Borgata 2014 Spring Open Championship:

Korotki Victorious, Soars To $1m Lifetime

Borgata Spring Open make way for the World Poker Tour

It’s all over and it’s the #1 Delaware All Time Money leader (and New Jersey resident) Abraham Korotki took the top prize in the Borgata 2014 Spring Open Main Event last night. With the top prize of $256,508 added to his impressive list of scores, Korotki’s lifetime total skyrockets to over $1 million.

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Among the 414 runners Korotki outlasted was his heads up opponent Lawrence Wolf. Wolf, for his part, easily notched the biggest score of his career when he collected his runner up consolation prize of $148,083.

According to the PokerNews live reporting team Korotki plans on taking a piece of his winnings to enter the World Poker Tour Championship event set to start on Monday.

“I’m very happy to win this tournament. This is the world’s best casino, because players from all over the world come to play.” Korotki said when talking to Rich Ryan from PokerNews.

Just because the Main Event is over, that doesn’t mean the Borgata Spring Open is slowing down. With 5 more events, outside of the World Poker Tour signature event, left to play there’s still a ton of action to be had at the Borgata.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink


Dan Bilzerian –

Livin’ In A Gangsta’s Paradise

Bilzerian hip-hops on stage at a Steve Aoki event.

Yea boyeeee!

That’s high-stakes poker player Dan Bilzerian on the left, on-stage with Public Enemy's hip-hop legend Flavor Flav, “Gangata’s Paradise” rapper Coolio as well as Bilzerian’s DJ pal Steve Aoki. This shot was taken by poker pro Jean-Robert Bellande.

I mean… @steveaoki, Coolio, Flava-Flav and Dan-mufukin-Blitz??? Wtf? #blitzbreaking?

Beardo also took the opportunity to do a little crowd-surfing as well.[Video after the jump]

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink



Borgata 2014 Spring Open Championship:

It’s Time To Crown A Champion

Unofficial Final Table has been reached, $256k up for grabs.

Due to the fast-paced speed with which players dusted off their stacks, the Borgata 2014 SPring Open Championship Main Event is already at a Final Table! With 45 players returning to the felt on Day 3, play was expected to take them down to the final 27. Instead tournament organizers saw fit to have players play down to the unofficial Final Table of 10 and now, today someone will be crowned champion.

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The odds on favorite for that title may be chipleader Charlie Hook from Philadelpia, who enters the final 10 with 2x the average stack. Charlie, according to the Hendon Mob, has been in this position before as his last massive score was taking down the $2700 Borgata 2013 Summer Poker Open for a score just under $200k. Right behind him is longtime grinder, Maryland’s Lawrence Wolf who is the only other person currently to top the 2m in chips mark with just over 12m in play.

Even though there were a number of notables who stepped into the room on Day 3, many of them hit the rail short of their goal. Taylor Von Kriegenbergh, Will Jaffe, David Tuthill and Jeff Madsen all got paid on Thursday, but also went busto. Madsen for his part expressed some frustration online as to how his tournament ended up.

There’s plenty more where those came from and while Madsen may have busted short of his goal for the over $250k first place prize, he also pledged to be in the field for next week’s $1k 6-max $100k guaranteed event at the BSO.

The final day of the BSO Championship is set to resume at Noon EST and play down a champion. For live reporting from the Borgata tournament floor, follow along with the PokerNews Live updates team.

New Jersey residents still looking to get in on the action at the Borgata can still satellite their way in over at BorgataPoker.com

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink


EPT Sanremo –

Day 3 Wrap Up, Stapes Rubs Down

James Hartigan gets you caught up before the Day 4 Live Stream.

Get all caught up on the action that took place on Day 3 of the PokerStars EPT Sanremo stop. As 39 players return for day 4 the top tier production staff at PokerStars gives you all the necessary info you who’s in, who’s out and who’s in command of all the chips.

Here’s everything you need to know, plus #EPTLive tells the tale of the “Curse of the Bunk Triange” and our favorite, Joe Stapleton, gets sexy and delivers some sensual manly massages.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Zack Korik

Looking For Signature Win At EPT Sanremo

“Zack is on the attack!”

“Generally, I believe I’m pretty intimidating at the table…”

Zack Korik may not be a household name as of yet, but with over $600k in live tournament earnings (and over $5m in online earnings as Zackattak13) his live results are starting to bring him more attention than his massive fauxhawk.

Having started the day on the short stack, Zack is back in final table contention as play keeps a furious pace at EPT Sanremo. So get to know a little more about the self-described “intimidating”, TMNT shirt wearing, Korik.

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Bonus He’s busted now, but before he did – Johnny Lodden was bored. While many people play “Lodden Thinks” to cure their boredom at the table, see what does Johnny to do cure his.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

World Poker Tour SHRPS Winner Eric Afrait –

“You Can’t Fight Fate”

Afrait bests the largest WPT field in history.

“It was my time!”

You can’t ask for too much more from a winner – happy, humble and grateful for the opportunity to have outlasted the rest to be the best (on that day.) Canada’s Eric Afrait not only claimed the massive $1,081,184 first place prize (for a $3500 buy-in) but also the title of World Poker Tour Champion.

At the final table he went on a run of what he describes as a magical run of cards for 5-6 hours, he defeated a stack final table that included runner-up Mukul Pahuja, James Mackey, Jacob Bazeley, Chance Kornuth and Matt Stout.

For an entire recap, check the World Poker Tour Live Updates page and here’s the final table results:

1st Eric Afriat – $1,081,184
2nd Mukul Pahuja – $691,965
3rd James Mackey – $441,128
4th Jacob Bazeley – $371,931
5th Matt Stout – $308,501
6th Chance Kornuth – $247,954

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Liv Boeree

Gets All Deep And Intense On Camera

Off-beat interview find Liv struggling to pick her favorite person.

Liv can always convince someone to give her a massage.

Obviously the poker world loves PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree. She’s always down for a good interview or a guest spot on #EPTLive. In this interview she’s tracked down by PokerStars correspondent Sarah Grant to answer some bizarre, super “deep” questions like what her favorite luxury service would be and who on this planet does she miss the most.

It’s an interview chock-full of Boeree thinking hard and gaps of dead air, but, hey, it’s Liv Boeree and it’s Thursday…so why not.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari

Goes Busto!

One Drop winner “starving” at Las Vegas airport.

“Anything you can spare will help…”

Antonio Esfandiari, lead ambassador for Ultimate Poker and the All Time Money List leader, found himself in the Las Vegas airport – broke and starving.

Luckily for him, he’s freakin’ Antonio Esfandiari and while he may have had no money or credit cards ON HIM, he’s far from broke (we assume). So, with a little charm and some celebrity recognition, Antonio was able to eat on this day and a random poker fan made a new friend.

Or maybe Esfandiari is actually broke after paying Bill Perkins so he could have sex again. Whatever he’s really going to use the $30 for, it must be nice to be @MagicAntonio.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

EPT Sanremo –

Online Wizards Berglund, Srinivasan Deep Stacked In Main Event

Srinivasan hoping for 2nd FT of 2014.

As is often the case in high-profile tournament poker, elite young guns with impressive resumes are out to make a name for themselves. The story is no different with a pair of chip monsters at EPT Sanremo, both of whom give a couple minutes to PokerNews interviewer Jennifer Robles. Lukas Berglund, the handsome current #2 online player in the world, currently sits 2nd in chips due to running great and playing with a ton of confidence.

Joining him on the chip leader board is Canadian Shyam Srinivasan who is back at a EPT deep run after his final table finish at the 2014 PCA. What do they have in common? They both are wielding massive stacks, playing with a ton of confidence and have made millions online. Check out their individual interviews for some good, old fashioned poker journalism! Watch more after the jump!

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Victor Ramdin

Knows What It Means To Be Down And Out

“Positivity helps your whole game.”

Family, charity and smacking on some gum is what Ramdin is all about.

Before he’d actually busted from the EPT Sanremo Main Event, Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin took a few minutes to talk with PokerNews rookie Jennifer Robles about how his day was going and, more importantly, how he plays for and supports a number of charities.

Additionally, over on Pokerlistings Ramdin remembers his start in poker. A late bloomer, Ramdin got serious about the game in his mid-thirties (although, in the article they refer it to his age as “extraordinarily late stage”). Ramdin recalls a time when he was down and out in the game and how it was currently embattled popular poker pro Phil Ivey who came to his aid.

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“I had met Phil Ivey but I didn’t really know him. He was already at the top of the world in 2005. When I was most devastated, he walked up to me and said, ‘I saw you play, Victor, and I want to back you’.”

“I was amazed, as I wasn’t really doing well. I asked Phil what I had to do differently and he said ‘nothing’. A couple of months later I won WPT Foxwoods for 1.3 million dollar. You can say that Phil Ivey saved my career.”

While he’ll always have Ivey’s back, it’s another Phil that Ramdin really looks up to.

“My idol is Phil Hellmuth. Hellmuth can get inside your head like nobody else. He can make bad players play worse. He convinces you to do stupid things. And whatever the size of a field is, be it 50 players or a thousand, Hellmuth finds a way to come out on top. I like the styles of other players like Negreanu, too, but the sheer number of bracelets tells you that he is a genius.”

Through it all, the World Poker Tour Champion doesn’t lose sight of what is important to him. Family and charity, both of which he finds himself extremely dedicated to. For more on Victor and his story, check out the entire article over at PokerListings.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Borgata 2014 Spring Open Championship:

Show Them The Money, 45 Players Remain

Things are getting serious at the BSO Main Event.

Only 45 players remain in the 2014 Borgata Spring Open Championship as 8 levels of play in Day 2 found those that would hit the rail busting at breakneck speed. But for all who ended the day with a stack in front of them, it’s a guaranteed payday as we are officially in the money.

The All Time Money List leader for Delaware, Abraham Korotki, surged to the overnight chip lead after eliminating the dangerous Paul Volpe. Right on his heels in terms of chips is Massachusetts poker pro Jacob Toole and the man who entered Day 2 with the chip lead, Alan Wentz.

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The field still contains some stiff competition though as notable names like David Tuthill, Taylor Von Kriegenbergh, Will Jaffe and 3-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Jeff Madsen all will be returning to play for the over $250k first place prize.

With over 150 players on Day 2 unable to win their flips some big names will have to look ahead to impending World Poker Tour Championship this Monday for their time to shine, rather than counting that sweet BSO Championship cash. Brett Richey, WPT Champion Andy Frankenberger, Christian Harder, Amnon Filippi, Matt Affleck and Eric “basebaldy” Baldwin all have a few days off to enjoy the ever warming East Coast weather.

Day 3 is set to resume at Noon EST and play down two tables to 27 players. For live reporting from the Borgata tournament floor, follow along with the PokerNews Live updates team.

New Jersey residents still looking to get in on the action at the Borgata can satellite their way in over at BorgataPoker.com

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink


Wrestling Superstar Matt Hardy

Chops Down “Poker Superstar Jonny Ferrari”

File under WTF.

What is this? An organization calling itself the National Poker Tour has a superstar named “Jonny Ferrari” and in this “behind the scenes” clip, former WWE Superstar Matt Hardy randomly challenges Ferrari to a 5k Heads-up match. Acting as if 5k is nothing to these two ballers, they essentially push all-in just to get to the fun stuff.

Hate pro-fake wrestling? Don’t watch this. Like good wrestling? Don’t watch this. Have an eye for acting? Don’t watch this.

Working a day job where you are bored stiff and the man is always breathing down your neck? EPT Live on a dinner break? Kill 10 minutes by checking out this groaner.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

UK Poker Den’s

Big Bluff Gets Called By Cops, Boss Convicted

Fake non-profit a smoke screen for laundering poker money.

The Big Bluff Private Members Club in the UK wasn’t actually a non-profit as it turns out.

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Nope…the Green Lane club was merely a front for non-sanctioned (see: super illegal) poker tournaments which police took down in September of 2012. Now, over a year later 33 year-old Ahmet Melin was found guilty and convicted on 5 counts of money laundering because of it, according to This Is Local London.

“This is an excellent example of how a local authority with Gambling Commission support is dealing with illegal gambling in whatever guise it is presented. The message is simple – if you offer poker in a club and are breaking the law, action can and will be taken.” said Nick Tofiluk, Enfield Councils director of regulatory operations.

Must have been hard for authorities to uncover this den of sin as Big Bluff has both a Facebook page as well as Ahmet Melin’s Twitter account regularly promoted events.

Bonus: [How does this story get poker attached to it??] Three fake poker players face possible life sentences

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Mike “Timex” McDonald

Lets You In On His $100k SHR Action

Timex keeps on ticking in the Super High Rollers.

This kid turned into one of the best poker players on the planet.

Lots of poker players sell off pieces to big tournaments – that’s not news. When it’s our pal, The Justin Bieber of Poker, Mike “Timex” McDonald and he’s selling off pieces to the European Poker Tour Monte Carlo $100k Super High Roller well we think that’s worth your time to check out.

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Read: High Stakes – The Big Business of Backing

Soooo…if you are cool with an exchange rate of 1.38130 and purchasing 1% at $1500, preferably in 2% chunks, then you might the opportunity for a big time sweat.

Poker has been going great lately- I’ve final tabled my last 6 super high rollers, 2nd in PCA and in the last month recorded my biggest score on Stars for winning the Sunday 109r, and my biggest score on FTP for chopping the FTOPS ME.

Sick brag Mike, but seriously…that is sick. Hey reader, you decide to buy-in and he makes you a ton of money don’t forget who hooked you up. We like Chipotle and Diet Coke and can be bought.

Also Read: Mike 'Timex’ McDonald Sells Pieces To $100k, Gives Investors Hope
and…Bank of Timex Charges For Interest

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Full Tilt Poker –

Kill Dead Seconds Fast With Rush Poker App

Mobile gaming from the ground up from FTP

Check out the new promotional video for Full Tilt Poker's Rush Poker App for Android. All the fast-fold fun of Rush Poker, on your mobile devise —for free.

Log-in with your existing account or create a new one and then you can hit the ground running, able to play hands anywhere you have your mobile phone (and a connection we assume).

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Looking for the real money version? The promo video is almost identical:

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Sorel Mizzi –

Bad Luck Birthday Boy

Distracted play at Sanremo finds Mizzi ready to “pop some bottles.”

“I’m a realist…”

Happy Birthday to professional poker’s lightning rod Sorel Mizzi who is spending his big day playing in the Main Event at EPT Sanremo. While he planned on being at the tables all day, he’s quickly spewed off much of his 95k starting stack and is now facing the prospect of spending his birthday in 'da club as opposed to at 'da poker table.

He takes a moment to talk with new PokerNews hostess Jennifer Robles about how while he’s down he’s not out and that even though “everything went to ****” he still plans on having a happy birthday after all.

Update:

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Borgata 2014 Spring Open Championship:

199 Return For Day 2 To Battle For Over $250k

Stars arrive and the chips begin to fly.

The Borgata Poker Room awaits the rush of action.

Nearly 300 runners showed up for Day 1b of the Borgata Spring Open $2700 buy-in Championship, pushing the prize pool just past the $1 Million Guarantee and ensuring that the top prize is worth more than $250,000.

According to the PokerNews Live updates team it was Ohio native Alan Wentz who bested WPT Champion Anthony Zinno in a massive pot to carry the overnight chip lead and with his stack being taller than that of Day 1a’s chip leader, Paul Volpe, Wentz leads the combined field of 199 players into Day 2.

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With the BSO being one of the East Coast’s premiere events and the lead in to the World Poker Tour's first ever East Coast Championship event, a slew of elite players flocked to the Borgata to take part. Former November Niner Matt Giannetti sits with a top ten stack with Team Ivey Pro Mike Leah sitting just outside the top 10. Rappin’ Brett Richey, Brian Lemke and 2-time WPT Champion Andy Frankenberger are all within striking distance of having a massive stack as well.

Other notable names returning to slug it out are Amnon Filippi, Mike Linster, Matt Affleck, Chris Tryba, Luke Vrabel, party poker’s Scott Baumstein and former Lock Poker pro Melanie Weisner.

Not everyone survived the onslaught though as Allen “Chainsaw” Kessler, the WPT’s own Tony “Bond18” Dunst, WPT Champion Anthony Zinno and storied actor James Woods all have a little extra time on their hands having hit the rail.

Day 2 action heats up at the Borgata today at 12:00 noon EST for another 8 levels all which can be followed over on the PokerNews Live Updates page.

New Jersey residents still looking to get in on the action at the Borgata can satellite their way in over at BorgataPoker.com!!

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink


Vanessa Selbst

Likes, Like, Tennis…Or Whatever

PokerStars Pro talks about her on-the-felt encounter with tennis great Nadal.

Game, Set, Match for Selbst.

Team PokerStars Pros are afforded some pretty cool things as being a representative of the largest online poker site on the planet. This past weekend one of the most recognizable names in poker Vanessa Selbst got to take on Rafa Nadalthe most high profile tennis player on the planet.

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What was it like? Pretty surreal according to Selbst. While Nadal was better than she expected she found him not to be the confident upper echelon tennis player he is when smashing a tennis ball in your grill, but a shy and nervous twenty-something getting the hand of a whole new game.

So what about the fangirl factor? Nadal is a huge star, right?

“He’s probably, like, my number one, like, person that I follow, or whatever.”

So yea, it was a big deal.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari

Talks “No Sex” Prop Bets, Kissing Phil and Defending His One Drop Title

This time, it’s for real.

Esfandiari, technically, paid for sex (kinda, not really).

A major tournament win can change your profile in the poker landscape. For Antonio Esfandiari, winning the Big One For One Drop in 2012 took the well-known, well-liked pro into the ranks of poker elite. Topping the All Time Money list in the largest tournament of all time raised Esfandiari’s profile onto the marquee with the likes of Hellmuth, Negreanu and Ivey and now, this summer, he’s ready to do it all over again.

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It’s been an amazing couple of years. I had some recognition before the One Drop, but this really escalated me to a different plateau. I enjoyed riding that wave for the last couple years. It’s not that a lot more doors opened up, but certainly they opened up further.

As much as I don’t believe I deserve the number one on the all-time money-winner list, because it was one tournament, I’ll take it. I took advantage of the privileges and perks that come with it. It’s been a very fun ride, no question about it.

In Pokerstrategy’s new interview with Ultimate Poker's lead ambassador, Antonio opens up about having fun, living life and making magic.

He also talks about the oft-rumored $1 Million “No Sex” bet he made with Bill “the Businessman” Perkins.

What happened is we were in Sweden drinking. I was a couple of gin and tonics in, and it came up somehow. My buddy, Bill Perkins, said, “For a million dollars you’d have to go the whole year.” I’m someone that values and respects money, and I just said, “I think I could do it for 500K.”

Turns out, he couldn’t do it at all.

It’s not your typical poker interview – no strategy, no gameplay – just a fun romp around the mind of one of the game’s most likable personalities.

Take the time and check out this Pokerstrategy interview with the once (and future?) king of One Drop – Antonio Esfandiari.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Dominik Panka –

“Being Interviewed Is Great!”

PCA Champ looking to become first 2-time EPT winner.

IHOP!

He may be under the weather but he’s feeling great! You would too if you were having the 2014 that PCA Champion Dominik Panka is having. Having kicked the door down on the live tournament scene this year, he’s declared himself firmly in the hunt to become the first ever 2-time European Poker Tour Champion and he’s in Sanremo to try and get it done.

Watch: 2014 PCA Champion Dominik Panka Just Hanging Out In Vienna

But first, he needs some gummy vitamins to get over whatever it is that’s got him feeling sick.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Sofia Lövgren –

Out To Earn More Respect

Check out her first interview as a Team 888 rep.

Lövgren, looking for results, is always “going for it” on the felt.

Hot from the announcement of her recent signing to Team 888poker, the charming Sofia Lövgren takes a moment for her first live interview under her new contact with new PokerNews host Jennifer Robles.

Read: Sofia Lövgren & Xuan Liu Take Their Talents To 888poker

Looking forward to representing her new site all over the world, Lövgren is more so hoping to put up some results which may, in turn, end up earning her more live poker respect. Check it out dudes.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Dan Bilzerian and Jay Farber –

Fast And Furious

Sneak peek of All In Magazine’s Part 2 of Off The Felt.

“How the fuck did that goat get there?”

What do you do when you have a video that gets 6-figures worth of views in 48 hours? You tease part 2 with a trailer and that’s exactly what the guys at All In Magazine have done here. Goats, guns, girls and guest star, runner-up of the 2013 World Series of Poker, Jay Farber join Instagram star Dan Bilzerian in a look behind his heart-attack inducing high-stakes lifestyle.

Get pumped – it’s a sneak peek into the second part of the life and times of Dan Bilzerian. Check out Off The Felt.

What’s that? You missed Part One? We got you.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Jason Somerville’s

Summer Speaking Engagement

Player/commentator does double duty this summer.

Popular Ultimate Poker sponsored pro Jason Somerville is taking his #RunItUp campaign to the halls of the Rio this summer during the 2014 World Series of Poker. Not only will he be providing content on his own channel but, as we hear him announce here, he’ll be joining the PokerNews podcast no less than 3 times a week to bring you on-the-felt action in audio form.

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We just hope he didn’t sign a contract or is getting paid from PokerNews as it was announced last month that, in an effort to extend the security and integrity, all WSOP employees, which this year includes PokerNews reporters/employees who are the 'official something or others’ are barred from playing bracelet events this summer!

On the bright side, Somerville instantly becomes the odds on favorite to win the casino employee’s event.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey

Lawsuit Goes Mainstream, Borgata Ordered To Tidy It Up

If there’s no such thing as bad press, Ivey’s star just got brighter.

“Damn, these F5poker guys have everything!”

News of the Borgata $9.6 Million lawsuit against poker pro Phil Ivey went widespread this week as the story jumped out of the “hipster blogger” world of poker media and into the mainstream. Here’s a number of links if you’d like to get a feel for how major news outlets are treating the story and also how some are painting Ivey as a defendant.

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Deadspin/Regressing: How Phil Ivey Beat (Or Maybe Cheated) A Casino For Millions focus on “edge sorting”

ABC News: Poker Player Phil Ivey: A Look Behind the Cards focus on Ivey’s career

CBS News: Poker pro Phil Ivey accused of cheating by Atlantic City casino

CNN: Atlantic City casino claims poker champ Phillip Ivey cheated to win $9.6 million

Dailymotion: Borgata Casino Says Poker Champ Cheated His Way To $9.6 Million


Borgata Casino Says Poker Champ Cheated His Way… by OneMinuteNews

Drudge Report: Poker Pro Phil Ivey Accused of Card Cheating

Bleacher Report: Phil Ivey Sued: Latest Details on Poker Star’s Lawsuit for Alleged Card-Cheating

We’re pretty sure that Phil Ivey never self-proclaimed anything in regards to calling himself the “Tiger Woods”, “Michael Jordan” or “Muhammed Ali” of poker.

While news of the lawsuit sparked the interest of the general public, the lawsuit itself needed a little cleaning up from Borgata lawyers. As reported by NorthJersey.com, the court – not Ivey’s lawyers – ordered Borgata lawyers to clarify the citizenship of all the parties named, since this is filed in Federal Court. Federal Courts have a limited jurisdiction and plaintiffs, in general, have a burdon to demonstrate that their case can be heard there. If the burden is not met, the case can be dismissed.

In this case, one would assume that this is more of a housekeeping issue for Borgata lawyers and it should not be assumed that because the court issued these orders that it is in any way biased against the lawsuit. It looks to be more for clarification of whether it can even be heard in federal court.

For a full on legal write up of what was ordered, check out: Judge orders Borgata to tidy up its lawsuit against poker pro Phil Ivey

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Borgata 2014 Spring Open Championship:

Volpe, Madsen Take Charge In Day 1a

$2700 Main Event field is packed with star power.

With the World Poker Tour Championship right around the corner, many of poker’s elite took to the felt at the 2014 Borgata Spring Poker Open to take part in the $2700 buy-in SPO Championship.

With a $1 million guarantee attached, Event 7 drew 115 runners, for the first of two starting days, with players looking to build a chip stack early in this re-entry event. At the end of the day it would be well-known tournament specialist Paul Volpe who would carry the overnight chiplead, followed closely by Jose Montes, Mike Jarvela Jeff Madsen and Dan Heimiller.

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Plenty of other notable names made it through the day with chips in their stack including Greg Ostrander, Taylor Von Kriegenbergh, Christian Harder, Jonathan Little, Matt Salsberg, Ravi Raghavan, Kevin Saul, Eric Baldwin, Melanie Weisner and actor James Woods.

For some though, the re-entry “feature” is going to be necessary if they want a shot at the top prize. As luck would have it, just over half the field didn’t make it through to Day 2 and that included guys like Matt Affleck, Kyle Bowker and Chris Tryba.

According to the PokerNews live reporting team, Day 1b is going to need 285 runners registered in order to hit the guarantee and with players making their way to the Borgata for the WPT Championship, which begins next Monday, that number is expected to be hit.

Day 1b of the Borgata Spring Open Championship starts today at 11:00am EST.

New Jersey residents still looking to get in on the action at the Borgata can satellite their way in over at BorgataPoker.com!!

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Brent Beckley –

“F*** Yeah I Ran Absolute Poker”

The rise, fall and incarceration of AP’s “almost billionaire.”

From post-high school wanderer to frat bro of Scott Tom,high-ranking officer in the Absolute Poker offices turnedindicted fugitive, Brent Beckley’s is a story of how he came to help run one of online poker’s most notorious sites.

Read: Almost billionaires

Read More »

Beckley is one of the very few who saw the inside of a prison, minimum-security but prison nonetheless, for his involvement in pre-Black Friday off-shore online poker.

Brent Beckley woke up at 4 a.m. on October 1, 2012, and kissed his two young boys goodbye while they slept. He pulled on some jeans, comfortable shoes and a sweater. His wife bawled as Beckley stepped out of their home in Highland, Utah, about an hour south of Salt Lake City.

They had been preparing for this day for a long time. It felt like preparing to die.

Beckley followed Scott Tom first to college, then into a frat and finally to Costa Rica to turn the fledgling AP into the 3rd largest online site on the planet only to see it crash down around him. On the cusp of going public and potentially becoming billionaires, Absolute Poker got caught in the middle of the government’s war on internet gambling.

The article on MontanaKaiman.com doesn’t address anything like segregation of funds, cheating scandals or the failure of AP to pay back its players, mostly on the journey of the man who considers himself the sole fallguy for the entire industry.

Beckley found himself in a room of the Intercontinental in San Jose with 20 lawyers. He explained to them what payment processing really was. He had to shut down the business, layoff 350 employees and pay them their severances. On December 17, 2011, Beckley sent his wife and two boys to live with family in Utah.

Beckley was charged with five felonies — three related to the UIGEA violation, the other two were for money laundering and bank fraud.

Beckley, taking a plea deal for reduced charges, and spent nine months in lockup.

“There were a lot of people, not just in our company, but in the industry that made a fortune. And walked away, and are still living the dream, so to speak. I felt like I didn’t only take it on the chin for our company, and my friends, but I took it on the chin for the whole industry, and our customers.”

Read the article in full: Almost billionaires

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Is It Too Late

For Adelson’s Anti-Online Poker Crusade?

Slate Magazine tackles the behind the scenes war on poker.

Let’s face it…the war against online poker is not only infuriating, for many of us – it’s confusing. Who’s doing what to whom and how hard is tough to suss out, except for the fact that Sands Corp. Chairman, 80-year-old Sheldon Adelson, is looking to impose an anti-freedoms legacy after spending a lifetime of supporting gambling (and mass amounts of alcohol consumption and non-stop cancer causing smoking in his casinos).

Read More »

Slate Magazine takes a look at the big picture from where legislation stands today, who the impact players (Adelson, Ceasars, the PPA, PokerStars) are who are giving cash to politicians to do their bidding and they ask the question if it’s just too late to impose a full fledged ban.

Las Vegas–based casinos and overseas operators have begun an all-out battle over Internet gambling, which is mostly banned nationwide but carries with it the promise of billions of dollars in additional revenue for casinos and state governments. Three states began licensing online betting last year, and Congress is facing increasing pressure to either bar or regulate the fledgling industry.

The moves are coming in response to a concerted push orchestrated by a colorful cast of characters, including Sheldon Adelson, one of the most prolific political donors of the super PAC era, an offshore company that only recently settled federal allegations of money laundering and bank fraud, and a pair of benignly named political advocacy groups backed by big-time casino cash.

It’s a dense article, filled with backstory, some of which as poker players you will be familiar with (Black Friday, UIGEA) but in the end, if you want to get what seems to be a pretty nice summary of the current fight for the freedom of online poker – and more than online poker, your freedoms as an individual – check out The Big Gamble over at Slate Magazine.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Borgata

To Refund Almost Half The Field In “Chipgate” Scandal

Three-month investigation resolved fake chip tainted tournament.

Event No. 1 of the Borgata Winter Open has been in limbo since Jan 18.

The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa has officially been cleared to put Event 1 of it’s Winter Open, aka “Chipgate” to rest. Over 2100 entrants will receive $560 refunds while the 27 remaining players will evenly split the remaining, unpaid prizepool – each receiving $19,323.

A ruling by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement explained how the refunds will be distributed and after the three-month investigation over half of the field will see their money back.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Alec Torelli & Andrew Robl

Want You To “Believe In Yourself”

The “tight bros” dish out advice, getaway spots.

Bro down with Torelli and Robl

It’s Part 2 of the “The Bro Diaries” where high-stakes dudes Alec Torelli and Andrew Robl answer some questions and just chill, bro, chill. The pair totes answer preguntas like “What’s your longest losing period, brah?”, “What’s your longest session, dude?” and “What’s, like, your supes fav place to max and relax, bros?”

That’s right, they answer all if these and more. So take a few minutes and get some advice from a couple masters of Macau on what you need to do to take your game to the professional level.

Miss part one? No problemo: Alec Torelli & Andrew Robl Film E-Harmony Success Story Video

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

EPT Sanremo

Day 1a Marks The Beginning Of The End for EPT Season 10

New PokerNews presenter Jennifer Robles, girlfriend of Team Ivey poker pro Griffin Benger, kicks off the coverage of the penultimate event of Season 10 of the European Poker Tour. EPT Sanremo, a €4,600 + €300 event, kicks off starts today with live coverage from the EPT Live crew kicking in on Day 2 of the event (Wednesday).

Bonus: Sarah Grant explores the outskirts of Sanremo.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Joe Hachem

Is “Just Another Asshole With An Opinion”

Former champ revisits inflammatory Aussie Millions comments.

While having a quick sitdown to talk about the state of poker “down under”, Poker Asia Pacfic asks former World Series of Poker Champion Joe Hachem, once again, about the comments he made during the Aussie Millions about the state of poker ambassadorship.

ICYMI: Joe Hachem – 'Poker Is Dying’

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Hachem admits he took in some feedback from the well-watched interview including having seen some posts on Two Plus Two and some engagement on the Twitters, but overall, he felt like his passion for poker overrides his need to keep things status quo. Plus…the kids seems to love what he said!

That said, Hachem doubles down on the fact he didn’t mean to disrespect fellow WSOP ME Champs Jerry Yang and Jamie Gold during his heartfelt “on-the-spot” interview with Bluff and that, in the end, it’s just his opinion.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Rafa Nadal

Gets Served In Heads-Up Match v. Selbst

PokerStars Monte Carlo exhibition match a success.

This past weekend tennis superstars, and PokerStars sponsored athlete, Rafa Nadal sat in another “made-for-tv” match against one of the best poker players in the world, Vanessa Selbst. For context, Selbst was repeatedly referred to as the best female poker players in the world, but those in the know get it – she’s a beast on the felt and one of the best of any gender and Rafa would have a monster challenge in front of him.

Nadal, of course, sat in one of these before where he bested Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu and a table of his peers for his first live “tournament” victory. This time around, there was no mercy from Selbst who took care of business and gave him a taste of what he rarely gets on the tennis court – defeat.

Of course, Selbst was a class act in victory and the pair may even plan a rematch in the future.

Next up for Selbst, of course, will be back-to-back EPT events with the start of EPT Sanremo followed by the Grand Final in Monte Carlo. Nadal on the other hand will be putting the cards down for a spell and focusing on his side-gig of being one of the best tennis players on the globe and smashing balls at the ATP Monte Carlo Masters.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Sofia Lövgren & Xuan Liu

Take Their Talents To 888poker

The pair of charming young pros reinvigorate Team 888.

The mystery of where former Team PKR pro Sofia Lövgren is over. It’s 888poker! But not only did 888 drop a bomb by signing the lovely 24-year old Lövgren, they dropped the mic entirely by bringing another young female pro, the formidable Xuan Liu, on board at the same time. The pair of young poker pros will be all patched up and promoting 888poker for the foreseeable future.

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Of course, 888poker is also shouting the news from the rooftops as well.

In addition, the blokes (that’s a UK term right?) over at PokerPlayer Magazine scored the first exclusive post-announcement interview with Sofia. It’s not a real in-depth interview or anything, but it’s a quick read. Here’s an excerpt:

Were there many online poker sites that wanted to sign with you?
Yes, I’ve been approached before but I really didn’t want to leave PKR. Now, after four years as a Team Pro I’m finally ready for a change and 888poker feels totally right for me.

How much will you be playing on the live circuit? What will your WSOP schedule be?
I will play EPT, WPT and WSOP this year. In Vegas I think I’ll play around 9 WSOP events including the Main Event. There are also four 888 Live events in different destinations and I really look forward to playing poker in Australia for the first time – the WSOP Melbourne in October will be fun!

Read: Exclusive first interview! Sofia Lovgren joins 888poker

This is a great fit for Xuan Liu as well, who has been patched up on isolated deals with 888poker in the past. Here she is this past February, representing the site at WPT Fallsview.

Of course, the new signings come on the heels of former “888poker ambassador Sam Holden announcing his “semi-retirement from poker.

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published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Borgata 2014 Spring Open

$1 Million Guaranteed Ends In 4-Way 6-FIgure Chop

Carlos Alvarado crowned winner.

“Everyone loves a chop pot” – Stapes

The final day of Event 1 of the 2014 Borgata Spring Open came to a conclusion last night when the top four players, from a field of 2482 entries, agreed to an “everyone’s happy” equal chop of the remaining prizepool. New Yorkers Adam Pace and Philip Neiman along with Kevin Grabel conceded the technical victory to Oceanside resident Carlos Alvarado, but all four walked away equal winners to the tune of $127,652.

For a full wrap up of all the winners from the $1 Million Guarantee, check out the PokerNews Live Updates website.

The $560 buy-in smashed the guarantee of $1 Million by nearly a quarter million and is a very good sign for what is likely to be a massive turnout for the Borgata Spring Open Championship Main Event, a $2500+$200 re-entry event with two starting days that kicks off this Monday.

The entirety of the BSO is leading up to the final event of Season XII of the World Poker Tour and the $15k Championship Event, with a $5 Million Guarantee.

Of course, New Jersey residents looking to make plans to play the big event with the pros can win their way into the event over at BorgataPoker.com!.

published 3 years, 5 months ago • by permalink