Posts Tagged ‘The Venetian’

NAPT, Venetian Part Ways over Row in Carson City

by , May 28, 2010 | 1:45 pm

The first in a four-part series about Nevada Gaming wrangling with a new era of poker regulation as Harrah’s and PokerStars fight …

The inaugural NAPT-Venetian was by most accounts a smashing success. PokerStars announced the tournament in January, and less than six weeks later — at a time when big-money players usually would be heading to California for the WPT-Commerce — 872 entrants made it to the Venetian for a televised $5k main event in Las Vegas.

(The February event, and others from the fledgling North American Poker Tour, are currently airing on ESPN-2 and TSN, the leading sports television channel in Canada.)

But it wasn’t the field size, TV cameras, or $4.1 million prize pool that made the NAPT-Venetian special … it was that the Las Vegas tournament was “presented by PokerStars”. Dot net.

Perhaps surprisingly, because we see so much PokerStars on TV … this was the first time since the UIGEA that a licensed Nevada casino partnered with PokerStars (or any site like it) for a major open tournament.

Its success didn’t go unnoticed. And that may prove to be the problem for PokerStars and the North American Poker Tour, as the inaugural NAPT-Venetian will probably — almost certainly — be the last.


Cards in/on the Air

The Poker Beat

by , Jan 9, 2010 | 6:48 pm

The Poker Beat is back … (attempting) to make sense of all that is going on in the poker world. In this episode, BJ, Huff, and I discuss (at length) PokerStars’ record-setting 149,000 player $1 tourney; the opening of the Aria poker room (and what this may or may not mean over at the Bellagio); the ridiculousness of 17 $1k rebuy tourneys at Bellagio’s upcoming 5-star Classic; everything that is the PCA; PokerStars getting in bed with the Venetian for the new NAPT; and over at Full Tilt, all things Isildur … and, of course, the second red-pro suspension of Brian Townsend.

The Poker Beat
Huff, Nemeth, Michalski

[audio:] subscribe via iTunes

BTW, a little breaking-ish news on this episode — and perhaps an indication of the perceived threat of the NAPT-Venetian, which just so happens to coincide with the LAPC, the usual early-year destination for the LA-LV poker masses … anyone who buys into the $10k WPT-LAPC main event at the Commerce before February 19 now will receive a seat in the televised $200k WPT Invitational. Neato!

PokerStars makes the NAPT a reality

by , Jan 6, 2010 | 8:18 am

Several years after it was initially proposed, the NAPT, presented by PokerStars, is now actually happening with Joanna Krupa being their host. The PCA currently taking place in the Bahamas is the first tour stop, with the Venetian holding the first NAPT in the US with a $5,000 Main Event taking place February 20-24 as part of their DeepStack Extravaganza (running against the LA Poker Classic). Their next stop will be held at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut in April, with a series of 20 tournaments with buyins ranging from $200 to a $25,000 “High Roller” event. Their main event will also consist of a $5,000 buyin. More details can be found over at the and this clip from PokerNews:

The Future of Gambling?

Doyle Brunson Meets Cantor Fitzgerald

by , Dec 13, 2009 | 2:30 pm

This (long) weekend’s #WPBT festivities are coming to a close … and as I type the poker bloggers are gathered for Sunday football at Lagasse’s Stadium in the Palazzo. There some of them are experiencing, for the first time, what many say is the future of gambling: handheld, semi-portable real-money action.

A new-ish device, “eDeck”, lets you gamble Blackberry/iPhone-style theoretically from anywhere, but currently within the confines of three Las Vegas casinos — the Venetian, Palazzo, and M Resort. Global Gaming Business Magazine named it Best Table Game Product or Innovation for 2009. And none other than Doyle Brunson has been pimping it:


New Poll: Who Has the Best Blind Structures?

by , Nov 23, 2009 | 3:30 pm

@AllenKessler loves a good blind structure, and may or may not love to bitch about those in successful tourneys he’s not even playing in. Regardless, he’s answered @SavagePoker‘s call to reassess the popular deep-stacks format by trying to start a twitter flame war on behalf of … well, that much we’re not so sure about, but we haven’t seen such a fun Battle of the Tweets since @EskimoClark vs. @BigRussPoker (whose account has apparently been suspended?).

We may or may not get around to taking a closer look at the finer nuances of currently popular blind structs, but in the meantime we wanna know, unscientifically, of course, from a tournament blinds perspective, where you think the best place is to play. Daily voting to your right.

Oh, and then just for fun, be sure to check out the delightfully mock-a-vellian @ComplainSaw.

More Poker around Town

by , Oct 22, 2009 | 2:57 am

This one isn’t for a special occasion or tournament or anything … just pretty standard 5th-floor parking at the Venetian on any given Wednesday:

This player is not nearly as creative as he thinks he is.

Sports Legends Challenge Shuts Doors after Venetian Lawsuit

Unofficially canceled-canceled, not “postponed”

by , Oct 5, 2009 | 1:12 pm

PokerNews probably woulda prefered their name were never attached to this event.

The Venetian sued the parent company of the Sports Legends Challenge last week in Clark County Court, claiming the operation skipped out on a contract to the tune of $174k.

And now, according to at least one disgruntled former employee and phones no longer being answered, the operation full-on shut down today.

We can only imagine, that this is just the beginning of the fallout, actually.

Think about it … you’ve got two lawsuits regarding the set-up of the event … and we haven’t even gotten to the Bahamas yet!

Whether or not there was any fraud-like criminal activity in this multimillion-dollar-semi-bluff-gone-awry remains to be seen. Two lawsuits aside, potential additions to the got-screwed list include:

— Player who bought in
— Investors
— Charities hosting casino events promising SLC seats as prizes
— Players who won those seats
— Players who chopped and paid cash for the extra portion of those seats
— Poker pros who fronted their own travel costs

Anyone else?


Where to Play and Eat for a Semi-Worky, Semi-Fun Weekend in Las Vegas

by , Aug 21, 2009 | 11:20 am

The Antiscouse writes in seeking some info that I figure should share with all of you, too … because really, what more do Pokeratizens wanna know beyond the latest law, politics, tournament results where should I play and eat when coming to Las Vegas?

Headed your way for the weekend, was hoping at the last second to get your recommendations on 1) tournaments and 2) sushi places to take guest/client. As for tournaments, playing one Friday somewhere during the day, not sure where yet- thoughts? Used to play the Caesars noon $330, didn’t like it last time so thought I’d branch out.

A slightly embellished version of my response to The Antiscouse:

1) Tournaments (Friday day)

Venetian $150 nooner
7,500 starting chips and 30-minute levels. It’s actually a daily event that usually draws 75-or-so runners throughout the week, but on Fridays it has been running closer to 150 players with first-place payouts around $8k.

Since you don’t dig the Caesar’s $330, you might also wanna check out the Bellagio daily events, and if you’re willing to go up against a smaller field with fewer prize payouts, the Hard Rock is in the last few days of their inaugual MegaStacks series — where all the events have been turned into $340s.

For a complete and semi-regularly updated list of Las Vegas daily and weekly tournaments + special events, go here.

2) Sushi

Nobu (at Hard Rock) is my personal favorite. Tasty. Sexy. Fun.

Simon (at Palms Place) is also one of my favorite restaurants in town … though it’s not pure sushi … it’s like Asian fusion with homegrown American steaks and stuff, and it’s away from the casino, which may be more appealing to me than you and your client.

Sushi Roku in Caesar’s Forum Shoppes is great food … but the price-to-portions ratio makes you feel like you’re at more of a French restaurant, and the long walk through a shopping mall to get there may be unappealing to smokers.

The sneaky, ooh, wouldn’t have thought of that place … Koi at Planet Hollywood.

UPDATE: 143 runners at Venetian today — Tagg finished 22nd (18 got paid). Hopefully better results TK for sushi.

Venetian Deep Stacks Booming, Too

Record DSE field today

by , May 29, 2009 | 8:12 pm

Don’t forget that the WSOP isn’t the only big poker action going on in town right now. The Venetian has its own not-so-mini series of poker four times a year, the third of which kicked off today.

Event #1 ($300+30 NLH) of the 2009 Deep Stack Extravaganza III had a record 700 entrants — compared to 337 for the same event last year.

Total prize pool: $202,650. 1st Place: $56,743. Paying 63 spots.

(Not sure where the $1,650 overlay comes from.)

We actually had a Team Pokerati player in the field — Cliff Fisher, aka @brdpoker — but he made it only halfway through the field (and halfway through the first level in the second-chance tourney). Cliff plays in the WSOP $1,000 Stimulus tourney on Sunday, btw.

We’ll also see if we can’t find out how the other Little Big Tourneys are doing — specifically the Grand Series of Poker at the Golden Nugget, and the Caesar’s Megastacks.

Deep Stacks Heads-Up Mini-Marathon

by , Apr 26, 2009 | 3:31 am

Remember back in the poker-boom day when an $85,000 difference in payout seemed to mean so little? Me neither. Anyhow, we’re nearing 5 hours into heads-up, and the average stack is now about 50 big blinds. There’ve been many lead shifts, and for awhile it looked like Lee was getting delirious and about to bite it. But he just doubled up and, by his own report, is “back in the game!”

NOTE: I was gonna make a compare-and-contrast joke about heads-up blind structures with the WPT Championship going on tonight/yesterday … but apparently they had quite the heads-up battle there, too … with Yevgeniy Timoshenko requiring 79 hands to dispose of Ran Azor for the World Championship. (Seriously, is that a record for WPT heads-up battles?)

UPDATE: It’s over. Baldwin wins.

Watch the vid below to see why Pokerati is clearly no ESPN:

Venetian Small Stacks Report

by , | 2:57 am

Adam Schacter (bald, right) negotiating a 1st-place chop.

Kinda fun … with action still grinding away at the big table, our boy Adam Schacter just won the nightly. Nice! (And making a final table is always a good way to become “our boy”, fyi.) Actually he chopped when they were down to three players … but as the chip leader in that situation, he gets credit for the win and takes home more than $3k. Second place got about $2,700 … with third getting about $2,000.

Schacter, of course, is an ancillary Batface (kinda like a “Friend of Full Tilt”) who made four final tables in Pokerati Invitationals and DSOP’s. He was in town for a wedding and hadn’t played poker since August when he bought into this $120 event on a whim.

Venetian Deep Stacks Report

by , | 2:44 am

I still don’t know who won the WPT World Championship over at the Bellagio OK, now I do … I’m too caught up in the main event of the Venetian Deep Stacks … where it really is kinda interesting seeing seasoned pro Doug Lee (wow, remember when a WSOP Circuit event used to pay more than half a million? Me neither!) duking it out with relatively unknown tournament pro Eric Baldwin (“Basebaldy” online). They’ve been playing heads-up for nearly two four hours, with their stacks relatively even and each having more than 70 60 big blinds. Very real poker being played here … with an extra sigh of WSOP buy-in relief going to the winner. ($198k for 1st, $115k for second.)

Such a big game going on in the back corner of the Venetian poker room, and yet so few people seem to have a clue about the action taking place. (Floor staff gave up on calling the hand-for-hand action a couple hours ago.) Meanwhile, the nightly $120 (where Pokerati fave Adam Schacter is still alive with 6 remaining) has more railbirds.

A few interesting tidbits about the Deep Stacks main event:

— The underdog, Baldwin, has a bigger crowd watching, with 4 to 5 viewers, compared to Lee’s 0 to 1.

— Michael Skomac, the winner of February’s Venetian Deep Stacks main event, finished 4th.

— “Known” pros in the money today included Sam Grizzle (23rd) and Michael Mizrachi (16th).

— The (plenty drinky) crew sweating Baldwin includes Cody Slaubaugh (on a tear of late), Adam Geyer from Austin, Justin Young (who finished 8th in the WPT World Championship this weekend), and Shannon Shorr (who finished 5th in the WPT Championship today). Needless to say, these guys are all having a good weekend and month … with nearly $1 million in winnings amongst them … probably more if you include their online tournament results.

Double Amateur Poker

by , | 12:25 am

It’s always fun running into people unexpectedly … happens regularly here in Vegas and today I noticed Lodge player Jerry Dolan (left) playing in the nightly $120 tourney at the Venetian … and when I went to snap a picture, lo and behold the player seated to his left was Adam Schacter (right), another occasional Lodge player and a final tableist in the 2005 Pokerati Invitational. They didn’t know each other … but would get to know each other in the end, as Schacter busted Dolan in this 129-player event.

Too funny! Small (poker) world. And good luck to Adam, as he’s currently chip leader with 19 players remaining.

Pro Poker, Too

So lots of big action going on in Vegas tonight. We’ve got the WPT World Championship final table at Bellagio (word around here is that somebody won — about $2 million), the Venetian Deep Stacks main event is down to heads-up (Doug Lee vs Vegas local Eric Baldwin — for about $200k), and over on the kiddie tables outside the Venetian poker room we’ve got a Lodge/Pokerati alum fighting to see if he’s got what it takes to take one the whole way (for about $2k). Good night in V-town.

Poker in the Everyday World

by , Apr 24, 2009 | 5:48 pm

Hardly a shocker to see on an everyday Nissan Altima in the Venetian parking lot … but this isn’t even in the Poker Room VIP parking area … just a regular ole spot:

The Venetian, Texas?

by , Apr 20, 2009 | 4:00 am

Sheldon Adelson

Good-ish article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram earlier this month about Sheldon Adelson’s vocal interest in Texas. Adelson, of course, is the Chairman and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp, aka The Venetian. Of all the casino billionaires out there, he’s probably shown more than any other a (financial) commitment to poker — not only did he help build the best poker room in Vegas, but he even took a chance on The Real Deal! (Oops.)

Adelson was in Austin the other week testifying before the same Licensing and Administration Procedures Committee that voted 6-3 in favor of poker. You all know about HB 222, but there are actually four gambling-related bills pending in Texas right now:

1. Full-on Vegas-style casino-resorts — 12 of ’em!
2. Poker
3. Slot machines (VLT’s they call them) in the race tracks
4. Online Lottery

Of these four, poker is a little different, because various authorities in the state have already ruled it enough of a game of skill that it doesn’t require a constitutional amendment. Hopefully, Gov. Rick Perry will see it the same not-quite-gambling way, should we get that far, as he has promised suggested he might-well veto any gambling bills sent to his desk.

Clearly, and for obvious reason, Adelson isn’t letting any political posturing deter his efforts to make Texas more Venetian-friendly. But knowing that … man, yo, Shelly, how ’bout throwing a little scratch HB 222’s way! Think of it as a hedge …