Archive for the ‘Poker News’ Category

PokerStars Testing Virtual Reality Game

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018

pokerstars-vrPokerStars is joining a small number of online gaming sites that are exploring virtual reality (VR). Stars is currently beta testing PokerStars VR, a free virtual reality poker game that’s available for HTC Vive and Oculus Steam.

Severin Rasset, director of poker innovation and operations at Stars, issued a statement on the site’s new frontier.

“PokerStars VR is a chance for us to take this amazing technology and bring something totally unique to poker players,” said Rasset.

“Poker is about interaction. It’s been bringing people together for well over a century. We’re really excited to invest in the next generation of the game and to give players the opportunity to meet in a brand new virtual reality dimension.”

How is the PokerStars VR Beta Test Going?

Stars is merely running a small beta test involving 100 online players. The goal is to see how the VR game performs and decide how close it is to offering to the masses.

Virtual reality poker is considered one of the untapped markets in the game. And PokerStars could position itself as a front-runner in this genre.

Will Virtual Reality Online Poker be the Future?

VR poker is exciting to consider, because it could feel like you’re playing a home game with friends. Furthermore, you’ll have a more-realistic online poker experience than simply playing the standard online version.

That said, virtual reality could very well be the future of internet poker. But it’s important to be realistic, because this type of poker still has a long ways to go before it’s ready to take over the game.

PokerStars VR is helping further this cause by beta testing a product that should be available at a later date.

Winamax Poker Struggles with DDoS Attacks

Thursday, September 27th, 2018

winamax-online-pokerSeveral online poker sites have dealt with distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks over the past few years, including PokerStars, partypoker, and the Winning Poker Network. You can now add Winamax Poker to this list, as they were hit with DDoS attacks recently.

These attacks are used in order to disrupt the targeted website. They cause a website’s communications to get jammed up, thus messing up a variety of functions. Looking strictly at an online poker room, the site’s cash games and tournaments are hit hard and filled with lag and other problems.

That said, Winamax Poker slowed to a crawl as they tried fending off the DDoS attacks. Luckily, the site has weathered the storm and is now fully operational again.

Winamax Releases a Statement

Winamax took to their Twitter account in order to provide clarification on what happened to them. Here are some tweets they offered as an explanation:

1/ These malicious acts (called DDoS in computer jargon) are unfortunately common on the Internet and are completely out of our control. These only affect a very small amount of players: the majority of players stay connected and can continue to play as normal. However, in order to keep proceedings fair, and in order for the disconnected players to not be put in an unfavourable position compared to the players who can continue playing, Winamax voluntarily interrupts all tournaments.

2/ Neither the quality of the Winamax servers nor the quality of our cyber security are called into question because of these attacks. They have no impact on the players’ data or funds, which are completely secure.

3/ Players who have been affected by the stoppage will be fully reimbursed to article 3.2 of our Poker Terms and Conditions. Reimbursement will be automatic: you will not need to take any further action.

Preventing this kind of situation from ever recurring is our technical team’s number 1 priority.

Why do People Launch DDoS Attacks Against Poker Sites?

Reasons for issuing a DDoS attack against an online poker room can vary. But in many cases, these are used as a method of revenge.

For example, somebody could have lost lots of money at a poker site and be angry about it. Or they could have a negative interaction with customer support and want to get back at them.

In any case, DDoS attacks can severely interrupt a poker room until the site is able to deal with the problem. Winamax, as well as other sites, have managed to fight off these problems. But DDoS attacks can still cause plenty of financial damage.

Poker’s William Kassouf Banned from Grosvenor Casinos

Sunday, September 23rd, 2018

william-kassouf-pokerWilliam Kassouf has worn on many fellow poker players with his antics at the table.

Apparently, he’s also worn on Grosvenor casinos since the UK-based chain has now banned him.

This means that Kassouf will no longer be able to play poker or any other casino games at their 55 establishments.

Why Is Kassouf Banned from Grosvenor Casinos?

Interesting enough, Kassouf’s ban revolves around roulette, rather than poker. He and his friends were playing roulette at the Grosvenor Casino Westgate in Leeds, while taking a break from a UK Poker Tour event.

British poker player Michael J. O’Mahoney was a member of the party and described what Kassouf did in detail.

“We were all drunk and the only one playing roulette was one mate who won about 4k and let us bet for him using the single 1 (£100) chips he had,” wrote O’Mahoney.

“We put a bet on that won another £2800 and Kassouf started celebrating and grabbing the £100 chips which myself and mates took back.”

While it seems like this is more of Kassouf’s annoying antics, he was actually trying to steal some of the chips.

“But in the ensuing betting he was seen pocketing some. That’s when argument happened,” O’Mahoney added.

“Like I said, we all wanted to keep it between us and we had a private argument at bar with a view to it being sorted the next day.”

Grosvenor Settles the Matter

Despite O’Mahoney and his friends wanted to keep the incident to themselves, Grosvenor management found out what happened. They proceeded to ban Kassouf from all of their properties.

Kassouf has since apologized, saying that he had too much to drink that night.

“I will continue to do what I do best by bringing the fun and entertainment factor back to poker as that’s what’s most important to me in my poker career,” he stated.

Kassouf first landed on the poker radar when he took 17th in the 2016 WSOP Main Event and won $338,288. He was frequently featured on ESPN’s coverage getting under fellow players’ skin.

He’s since gone on to win the 2016 EPT Prague High Roller for €532,500 ($555,619) and now has $1,406,158 in career winnings.

Timofey “Trueteller” Kuznetsov Signs with Partypoker

Saturday, September 22nd, 2018

timofey-kuznetsovPartypoker has been signing a large number of players over the past couple of years, including Fedor Holz, Bertrand Grospellier, and Sam Trickett.

And Timofey “Trueteller” Kuznetsov is the latest player to be signed by partypoker.

What’s interesting about Kuznetsov is that, unlike the other sponsored players, who are tournament pros, he’s a cash game specialist.

Kuznetsov Excited about Helping Poker Community

Trueteller has spent most of his poker career anonymous, under his online screen name. However, he’s now excited to be more visible and use his position to help the poker community.

“I am looking forward to using my experience of online games to help shape the poker ecology at partypoker and get involved in the new software developments,” he said.

“I also have a keen interest in working with partypoker to develop better mixed games and I can’t wait to start working on this proposal.”

Tom Waters, marketing director at partypoker, spoke about what having Kuznetsov aboard means to the brand.

“We are thrilled that Timofey has decided to pledge his allegiance to partypoker and can’t wait to start working with him,” said Waters.

Trueteller is an Online Poker Cash Game Legend

Kuznetsov has developed quite a reputation while playing high stakes online poker from 2011 until now. He’s won over $2 million for his career at Full Tilt, and another $3.1 million at PokerStars.

The internet high stakes scene has been tempered, but Trueteller still finds plenty of action in Macau. He plays in Macau’s “Big Game” against other pros and Asian businessmen.

Aside from his cash game prowess, Kuznetsov has also found time to win nearly $3 million in live poker tournaments. That said, he’s a well-rounded representative for partypoker.

Yevgeniy Timoshenko & Former Roommate Settle $90k Lawsuit

Friday, September 21st, 2018

yevgeniy-timoshenko-lawsuitPoker pro Yevgeniy Timoshenko and his former roommate/friend, Frank Gu, have settled a $90,000 lawsuit that involved $10k in missing cash.

Timoshenko, a WPT champ with $7.7 million in tournament winnings, filed a lawsuit against Gu in federal court back in March 2017. The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York was set to hear the case on September 25.

Timoshenko was seeking a total of $90,000. The Ukrainian-American poker pro claimed that he was owed $16,000 in unpaid rent and another $50,000 that Gu borrowed to invest in penny stocks. Timenshenko was also seeking $1,160 that he spent on basketball seats for Gu.

Timoshenko Blamed Gu for $10k in Missing Cash

Yet another element to this lawsuit involves $10,000 that went missing from Timoshenko’s bedroom table when he was off at a poker tournament.

The rounder claims that Gu “mishandled” the cash by “allowing a stranger to stay in Timoshenko’s room.” Gu denied these allegations as well as others while answering a complaint filed in September 2017.

How Did Timoshenko Know Frank Gu?

Court filings show that Timoshenko and Gu met while playing in a poker tournament. They became friends and later started rooming together.

It’s clear that their friendship had a certain trust, given how Timoshenko allowed Gu to continue living in their space without paying $16,000 in rent. It took even more trust to loan Gu $50,000 to purchase penny stocks.

The friendship eroded as Gu refused to pay up on all of the money that Timoshenko loaned him. The allegations of $10k missing from the poker pro’s room didn’t help matters either.

As for Yevgeniy Timoshenko’s poker career, his earnings have gradually gone down over the past few years. He’s made just over $81,000 through nine months in 2018. This is a far cry from what he made in 2014 ($1.83m) and 2009 ($2.25m).

Doug Polk Retires from Poker – “It’s Felt Like Work”

Wednesday, September 19th, 2018

doug-polk-pokerDoug Polk has been a poker pro for the past decade. But the 29-year-old pro has announced that this chapter of his life is now coming to a close.

Polk, speaking through his latest poker YouTube video, expresses that poker has been great to him. However, he’s ready to move on and explore new avenues.

“I’m not going to play poker anymore,” he says while discussing his recent $100-to-$10,000 bankroll challenge.

“That’s a chapter in my life’s story that’s coming to a close. I had a great time, I had a blast. Poker’s given me so much. It’s a great game. It’s truly amazing to me there’s a strategic game you can play for a lot of money.

Why is Doug Polk Quitting Poker?

The main reason why Polk is stepping away from the game is that it no longer brings him the same joy.

“For quite some time now I have not enjoyed playing poker,” he says. “It’s felt like a grind, it’s felt like work.”

Polk has been playing poker for his entire adult life. That said, it’s understandable why he’s burnt out from the game.

What will Polk Do Now?

Lucky for Polk, he has a very lucrative fallback plan. He’s become one of the biggest YouTubers in the cryptocurrency sector, amassing over 200,000 followers on “Doug Polk Crypto” in less than a year.

It’s very likely that Polk will continue dedicating more time to his thriving cryptocurrency channel. He’s also been an investor in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for a few years.

Will Doug Poker Ever Play Poker Again?

Just because he’s retiring as a poker pro doesn’t mean that he’ll never play the game again. Polk even left open the possibility that he could go pro again.

“This doesn’t mean I’m never going to play poker again,” he explains.

“I’ll probably play occasionally from time to time for fun. Maybe, at some point down the road, it will be something that I really want to get back into, and the flame will reignite and I want to play a lot of poker, I really don’t know.”

Cate Hall Claims Extortion in Poker Staking Dispute

Tuesday, September 18th, 2018

cate-hall-poker-staking-disputeCate Hall has accused fellow poker pro Chad Power of extorting her in a staking dispute that’s gone to court.

Hall claims that Power starting staking her for cash games around a year ago. Power says that she lost $60,000 playing mid-stakes poker games during this time, an amount that Hall doesn’t dispute.

However, the two sides differ on the repayment terms. Hall says that their deal didn’t make her liable for losses if she took a break from poker and the backing deal were severed.

Power disputes this, alleging that she was responsible for the full makeup in the event of losses. Meanwhile, he would get a cut of her profits in the event that she won.

Power Threatens to Expose Hall as a Scammer

Cate Hall took to Twitter in order to explain how bogus Power’s claims are. And part of her rant includes the “extortion” bit, where she says that Power threatened to expose her as a scammer.

Hall goes on to show how a third-party arbitrator looked at both sides and agreed that Cate shouldn’t be liable for the $60k in losses.

Who’s in the Right – Hall or Power?

Hall closed her Twitter rant by advising any other players who are being backed that they don’t have to pay full makeup when the terms don’t call for it.

As for who’s in the right, it seems that Hall has no legal obligation to repay the $60,000 to Power. This wasn’t part of their original deal. She stepped away from poker for personal reasons, and Power terminated their arrangement as a result.

At best, Power can only rip Hall for being a bad horse, which he’s already done. Given that she lost $60k, Hall may have trouble securing substantial backing if/when she returns to poker.

Sam Tricket Reveals £30 Million Poker Fortune

Monday, September 17th, 2018

sam-tickett-pokerSam Trickett has seen plenty of ups and downs in poker. In fact, he’s seen enough downs to where his family and bank managers asked him to quit playing the game.

But the Brit ignored their advice much to his own advantage. He’s now £30 million richer as a result of his perseverance.

Trickett spoke with the DailyStar about his poker career, revealing both the high and low points of his career. He admits to losing as much as £1 million per day, which is why people asked him to stop playing.

“My dad was really anti-gambling at the time,” says Trickett.

“I went broke a couple of times and my bank manager sat me down and told me to stop. It was hard because I knew they’d be right in other situations.”

Why did Trickett Keep Playing?

Trickett listened to what those around him had to say regarding poker. And he even felt “nervous even when there are millions on the line.” But what kept him going through it all was the belief that he’s always had an edge.

“But I could see there was money to be made because poker is a skill game,” explains Trickett. “I knew in the long run I’d end up with money.

“I had to go against what everyone said, which did upset my family. It took a while before they understood.”

Balancing Poker and Life

It’s hard for Trickett to live a normal live. This is especially true when considering that he’s won as much as £7.6 million in a single day of playing cash games.

But these days, he’s found the perfect balance between playing high stakes poker and living a regular life. Furthermore, he’s now married and living well with all of his money.

“I’m married now too, which means I’m content. I guess I still don’t respect money as much as I should. I’m a sucker when it comes to material things.”

New Jersey Online Poker Struggles – Despite Shared Liquidity

Sunday, September 9th, 2018

new-jersey-online-pokerNew Jersey’s online poker market has lagged well behind their casino market. The state’s internet poker traffic saw an 8.5% decline to $24.5 million in 2017.

This is a big reason why they finally agreed to join Delaware and Nevada in the Multi-State Internet Gaming Association (MSIGA) in May 2018.

The hope was that this shared liquidity would boost the state’s online poker revenue and traffic. But so far, the change has done little for the Garden State.

Looking at May, New Jersey online poker earned $1.9 million in revenue, which is down 9% from May 2017. June brought in $1.76 million, which was a 1.2% increase. July generated $1.85 million, which is an 8% decrease from July 2018.

New Jersey Online Poker Is Worse than Ever This Year

While 2017 wasn’t a banner year for the state’s iPoker market, they at least recorded five months with over $2 million in revenues. They haven’t hit this level even once, though, in the current year.

Considering the lower revenue up to this point, it’s likely that 2018 will be an even worse year for New Jersey internet poker.

Why Has the MSIGA Failed So Far?

new-jersey-online-pokerIt stands to reason that New Jersey should’ve benefited from shared liquidity. After all, this creates a larger player pool and makes for the possibility of bigger tournaments and cash games.

However, the Garden State has gained little benefit out of partnering with two much smaller states. Nevada and Delaware have less than 4 million residents combined. New Jersey, meanwhile, has a population of 9 million.

Another problem is that WSOP.com and 888 Poker are the only operators that are involved in the MSIGA. Partypoker and PokerStars are currently confined to New Jersey. If they were able to participate in the market, then things might be a different story.

One other possible explanation is that New Jersey residents are sticking with partypoker and PokerStars post-MSIGA. If this is the case, then it would provide a boost if these two operators were ever able to join the multi-state pact.

Until then, though, it appears as if New Jersey’s online poker traffic is set to continue struggling.

Former CardPlayer Employee Busted After $1m Theft

Monday, September 3rd, 2018

cardplayer-shelby-mccannShelby McCann, a former employee of CardPlayer Magazine, has been arrested on charges of theft and other felonies. She’s believe to have stolen $1.1 million during her time with the company.

McCann was hired by CardPlayer in September 2011 to manage their finances. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, she began embezzling money from her employer just two months into the job.

Shelby was also working for the company under the name “Anna,” presumably to lessen the chances that CardPlayer could look into her criminal record.

How did Shelby McCann Pull Off This Crime?

Chief Deputy District Attorney Jay Raman says that McCann wrote checks to herself from CardPlayer. The checks went to covering her debts and giving herself a pay raise.

McCann also created fake crowdfunding efforts to transfer money to. For example, she sent $22,000 to a fake adoption crowdfunding page.

She worked for CardPlayer from 2011 to 2016, embezzling $1.1 million over this five-year span.

Why didn’t CardPlayer Catch the Theft?

barry-allyn-shulmanRaman explained that CardPlayer was struggling in the aftermath of Black Friday. Therefore, owners Barry and Allyn Shulman were more worried about keeping the company afloat than monitoring every employee.

McCann was hired just a few months after Black Friday under the alias Anna McCann. The Shulmans weren’t involved in the financial side of the business, leaving McCann with free reign to manipulate the company’s accounts.

“All of a sudden, there was no money to pay the bills,” said Allyn. “This made us start thinking, what the heck is going on?”

Shulmans Grateful for Support After $1m Theft

Writing through her Facebook account, Allyn Shulman thanked everybody who’s helped her and Barry through this difficult time:

“Two years after we painfully and shockingly learned that our bookkeeper embezzled over a million dollars from CardPlayer during her 5 years with us. Anna Shelby McCann has finally been indicted and justice is being served.

“It is comforting that in the 24 hours since the Indictment was issued, so many of you have sent us love and kind wishes! Barry and I THANK YOU ALL!”