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Haley Hintze

Poker News Brief: Caesars Seeks New York Casino License

by Haley Hintze

American casino giant Caesars Entertainment Corp. is looking to expand into New York State, if it can secure one of four casino licenses approved by the state’s legislature in 2013.  If approved, Caesars hopes to build a $750 million casino complex in Woodbury, NY, just 50 miles from central New York City.  Caesars is expected to be one of at least four casinos vying to receive a coveted Hudson Valley / Catskills region license from the state, which would be the closest of the four potential New York casinos to the giant New York City market.  A NY Times report on the vying for the new licenses also lists MGM, Boyd Gaming and Las Vegas Sands Corp. as being interested in building a casino in New York’s downstate region.

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Poker News Brief: Borgata Alleges Intentional Losses in Phil Ivey ‘Edge Sorting’ Case

by Haley Hintze

More details in the $9.6 million lawsuit filed by New Jersey’s Borgata against noted poker pro Phil Ivey have emerged, including the claim that Ivey intentionally lost more than $2 million in baccarat winnings back to the Borgata as news of his own lawsuit against London’s Crockfords Casino became public in 2012.  “Upon information and belief,” reads the complaint, “Ivey intentionally lost a portion of his winnings at the end of the October 7-8, 2012 Baccarat session.” The Borgata’s complaint also alleges that the casino only learned of the similar Crockfords matter as Ivey was leaving the casino after the fourth and last of his 2012 Borgata visits.

 

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Poker News Brief: California Online Poker Hearing Draws 33 to Testify

by Haley Hintze

An informational hearing held before the California Assembly Committee on Governmental Organization (the “GO” Committee) drew 33 experts and interested parties to share their insights and opinions on the possible future of regulated iPoker in California, where two bills are currently under consideration.  The wave of testifying witnesses included industry experts, casino and tribal representatives, technology and security specialists, plus a handful of public-opinion lobbyists – both for and against online poker’s possible legalization.  The hearing lasted over five and a half hours and included a number of surprises, including the surprise announcement of the Morongo / PokerStars infrastructure deal (above) just minutes before Morongo rep Robert Martin began his testimony, likely designed to attack “bad actor” language indirectly targeting PokerStars inserted into one of the pending bills.

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Poker News Brief: PokerStars’ Prospective California Online Poker Deal

by Haley Hintze

PokerStars parent The Rational Group announced on April 23rd the reaching of a formal agreement with four potential providers of online poker in California, should that state approve pending or future legislation approving intrastate online offerings.  Rational announced a deal to provide platform infrastructure for the Morongo Band of Mission Indians and three large Los Angeles card rooms – Commerce, Hawaiian Gardens and the Bike.  The deal would go into effect only upon online poker’s formal California legalization, and would also require Rational Group to receive approval from state gaming regulators.  Use of the actual “PokerStars” brand name was not mentioned as part of the deal.

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Poker News Brief: Hellmuth’s Continued Bracelet Gifting

by Haley Hintze

The WSOP’s career wins leader, Phil Hellmuth, has resumed his practice of giving his victor’s bracelets to family and friends.  Hellmuth recently gave the jewelry honoring his record 13th win to wealthy Silicon Valley venture capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya.  Palihapitiya is also a part owner of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors, whose games Hellmuth frequently attends.  Most of Hellmuth’s other bracelets have gone to family members, except for his very first and his 12th, which was once publicly promised to UltimateBet co-founder Greg Pierson but went undelivered in the wake of revelations connected to the cheating on that now-defunct online site.

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Poker News Brief: Borgata Introduces UV-Stamped Tournament Chips

by Haley Hintze

January’s cancellation of the opening event of the Borgata Winter Open due the introduction of a large number of counterfeit chips has led to the casino’s introduction of new high-denomination chips incorporating UV stamping, detectable by security-camera filters. The expensive new chips debuted at the casino’s Spring Poker Open and are being made by Maine chipmaker Game On Chip Company, with the Borgata receiving conditional approval from New Jersey gaming regulators for their use. Final determinations in the cancelled January tournament have yet to be issued by the state’s regulators, while alleged counterfeiter Christian Lusardi remains in custody on related charges. More than $1.4 million in prize money had yet to be awarded when play was halted with 27 players remaining.

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Poker News Brief: PPA Announces “Fight Back” Campaign

by Haley Hintze

The Poker Players Alliance has announced a grass-roots campaign designed to put poker players directly in touch with federal legislators to protest anti-online-gambling bills under consideration in Congress.  Called “Fight Back,” the new effort targets twin measures introduced by US Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and US Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), that are backed and drafted by the Sheldon Adelson-CEO’d Las Vegas Sands Corp.  While the twin bills have signed up about 20 co-sponsors, several legal and political groups have protested the bills, often as a violation of states’ rights regarding gambling.  Among the groups opposing the Graham and Chaffetz measures are Democratic Governors Association, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) and the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL). More at: http://theppa.org/fight-the-ban/

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Poker News Brief: More Full Tilt Refunds Issued

by Haley Hintze

The Department of Justice-appointed administrator for the Full Tilt Poker remissions process, Garden City Group, released a second wave of refunds in early April.  Almost $6 million in online-poker balances was sent to about 2,800 players whose banking information could not be verified in time for inclusion in the larger first wave of payments earlier this year.  All told, GCG has issued about $81 million in FTP payment to date, with two large categories still under review – online affiliates and former players who enjoyed some form of sponsorship relationship with the site.  The funds for the ongoing refunds came from the 2012 PokerStars settlement with the DOJ, which acquired Full Tilt’s remaining assets in exchange for the remission funding.

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Poker News Brief: Borgata Sues Phil Ivey for $9.6 Million Over Alleged “Edge Sorting”

by Haley Hintze

The “edge sorting” technique used by Phil Ivey in conjunction with his ongoing suit against London’s Crockfords Casino has again surfaced, this time in the form of an action filed by New Jersey’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa against Ivey and companion Cheng Yin Sun.  The lawsuit alleges that Ivey and Sun conspired against the Borgata by exploiting minor printing variations on the casino’s cards, with Ivey winning over $9.6 million during four 2012 high-stakes sessions.  The Borgata also named as a defendant the cards’ manufacturer, Gemaco, for the same amount, alleging defective cards that failed to meet the terms of the company’s card-supplying contract.  The nearly 60-page legal document accuses Ivey and Sun of an elaborate series of manipulations and requests, many of which were described as “superstitions,” but which the Borgata alleges were intentional ruses designed to tip the odds in Ivey’s favor.

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Poker News Brief: New York State Online Poker Bill Introduced

by Haley Hintze

New York State Senator John Bonacic (R-42) has introduced a measure seeking to authorize intrastate online poker. The new proposal isn’t the first time online poker has been considered in Albany, after being considered in conjunction with a controversial casino-expansion effort that finally passed in 2013. Bonacic’s new bill would define poker as a game of skill and would create as many as ten online poker licenses, and would open the door to player-pooling compacts with other states also offering regulated internet poker, including neighbor states New Jersey and Delaware. The original draft language of Bonacic’s bill does include bad-actor language designed to block any online sites that serviced New York residents following the passage of the 2006 UIGEA.

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September 4, 2014 - 10:31am
August 28, 2014 - 9:45am
August 25, 2014 - 9:44am
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