoom lens malfunction … Anyhow, yes, SHANNON ELIZABETH is out.

JOSH EVANS (below, left) will be a guy to really watch, as he carries 240,000 chips into Day 2 … with the money just a day-and-a-half only a day away.

And another North Texas pokerer fighting to make it to the pre-money bubble is JERRY RANDACK (right). Considering that he took 2nd place in the 2007 Pokerati Invitational, we like his chances.

Dallas big-game player PRIMO is also still alive. He’s seen here tearing up the $5/$10 NLH cash game (moments away from bluffing — oops! — away more than $1,300 in a hand).

We’re still looking for VANDY CROUCH — seen here, cashing in the 6-handed No-Limit event — who is rumored to be protecting some 240,000 chips.

UPDATE: I mean not like right now. He finished Day 2a with about that many. He makes it to Day 3 — where the fight for the money begins!

For those who may have missed it, ROUNDER CLUB representative CHRIS COMO did not move on to day 2. Despite building up his stacks and taking control of his table, he got beat down toward the end of the day, and, in the end, surrendered them to online powerhouse CARL OLSON.

Morning-After Pics: Jackie’s

by , Nov 21, 2006 | 6:54 am

Jackie’s was probably more of a “family” game than any other. (BIG family, but still.) Anyhow, if you were one of the people who considered this place your home, you may not want to look at the pictures below. All kinda sad, really. Shortly after these were taken, Jackie’s was apparently looted — with thieves taking a big-screen TV, leather couches, office chairs, pots and pans, and pretty much everything else that Dallas SWAT didn’t leave behind.

By the way, “Jackie” … I am pretty sure you did not get arrested — just “the kids” did. So just a heads-up … I think the cops are looking for you, FYI.


Firsthand Account: Jackie’s

by , Nov 18, 2006 | 6:25 am

jackie's after poker bust
Jackhammers? Are you serious, jackhammers? I mean machine guns and shields are one thing, but tools that could be better used for road repair?

From Steve, a Pokerati commenter:

Jackies was busted tonight…I was there…Dallas SWAT kicking in wall of glass with jackhammers…mask…automatic weapons…the whole nine yards. News cameras waiting as I left with my ticket asking if I had anything to say for the camera. I said know threw my jacket over my head and walked off…but I did shout back…”guess it’s a lot safer to bust a poker game than to raid something dangerous and catch some real criminals”. So sad…so true. In my humble opinion, the driving “force” behind these raids is not the law. It’s the Oklahoma and probably even the Louisiana Poker rooms putting money into some politicians pocket! That’s the real crime.

Steve, though I agree with your sentiment, and we’ll find out if the new Dallas DA does too (he says he’s interested in stopping real crime) … I’m not sure your retort will hold up in a court of law. But thanks for giving Pokerati the info you wouldn’t give the local news. These raids seemed to all go down simultaneously (at about 10:30) … and the guys at Jackie’s, I consider many of them good poker friends.

BREAKING NEWS: Dallas Poker Busts, Round 2

by , | 5:51 am

Three Dallas rooms got raided tonight. Jackie’s, JB’s, and Ace-High. SWAT teams, machine guns, arrests, and TV news cameras. I suspect some folks will be getting out of jail soon. Feel free to be in touch. Especially people who may have snapped pictures with their cell phones. Pokerati will continue to post as we find out information, so check back for updates.

The “dallas poker raids” tag will carry the latest.

I suspect you’ll also find some good information at the Weston Poker Forum.

This seems to be the second big blow to the Dallas poker scene. The first one being the Aces raid in June … and then the Dallas SWAT team sat back, let the Dallas scene regroup before … pop-pop-pop! Fortunately, no one got killed.

For some recent discourse on the status of the original Aces cases, click here.


That’s it … I’m done playing crappy cards

by , Aug 29, 2006 | 12:07 pm

So I decided to kick it old school last night. I went to “JR’s” for a cash game. Things had changed in the many months since I had played there — the game is no longer 1/2/5 … it’s back to 1/2 again. But with lots of straddling and re-straddling. More than half the faces at the table were the same, as if they hadn’t left for the better part of a year.

I bought in for $200, and on my very first hand, I got the hammer. Sweet! I made a small raise and got a couple callers. I flopped 2nd pair and bet it out … and got a caller. (Dude was likely on a flush draw, so I probably didn’t want to see a 4th heart.) A third seven came out on the turn, and life was looking really good. Awesome. Check-check. The fourth heart did come on the river, giving me a 2-high flush. My opponent in the hand came out betting $50 … and bummer, I had to fold. But yea, I got to do it face-up.

But that didn’t do much for me. Why? Because the other guy had flopped a straight-flush — good enough for a high hand jackpot, and good enough to beat me. Everyone was looking at his cards … and I got no credit for playing shit. I mean yeesh … the hand still worked out OK, because I didn’t lose much. But I could’ve just as well had aces in this case, and it woulda been the same. Damn.

From there I proceeded to play pretty good poker. But the killer came when it was getting very pre-flop raisy, and I decided I was going to spend some money to see a flop with 7-10 offsuit in late position. Somebody made it $25 to go, and I called. So did three others. So with $125 already in the pot, I was pretty delighted to see a flop of 7-8-10 (two diamonds). I had to be afraid of a set, but it was clear the first to act (the same guy who had flopped the straight-flush against me) had nothing when he checked. Next in line was Nic the Straddler … who was very talky talky as he checked. OK, he wouldn’t have checked a set, so after some fake consternation, I moved all-in (for $280) … sure to use the exact same gestures I used when getting caught bluffing about an hour earlier.

First guy folded, and Nic sized up our stacks, and relatively quickly called, saying, “I’ve got the nuts.” Indeed he did. J-9 offsuit. Crap.

Being the nice guy he is, he offered to run it twice, but I declined … thinking if I’m gonna get lucky and win it, I’m gonna get lucky and win it. No way I could do that twice, so why gamble for a split? (I’m not sure, but I think this is the right non-double-play play. Any thoughts on the matter?)

Anyhow, I got no help and went home.

Just like old times.

Buy-in(s): $400 (2)
Cash out: $0
Net: -$400

Highlight: Friendly Asians.

Not-So-Historic Poker

by , Jul 16, 2006 | 12:32 pm

There was a big tournament that didn’t finish up until 11 am Dallas time yesterday. Chip Reese whittled away Andy Bloch to take the super-prestigious HORSE event bracelet. But that wasn’t the only tourney going on at the WSOP. While the HORSE final table was coming to a conclusion, so was the $225 second-chance tourney. By the time I had to take off for the airport, Josh from Jackie’s (in Dallas) was kicking ass.

It was a true “second chance” event for him. Josh had busted out of the $2k NLHE event relatively early. So he bought in to the second-chance with a drink-lots-of-tequila strategy in place. But with that, he accumulated a lot of chips. And eventually he decided, holy shit, I better shift gears. At that point it was all about Red Bull and massages. At the final table, he was a decidedly big stack after having knocked out more than a dozen people …