by Haley Hintze
POKER HALL OF FAME NOMINEES ANNOUNCED
Caesars Entertainment officials announced ten finalists for possible 2011 induction into the Poker Hall of Fame. Either one or two nominees will be selected from a list including Barry Greenstein, Annie Duke, Jennifer Harman, Linda Johnson, John Juanda, Marcel Luske, Jack McClelland, Tom McEvoy, Scotty Nguyen and Huck Seed.
BILLIRAKIS MINES FRENCH GOLD
Three events are in the books at the 2011 WSOP Europe, with Illinois native Steve “MrSm0key1” Billirakis the lone American to win a bracelet in early action at Casino Barriere in Cannes, France. Billirakis captured his second WSOP title in Event No. 3, Ð5,000+300 pot-limit Omaha, winning €238,140 payday. A CASINO WIN AT HPT BLACKHAWK
The casino always wins, according to the saying, but the “Casino” winning at the Heartland Poker Tour’s recent Blackhawk, Colorado stop was Illinois’ Craig Casino, who outlasted a huge 668-player field at the popular HPT Golden Gates Casino. He netted $293,270 from the HPT’s firstever million-dollar purse, beating Coloradan Mary Flurkey ($146,633) for the win, with Dan Hirleman finishing third for $87,217.
SCHWARMANN TOPS KORANSKY AT DAYTONA BEACH
Speaking of the Heartland Poker Tour, Nick Schwarmann claimed victory at the expanding mid-scale HPT’s recent Daytona Beach Kennel Club stop. Schwarmann’s $167,944 winner’s payday came at the expense of Rebecca Koransky, whose runner-up showing was worth $83,970. Travis Klein took third for $50,382.
COPA, SOUTH POINT LAUNCH ONLINE SITES
Despite no state having officially launched real-money online poker networks, interested players are already lining up with play-money offerings in anticipation of such legislation. The California Online Poker Association (COPA) debuted a freeplay network at CalShark.com in early October. COPA represents a loose coalition of about 60 tribal-gaming and existing card-room interests. This was soon by the opening of a free online room by Las Vegas’s South Point Hotel, which has been among the leading advocates of a Nevada-based network.
DOYLE’S ROOM NO MORE
The final tie between Doyle Brunson and online poker ended in October with the official sale of Doyle’s Room to America’s CardRoom. “Texas Dolly” had previously ended his business relationship with the site, and the sale means the probable retirement of the “Doyle’s Room” brand name. The transaction ends the saga of the long-running room’s efforts to continue providing services to Americans in the wake of the 2006 UIGEA, which saw the site jump from network to network in its efforts to remain viable.
ARGENTINEAN POKER PROS SUED OVER WYNN CRAPS GAME
Two prominent Argentinean poker pros were recently sued over their alleged cheating roles in an apparent scam that netted over $700,000 from a high-stakes craps table at the Wynn in Las Vegas. Leo Fernandez, a Team PokerStars Pro, and Veronica Dabul, a former member, were sued by Wynn after a series of gaming incidents in July wherein the two are alleged to have repeated slid the dice across the table while using accomplices to distract floormen. The two were arrested on July 18, according to a Las Vegas Review Journal report; Dabul was subsequently released while Fernandez was turned over to immigration officials.