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The Nightly Turbo: 888 Partners with WMS, Cates Awards WSOP Main Event Seat, and More

Daniel Cates

Yes, there was more going on in the poker world besides Ray Bitar surrendering to U.S. authorities on Monday. Was it more exciting? We'll let you decide. Keep reading to find out more on 888 aligning itself with WMS Gaming to position itself for a U.S. launch, who won Daniel "jungleman" Cates' challenge, and more.

In Case You Missed It

The PokerNews video team produces so many videos a day during the World Series of Poker, it's kind of hard to keep up. Luckily, we've compiled our favorite videos from the week and put them in a Video Vault to give you easy access.

On Sunday at the 2012 World Series of Poker, Vanessa Selbst accomplished something no woman has been able to since, well, since Selbst did it in 2008. Find out who Selbst knocked out on the way to her second bracelet and who entered The Big One for One Drop in our WSOP Day 36 recap.

On Monday, PokerNews learned that Ray Bitar had surrendered to U.S. authorities. Read the new superseding indictments on PokerNews.com.

There are plenty of WSOP events playing out in the Rio, but one will be awarding a bracelet on Monday. Find out who's hunting for gold in Event #53 by checking out the latest What to Watch For.

888 Aligns with WMS Gaming

On Monday, online gaming operator 888 announced a strategic partnership with slot machine supplier WMS Gaming Inc. The deal will see the launch of a real-money online poker offering once the licensing and regulation process is completed in Nevada and other U.S. states.

WMS will market and distribute 888’s online poker platform to land-based casino customers in venues in the U.S., initially with a play-for-free offering. The joint offering will be ready to go as soon as a real-money platform is given the green light by gaming authorities.

Both companies have already submitted online gaming license applications to the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

“WMS is one of the main gaming suppliers in America, with a network of relationships with land-based operators that is second to none," said 888 CEO Brian Mattingly. "The combination of 888’s cutting edge online poker platform and WMS’ customer relationships, marketing and distribution capabilities, provides the opportunity to build a substantial online presence.

"By deploying our joint online poker solution, casino operators in the United States will be able to provide their customers with a robust and secure network with the liquidity and games offering to give the best possible player experience."

Early this year, 888 extended its partnership with Caesars Interactive Entertainment into the U.S. By combining forces with WMS, 888 plans to power a selection of Caesars' poker brands once online gaming is legalized and regulated.

For more, read the press release issued by 888.

Suava Wins Cates' WSOP Challenge

Dan "Jungleman" Cates has selected the winner of his WSOP Challenge.

In May, Cates offered to give away a World Series of Poker Main Event seat to a person who performs a good deed and records it on video. More than 30 videos were submitted to Cates before the June 20 deadline. The winner was Daniel Suava, whose Good Deeds Hugs video got the most votes from viewers and received approval from Cates on Monday morning.

In addition to the $10,000 Main Event seat, Suava will receive free air travel and a free room at the Rio, as well as free poker lesson from Cates himself.

“Words cannot possibly describe how incredibly excited, gobsmacked and thankful I am," Suava told the PartyPoker Blog. "This is a dream come true. Wait, this is real right? Somebody slap me. Whoop whoop! Vegas baby!”

As it turns out, Suava could play more events than Cates at this year's WSOP. As of Monday, Cates hadn't played a single tournament at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. We'll have to wait and see if he plays the Main Event; that could all depend on the lure of the cash games going on in Vegas later this week.

Here's a look at the winning submission from Suava, who certainly got some help from a friend:

Read more about the Jungleman WSOP Challenge winner at the PartyPoker Blog.

Belt the Champ

Ultimate Poker, the new social online poker site developed by Fertitta Interactive and CyberArts, has announced the sponsorship of the UFC with the launch of a free “Belt the Champ” online poker tournament running now through July 22.

The free-to-play tournament will offer the winner a trip to Las Vegas in September to experience VIP treatment at UFC 151, which will feature the UFC Light Heavyweight championship between Jon “Bones” Jones versus Dan Henderson. The grand prize includes the opportunity to place the championship belt on the winner of the fight.

“We are happy to be in business with Ultimate Poker and this is undoubtedly the coolest prize we have ever given away,” said UFC President Dana White.

To compete in the “Belt the Champ” tournament, all you need to do is visit the Ultimate Poker Facebook application, click on the “Tournament” or “Sit n Go” tab to register. The tournament is free for all Ultimate Poker players with no chips or money required.

More information on the "Belt the Champ" tournament can be found at Heavy.com.

World Poker Tour National Series Madrid

World Poker Tour National Series Madrid reached a final table Monday with poker pro Raul Mestre leading the way. Mestre has been near the top of the leaderboard since the even kicked off on Friday and is in great position to win his first WPT title and the top prize of €60,000.

Mestre led the way with 21 players remaining on the penultimate day of play and increased his chip count to nearly twice that of his closest competitor when the final table was set. He ended the day with 974,000; Cristian Mihu was second with 545,000.

Here's a look at the final table lineup for the World Poker Tour National Series Madrid

PlacePlayerChips
1Raul Mestre974,000
2Cristian Mihu545,000
3Alex Stevic468,000
4M. ª Rosa Rodrigues435,000
5Peter Olsen332,000
6Manuel Sanchez243,000
7Enrique Barroso230,000
8Robert Cazali95,000

For more on the event, visit PokerNews Spain.

Onnit Last Sticker Standing Results

Onnit Labs, a health and fitness company specializing in vitamin supplements, has announced the winner of the Last Sticker Standing promotion for the WSOP Ladies Event.

After outlasting more than 50 women had signed up at the Onnit booth in the Rio, Janet Howard the last woman standing in the tournament earned $750! Not only that, but Howard reached the final table of the event and finished third for $66,061. Howard was using Onnit's Alpha Brain product during her exciting deep run.

Onnit will also be running similar promotions during Event #59, a $1,000 no-limit hold'em tournament, and the Main Event, where the winner will take home $5,000!

Want to focus on your poker game? Get Onnit.

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The Big One

We know you guys can't get enough Big One for One Drop coverage, so here's Lynn Gilmartin chatting with a handful of the players who dropped $1 million on the tournament.

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