Two interesting stories this week in the world of online poker. Finally the DoJ have appointed a claims administrator for US players owed by Full Tilt. Secondly WSOP winner Jerry Yang has got himself in financial hot water with the IRS so much so they are selling his WSOP bracelet.
DOJ Appoints Claims Administrator for FTP Funds
US poker players will be sighing some sort of collective relief as the Department of Justice has finally announced the appointment of Full Tilt Poker claims administrator. This means players a now a step nearer seeing their money which the DoJ has been sat on for months since they seized more than plenty over the last couple of years and PokerStars paid out an arm a leg and a few body parts left over to get of the proverbial hook.
The Garden City Group, Inc is the appointed claims administrator and all the information about the process can be found on http://www.fulltiltpokerclaims.com
The fact that the AGA is now sh*t stirring to keep them out of the US makes the small print in their settlement with the DoJ all the more important … PokerStars again on the ball and they have come out fighting against the AGA saying they have no business sticking their nose into the New Jersey / PokerSrars deal.
IRS selling Jerry Yang’s WSOP Main Event Bracelet
In something of a shock but no shock WSOP 2007 main event winner Jerry Yang would seem to be pot-less as the IRS have chased him down and now plan to auction off his WSOP bracelet and a bunch of other baller jewellery and poker bling to cover his debts of over $571,894 to the tax man.
While Jerry would probably be one of the first to say he isn’t the best player in the world it looks like the realities of variance have caught up with his $8m WSOP win back in 2007, while he has since only brought in 150k in winnings since it’s likely his tournament entries and costs have likely eaten away at most of his 8 million win.
Shame really as the guy seems nice enough – Giving 10% of his WSOP win straight to charity, but you have to question setting up his “Pocket 8’s” Sushi and Grill with over half a million dollars and his taste in poker bling which apparently includes 14K gold bracelet with “WSOP Champ” on it. Sometimes it’s a good idea to accept that a win that big might be more to luck than skill and pull in on the baller lifestyle before it’s too late.
Ladbrokes to Migrate to iPoker
The iPoker Network is going from strength to strength with British bookmaker and household name Ladbrokes moving their poker room from Microgaming (MGN) Network over to iPoker in the near future.
Recent deals with William Hills will have enabled this deal to go through as previously there was felt to be something of a conflict of interest with WillHill being a major shareholder in PlayTech (ipoker software provider) but this move makes a lot of sense to all concerned.
The Microgaming software is old and certainly now looks very lacklustre, now only a tempting option for sites stuck on even more lacklustre software or low traffic networks.
PokerStars Beat Full Tilt 3-0 Rematches Likely
Team PokerStars beat the Full Tilt professionals 3-0 this week in their HU games but there is the likely (inevitable) rematches sometime soon, probably at the next EPT if they can all pull themselves away from Open Face Chinese at $50 a point … more here
Regulated Online Poker Coming to Australia
Moves towards a regulated and legalised environment for online poker in Australia are gaining momentum. However it looks like it still has a long way to go with strong opponents and proponents it’s unlikely that it will be a particularly liberalised approach so expect a more heavily regulated approach trying to keep out those “evil” offshore operators (again).
888 Poker Announces New “All American Poker Network”
Stealing a march on the competition 888 poker seems to be signing and sealing deals all over the place as the US state by state regulation battle hots up. Not content with their WSOP deal with Caesar’s for Nevada they have now announced the creation of the All American Poker Network (AAPN), ticking all the boxes with a jingoistic “good ol boy” made in America feeling name to brand their America only network. Treasure Island is the first skin to join AAPN and expect more sites to join as inter state compacts take shape.
Full Tilt Adds “Escalator” Tourneys and Irish Poker
Full Tilt (PokerStars still slightly awkward younger sister) in an attempt to further differentiate their offerings has launched escalator tournaments which should be more properly named “don’t escalator” tournaments as the blinds DON’T escalate so fast nearer the end of the tournament in order to give the players who have battled through the donks in the earlier stages a bigger stack to blinds ratio at the end. The blinds escalate quicker in the early blind levels thus making stack sizes in relation blinds smaller in the early levels and bigger at the end – quite a clever idea really.
Adding more innovation an uniqueness Full Tilt now have Irish Poker which is basically like Omaha but with a twist. Your dealt four hole cards but have to discard two on the flop thus introducing a lot more action and a lot more fun, thankfully the Irish play it leading to an obvious name as I’m not sure “Texas Omaha Don’t Hold (Two Of) Em” has quite the same ring about it.
The Weekly State of the States (by State) Update
This catchy titled section will likely be a weekly feature given the increasing clamour by many states to legislate and regulate online poker and gaming in their state to raise much needed tax dollars. Inevitably there are opponents so not everything is going to get rubber stamped at first (or second, third or forth) attempt.
Illinois – Reduces bad actor clause down from 10 years but it’s still there with a “been convicted of accepting wagers” clause which may or may not include Stars or Tilt etc.
New York – Introduction of state-authorized online poker possible.
Texas – Online poker amendment introduced.
Hawaii – Failed to get past a hearing in the state’s House Finance Committee.
Iowa – Online poker bills fails to get anywhere – nothing able to be proposed before 2014.
Would You Adameve it Revolution Behind on Payments
Recent announcements by little known Revolution skin AdamevePoker that the Revolution network is 5 months behind paying them – Yet again puts question marks over Revolution’s financials with the network being one of the slowest payers to players and now it seems they are also slow with reconciling payments to some of the skins on their network – not good.