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The Nightly Turbo: High Stakes Poker Season Seven Premiere, Another State Looking at Online Poker, and More

Norm Macdonald

Our weekend is shaping up quite nicely so while we like to lollygag most days, we have things to do and we're sure you do, too. The new season of High Stakes Poker, complete with new host Norm Macdonald, premieres this weekend and we'll tell you when to set your DVR so you don't miss it, as well as which state is looking at legalizing online poker, and more.

In Case You Missed It

The new season of the Big Game was filmed this week in Las Vegas, and Kristy Arnett decided to stop by and check it out. Check out the latest Sin City Series for a behind-the-scenes look at the Big Game.

The PokerNews Team is back with their latest podcast discussing everything from Sorel Mizzi and John Racener to the NBC National Heads Up Championship field. Listen to the latest PokerNews Podcast for more.

Wondering how the high-stakes action has been going this week on the virtual felt? The Online Railbird Report will give you the details.

The 64-player field for the 2011 NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship was recently released. We take a look at the field and and some match-ups we'd like to see.

Online poker players in New Jersey have been waiting anxiously to find out the fate of the Internet gambling legislation that has been sitting on the governor's desk for the past month. No action has been taken on the bill yet and here's why.

Recently, Travis Makar released new information regarding the 2007 UltimateBet cheating scandal. If you haven't had a chance to check out all the details, don't worry, we've summarized it for you.

*Above photo courtesy of Dan Steinberg/Associated Press

High Stakes Poker is Back

The seventh season of High Stakes Poker premieres Saturday, February 26 on GSN. Norm Macdonald will be taking over hosting duties this season with Kara Scott as his co-host. The show was filmed in 3D at the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

While some of your favorites will be back this season, quite a few will be missing from the lineup. Here's a look at the entire HSP season seven roster.

Mike BaxterEric BonetaDoyle BrunsonJohnny Chan
Robert CroakJonathan DuhamelAntonio EsfandiariPhil Galfond
Bill KleinPhil LaakJason MercierJulian Movsesian
David PeatBill PerkinsAndrew RoblPhil Ruffin
Vanessa SelbstHaralabos Voulgaris  

The minimum buy-in this season is $200,000 with a maximum of $500,000, with stakes of $400/$500 with a $100 ante.

Don't forget to tune in on Saturday at 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m on GSN.

Iowa Looking to Legalize Online Poker

A bill was recently introduced into the Iowa legislature that is aiming to legalize online poker. The bill would allow state-regulated casinos to run online poker sites, where players 21 or older would be able to play.

"What is driving this is the recognition that you have an existing activity that's already taking place in an unregulated environment, and the revenue is all flowing overseas," Kirk Uhler, vice president of government affairs for U.S. Digital Gaming said.

It's estimated that 150,000 Iowans play poker online, which would amount in $30 to $35 million in taxes that the state is missing out on at the moment.

The Internet poker network would be regulated by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission and already, casinos are expressing interest in the bill.

The Des Moines Register has more.

LAPC Under Way

The World Poker Tour LA Poker Classic kicked off Friday at Commerce Casino. Last year, 745 players ponied up the $10,000 buy-in, and in the end, Andras Koroknai took home the title and just over $1.7 million.

Tournament registration is open through the first five levels on Friday, or through the end of Day 1 - however you want to look at it. At the time of writing, 612 players had entered the field, including Antonio Esfandiari, Jason Mercier, Liv Boeree, Michael Mizrachi, Daniel Negreanu, and Barry Greenstein.

Want to catch up on all the action? Head on over to

Data Mining on Full Tilt Poker

It seem that Full Tilt Poker is taking more steps to stop data-mining operations to access the site. There were rumblings in December last year regarding PokerTableRating's coverage of the games on Full Tilt Poker.

Recently, it seems that the number of hands from Full Tilt Poker that PTR has been able to provide its members has dipped significantly. No official statements have been made from Full Tilt Poker or PTR about the issue, but it seems that both have acknowledged the issue on the TwoPlusTwo forum.

For more on the story, check out

Norway vs. Denmark vs. Sweden vs. Finland vs. Iceland

We may group the Nordic countries together, but they are unique. While at the PokerStars European Poker Tour Copenhagen, Sarah Grant went on a mission to find out what is so different about these countries.

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Prove your skills and play for $55,000 of added money league games in our weekly PokerNews Skills Challenge on Full Tilt Poker.

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