The high-stakes action at Full Tilt Poker was booming Tuesday night. Many of the game's top pros were trading six-figure pots, including Viktor Blom, Tom Dwan and Phil Ivey. We'll bring you that story, plus the latest company to receive preliminary approval for an online gaming license in Nevada, in this edition of the Nightly Turbo.
In Case You Missed It:
Is Daniel Negreanu involved in a cult? "Kid Poker" joined the PokerNews Podcast to explain the recent rumors that have been circling the poker community.
The World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event continued Tuesday with Day 1b. Get all of the highlights in our WPT Bay 101 recap.
The PokerNews Mid-States Poker Tour is aiming to award $1 million in poker tournaments over 29 days. Read about the upcoming tournaments here at PokerNews.com.
Dan Shak passed Mike Watson to take the lead in the 2013 Global Poker Index Player of the Year Race. Mickey Doft breaks down the latest shift in the GPI POY rankings.
High-Stakes Action Heats up at Full Tilt Poker
Earlier this week, Viktor "Isildur1" Blom told PokerNews that he's been forced to learn new variations of poker because nobody has given him enough action at high-stakes no-limit hold'em and pot-limit Omaha.
After his PLO sessions at Full Tilt Poker on Tuesday, we understand why.
Playing varied shifts of PLO, Omaha 8/b and 2-7 triple draw on Tuesday, Blom won nearly $800,000 against some of the site's most successful players. The majority of those winnings came late in the evening at the $250/$500/$100 PLO tables, where Blom faced off against Tom "durrrr" Dwan, Hac "trex313" Dang, Phil "Polarizing" Ivey, and many others. According to HighStakesDB.com, Blom won $526,000 in 1,426 hands during his late-night PLO session, adding to the $270,000 he won in his PLO and 2-7 triple-draw sessions earlier in the day.
Blom's biggest pot came on his last hand of the night. He won a $490,000 pot against Hac Dang when he turned top set against Dang's flopped set of fives. We caught the action as it happened. Here's how it played out:
Dang was among the day's biggest losers, but his damages paled compared to Dwan's. February's biggest online winner dropped more than $900,000 on Tuesday. Dwan was second on the yearly winnings leaderboard entering the day, but his massive loss dropped him to sixth. One of the biggest pots Dwan lost came against Blom and Ben "Bttech86" Tollerene at six-handed $250/$500/$100 PLO. Blom opened with a raise to $1,500 from middle position and Tollerene three-bet to 5,600 from the small blind. Dwan flat called from the big blind and Blom responded with a four-bet to $24,500. Tollerene flatted, but Dwan then came over the top with an all-in bet worth $74,900. Blom re-shoved for $90,388 total and Tollerene called, having both opponents covered.
With more than $256,000 in the middle already, the board ran out , giving Blom a flopped straight for the entire pot.
Despite losing that hand, Tollerene was Tuesday's biggest winner with more than $905,000 in profit, moving him into third place on the yearly leaderboard behind Blom and Alex "PostflopAction" Kostritsyn. Here's a look at the year's biggest cash-game winners on Full Tilt Poker as of Wednesday morning, according to HighStakesDB.com:
|1||Alex "PostflopAction" Kostritsyn||$2,978,418|
|2||Viktor "Isildur1" Blom||$2,058,204|
|3||Ben "Bttech86" Tollerene||$2,013,201|
|4||Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond||$1,797,335|
For more, check out HighStakesDB.com.
888 Recommended for Nevada License
On Wednesday, online gaming operator 888 Holdings received a recommendation for an interactive gaming license from the Nevada Gaming Control Board. The company, which owns and operates 888poker, will meet with the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC) on March 21 for final license approval.
Last January, 888 Holdings extended its licensing agreement with Caesars Interactive Entertainment in a deal that will see Dragonfish, the business-to-business division of 888, power a selection of Caesars' online poker brands. Caesars was approved for an interactive gaming license in Nevada in December and hopes to use its World Series of Poker brand to capitalize on the emerging online poker market in the Silver State.
In an interview with PokerNews last year, 888 Holdings CEO Brian Mattingly said the company will be "well positioned" to perform strongly in Nevada. The company was deemed "suitable for a Nevada license" by the three-member control board on Wednesday despite that fact that it offered real-money gambling to U.S. residents before passage of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA). 888 withdrew from the U.S. shortly after the law was passed and will now avoid the five-year "bad actor" exclusion that will affect PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker once the market opens in Nevada.
Because 888's deal with Caesars is nonexclusive, the company has been able to strike partnerships with other relevant partners in Nevada. 888 officials said Wednesday that the company would also provide an online poker platform for Treasure Island and slot machine manufacturer WMS Industries in Nevada.
If 888 is approved by the NGC later this month, it will become the 20th company to receive an interactive gaming license in Nevada.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal has more.
Poker Bill Introduced in Texas
On Friday, March 1, Texas State Representative Ryan Guillen (D-Rio Grande City) introduced a new bill that would establish social poker gaming clubs to operate within the state.
The Texas Social Poker Gaming Act of 2013, or H.B. 2098, would allow social poker businesses to run real-money games as licensed and regulated establishments but only to registered members of the club within a private setting. Under the measure, clubs authorized to offer private poker games would be licensed by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.
The bill also would restrict other forms of gambling such as bingo state lottery, horse racing, video poker, or casino gambling. The measure will need to make its way through committee before requiring a two-thirds majority vote from both the Assembly and Senate for approval.
H.B. 2098 was the second poker bill introduced in the state in recent months. Originally proposed in December 2012, the Texas Gaming Act of 2013 would regulate land-based poker rooms, but did not address online poker.
H.B. 2098 can be viewed in full at legis.state.tx.us.
Poker Festival in London
On Tuesday, the UKIPT London Main Event kicked off as part of the PokerStars European Poker Tour London Poker Festival, which will morph into EPT London at the end of the week.
The £770 buy-in UKIPT event got off to an unusual start Tuesday. Tournament officials had to create a third starting day because of the massive number of entrants registered. Instead of two starting days, there will now be a third Day 1 flight on Thursday, with the three flights combing into a single Day 2 on Friday. The event is expected to hit the 1,000-player mark at the Grosvenor Victoria Casino in London.
Day 1a had 194 players but only 43 pushed through the 11 levels to advance Day 2. End-of-day chip leader Ben Jackson can sit comfortably for the next couple of days after bagging a hefty stack of 197,700 in chips. Other notables advancing to Day 2 were Philippe Soukie (159,800), Scott Shelley (109,500), and UKIPT Champion of Champions Richard Sinclair (65,400 chips). Among those who failed to survive included Julian Thew, Neil Channing, Chris Bjorin, and Ari Engel.
End of Day 1a Chip Counts:
The EPT London Main Event begins March 10 and PokerNews will be providing live coverage from the Grosvenor Victoria Casino. The £5,250 championship event will conclude when a champion is crowned on Saturday, March 16.
Until then, follow the PokerStars Blog for live coverage of the PokerStars European Poker Tour London Poker Festival.
The PokerStars Honeymoon
Team PokerStars Online member Adrienne “talonchick” Rowsome submitted a blog entry on Wednesday that proves old-fashioned romance can still warm the cockles of your heart.
Last summer, Rowsome skipped the World Series of Poker to marry fiancé and fellow poker pro Ryan Carter on Okanagan Lake in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. The ceremony was far from traditional as they said their “I do's” on a wakeboard boat. Later, they literally "took the plunge" into the lake.
The nontraditional ceremony was then followed by an even more nontradition honeymoon. Because both are PokerStars Supernova VIPs, they decided to spend their Frequent Player Points (FPPs) on a trip to the Caribbean, courtesy of the PokerStars Concierge service.
“When Ryan and I got engaged, we laughed and imagined a PokerStars-themed wedding from party favors to an open bar,” said Rowsome in her blog. “Instead of planning a big ceremony, we decided to spoil ourselves with a lavish honeymoon. What better way to pay for it than with our FPPs?”
After making the trip to Atlantis for the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, where Rowsome won the $1,000 Triple Stud event, the poker couple jet-setted to the Turks and Caicos Islands where they enjoyed snorkeling, catamaran sailing, and deep sea fishing, all paid for with their FPPs.
“It was a fantastic trip, made that much sweeter knowing that PokerStars Concierge would be covering the bill,” she added.
For more on their trip, visit the PokerStars Blog.