Posts Tagged ‘poker tables’

PokerStars to open World’s Biggest Branded Poker Room in Macau

Friday, February 22nd, 2013

Over the past few months, PokerStars has been making some major forays into the land-based gaming world. First, they worked out a deal to buy the Atlantic Club Casino in Atlantic City; then they announced plans to build a branded poker room in London. And now Stars has announced that they’ll build the world’s largest branded poker room in Macau.

The room will be built at the City of Dreams Casino, which is located on the world-famous Cotai Strip. “PokerStars Live at the City of Dreams” will offer cash games, daily tournaments and 13 permanent poker tables. The venue will be spacious enough to add extra tables when needed and host major events like the Asia Championship of Poker, Macau Poker Cup series, Macau Millions and the Asia-Pacific Poker Tour Macau.

Danny McDonagh, who’s the PokerStars Director of Live Operations for Asia-Pacific, discussed the new poker room by stating:

The PokerStars online brand drives more traffic to live poker events than any other. Players know that PokerStars is synonymous with integrity and high quality. That makes this collaboration a natural fit because City of Dreams has been at the forefront in providing the most innovative and premium gaming experience that is second to none in Macau.

Macau is already one of the world’s biggest destinations for live poker games. And now that PokerStars will be building a branded room at the City of Dreams, the Macau poker scene only figures to get bigger.

Some of the famous poker pros who commonly travel to Macau include Tom Dwan, Phil Ivey, John Juana and Andrew Robl. Combine these action-hungry players with the Asian businessmen who regularly play in these high stakes games, and you can see why Macau features some of the biggest pots in the world.

Gulfstream Park Poker Room, Casino Floor reopen after Flood

Monday, September 10th, 2012

This week held a lot of excitement for the Gulfstream Park Racing and Casino as poker players gathered around tables at the recently reopened poker room. The second floor casino was also reopened after an aquarium holding 13,000 gallons of water and exotic fish burst, causing the casino, poker room and slot machines to get soaked.

The aquarium flood affected nearly 30,000 square feet in the casino, which forced a lengthy shutdown. Cleaning crews spent hours on the second floor replacing carpets, scrubbing walls and other surfaces, and cleaning machines. Luckily, all of their hard work paid off when both the poker tables and casino were opened back up.

This was definitely to the liking of Michael Ramirez – a horse owner who enjoys watching the races in the casino daily. He said the flooded casino was a small inconvenience to his racing and breeding business, and Sunday was the first time he could see races on the first floor again. Ramirez stated, “I always want this place to succeed. I’m glad it’s getting back on track.”

The casino took additional preparations and added an extra table for the larger crowd; however, numbers slowly depleted as the day carried out. The casino employees, such as Harold Anderson, are predicting the poker room will gain more visitors once the slot floors are reopened.

Mike Couch, who manages Gulfstream Park, talked about the reopening by saying, “Most people are just curious to know if the fish made it,” Luckily, Couch had good news to tell the poker players and casino visitors since all of the fish survived by staying in 3,000 gallons of remaining water. Some of the fish include sharks, lionfish and pufferfish, just to name a few.

The verdict is still out as to whether or not the casino will keep the fish tank. Based on this latest incident, we’re doubtful that they elect to keep it around.

Closer Look at 2012 WSOP Main Event Final Table

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

The 2012 WSOP Main Event final table is set now that there are only nine players remaining in the tournament. These lucky rounders made it through a brutal tourney that began with 6,598 entrants, and everybody is guaranteed to collect at least $754,798.

Of course, nobody is thinking about the ninth place prize since all eyes are on the top payout of $8.5 million. At this point, chip leader Jesse Sylvia has the best chance of winning the $8.5m, and you can take a closer look at him along with the other competitors below.

2012 WSOP Main Event Final Table Bios

Nobody at this year’s final table is a huge name, but there are plenty of well-established grinders and professionals. That said, the following players should make for an interesting couple days in late October, when the final table resumes play:

Jesse Sylvia, 43,875,000 chips – Before storming onto the final table with the chip lead, Sylvia was largely unknown outside of the Vegas mid-stakes cash games scene. Excluding the Main Event, he has just under $24k in live tournament cashes.

Andras Koroknai, 29,375,000 chips – The only non-American on this final table, Koroknai primarily makes his living through online poker games. However, the Hungarian did have a huge victory at the 2010 LA Poker Classic Main Event ($1,788,040).

Greg Merson, 28,725,000 chips – Merson is a skilled online cash games pro who really busted out this year after winning the 2012 WSOP Event #57 NLHE tournament along with $1,136,197.

Russell Thomas, 24,800,000 chips – An actuary by trade, Thomas also dedicates plenty of time to the poker tables and has $126,796 in live tournament cashes.

Steven Gee, 16,860,000 chips – At 57 years old, Gee is by far the oldest player at this final table. He makes a living through live cash games in California and won a bracelet in a 2010 WSOP $1k NLHE tournament ($472,479).

Michael Esposito, 16,260,000 chips – Esposito is another amateur and his full-time job revolves around commodity trading. He does have a nice poker resume though with $172,806 in live tourney cashes.

Robert Salaburu, 15,155,000 chips – Prior to Black Friday, Salaburu made his living by playing online tournaments and cash games. He has 10 live tournament min-cashes too.

Jacob Balsiger, 13,115,000 chips – An amateur poker player/Arizona State University student, Balsiger seems to have the least experience on this final table.

Jeremy Ausmus, 9,805,000 chips – Ausmus is another Las Vegas cash pro who’s venturing into the live tournament arena more these days. He cashed an incredible nine times during the 2012 WSOP.

David Einhorn discusses Psyche of a Billionaire Poker Player

Saturday, July 7th, 2012

Following his recent third place finish in the Big One for One Drop, David Einhorn has become one of the hottest stories in the poker world. The Greenlight Capitol hedge fund manager earned $4,352,000 for taking third place, and he donated the entire amount to the One Drop foundation.

Seeing as how Einhorn is an investor, you might think that he’s just some random billionaire who luckboxed his way into a good finish. However, the truth is that the New Yorker has become very good at relating poker to his investing business. Einhorn explained this by saying the following:

There’s some information you know, there’s some information you surmise, and then there’s the future which is the unknown information and you have a range of possible outcomes.

If you think about a poker hand that way, you have your cards, you have what you can surmise about whatever your opponents might have and then you have whatever cards might come on the board that are uncertain. So there’s a range, and you’re calculating through those three pieces of information.

And when you invest, it’s really the same. There are the things you know about a company or the world or whatnot, and there are things that you surmise — you don’t know, but you kind of assume –and then there’s the future, which is the range of possible events in the future. And then you think about how do those three things put together affect an investment, which isn’t all that different from how something might affect a poker hand.

As you can see, David Einhorn definitely seems to know more about poker than one would think. He uses his knowledge of investing to profile players and consider their range of hands.

Now one thing that many people may not realize is that this isn’t Einhorn’s first time around the block on the poker tables. He’s cashed in three other live poker tournaments – including an 18th place finish in the 2006 WSOP Main Event ($699,730).

In all, Einhorn has collected $5,107,352 in live tournament winnings, which ranks him 73rd on the all-time money list. And this isn’t bad at all for a guy who spends most of his life trading stocks!

Multi-tabling and its Effect on Poker ROI

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

As we’ve talked about in the past, return on investment (ROI) is a very critical concept for poker tournament players to understand. ROI shows you how much money you’re earning back based on the amount you are investing in buy-ins. If you’d like to learn more about ROI, check this out.

Moving along, some people worry about multi-tabling because they know it’s likely to have an adverse effect on their profit rate. For example, if you go from playing one table to playing 4 poker tables, your ROI could drop from 15% to 8%. Now this might sound like a significant drop, but it’s actually a good thing – as we’ll explain.

Focus on Overall Profits

While we’d all like to have a pretty ROI, the most important thing to focus on is your overall profits. Using the previous example – where your ROI drops from 15% to 8% – let’s say that multi-tabling four tables helps you go from playing two MTT’s daily, to playing eight MTT’s daily.

With the situation where you’re only playing two MTT’s, you’d be earning $3 per day (20 x 0.15). Looking at the eight MTT’s per day, you’d be making $6.40 in profit per day (80 x 0.08). Taking this further, you’re making over twice as much money each day by multi-tabling four tournaments, as opposed to playing just one.

Finding a Balance

Like we showed before, playing more than one table at a time can turn into a lot more profits. However, it’s important to understand how multi-tabling too many tables can hurt both your profits and ROI.

To illustrate this, let’s assume that you move from one $10 MTT at a time to multi-tabling six MTT’s, and your ROI drops from 15% to 1.5%. Assuming you’re still able to get two $10 MTT’s in daily while single-tabling, you’d now be playing twelve $10 MTT’s daily; unfortunately, your daily profits have fallen from $3 to $1.80 (120 x 0.015).

Obviously this is too many tables for you to handle at once, and the multiplied simultaneous decisions are hurting your overall profits. That said, you’ll need to move up slowly when it comes to multi-tabling so you don’t end up hurting your game.

Victoria Coren and David Mitchell Engagement

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

There was a bit of joyous poker news earlier today as female pro Victoria Coren and comedian David Mitchell announced their engagement. This might come as a surprise to many people within the poker community because the Brits have kept their relationship really quiet. However, they figured that now was the perfect time to unveil their romance to the public as Mitchell put the following announcement in a British newspaper:

MR D.J.S. MITCHELL AND MISS V.E. COREN. The engagement is announced between David, son of Mr and Mrs Ian Mitchell, of Oxford, and Victoria, daughter of Dr Anne Coren and the late Mr Alan Coren, of London.

Mitchell is getting quite a catch with Victoria Coren since the PokerStars pro is 12th all-time among women with $1,476,668 in live poker tournament winnings. She first became known to the poker public after appearing on TV’s Late Night Poker in 1999. The 38-year-old gained more fame after winning the 2006 EPT European Poker Championships title and $941,513.

Away from the poker tables, Coren writes for the UK’s Guardian newspaper, and has even reviewed porn movies for British papers. But perhaps her most notable achievement includes hosting the TV quiz show Only Connect, which has been running since 2008.

As for her hubby-to-be, David Mitchell is best know for his long-running role on the sitcom The Peep Show, which has been on air since 2003. Based on his The Peep Show performance in 2009, Mitchell actually won the British Academy Television Award for Best Comedy Performance. The 37-year-old has also been on a lot of different quiz show panels, and he met Victoria Coren when they were on The Bubble in 2010. Apparently, this is when their romance sparked up – although they kept things quiet at this stage.

Zynga Poker may be Rigged

Monday, February 6th, 2012

One of the most-discussed topics among online poker players right now is how much Zynga would benefit if they were to enter the internet poker world. Currently, they run free social networking games such as Zynga Poker for Facebook, which could change if the United States chooses to regulate the online gaming market.

And just recently, Zynga admitted that they’d be willing to explore the option of real money poker games as they told the website, “We know from listening to our players that there’s an interest in the real money gambling market. We’re in active conversations with potential partners to better understand and explore this new opportunity.”

This is certainly exciting news to those who enjoy playing Zynga Poker already. However, one thing that’s not exciting is how a former Zynga engineer appeared on to discuss how the free poker site is rigged. The former Zynga worker’s thread opened with the following:

I worked at Zynga for 8 months, I can tell you all about the Good Stuff (yes, there is good stuff going on in there!), and the nasty-douchey stuff (yes, there is extremely CREEPY stuff going on in there!)

I can tell you about Zynga’s mangled code base. I can tell you all about Brogrammers. Ask me anything. Seriously.

Going by the name “mercenary-games,” the poster discussed the poker games specifically by mentioning:

so theres millions of people playing poker.

An instance of a poker table takes up a significant amount of data. shuffling the deck for millions of poker tables would rape the server.

Instead, have “pre packaged” scenarios… roll them and randomize which scenario comes us. Cheaper.

Obviously these are not the allegations you want to hear about a publicly traded company that’s considering offering real money poker services. Hopefully, if Zynga Poker does come out with real money play in the future, they clean up this kind of stuff. Otherwise, you can expect to find a lot of empty real money poker tables here.




How Long should you Play Poker?

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

One of the biggest mistakes that many online poker players make is extending a session too long. For example, if you start to lose concentration after two hours of playing and you keep going, you’ve played too much online poker.

Now you may be wondering why somebody would keep playing when they’re no longer focusing on the game. And the answer is that many players don’t even think anything about it when they’ve been on the poker tables too long. In essence, it becomes somewhat of blur, kind of like when you’re playing a video game for hours.

The downside of extending online poker sessions past when you can reasonably concentrate is that you stop focusing on opponents’ tendencies. Furthermore, you begin making small mistakes such as calling when you shouldn’t or playing marginal hands past the flop. So basically, playing poker for lengthy hours decreases your profitability with the game.

This being the case, it’s crucial that you both know your limits for playing, and stick to this limit. The only way to truly find out how long you can play poker is to go until you feel yourself losing concentration. For instance, if you fall into a lull after two hours, this should be your limit for the time being.

Interestingly enough, most poker players can extend the amount of time they’re able to play eventually. A large part of this is just getting better at the game, and having the correct moves become automatic responses. As you become more comfortable with playing longer online poker sessions, a good way to increase your interest is by multi-tabling. By managing two tables or more, you increase the challenge, which in turns keeps you more focused on the game. Just make sure you’re a winning player before you start multi-tabling!


Mike McDonald wins Lackluster Epic Poker League

Saturday, September 10th, 2011

The second ever Epic Poker League Main Event wasn’t exactly a resounding success since just 97 of the 200 invited poker pros joined the tournament. Seeing as how invited players are given a free $20,000 Main Event seat, and hotel/travel costs are covered, you have to wonder about the future of this organization.

In any case, the 97 players that did show up to the Epic Poker League certainly weren’t sorry because a $2.3 million prize pool was up for grabs, and the first place finisher was guaranteed $782k. Once everything was decided on the poker tables, Mike McDonald was crowned the champion.

McDonald, who became the youngest EPT winner in history after taking down the 2008 EPT Dortmund Main Event, outlasted David Steicke in heads-up play to scoop the big prize. And what’s nice about this win is that McDonald will have something extra to celebrate for his birthday tomorrow, when he turns 22. The Canadian now has $3,668,524 in live tournament winnings.

Of course, this is nowhere close to the $16.8 million that Erik Seidel has earned throughout his career, which ranks first all-time. And the reason why we’re bringing up Seidel is because the former New Yorker took fourth place in this tournament, and earned $184k for yet another solid finish this year. He took second place in the first Epic Poker League tournament too, and has earned $6,445,168 in 2011 alone!

It’s also worth mentioning that French poker star Fabrice Soulier took third place in this tournament, while the oft-hated Dutch Boyd finished in eighth place. Here is a look at the full standings from the second Epic Poker League Main Event:

1. Mike McDonald – $782,410
2. David Steicke – $506,260
3. Fabrice Soulier – $299,160
4. Erik Seidel – $184,100
5. Nam Le – $126,570
6. Isaac Baron – $92,050
7. Sean Getzwiller – $69,040
8. Dutch Boyd – $57,530