Daniel Negreanu Clarifies GGPoker’s WSOP Main Event Structure

June 29th, 2020

Due to COVID-19, the 2020 WSOP won’t be like anything in the past. Therefore, the world’s biggest poker tournament series will run online for at least 85 events.

WSOP.com is set to run 31 of the 85 online tournaments. GGPoker, an international-facing site, will stage the remaining 54 internet events.

The latter will run their tourneys from July 19 to September 6. Their schedule will culminate in a $5,000 buy-in Main Event ($25 million guaranteed).

Players were shocked to find out that it’s seemingly possible to buy into the Main Event 22 times. Therefore, wealthy businessmen and professionals would have a decided advantage.

Negreanu Explains Truth Behind the Online WSOP Main Event

Daniel Negreanu is arguably the world’s most-famous poker pro. He’s also a high-profile ambassador for GGPoker.

So, Negreanu took it upon himself to explain the reality behind GG’s Main Event structure through Twitter. He started this video by explaining that, no, players won’t truly be able to buy in 22 times. They’ll only be able to play in the ME three times (entry + two rebuys) at the most.

“No matter how many heats there are, if there are 100 heats, 200 heats, you will only get to play three times,” Negreanu explained. “So you get one shot, mulligan. Two shot, three strikes, you’re out.”

Besides clarifying the confusion on the online Main Event, Negreanu also said that he’s still holding out hope for a live $10,000 Main Event. The latter has capped off the WSOP for 50 years.

Americans Can’t Play at GGPoker

Negreanu addressed one final concern regarding GGPoker’s online WSOP schedule. Americans can play on the site, but they must be outside of the United Stated to do so. For example, Negreanu is heading to Mexico to play.

“For you players that are traveling from the US to play other places, there’s been a little bit of confusion about what the rules are there,” he said.

“So, here’s the deal. It’s actually going to be a lot simpler than you think. You can get an Airbnb, you can get a hotel, wherever it is you want to go outside the United States. All you need to do is show proof of address and you’re good to go.”

The proof of address refers to the address of the hotel, Airbnb, or whatever non-US location a player is staying at.

Vice Journalist Admits to Cheating Online Poker Games with a Bot

June 29th, 2020

Vice journalist Hayden Vernon documented his experiences while playing online poker as a novice. He managed to do quite respectable after turning £1 into £220 through a low-stakes tournament.

However, Vernon didn’t use the most-admirable means to obtain his winnings. Instead, he cheated by using a bot to take down the tournament.

He admitted that he’s “absolutely shit” at playing poker. Vernon simply wanted to see how he could do on the cyber tables despite his lack of skills.

He went wrong, through, by relying on a bot to play for him. It’s possible that Hayden didn’t really know how serious of an offence this is among the poker community.

Vernon Describes in Detail How to Cheat with a Bot

The writer offered descriptive details on just how he won. He started by downloading a bot off of BonusBots.com. Following the download, he merely “pressed Start” to get the program playing for him.

Vernon may have needed the help more than anybody. He original deposited £10 and was down to £5 while playing low-stakes games. He used £1 to enter a Bet365 tournament and collect a £220 payout.

“The website I get it from looks like its going to give my computer hepatitis, but the bot’s easy enough to use and even comes with different profiles depending on the style of game you want to play,” he notes.

Poker World Comes Down on Vernon

Again, Hayden Vernon admitted that he’s a terrible player. He also fessed up to exactly how he won the money.

None of this earned him any leeway with the poker world, though. Many players were quick to condemn his use of a bot.

“Any mention of the work online poker sites go through to stop cheaters and scumbags like yourself who employ bots to cheat honest players?” asked Jack Chadwick.

“Such a shame that this piece was published and you call yourself a journalist,” noted poker reporter Christian Zetzsche.

“I don’t expect anything different from that s**t company,” @90scoot66 tweeted at both Vernon and Vice Media.

Australian Poker Player Warwick Mirzikinian Apologizes for Killing Uber Eats Cyclist

June 20th, 2020

Warwick Mirzikinian, a notable Australian poker player, recently apologized for hitting and killing a cyclist three years ago. Mirzikinian hit Julien Trameaux, an Uber Eats cyclist, with his car in Sydney, Australia.

The Aussie is perhaps best known among the poker community for winning the 2017 Sydney Championships. He appeared in court this week while the case’s judge prepares for sentencing.

“There is nothing I can say or do to take back my actions on the day, even though I have prayed that it was possible,” Mirzikinian said in the courtroom.

“I am sorry. I can sincerely say that there has not been a single day that has passed over the last two-and-a-half years that I have not thought about Julien.”

What Happened During the Fatal Accident?

Mirzikinian was driving on a Sydney area road when he hit Trameaux with his car in November 2017. The poker champ passed a bus at the wrong moment and ending hitting Julien during the dangerous maneuver.

Trameaux died at the scene. Meanwhile, Mirzikinian was charged by prosecutors with death by dangerous driving. He pleaded guilty to the charges this week.

The poker player has done his best to rectify the situation. He offered to pay Trameaux’s funeral costs prior to returning to the Sydney courtroom.

What Kind of Punishment is Mirzikinian Facing?

Warwick Mirzikinian faces a maximum prison sentence of 20 years for his fatal driving maneuver. His barrister claims that anything close to this kind of time would be extreme.

Mark Tedeschi QC notes that a “combinations of factors” led to Trameaux’s death. He argues that his client’s driving was only part of the problem.

Tedeschi is partly referring to how the Uber Eats cyclist was wearing headphones before getting hit. Mirzikinian was going the speed limit when he hit Julien. He was also driving a Tesla, which makes very little sound compared to other types of cars.

The prosecution is set to recommend a sentence for Mirzikinian on July 10. Afterward, Judge O’Neil will make a final ruling.

Poker Lawyer Mac VerStandig Files $5.9m Lawsuit Against Skillz Inc.

June 19th, 2020

Lawyer Mac VerStandig is currently leading a $30 million lawsuit against vilified poker cheater Mike Postle and Stones Gambling Hall. That case has been tossed for now, but VerStandig has an opportunity to amend the lawsuit and refile it.

Mac has now dove into another case involving the gaming community. This time, he’s leveled a $5.9 million lawsuit against Skillz Inc⁠—a gambling site that offers various skill-based games.

What Is the Skillz Lawsuit About?

Gamblers John Prignano and Alyssa Ball claim that Skillz Inc. (owner of Skillz.com) has failed to pay out a collective $1.5 million. The lawsuit has been leveled at company CEO, Andrew Paradise.

Prignano alleges that the website withheld a prize that he legitimately earned and then changed the terms and conditions. He claims that, under the gambling site’s VIP plan, he should’ve been able to buy a Porshe Boxster ($60k value) with his points.

In addition to denying him the prize, Skillz.com also seized Prignano’s bankroll and closed his account. The gambler had $280,000 in his account when it was shut down.

Ball Detected Cheating

Alyssa Ball claims to have reported a potential cheater to Skillz.com. She also demanded that the site return $650,000 in losses that she incurred. Prignano believes he lost $950,000 to the same suspected cheat.

Skillz Inc. merely issued a warning to the player in question. However, they didn’t confiscate any funds from the questionable gambler nor reimburse Ball or Prignano.

VerStandig is now seeking $5.9 million on the players’ behalves. Much of the amount is for emotional and financial damages suffered after the fact.

Skillz Claims that Ball and Prignano Cheated

Skillz.com has turned the tables in its legal response. They allege that the victims are actually the aggressors in this situation.

The site claims that Prignano and Ball colluded to win prizes and money. Skillz Inc. also alleges to have taken their money for violations of terms and conditions. The next round of legal proceedings in this case will happen in July.

Germany Moves Closer to Legal Online Poker

June 19th, 2020

Germany currently features an unregulated internet poker market. However, they’re moving closer to legal online poker these days.

The Regional Department of Darmstadt, which is normally in charge of enforcing betting laws, is preparing for internet poker regulation. It’s currently in the process of creating transitional regulations that would remove certain prohibitions and make for a legal market.

Why Is Germany Suddenly Interested in Online Poker?

An online gaming site challenged Germany on its internet gambling restrictions. This challenge motivated the national government to finally legalize online casino games and poker in January 2020.

Lawmakers also changed the third amendment in the German State Treaty on Gaming (GlüStV) to allow operators to apply for licensing.

Before the update, Germany largely treated online gaming as illegal. The Interstate Treaty on Gambling (ISTG) of 2008 legalized sports betting but banned everything else.

The ISTG applied to 15 out of the country’s 16 states. Schleswig-Holstein was the only one to opt out, doing so in 2012. However, the other 15 states came on board when they agreed to GlüStV in early 2020.

What to Expect from Germany’s Online Poker Market

Online poker and casino games are set to go live in 2021. Therefore, the Regional Department of Darmstadt has been asked to stop enforcing laws so strictly prior to the market launching. The department is now in the business of assisting operators in getting started without a hitch.

Internet gaming sites have longed served the lucrative German market—often illegally. Now, however, they won’t need to float laws to do so.

Instead, internet casinos and poker rooms can apply for licensing. Assuming they’re approved, they can legally offer online poker to the country.

Of course, a lot still needs to happen before the internet games are up and running. By this time next year, the country should have at least a few sites offering online gambling to German residents.

Daniel Negreanu Makes $1 Million Prop Bet that He’ll Win 2020 WSOP Bracelet

June 14th, 2020

Daniel Negreanu has bet $1 million on his ability to win a gold bracelet at the 2020 WSOP. With 101 online and live tournaments on the schedule, Negreanu will have many chances to win.

Kid Poker currently holds six gold bracelets. However, he hasn’t been able to capture a seventh victory since the 2013 World Series of Poker.

Online Events Give Negreanu a Stronger Chance

The 2020 WSOP will feature a different format than it has within the last five decades. Rather than most of the events running live, most tourneys will instead take place online.

COVID-19 has forced the organizers to rethink the traditional format. Rather than stuffing numerous people in a poker room, the WSOP has chosen to socially distance with an online-heavy schedule.

85 of the events will run through a combination of WSOP.com (Nevada and New Jersey only) and GGPoker.com (international). The remaining 16 live tournaments may or may not actually happen at the Rio as planned.

In any case, the online tourneys will allow Negreanu to play in more events. They make for the possibility of multi-tabling, which just isn’t available in a live format.

Bettors Have Already Lined Up

Negreanu hasn’t experienced any trouble finding takers on his bet. He’s already accepted $1 million in wagers from a variety of players.

The biggest bettors, Ali Imisrovic and Connor Drinan, both wagered $100,000. Assuming Negreanu wins a bracelet, he stands to receive $2.5 million from the bettors.

Kid Poker will get his first crack at winning the bracelet along with a $2.5m side bet on July 1. He lives in Nevada, so he won’t have any trouble playing in the WSOP.com events.

From here, he plans to move to Mexico to enjoy the remaining tournaments on GGPoker. Negreanu also represents GG as an ambassador.

Dan “Jungleman” Cates Getting Into Acting – Ponders Poker Future

June 11th, 2020

Dan Cates has been one of the world’s best high stakes poker players for over a decade. Lately, though, he’s been questioning his future in the game.

Discussing his thoughts in a post called Quarantales, “Jungleman” notes that the Covid-19 shutdown has given him lots of free time. After all, live poker rooms are still shuttered throughout much of the US.

He’s still playing online poker. However, Cates has also been visiting London parks, cooking, taking improve classes, and learning acting. The latter has actually become Jungleman’s passion during the pandemic.

Poker Is Taking a Backseat

Cates says that he’s played plenty of online poker and even won some money. However, he’s not as passionate about the matter right now.

“Got screwed over a bit in new ways and in a [ghosting] scandal somehow despite having the tiniest role. So, I got something possibly worth more than money: life lessons and experience! Yeay, thanks?

“Anyway, poker no longer satisfies my ambitions, so I have largely been working on a new career path. One where I will hopefully be able to align my crazy ambitions and selfish motives towards what is better for doing good in the world.

“Poker was and possibly still is an excellent way to go from having not much money to having enough to give one freedom, but not to make world-changing money or to do much good. To be clear, I am not quitting poker, just shifting focus unless big opportunities or games come.”

Jungleman Is Diving Into Acting

Cates is taking both acting and improve classes. He seems extremely interested in acting right now and is even getting private lessons.

“Fortunately acting is much more interesting I expected. I halfheartedly took an acting lock down class and got some private lessons from an established actor.

“Acting has much to do with feeling as though the character played is oneself and stretching the imagination.

“Think back to being a little kid where it was acceptable to have imaginary friends and shit, except now it totally is! I always wanted to see/feel the world through other people’s eyes, maybe this will sort of allow me to.”

Jungleman is definitely searching for something different to do. Perhaps he’s found it in acting, or maybe he’ll choose another path. Whatever the case, he doesn’t sound interested in playing poker as much these days.

$30 Million Lawsuit Against Mike Postle Tossed

June 8th, 2020

Last year, Mike Postle engaged in what’s perceived to be the poker cheating scandal of the decade. He seemingly received information via his smartphone on other players’ hole cards during steamed games at Stones Gambling Hall (Sacramento).

Unfortunately, the affected players won’t be getting any justice in the meantime. A US District Court judge has ruled that California law doesn’t cover gambling disputes.

Judge William B. Shubb explained his decision through a lengthy opinion letter. He did, however, leave open the possibility for the 88 plaintiffs to launch an appeal.

The plaintiffs collectively launched three separate $10 million lawsuits against Postle and Stones Gambling Hall⁠—for a total of $30 million.

Stones Gambling Hall Successfully Defends Position

Many poker experts who observed Postle’s play agree that he had to have been cheating. After all, he won in nearly every live-streamed session over a year-long span.

Some believe that an insider(s) at Stones Gambling Hall helped him. The casino had access to players’ hole card information before it was streamed via a tape delay.

Poker pro Veronica Brill has been the most vocal alleged victim. She launched one of the three $10 million lawsuits against Postle and Stones.

However, Stones’ lawyers successfully argued that the casino has no responsibility for what takes place between poker player. Nobody has been able to provide 100% undeniable evidence that Stones helped Postle cheat either.

Only Businesses and Property Are Protected In Gambling Cases

Going back to Judge Shubb, he cited a long-held California law that only protects businesses and property from gambling cheats. Players, unfortunately, don’t enjoy the same protections when cheated by fellow gamblers.

“California’s strong public policy against judicial resolution of civil claims arising out of gambling disputes mandates the dismissal with prejudice of plaintiff’s claims against Postle for fraud, negligent misrepresentation, negligence per se, and unjust enrichment,” Shubb notes.

Again, the players now have a chance to launch an amended appeal. But Bill doesn’t seem overly thrilled with the current ruling.

Some Players Not Happy About 2020 WSOP Online Heavy Format

June 6th, 2020

The 2020 WSOP will feature a large number of online bracelet events due to COVID-19. Organizers have announced that 85 online bracelets will be given away.

This year’s World Series of Poker has 101 events on the schedule. The other 16 tournaments are tentatively set to run in the fall at Las Vegas’ Rio.

Of the online tourneys, 31 will run on WSOP.com throughout July. The remaining 54 events will take place on the international-facing GGPoker.com.

Not Everybody Is a Fan of 85 Online Gold Bracelets

Online tournaments have become more and more popular in recent years. However, the WSOP has never run anywhere close to 85 internet-based events.

Melissa Burr, a high-stakes poker player, sarcastically commented on how many bracelets are being given away online.

“I guess the bright side of these online bracelets being handed out like Halloween candy is that ill get to ladder up ‘good players without a bracelet’ list,” Burr writes.

Brandon Shack-Harris, who lays claim to two bracelets, worries that the WSOP is cheapening the entire event.

“I worry I am/will find myself more apathetic to attending events if our most revered brand isn’t concerned about their own image and value,” he rants.

Some Defend the WSOP

Ryan Fee, who co-owns Upswing Poker and plays online poker professionally, doesn’t see an issue with the online-heavy format.

“Online poker is every bit as legitimate discipline as live, if the series were invented today it could conceivably all be online, they should update to keep with the times (generally) and the times (specifically).”

A poker pro going by the handle ‘Gags30,’ agrees with Fee’s point of view. He specifically points to the small tournament fields from decades ago.

“Everyone complaining about wsop diluting bracelet value and that online bracelets shouldn’t count… yet somehow still in agreement to definitely count the bracelet from when John “Aces Up” Smith beat 8 people to win a 5 card stud tourney in 1981.”

Like it or hate it, the WSOP will be going ahead with their online plan. They don’t have much choice with the coronavirus still floating about.

Dan Bilzerian Claims Dan “Jungleman” Cates Cheated Bill Perkins in Poker

May 28th, 2020

A few days ago, recreational poker player Bill Perkins claimed that he was the victim of a cheating scandal. He notes that multiple “poker heroes” took advantage of him.

Unfortunately, Perkins has yet to provide the full details of this incident. However, fellow recreational player Dan Bilzerian offered his account on the matter.

Bilzerian claims that Dan “Jungleman” Cates was part of the cheating. He says Cates “ghosted” Perkins in a high-stakes game.

Ghosting refers to when one player coaches another during an online poker game. Meanwhile, the opponent doesn’t realize that they’re competing against somebody who’s receiving coaching.

Cates Admits to Ghosting Perkins

Jungleman has admitted to and apologized for ghosting Perkins in a game. However, he claims that he wasn’t the only one involved in the cheating incident. Cates’ story aligns with the one that Perkins teased recently. The latter notes that he was victimized by multiple players.

The only detail Perkins gave at the time was that Jason Koon is the lone player involved who didn’t cheat him. Now, he’s opening up more on the matter.

Perkins claims that he was supposed to be playing against recreational players through a poker app. However, the so-called recreational accounts were headed by professionals.

Cates has been called out by Bilzerian and multiple other players over the incident. He now admits to playing under and coaching an unknown player/account named “Sina Taleb.”

“I thought since many on the site were using pros to play for them (which was clear by the uniquely high level of play) at the time,” Jungleman stated. “It felt acceptable for me to be playing.”

Cates adds that he didn’t mean to play many hands against Perkins. “I’m very sorry for that,” he notes.

Who Else Cheated Perkins?

Perhaps Bill Perkins is still gathering evidence on the cheating scandal. In any case, he hasn’t offered much information yet.

Cates is the only known ghosting pro so far. However, others will likely be revealed within the coming days or weeks.