Weekly Poker Roundup: March 20, 2016
Super High Roller Bowl Sells Out in a Flash
Poker Central’s Super High Roller Bowl, a surprise hit in its debut last year, is back in 2016 and has already sold out more than two months before the start of the tournament. Poker Central and the Aria Resort & Casino set the entrant cap at 49 and sure enough, 49 people have paid the $300,000 to take part. An to-be-announced sponsor will contribute an additional $300,000 to the prize pool, bringing the total to an even $15 million. $5 million will go to the winner with seven players getting paid.
Last year, the ambitious event cost $500,000 to enter and it still drew 43 players. Not bad for a new event created by an unknown (at the time) poker television network. That tournament also paid to seven spots; Brian Rast won the whole thing and $7.525 million. The other men who cashed – Scott Seiver, Connor Drinan, Timofey Kuznetsov, David Peters, Tom Marchese, and Erik Seidel – are all returning for another go at it this year. The 2016 Super High Roller Bowl will begin on May 29th.
888poker NJ Launches Spring Fever Promo
It may or not be a coincidence, but 888poker New Jersey launched its Spring Fever promotion this past week, starting at the same time PokerStars initiated its “soft launch” in the Garden State. The promotion will run all the way through about mid-June. Clearly aimed at casual players, it features the opportunity for pretty much any level of poker player to win cash or prizes.
888poker will host two daily $1,000 freerolls which can be entered with a special tournament ticket. Players receive two such tickets automatically and can earn at least one more each day by either earning one status point playing poker, playing in tournaments with a total of $5 in buy-ins, or placing $10 or more in casino bets. When accomplishing one of those challenges, players also earn a daily prize, which can be another $1,000 freeroll ticket, cash, casino freeplays, or tournament tickets.
There is also one $3,000 freeroll per week. Everyone gets one ticket to this at the outset of the promo and can earn another each week by playing in three of the $1,000 freerolls. The $3,000 guarantee for this tournament is paid out in prizes rather than cash. First prize is a Sony Playstation 4.
PKR Joins Microgaming Poker Network
PKR, the online poker room popular for its 3D graphics and customizable avatars, has officially joined MPN, the Microgaming Poker Network. PKR has been an independent room for the last decade, but it was announced at the beginning of February that it would make the move over to MPN. The transition to a bit longer than expected, but the companies announced that it has been completed, thanks largely in part to MPN’s Babelfish API, which allows other platforms to hook right into MPN with little resistance. As such, PKR was able to keep its unique 3D platform and not have to use the same interface that the other rooms do.
When the announcement of the switch was made, PKR CEO Chris Welch said, “The opportunity to connect our unique 3D poker software to a popular network and enjoy the best of both worlds means we can dream bigger once again. With our software and community allied to Microgaming’s advanced products, poker liquidity and proven track record, this is the perfect match.”
Baazov Still Wants to Buy Amaya
A couple weeks ago, we noted that media reports have speculated that Amaya CEO David Baazov’s announced intentions to purchase all of the outstanding stock of his company in order to take it private may have been a fake-out intended to stabilize said stock’s price. In Amaya’s fourth quarter earnings call, though, Baazov said that he is still looking to make the CAD $2.8 billion (USD $2 billion) purchase.
“Now that I have settled a Special Committee, the process for my bid, including the framework for the company to share its confidential information externally, I’m going to position to move towards submitting a proposal to acquire the outstanding shares of Amaya consistent with my previously announce intentions.
Before we open the line for questions, please note that at the direction of the Special Committee of the Board of Directors I will not be addressing any questions relating to my potential offer to acquire the company.”
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