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November Nine History, Fun Facts & Poker Tidbits

Qui Nguyen: 2016 World Champion
Fun November Nine Facts
It’s poker’s marquis showcase, the World Series of Poker main event final table. The much heralded November Nine today on High Roller Radio.  Since 2008, in a bid to generate publicity and worldwide excitement, the WSOP has paused play in July, when the tournament gets down to 9 players, taken a 3-and-a-half month break, and reconvened in November to decide the winner, hence the phrase November Nine.

Blackjack and roulette for high rollers at High Stakes

Players have used that time off to hire coaches, study, play more poker or simply go on vacation. Not everyone is a fan of the extended break. ”it ruins the integrity of the tournament,” said Ylon Schwartz, one of the first ever November Niners, Class of 2008.
ESPN isn’t complaining. That 2008 version got great ratings and an Emmy nomination for ‘Outstanding Live Turnaround’.
In 2009, November Niner Jeff Schulman, president of Card Player magazine, openly stated that if he won the bracelet he would throw it in the trash. “Everything to do with how the tournament is run,” Shulman said. “It used to be run by people who loved and really cared about poker. That mission has been derailed by executives.”
He later recanted, saying he wouldn’t toss the bracelet but instead pursue one of four options; hold an auction for charity, give it away as part of a magazine promotion, hold a tourney and give it to the winner, or give it to tv personality Stephen Colbert. Schulman finished 4th that year. Joe Cada won it at the tender age of 21, making him the youngest ever to do so.
Phil Ivey was there in 2009, but was ousted in 7th when his ace king lost to Darwin Moon’s ace queen, when a queen hit the flop. Moon, the amateur logger from Maryland finished 2nd. Did you know he gaimed entry into the main through a $130 satellite tourney in Wheeling, West Virginia, and briefly considered re-investing that 10k score into his business instead of taking his seat in Vegas. Well, 2nd  got him $5 million so good decision and great parlay Darvin Moon.
Herer’s a quirky fact – 2010 main event champ Jonathan Duhamel and 2013 November Niner Marc Etienne McLaughlin, who finished 6th, play on the same dodgeball team. Also, for just the second time ever, 2010 featured a final table without someone who resides in Las Vegas.
In 2011, Irishman Eoghan O’Dea made the November Nine. His legendary, poker playng father, Donnacha, reached the main event final table in 1983, then again in 1991, so they become the first father-son duo to ever accomplish that feat.
In 2012, thanks the US presidential election, the final table was held early, so it was the ‘October Nine’. 2012 was also the year the women got close; Gaelle Baumann and Elisabeth Hille, finsihed 10th and 11th respectively, effectively bubbling the Octo 9. The only woman to ever reach the main event final table? Hall of Famer Barbara Enright in 1995.
Then there’s the MarK Newhouse story! In 2013, the American made the final table but was first one out in 9th. Fast forward one year, 2014, and he sent out a tweet:
“Just bought into the main event day 1c. Not f’ing finishing 9th again!’ he wrote. Incredibky, Newhuse outlasted another monster field to make the final table again. Think about that; he survived more than 13,000 runners over a two year period. This time, he had good chips, one of the leaders heading in, but nothing seemed to work that night, just couldn’t get anything going. After losing a few big pots heeventually shoved with pocket 10’s on the river only to be called by pocket Queens. Guess what? Ninth again!
Now let’s break this down:
The odds of being struck by lightning in any two-year period are 1 in 480,000, according to the National Weather Service. Bowling a 300 game? 11,500-to-1. A hole-in-one is 6,000-to-1. Winning an Olympic medal? 650,000-to-1. Well, finishing 9th at the WSOP two years running can be calculated at roughly 4 million-to-1, the experts suggest.
Also in 2014, The November Nine featured Builly Pappas, who between the time of the tounrey getting down to 9 and the actual final table playing out, went out and won a World Foosball Championship, his 4th since 2005, nobody has won more. More fun facts; Britain has had two November Niner’s, both James Akenhead in 2009, and Sam Holden in 2011, started from ninth position and both lasted just a few hands.
Oldest November Niner? Pierre Nueville of Balgium. Second oldest? Neil Blumenfield of San Fransisco. And, they were at the same final table – 2015. Average age of all November Niners since 2008? 31. 2015 was also the first time in history that all players had previously cashed in a WSOP event.
The player entering in 2nd chip position had never won (until this year and Qui Nguyen).

Global Poker League Team Selection = Draft Day

Hey High Rollers, a bit of poker history today as the Global Poker League held its first ever player draft and it was broadcast live on twitch poker with Joe Stapleton, Phil Hellmuth and Daniel Negreanu as your commentators. The GPL will feature 12 teams and some of the best poker talent on the planet. Some picks were surprising and that left a number of top ranked players, from the pool of 200 available, off the final roster. Make no mistake about it, everyone wants to be involved in this. Here is a look at the teams, the captains and the players.

Mustapha Kanit

Mustapha Kanit       #1 Pick Overall

Rome Emperors
Captain: Max Pescatori
1st Pick: Mustapha Kanit
2nd Pick: Dario Sammartino
3rd Pick: Timothy Adams
4th Pick: Walter Treccharichi

Montreal Nationals
Captain: Marc-Andre Ladouceur
1st Pick: Mike McDonald
2nd Pick: Martin Jacobsen
3rd Pick: Pascal LaFrancois
4th Pick: Xuan Liu

New York Rounders
Captain: Bryn Kenney
1st Pick: Jason Mercier
2nd Pick: Tom Marchese
3rd Pick: Kevin Macphee
4th Pick: Jason Weiler

San Fransisco Rush
Captain: Faraz Jaka
1st Pick: Phil Galfond
2nd Pick: Anthony Gregg
3rd Pick: Kitty Kuo
4th Pick: Anton Wigg

Las Vegas Moneymakers
Captain: Chris Moneymaker
1st Pick: Anthony Zinno
2nd Pick: Jonathan Duhamel
3rd Pick: Jake Cody
4th Pick:
 Jonathan Little

Sao Paulo Mets
Captain: Andre Akkari
1st Pick: Darren Elias
2nd Pick: Byron Kaverman
3rd Pick: Thiago Nishijima
4th Pick:
 Joao Pires Simau

London Royals
Captain: Liv Boeree
1st Pick: Igor Kurganov
2nd Pick: Vanessa Selbst
3rd Pick: Chris Moorman
4th Pick: Justin Bonomo

Moscow Wolverines
Captain: Anotoly Filatov
1st Pick: Dzmitry Urbanovich
2nd Pick: Vladimir Troyanovskiy
3rd Pick: Andrey Pateychuk
4th Pick: Sergey Lebedev

LA Sunsets
Captain: Maria Ho
1st Pick: Fedor Holz
2nd Pick: Olivier Busquet
3rd Pick: Eugene Katchalov
4th Pick: Chance Kornuth

Berlin Bears
Captain: Philipp Gruissem
1st Pick: Brian Rast
2nd Pick: Sorel Mizzi
3rd Pick: Dominik Nitsche
4th Pick: Jeff Gross

Paris Aviators
Captain: Fabrice Soullier
1st Pick: Bertrand Grospellier
2nd Pick: Davidi Kitai
3rd Pick: George Danzer
4th Pick: Mike Leah

Hong Kong Stars
Captain: Celina Lin
1st Pick: Weiyi Zhang
2nd Pick: Raiden Kan
3rd Pick: Dong Guo
4th Pick: Bryan Huang

Did you know? Pascal LeFrancoisSelected by fellow Canadian Marc-Andre Ladoceur, this Montreal Canadiens fan appeared topless in his WSOP bracelet photo – a first!

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Gambling Prop Bets, Gambling and Poker Legends

Hey High Rollers, crazy famous prop bets today. Why? well, because we just heard of the $1.2 million dollar wager between Bill Perkins and Dan Bilzerian. Enjoy.

High Stakes Prop Bet
High stakes poker players Dan Bilzerian and Bill Perkins have shaken hands on a major wager, one that involves Bilzerian riding a bicycle from Los Angeles to Las Vegas in a 48-hour span. If the playboy Instagram star does he’ll collect on the $1.2 million bet. Perkins, a wealthy hedge fund manager, is known for making huge prop bets (most recently a bet with Antonio Esfandiari that resulted in ‘The Magician’ peeing at the table and getting DQ’d from there PCA in the Bahamas), against Bilzerian, who spent $100,000 on Powerball tickets for a $1.5 billion draw. Crazy stuff. Bilzerian tweeted that he hasn’t been on a bike in 15 years and he’ll now have to cover the roughly 300 miles in just two days. What do you think?

Bill Perkins
An avid poker player, who cashed for $1.9 million in the Big One for One Drop at the WSOP, Perkins focusses on venture capital and energy markets. He founded Small Ventures USA, L.P. in 1997 and later joined Centaurus Energy in 2002. He now manages Skylar Capital.

‘The Mouth’ Lost in the Forrest
In 2007, Mike Matusow got down from 241 pounds to 181 pounds and collected on a $100,000 weight loss bet with fellow multiple bracelet winner Ted Forrest. A few years later the two made another famous wager with Forrest dropping wight this time, And, he did. Forrest shed 48 pounds in three months to pocket a whopping $2 million.

The Johnny Moss Sucker Punch
Johnny Moss, legendary poker world champ and member of the Hall of Fame, once bet a guy who had never lost a bar fight that he could beat him. His price? 15-to-1. The stipulation? That he got to throw the first punch. So, Moss hit the guy from behind, in the head, but failed to knock him out and, as a result, suffered broken bones and a night in the hospital.
“Fifteen-to-one was too good to pass up,” he said.

Eat a Burger Baby!
Controversial poker great Howard Lederer, a known vegetarian on the poker circuit (when he was welcome), accepted a $10,000 wager to eat a hamburger, which he easily downed. Lederer gave his rival, David Grey, who hates olives, a chance to double up by eating a few. Apparently Grey hates olives more than he hates losing five figures because he gave up the cash.

Where Everybody Knows Your Name!
The first of two bets between fictional characters to make the list is one of my favorite episodes of Cheers and involves the gang growing beards for a month. Sam, Norm, Cliff and Frasier each throw in $20, agreeing to let Carla judge the entries on “length, body, fullness, luster, sheen and bounce.” All of them do pretty well, but Cliff has a little bit of trouble until he finds some “industrial adhesive products.”

Hilarious clip from ‘The Nuts’ by ESPN. Love Billy Gazes.

Barkely Vs Bavetta in Foot Race!

“If you’re committed to being a professional gambler, and you want to be the best you can be, you spend every waking moment trying to figure out a way to beat the game.”
– Billy Walters, Legendary Gambler (from Richard Munchkin’s book, Gambling Wizards)

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Slot Machine History & Betting Tips

Slot Machine History

     Since their invention in 1899 by Charles Fey, slot machines have been a source of excitement and entertainment for gamblers worldwide. They come in all shapes and forms and occupy most of the space at brick and mortar casinos. The bells and whistles are highly attractive and a proven source of fun for patrons of all kinds.
     In 1964, the slot machine industry was changed forever when electronic processors were added to the mix, a function to determine the outcome of games. This made machines more secure and, because it allowed the reels to stop reliably where they were supposed to, it also meant operators could offer larger prizes and jackpots.
     The next logical step unfolded in the mid 1970’s when Walt Freely introduced the first video-based slot machine called the “Fortune Coin,” which consisted only of the computer unit, the coin hopper and a TV screen. Things were simplified greatly, but despite the benefits for the casinos and better odds, highly controlled payout’s and jackpots, players were at first slow to trust the new technology. Then, video poker came along and, although the two games have few similarities, when players realized video poker games were fair the public perception slowly started to change with respect to video slot games as well. From there things exploded as the three-reeled machine grew to five, seven and nine reel games, massive symbol variations, pay lines, bet sizes, side games and jackpot amounts. Slot machines were added to the roster of online casino offerings. Click here to visit Netbet.  Think about it – 100 years of research has been crafted into each and every slot machine you’ll play at either a brick and mortar casino or online casino.

Tips for Slot Machine Play
     Be sure to check and read any information relating to your online casino or individual slot machine you’d like to play. Look for things like payout information, percentages, and if you can’t afford the maximum bet on any one machine switch to one with fewer reels or lower denominations to ensure yourself in the mix for jackpots.
     Be sure to set your limits with the ultimate goal of managing your bankroll in a bid to keep play entertaining, exciting and affordable. Think about it like an evening of fun and always consider playing with a set, comfortable amount.
     When you play consider which machines offer the highest progressive jackpots, a signal they haven’t been ‘hit’ in a while.  Look for machines and online casinos that offer the best bonuses and highest player rewards. Also, consider playing machines that offer higher prizes than one that pays out more often but also pays out less.
     Most importantly, if your machine is hot and hitting stay there until the luck turns. Sometimes swapping machines and games can pay-off. And, always remember slot machine pay-out’s are still random. Sometimes it’s just not your night. Take a break and you’ll have better luck next time.


Did you know?
In 1899, Charles Fey produced the first ever slot machine, one resembling the machines we know today. It was called “The Liberty Bell” and featured three reels with various symbols, the major one being a cracked Liberty Bell. It had a coin acceptor, a payout table and a large handle on the side. Fey placed it in a San Francisco saloon to see how the public would react and it became such a hit he quit his job to focus on this new technology. He monopolized the market and became very successful.

Lucky Twins online slot machines at Netbet!

Lucky Twins online slot machines

Online Casino Guide

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Gambling in a Canadian Chinatown – Fun Gambling Facts

Hey High Rollers, absolutely love it when we get follower submissions…and we thank a young 12 year old fan of High Roller Radio for these pics from Victoria, British Columbia. He was there, visiting Chinatown on his older sister’s birthday. Thank-you young man!

Vintage Gambling Games from Victoria, BC, Canada circa early 1900’s:

(Apparently gambling was huge in Victoria, BC, in Chinatown…can you imagine the action and cigarette smoke back in the day?)

Classic dice games enjoyed by those living in Chinatown many years ago.

Classic dice games enjoyed by those living in Chinatown many years ago.

Craps Anyone? Dice games in Chinatown.

Craps Anyone? Dice games in Chinatown.


Slots Anyone?

Slots Anyone?

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Play exciting slots and casino games at Star Games. Clkck banner and you'll be having dun in minutes. Great online casino gaming and bonuses. Enjoy casino table games at their finest. No Guts, No Glory.

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JC Alvarado Interview, MMA Fight Prop Bets, Sports Books Lose on Rousey

Hey High Rollers, some programming note; we have just interviewed JC Alvarado, a who who just finished 3rd in the 2015 WSOPE main event for $347,000. He’s won more than $3 million playing tournaments, and scored for $969,000 in the 2012 EPT Super High Roller vent in Barcelona. Plus, he’s made news for agreeing to a 6-figure MMA fight prop-bet with fellow pro Olivier Busquet. That fight games place in April and has the poker world, and UFC fans alike, abuzz.

Agrees to 6-figure MMA fight prop bet with fellow pro.

Agrees to 6-figure MMA fight prop bet with fellow pro.

Listen to that great Q&A HERE

The Man Alvarado is Fighting
Olivier Busquet
* Earned $2 million in Sit n Go’s before any other player earned $1 million.
* 2009 Borgata WPT Poker Open champion.
* Owner of 2 EPT titles
* More than $6 million won playing live tournaments.

Flashback: Remember the fight between poker pros Lex Veldhuis and Bertrand Grospellier?

Poker Quotes
“I’m giving him odds because I’ve been training for a while and he never has. I think my experience gives me a slight edge coming into this.”

– JC Alvarado on his fight with Olivier Busquet

Ronda Pounded, Sports Books Too
Rough day for sports books in Nevada when Holly Holm nailed Ronda Rousey with that vicious head kick at UFC 193. According to reports, it was a disaster. Most of the action was on Holm. According to a report from USA Today, the consensus line: $900 on Rousey to win $100, while a $100 bet on Holm would win $600. And the odds were much worse for Holm the further back you go from the fight. She was once 14-1 at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook. It was reportedly the most heavily bet Ronda Rousey fight to date.

Did you know?

The UFC’s held over 300 events and counting. Dana White is president, while brothers Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta control the parent company Luffa, LLC. The first UFC event was held on November 12, 1993 at the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver, Colorado.

Bruce Buffer, the ring announcer for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, is an avid poker player and is a regular entry into the Main Event of the WSOP.

George St.Pierre, the UFC Middleweight Champion of the World, represents the online poker website, one of the most respected poker sites in the world.

EPT Barcelona
The Grand Casino in Barcelona sits right on the Mediterranean Ocean and directly across from Port Olympic, which was one of the main stages for the 1992 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXV Olympiad.

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Odds & Ends
“I love gambling and that’s another bad financial decision I’ve made; to play cards for money.”
– Macy Gray, Singer

Did you know? Mike “Timex” McDonald, a 26-year-old poker pro from Canada who has accumulated more than $12.4 million in tournament earnings. He has 10 huge titles to his name and five seven-figure tournaments scores under his belt. One word – WOW! Timex has also worked with some of the November Nine in recent years, including 2011 champion Pius Heinz.

Great Player!
(would love to have him on)

Lastly: Do you play on PokerStars? Check out this Two Plus Two thread where some players are talking about a strike:


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Gambling Movie Quotes – Poker and Casino Fun Facts

Hey High Rollers, NFL Week #1 almost in the books…who are you taking for the Super Bowl? If you wanna bet and help support us at the same time please click the MMA Betting link and you’ll be wagering on any sport, any team, any game in just a matter of minutes. Good luck.

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Gambling Movie Quotes

“Do you know the difference between a hustler and a good con man? … A hustler has to get out of town as quick as he can, but a good con man – he doesn’t have to leave until he wants to.”

The Hustler
“I’m the best you ever seen, Fats. I’m the best there is. And even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”

“In the casino, the cardinal rule is to keep them playing and to keep them coming back. The longer they play, the more they lose, and in the end, we get it all.”

Steve Allen
“I used to be a heavy gambler. But now I just make mental bets. That’s how I lost my mind.”

The Sting
“What was I supposed to do – call him for cheating better than me?”

Dumb & Dumberer
Lloyd: “I’ll bet you 20 bucks I can get you gambling before the end of the day!?”
Harry: “No way.”
Lloyd: “I’ll give you 3 to 1 odds?”
Harry: “Nope.”
Lloyd: “5 to 1?”
Harry: “Nope.”
Lloyd: “10 to 1?”
Harry: “You’re on.”

“I’ve often seen these people, these squares at the table, short stack and long odds against them. All their outs gone. One last card in the deck that can help them. I used to wonder how they could let themselves get into such bad shape and how the hell they thought they could turn it around.”

The Hangover
Stu: “I’ll tell you another thing … 6 to 1 odds are our car is beat to shit.”
Phil: “Stu, not now.”
Stu: “Seriously, how much do you wanna bet? It’s like fucked up beyond all recognition?”
The Empire Strikes Back
C-3PO: “but sir, the possibility of successfully navigating an asteroid field is approximately 3,720 to one.”
Hans Solo
: “Never tell me the odds.”

(From the sequence where Han Solo barrels the Millennium Falcon into an asteroid field to escape the Empire. It’s then that C-3PO decides this would be a great moment to do some math.)
If you must play,
decide upon three things at the start:
the rules of the game,
the stakes,
and the quitting time.

Chinese Proverb
Editor’s Note: if you haven’t experienced the website Twitch yet, you should. You an watch great players navigate the large fields online. How do they do it? Free training!
Check it out Twitch Poker
“Like video games, poker is a game and we’ve grown that into a huge business.” 
 Scott BallTwitch Poker Partnerships exec
Jason Somerville
This very popular podcaster/poker player has a huge following on social media (36,000 on twitter alone) and twitch, which enabled him to land a lucrative sponsorship deal with PokerStars. In 2015, Somerville attracted his 8,000,000 viewer on twitch.
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Poker Legend Puggy Pearson, Ivey v Bilzerian, Gambling Fun Facts

Hey High Rollers, hope you are winning at the tables and the cards have been kind. Bubbled a few events as well recently but had a nice score this past weekend, chopped the daily $25 Omaha Hi Low for $447. Sweet!

NFL football is back…..wanna bet on sports? Visit our site at and click the banner right at the top, BetOnline, a great place to wager on your favourite team in minutes. Or, click the banners below and good luck!

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Puggy Pearson Quotes

Hall of Famer and WSOP main event world champ.
“I’ll play any man from any land, any game he can name, for any amount he can count…provided I like it.”

“Ain’t only three things to gambling; knowing the 60-40 end of the proposition, money management and knowing yourself.”

“Losing is like smoking, it’s habit forming.”

“The real things to know is that folks will stand to lose more than they will to win. That’s the most important percentage there is. I mean, if they lose, they’re willing’ to lose everything. If they win, they’re usually satisfied to win enough to pay for dinner and a show. The best gambler’s know that.”

Poker Tips for Beginners

Implied Odds = The estimated amount of money that you can expect to win if you complete your drawing hand, regardless of the immediate odds the pot is currently laying you.

Value Bet
What Is It?
A bet made with the intention of being called in order to extract more money or chips from a likely worse hand. Value bets are made when a player’s hand has a positive expectation.

“Aces are larger than life and greater than mountains.”
– Mike Caro

Gamers Spend Money
A new report says nearly half of all social gamers spend money on the activity rather than just continuing to play for free. Most are men between 21-and-35 but 41% are women. The social gaming market is $2.9 billion in the US.

Fun Casino Facts
It’s thought Roulette was invented by the well-known scientist Blaise Pascal as a result of his attempts and numerous tests to create a perpetual motion machine.

Alec ‘Traheho’ Torelli
Alec Torelli is a high stakes cash game terror, who recently crushed his opponents on Poker Night in America Florida for close to $60,000 over two days. He’s a regular in Macau at nose bleed stakes and writes for Card Player magazine. Listen now to our fantastic chat:

For his ‘Hand of the Day’ check out his blog site

Phil Ivey versus Ban Bilzerian
Dan Bilzerian is currently estimated to beworth around $150 million while Phil Ivey has a net worth of around $100 million. While Ivey has the inferior net worth, the majority of Ivey’s worth can be attributed to poker while much of Bilzerian’s wealth allegedly comes from his family.

Did you know?
Dan Bilzerian recently signed a sponsorship deal with the fantasy sports site DraftKings. Bilzerian has a whopping 1.25 million followers on twitter and 11.5 million on Instagram.
NOTE: Phil Ivey has over $23 million in live tournament earnings, 10 WSOP bracelets, a WPT title.


Soccer Star Hits Royal Flush

Neymar da Silva Santos Jr, the Brazilian football star who represents PokerStars, has generated a lot of buzz online for the hands he’s been getting. In August, 2015, Neymar Jr hit a royal flush in spades on a board reading KSpade Suit 5Club Suit 4Heart Suit 10Spade Suit QSpade Suit during a €50 Super Stack tournament. He later went on to make the final table, though it was completely insignificant money for him. He makes at least $30 million a year. He posted a photo of the hand on Instagram and it was liked more than 510,000 times. Good publicity for PokerStars.

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Poker and Gambling Quotes on High Roller Radio

Hey High Rollers, still recovering from all that WSOP action? What a summer. Editor’s Note: We are looking for contributors, either audio segments on sports betting, poker strategy, or casino news or written articles on anything gambling/poker related. Interested in getting your name out there? Want to join our team? There is NO pay, but we will promote you with your own page on the website and through social media. 2-to-1 you’ll LOVE it! We’d love to have you!

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Phil Ivey vs Borgata

Can you say Countersuit?

Phil Ivey countersues the Borgata Hotel & Casino over the controversial $9.6 million ‘edge sorting’ case,suggesting the casino committed fraud against them because they destroyed the playing cards/evidence in question. Below is a statement form Ivey’s legal team:
(NOTE: Everything centres on faulty playing cards.)

“Plaintiff’s complaint is barred because of the plaintiff’s own spoliation of evidence, specifically plaintiff’s failure to preserve, sequester or in any other way produce the actual playing cards used in the course of the defendants’ play, thereby irretrievably prejudicing defendants’ ability to secure judgment, and otherwise constituting suppression of evidence that would result in the entry of judgment on behalf of the defendants…Plaintiff intentionally destroyed each and every card and deck of cards it produced for play to defendants Ivey and Sun for that entire five month period preceding defendants’ final play at the Borgata in October of 2012.”

“In the casino, the cardinal rule is to keep them playing and to keep them coming back. The longer they play, the more they lose, and in the end, we get it all.”
– Ace RothsteinCasino

“In Vegas, everybody’s gotta watch everybody else. Since the players are looking to beat the casino, the dealers are watching the players. The box men are watching the dealers. The floor men are watching the box men. The pit bosses are watching the floor men. The shift bosses are watching the pit bosses. The casino manager is watching the shift bosses. I’m watching the casino manager. And the eye-in-the-sky is watching us all.”
Ace Rothstein: (voice-over), Casino

At the movies…
A collection of great poker and gambling films.

“I hadn’t been in Vegas 20 minutes when I got word the bookmakers were offering 3-to-1 that Frank wouldn’t show for my wedding.”
– Sammy Davis Jr.

“Las Vegas is sort of like how God would do it if he had money.”
– Steve Wynn

You can lead a horse to water but a donkey will follow you all the way to the river.

– Anonymous

“Every time I go to Vegas, I seem to incur some kind of fine.”
– Artie Lange

In a bet there is a fool and a thief.  

“The night before I left Las Vegas I walked out in the desert to look at the moon. There was a jeweled city on the horizon, spires rising in the night, but the jewels were diadems of electric and the spires were the neon of signs ten stories high.” 
 Norman Mailer

“In Vegas, I got into a long argument with the man at the roulette wheel over what I considered to be an odd number.”
– Steven Wright

Hockey in Vegas?
“I just don’t see it not happening. We have a solid owner, an arena and we sold 13,000 season tickets. Vegas has 2.2 million people. It’s a sports town. We’ve been starving for a professional franchise of any kind for many years.”
– Daniel Negreanu, on Las Vegas getting an NHL team.

Freeroller to High Roller

“I started playing poker seriously during my sophomore year of college in 2005. I had played some $5 home games in high school and stuff before that, but it was mainly an excuse to drink in our basements. I had kind of forgotten about poker, to be honest, but my little brother was really into it. He’s five years younger than me, and one day when I came back to visit from college, he was in the play money games on PokerStars. I thought it looked fun, so I started playing too. Then I found out about all of the freerolls they had on some of the other sites, won one of them, and all of a sudden I had a $100 bankroll. It was pretty much a standard poker boom story. I read some strategy books, got better and started building up my bankroll. I never had to make a deposit and I never went broke. By the time I had reached my senior year I was doing really well. During the last week of my finals, I had won over six figures.”

– Amit Makhija

Poker Hall of Fame
What’s the Criteria for Entry?

Inductees must be at least 40 years old and must have “played poker against acknowledged top competition” and “for high stakes,” while playing “consistently well” and “gaining the respect of peers.” The player must have lasted in the poker world too, as another standard is that they “stood the test of time.” For those who didn’t more or less play full-time, they must have “contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results.”

Did you know? There are currently 48 members of the Poker Hall of Fame.
Full List

Bluff Catcher
A hand with marginal strength that is not good enough to bet or raise with, but strong enough to go to showdown against an opponent’s bluffs.

Poker Tips for Beginners

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WSOP 2015; Highlights, Fun Facts and Bracelet Winners

Hey High Rollers, sorry its been a while. The World Series of Poker is in full swing, almost at the halfway mark and the action has been fast and furious. Phil Hellmuth has won bracelet #14, Phil Galfond bracelet #2 and a 20-something kid has taken down the largest live tourney ever, the Colossus.

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Hellmuth is The Man!
Proving again that he is the greatest tournament player ever, Phil Hellmuth captured his 14th bracelet at the 2015 WSOP, besting a field of 103 in Event #17, the $10,000 world championship of Razz. This is the ‘Poker Brat’s’ 2nd Razz bracelet.

Hellmuth Hype

Big Crowds at Colossus

WSOP Sets Record
The Colossus was exactly what officials at the World Series of Poker imagined – unreal! A field of 22,373, making it the largest live poker tournament ever, was topped by 20-something Cord Garcia. Congrats. Talk about a resume topper.

Did you know?
Ray Henson, a long-time poker pro and summer roomates with Cord Garcia, finished 3rd in the Colossus. Roomates, first and third? Wow.

Michael Wang, winner of Event #2, has a degree in biology from Lehigh University in Pennsylvania.
“I’m still trying to process it. This is the most prestigious prize in poker. This is the best thing in the game that’s ever happened to me. It’s going to take some time for this to sink in.”

Robert Mizrachi wins 3rd WSOP Bracelet

Mizrachi Mashes

Wins his 3rd bracelet in Event #3, $1,500, Omaha 8 or Better. In 2007, he captured the world championship of Pot Limit Omaha and $769,000. In 2014, he won gold in the $1,500 Dealers Choice 6-Handed event.
Did you know? Robert’s brother, Michael, owns three WSOP bracelets & two WPT titles. He won the $50k Players Championship in back-to-back years.

Fun Facts
Christian Pham, a Minnesota poker pro, accidentally signed up for the wrong event ($1,500 No Limit Deuce-to-7) and ended up winning it. Pham previously won a the WSOP circuit main event at Caesars Palace in 2013. Thinking he was signing up for the next day’s NLHE event, Pham was stunned to learn he was playing Kansas City Lowball, a form of poker he had never played before:

Kansas City What?
“They had started dealing already, so I couldn’t do anything. If they had not started dealing, I would have told the floorman and asked to be unregistered.”
– Christian Pham

Shocker in 5k
Jeffrey Tomlinson, a 51 year old football coach from Florida, upset a stacked field in Event #25.
“I don’t have any fear. I mean, I’m here to play my game. It doesn’t mean I’ll win ten gold bracelets, but from the moment I sat down I knew I could win.”

Twin Towers?
In Event #24, Arash Ghaneian was being cheered on by his wife, soon expecting twins. Good start to the family, Ghaneian won the event, his first gold bracelet and $240,000.

7 Year Itch?
Seven years after his first gold bracelet, Phil Galfond picked up his 2nd in the world championship of Kansas City lowball single draw defeating Nick Schulman, a two-time winner of this very event, heads-up. It was his 15th career cash, bringing is WSOP earnings above the $2 million mark.

Italy to the Max!
Max Pescatori became the first Italian to win three gold bracelets, taking down the $1,500 Razz for $156,000.

12 Years Later
Keith Lehr needed just 24 hands to beat Paul Volpe in the final of the $10k heads-up world championship. It’s his 2nd bracelet. His first? Twelve years ago in pot limit hold’em.

James Woods
The actor, who co-starred in the movie Casino, made his first and second ever WSOP final tables in 2015. He is widely regarded as a pretty good poker player.

Tuan Le won the $10,000 Deuce-to-Seven triple draw world championship, becoming the first player since 2009 to win the same WSOP event in consecutive years.

Running Good?
After min-cashing in the Colossus, Germany’s Paul Michaelis took down Event #8 for his first bracelet and close to $200,000.

Poker Quotes
“I was running insane basically. I had a straight flush against a nut flush, I had a couple sets. My bluffs worked out. Everything worked perfectly actually,”
– Paul Michaelis

Fast and Furious?
A total of 1,496 runners signed up for the WSOP’s newest event, the $1,000 Hyper Hold’em, which only took two days to complete. Won by Minnesota’s John Reading, it featured 20 minute blind levels. The final table only last one hour and forty-five minutes of actual playing time.

Shaun Deeb Wins Event #15
“This was one of the toughest final tables I’ve ever played against. This was the second time I’ve made the final in this $10K PLHE event, and to come out on top against these caliber of players was just great. It was really special to get this against Paul (Volpe), because we play together all the time. I know he wanted to win, but to get my first against him was just amazing the way it all happened.”
– Shaun Deeb

One to Israel
Idan Raviv became the first Israeli to win WSOP gold by taking down Event #12, the $1,500 6-Max. This just a year after finishing 22nd in the main event.

2015 WSOP Bracelet Winners (so far)
Event #1: Casino Employees Championship, Brandon Barnette ($74,704)
Event #2: $5,000 NLHE, Michael Wang ($466,120)
Event #3: $1,500 Omaha 8 or Better, Robert Mizrachi ($251,022)
Event #4: $3,000 NLHE Shootout, Nick Petrangelo ($201,812)
Event #5: The Colossus, Cord Garcia ($638,880)
Event #6: $1,000 Hyper Turbo, John Reading ($252,028)
Event #7: Deuce to 7 World Championship, Taun Le ($322,756)
Event #8: $1,500 Pot Limit Hold’em, Paul Michaelis ($189,818)
Event #9: $1,500 Razz, Max Pescatori ($155,947)
Event #10: Heads-Up World Championship, Keith Lehr ($334,430)
Event #11: $1,500 Limit Hold’em, William Kakon ($196,055)
Event #12: $1,500 6-Handed NLHE, Idan Raviv ($455,057)
Event #13: $2,500 7-Card Stud/Omaha 8 or Better, Konstanin Maslak ($269,612)
Event #14: $1,500 NLHE Shootout, Barry Hutter ($283,546)
Event #15: Pot Limit Hold’em World Championship, Shaun Deeb ($318,857)
Event #16: Millionaire Maker
Event #17: Razz World Championship, Phil Hellmuth ($271,105)
Event #18: $1,000 Turbo NLHE, John Gale ($298,290)
Event #19: $3,000 Limit Hold’em 6-Handed, Matt Elsby ($230,799)
Event #20: $1,500 NLHE, Benjamin Zamani ($460,640)
Event #21: $10,000 World Championship of Omaha 8 or Better, Daniel Alaei ($391,037)
Event #22: $1,000 NLHE, Sam Greenwood ($318,977)
Event #23: $1,500 No Limit Deuce-to-7 Lowball, Christian Pham ($81,314)
Event #24: $1,500 HORSE, Arash Ghaneian ($239,750)
Event #25: $5,000 8-Handed NLHE, Jeffrey Tomlinson ($567,724)
Event #26: $1,000 Pot Limit Omaha, Aaron Wallace ($226,985)
Event #27: $10k World Championship 7-Card Stud, Brian Hastings ($239,518)
Event #28: Monster Stack,
Event #29: $10k World Championship Deuce-to-7 Single Draw, Phil Galfond ($224,383)

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