2017 WSOP Europe Set for Czech Republic (King’s Casino Rozvadov)

October 27, 2016

czech-republicWorld Series of Poker organizers have announced that the 2017 WSOP Europe will be held at King’s Casino Rozvadov in the Czech Republic. King’s Casino will also host the 2019 WSOP Europe too.

Both WSOP Europe events are going to offer 10 gold bracelet events for players. The official 2017 WSOP Europe schedule isn’t available yet.

Located 100 miles west of Prague in a rural area, King’s Casino has become a poker hot spot in recent years, thanks to efforts by the owner, Leon Tsoukernik.

The casino has one of the biggest poker rooms in Europe with 150 tables. And Tsoukernick has done an excellent job of promoting his venue as a premier poker destination. He’s also drawn high stakes players to his casino over the years including Dan ‘Jungleman12′ Cates and Tony “G” Gouga.

Tsoukernick’s efforts have impressed WSOP Director Ty Stewart, who discussed the reputation of King’s Casino Rozvadov as a poker spot.

“I have really bought into Leon’s vision for creating a poker-first destination in Central Europe,” said Stewart. “The existing setup already reminds me of the Amazon Room at the Rio and it’s only going to get bigger. When the new hotel and the renovations are complete, and considering the way Leon and staff cater to poker players, this is going to be a very comfortable environment for a large festival such as ours.”

Stewart believes that King’s Casino Rozvadov could be a long-term location for future WSOP Europe events. Besides the 2017 and 2019 WSOPE affairs, other poker events that are planned for King’s Casino include two WSOP Circuit events in 2017, ’18, ’19, ’20, and ’21 (Winter and Spring).

It would be nice if King’s Casino Rozvadov remains a permanent location for future WSOP events. After all, the series has moved around a lot, with stops in London (2007-10), Cannes (2011-12), suburban Paris (2013), and Berlin (2015).

The event has yet to truly take off since starting in 2007. But the hope is that King’s Casino will host the biggest and best European WSOP events ever.

Judge Rules Phil Ivey Broke Rules in Borgata $10m Win – Judgement Coming

October 21, 2016

ivey-vs-borgataA federal judge has ruled that poker pro Phil Ivey broke New Jersey state gambling rules en route to winning $9.6 million at the Borgata Hotel & Casino.

While U.S. District Court Judge Noel Hillman said that Ivey and his accomplice aren’t guilty of fraud, he did say that they failed to follow state gambling regulations on four occasions in 2012. Specifically, they asked the dealer to arrange baccarat cards so that they could better win through a technique called edge sorting.

According to Philly.com, Judge Hillman threw out Borgata’s allegations that the pair committed fraud, but he did give Borgata 20 days to detail the damages that it suffered.

“Borgata and Ivey had the same goal when they entered into their arrangement: to profit at the other’s expense,” wrote Hillman. “Trust is a misplaced sentiment in this context.”

This case arose back in 2013, after Ivey launched a lawsuit against Crockfords, which withheld £7.8 million ($12.4m) from the 10-time WSOP champion in 2012. A judge sided with Crockfords in not paying winnings to Ivey, who used edge sorting in this case too.

Edge sorting involves spotting flawed card backs and using this information to determine card values before they’re flipped over. In Ivey’s case, he requested a special Gemaco deck that had a flawed design, then his accomplice, Cheng Yin Sun, asked the dealer to arrange the cards in a specific way.

The arrangement made it easier to spot the flawed card backs, which Judge Hillman believes were questionable.

Hillman wrote that he “view[s] their actions to be akin to cunning, but not rule-breaking, maneuvers performed in many games, such as a play-action pass in American football, or the ‘Marshall swindle’ in chess.”

The following excerpt from Hillman shows that, although impressed with Ivey and Sun’s skills, he still believes that they’re in violation of New Jersey state law:

“Sun’s mental acumen in distinguishing the tiny differences in the patterns on the back of the cards was remarkable. But even though Ivey and Sun’s cunning and skill did not break the rules of Baccarat, what sets Ivey and Sun’s actions apart from deceitful maneuvers in other games is that those maneuvers broke the rules of gambling as defined in this state.”

Carlos Mortensen, Todd Brunson Earn 2016 Poker Hall of Fame Nods

October 14, 2016

carlos-mortensen-brunson-poker-hofCarlos Mortensen and Todd Brunson will be the 51st and 52nd players inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame. They were voted into the Hall of Fame by a 44-member panel that includes media members and living HOF inductees.

For Brunson, this is a very special honor because his father, 10-time WSOP champion Doyle Brunson, is also in the Poker Hall of Fame.

“It’s a true honor to be inducted by my peers into this prestigious institution,” Brunson said in a press release. “I literally grew up attending these ceremonies and have always respected and admired its members. To join their ranks is the honor of a lifetime.”

Mortensen, who was the most-obvious inclusion in the 2016 Poker Hall of Fame class, becomes the first European player to earn this prestigious honor.

“I have been playing poker professionally for more than 20 years. This game has given me so many things that I have come to cherish,” Mortensen stated. “I’ve always wanted to be included among the great players who make up the Poker Hall of Fame. To be included with the legends makes me very happy. I want to thank my friends, the poker fans, and all the people who vote for me. I take this honor very seriously.”

As always, there was heavy competition to gain a spot in the Poker HOF. Other nominees included: Chris Bjorin, Humberto ‘The Shark’ Brenes, Eli Elezra, Bruno Fitoussi, Chris Moneymaker, Max ‘The Italian Pirate’ Pescatori, Matt Savage and David ‘Devilfish’ Ulliott.

But voters found that Mortensen and Brunson’s accomplishments trumped this group.

Despite not playing as many tournaments as most pros, Mortensen has almost $12 million in winnings with no high-roller earnings. His most-famous tournament titles include winning the 2001 WSOP Main Event and 3 WPT wins.

Brunson has almost $4.3 million in tournament earnings, but where he really drew voter interest is through his years of grinding in big high stakes poker games.

The Poker Hall of Fame has 6 pieces of criteria for players and non-players. Here’s a look at what nominees are judged on:

– A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
– Be a minimum of 40 years old at time of nomination
– Played for high stakes
– Played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers
– Stood the test of time
– Or, for non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results.

Joey “ChicagoJoey” Ingram Playing Daily Fantasy Sports

October 6, 2016

Joey Ingram, better known as “ChicagoJoey,” has made a nice living through online poker – particularly PLO cash games. Ingram is also well known for doing the Poker Life Podcast, where he talks with top poker pros every week.

But lately, it seems that ChicagoJoey is deviating from the norm by playing a lot of daily fantasy sports (DFS).

We can trace this back to the Week 1 of the NFL season, where Ingram invited DFS pros Assani Fisher, Adam Levitan, and Jonathan Bales onto his podcast:

Maybe this conversation sparked ChicagoJoey to start playing DFS himself because since then, he’s had a one-track mind. As the videos below show, Ingram is enjoying DFS and talking about his results. ChicagoJoey’s goal is to increase his bankroll to $100,000 before the 2016 NFL season ends:

One more sign that Ingram is ingrained in the DFS world is his new show, Sunday Night Sweat Show. This show gives viewers the opportunity to sweat Sunday night football action with Ingram:

We doubt that Ingram is moving completely away from online PLO games. But like some other poker pros, he’s clearly interested in dividing his time between poker and DFS for the foreseeable future.