Weekly Poker Roundup: May 15, 2016
GPL Week 6: Montreal Near Perfect
For once, the New York Rounders did not fall out of first place in the Americas Conference in an even-numbered week of the Global Poker League. They came close, though, but not because they had a bad week, earning 14 points. The Montreal Nationals, who had been knocked down to fourth place after last week, had the highest scoring week so far in the first season of the GPL, notching 21 points to pull within one point of the Americas Conference lead.
Montreal’s week was nearly perfect. Martin Jacobson finished first and second in the Sit-and-Go rounds for 12 points while Jason Lavallee swept the Sao Paulo Mets’ Darren Elias to notch another 9 points.
Over in the Eurasia Conference, the Moscow Wolverines regained the lead after a fantastic 18 point week; the gap between Moscow and Paris is now a healthy 14 points.
- New York Rounders – 73 points
- Montreal Nationals – 72 points
- LA Sunset – 68 points
- Sao Paolo Mets – 62 points
- Las Vegas Moneymakers – 52 points
- San Francisco Rush – 51 points
- Moscow Wolverines – 82 points
- Paris Aviators – 68 points
- London Royals – 68 points
- Hong Kong Stars – 58 points
- Berlin Bears – 51 points
- Rome Emperors – 51 points
Women in Poker Hall of Fame Names Seven Finalists
Seven finalists have been announced for the Women in Poker Hall of Fame (WiPHOF) class of 2016. The inductees will be honored in a ceremony at the Gold Coast on July 6th, across the street from the Rio, where the World Series of Poker Main Event will be contested just days later. Those who wish to attend the 11:00am lunch ceremony can purchase a ticket/plate for $50 at the door or $45 in advance.
This year’s nominees are Victoria Coren-Mitchell, Shirley Rosario, Mandy Glogow, Debbie Burkhead, Jennifer Tilly, Karina Jett, and Esther Rossi.
The living members of the WiPHOF will each submit a vote for one finalist. This year, the general public was also to be included, with anyone and everyone being allowed to choose their preferred honoree; the public’s choice would then be awarded a single vote. Unfortunately, some sort of a vague “technical issue” has marred the public voting process, so that portion of the balloting has been canceled.
Trump Taj Mahal Poker Room Re-Opens
After more than a year lying dormant, the poker room at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City has finally re-opened. The once famed poker room, the hub of east coast poker for years, closed in February 2015, supposedly so it could be renovated and re-opened that summer. The re-opening, of course, did not happen until now.
The last couple years have been rocky for the Trump Taj Mahal. The property’s owner, Trump Entertainment Resorts, filed for bankruptcy protection in 2014 and nearly closed the Taj in December of that year. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn rescued the property, injecting money into it so it could remain open, and once Trump Entertainment Resorts saw its bankruptcy case end, he bought the Taj for $300 million and had another company he purchased, Tropicana Entertainment, take over its operations.
Icahn is currently battling New Jersey lawmakers, as he wants as much preferential financial treatment as possible, not liking the rise of online gambling in New Jersey as well as the possible construction of casinos in the northern part of the state. He has threatened to shut down the casino if he doesn’t get the concessions he wants. In the meantime, Tropicana Entertainment is operating the poker room featured in the iconic poker film, Rounders.
Sen. Lindsey Graham Still Hates Online Poker
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R – SC), has decided that if he can’t get billionaire Republican puppeteer Sheldon Adelson’s Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) passed through legitimate means, he is going to try the sneaky route. Only recently brought to light by Gambling Compliance, Graham inserted anti-online poker language into the Senate Appropriations Bill in April, a small move in a long-term plan to ban online gaming. The language is brief:
Internet Gambling- Since 1961, the Wire Act has prohibited nearly all forms of gambling over interstate wires, including the Internet. However, beginning in 2011, certain States began to permit Internet gambling. The Committee notes that the Wire Act did not change in 2011. The Committee also notes that the Supreme Court of the United States has stated that `criminal laws are for courts, not for the Government, to construe.’ Abramski v. U.S., 134 S.Ct. 2259, 2274 (2014) (internal citation omitted).
This in and of itself does nothing to make online poker illegal, but it is a way to get the ball slowly rolling. The idea is to insert a request for online gambling to be banned in the conference reports that accompany both the Senate and House Appropriations Bills, after the bills are passed. Thus, the language is tacked on without a vote. Then, when the report is presented to the legislature, it will be voted upon in an all-or-nothing sort of deal, without the ability of anyone to take the anti-online poker part out. Since nobody will want to vote the whole thing down and start over (plus, most lawmakers probably won’t notice Graham’s addition in the giant document), it is possible for online poker to be banned without so much as a discussion.
This is not to say that this WILL happen, but considering Graham knows what he is doing (we assume), it is certainly possible.
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