Weekly Poker Roundup: July 24, 2016
888 Introduces Blast Lottery Sit & Go
888poker will be introducing Blast Sit & Go’s this coming week, the latest take on the popular Lottery Sit & Go that has swept through the online poker world in the last couple years. Traditional Lottery Sit & Go’s (such as PokerStars’ Spin & Go) are three-handed, hyper-turbo games in which the prize pool is not revealed until all players are seated. At that point, the prize pool is randomly generated and can be anywhere from two times the prize pool to thousands of times the prize pool (of course, the latter is extraordinarily rare).
Blast sticks to this formula for the most part, though with a couple tweaks. The games are four-handed, first of all. The biggest different with Blast, though, is that each game has a time limit. Once the clock runs down to zero, all remaining players are automatically put all-in until the match is completed. The time limit depends on the prize pool multiplier – the higher the multiplier, the long the time limit. Multipliers can be 2x, 5x (six minute limit for those two), 10x (eight minutes), 100x (ten minutes), 1,000x, or 10,000x (twelve minutes for the latter two).
Blast games with the 2x multiplier are winner-take-all. As the multiplier increases, more players will be able to cash; at the 1,000x and 10,000x levels, all players will win something.
Poker Botter Discusses His Craft
Recently on the Two Plus Two message forum, a poster by the name of “themadbotter” detailed how he profited $30,000 from running a bot on the online poker room, America’s Card Room. He claimed that he was not originally in it for the money, but rather for the programming challenge, but as he started doing well, he got “greedy” and kept running the bot for a few more months than he had intended.
The botter said that it is not difficult to get into botting, that there are plenty of “plug and play” software packages available, but the difficulty is actually customizing the bot to actually play well and win consistently. He said that he would spend hours every night reviewing the bot’s play and making adjustments to the code to improve its performance.
While he received a lot of criticism, themadbotter does not consider what he did cheating:
I didn’t share any hand-histories or real-time data and I was not part of a bot ring. I probably put in more hours studying sessions, opponents, and general gameplay than 90% of profitable players. Botting is easy, botting well is not. It’s not as if the bot suddenly turned me into a winning poker player. I was a good cash game reg before (on a different site) and a big part of the reason why I was able to construct a good profile was because I was a solid player with close to 2M hands of 6-max playing experience.
Jason Mercier Shocks Nobody, Wins 2016 WSOP POY
When Jason Mercier came inches away (in a metaphorical sense) from winning three World Series of Poker events in one week, it was assumed he was going to run away with the 2016 WSOP Player of Year race. He didn’t quite run away with it, but in the end, he did capture the POY crown, something we all knew was going to happen.
In June, he embarked on his astounding run, winning the $10,000 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship, finishing second in the $10,000 Seven Card Razz Championship, and then winning the $10,000 HORSE Championship, all in the same week. He also made the final table in the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Low Split-8 or Better Championship a few days later. In all, Mercier cashed eleven times at the WSOP this summer, including those four final tables and two bracelets. Of course, as you have likely read, had gone just a bit farther at two of those final tables and nabbed a third bracelet, he would have won $1.8 million from a prop bet with Vanessa Selbst. Since he “only” won two bracelets (his fourth and fifth of his career), he had to pay her $10,000.
Mercier clinched the POY award win Paul Volpe busted out of the Main Event in 29th place. Based on the points calculator on the Global Poker Index’s site (the GPI’s points formula is used for the WSOP POY rankings), it looks like Volpe would have needed to win the Main Event to knock Mercier from the top spot.
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