Weekly Poker Roundup: July 30, 2017
Scott Blumstein’s Friends Had a Nice Payday
It is no secret that poker players often have backers for the larger buy-in tournaments, people who pay a portion of the buy-in in exchange for a portion of the player’s winnings (if the player busts out before the money, the backer gets nothing, but that is the risk they take in making this “investment”). According to an ESPN.com report, 2017 World Series of Poker Main Event champ Scott Blumstein did have backers for this run to the $8.15 million first prize, but for him, it was the group of micro-investors that meant the most.
Four of Blumstein’s friends contributed $60 each to his buy-in, a total of just $240, which was likely fairly financially meaningless to the champ. Those investments were important to him, though, because they further built camaraderie between Blumstein and his pals.
“He wanted us to sweat it out with him,” Aldo Boscia told ESPN.com. Once Blumstein made the final table, Boscia and the gang made sure to get out to Las Vegas to cheer him on for as far as he could go.
“The truth is that a bunch of guys who had small stakes in me helped me the most at the end, when I needed support, when I needed to be driven places,” Blumstein told ESPN. “I can say pretty confidently that without their support, I might not have won it all.”
And for their small contributions, each of his friends walked away with $40,750.
Macau Chip Counterfeiters Busted
Macau’s Judiciary Police recently arrested two men for allegedly introducing counterfeit chips into play at a casino. The men were charged with fraud and are potentially connected to six other cases of chip counterfeiting during the same week.
Police indicated that the suspects’ activity was noticed by a dealer and the casino subsequently called the authorities, who arrived and took the men into custody. 85 fake chips were seized from the men and from the table, each with a denomination of HKD 10,000 (a bit less than USD $1,300).
It was found that the men had arrived from the mainland that same day and met up with an accomplice who gave them 100 counterfeit chips. Through a combination of betting and exchanging the chips at the cage, police say the two men took the casino for about HKD 350,000.
It seems that the men were potentially one leg of a larger counterfeit chip scheme, as Judiciary Police spokeswoman Lei Hong Nei said, “They would have received 150,000 dollars each as a reward.”
New Jersey Governor Signs Resolution Condemning RAWA
Though it has never really gained any traction and is seen by almost every legislator on Capitol Hill as disgusting crony capitalism, Sheldon Adelson’s Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) always threatens to keep popping up in one form or another. Since the passage of an sort of RAWA-like legislation would threaten New Jersey’s regulated online gambling industry, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed Assembly Joint Resolution #137, urging Congress to rebuff any attempts to get any anti-online gambling legislation passed.
The Resolution was introduced in January, but not voted upon until June, when it sailed through both the New Jersey Assembly and Senate. It’s not a law or anything, just a message to the U.S. Congress, but I suppose it’s better than nothing. Among other things, it says:
A federal prohibition against Internet gaming would directly and negatively impact New Jersey by dismantling the investments that the State and Atlantic City casinos have already made to implement and regulate Internet gaming, taking away the economic and employment opportunities already realized by the State and its residents, and foreclosing the future potential of Internet gaming to generate tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue, create high-tech software jobs, and foster valuable business ventures for Atlantic City casinos in this State.
Poker Central Launches Poker Masters
Poker Central has announced the creation of a new tournament series called the Poker Masters High Roller Tournament Series, to be held at the Aria in Las Vegas in September. The action will be streamed on Poker Central’s subscription service, PokerGO.
The week-long Poker Masters will consist of four two-day $50,000 buy-in tournaments (single re-entry) and one three-day $100,000 main event (freezeout). Live streaming will be September 13th through September 20th, with the exception of Sunday, September 17th, when there will be no broadcast.
As an added incentive for players to pony up the simoleons, anyone who signs up for one of the $50,000 tournaments “on time” (likely meaning before the first card is dealt) will not be required to pay rake. Anyone who plays in all four $50,000 events will have no rake for the $100,000 tournament.
The Poker Masters will also introduce something new in the poker world: a prize jacket. The player who earns the most money across all five events will be presented with the Poker Masters Purple Jacket, a clear nod to the Masters golf tournament, which awards the coveted green jacket to its champion.
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