Catch up on the week's top poker news stories with the Weekly Turbo. In this edition, you'll learn Daniel Negreanu's reasons from not playing in the Epic Poker League, what stops the World Poker Tour has added to Season X, and more.
Daniel's Reasons Why
On Thursday afternoon, Daniel Negreanu published a blog discussing his reasons for not participating in the Epic Poker League. His main reason for not playing, he wrote, is the same reason he didn't partake in the World Team Poker event: because he doesn't think it will be a success.
"I'm always careful about what I attach my name and likeness to, and after doing my due diligence on the 'business plan' I don't think this league can succeed. Of course I could be wrong... but I'm not," he wrote.
He also notes that he believes the League is positioning itself to create an online poker site if legislation passes in the U.S.
"So, as I said previously, any and everyone involved behind the scenes knows full well that the league is depending on creating a brand in the hopes of entering the U.S. market with an online poker site. That's the business plan. The best thing that happened to the EPL to date was Black Friday. If Black Friday didn't happen, the first event wouldn't have gotten off the ground."
He touches on the difficulty of attracting sponsorship dollars for the television broadcast and says it will be difficult for the League to get the audience invested in the stories behind the players.
"There are only so many 'I dropped out of college because I was making more money 24-tabling online' stories you can do. There are certainly some really great, interesting young players in the game that the public will be drawn to, but that's the exception not the rule. While the TwoPlusTwo crowd may love a featured table with online pros they adore, the mainstream public wants to see Sammy Farha bluff Phil Hellmuth and watch him go on a tirade!"
Agree or disagree, you can read Negreanu's entire blog on FullContactPoker.com.
Where's the World Poker Tour Headed?
We all know what happened to the Italian Man Who Went to Malta. Soon we'll know what will happen when the World Poker Tour heads to Malta. According to a press release, the tenth WPT season will be making a stop in Malta. The €3,000 + €30 Main Event will take place at the Casino at Portomaso from Sept. 20 to 24.
“Portomaso in Malta is normally the home of super yachts, but for four days in late September it will be home to WPT Malta. This Mediterranean hotspot already has poker in its veins so we hope that by introducing a World Poker Tour stop we will satisfy the desires of locals and the international contingent looking for some late summer sun," said Adam Pliska, president of the World Poker Tour.
Matt Savage is confirmed as the tournament director for this event.
If you want to find out more about this event, or pre-register, head on over to WorldPokerTour.com.
It doesn't stop there. The World Poker Tour also announced a three-year agreement with Parx Casino in Bensalem, Pennsylvania. A televised Main Event will take place in 2012, as well as three WPT Regional Events, as per the new deal.
“We have put an emphasis on finding the right partners for expansion. Parx was an immediate target for WPT and have been wonderful business partners in getting this deal done,” said WPT President Adam Pliska. “The ability to crown a WPT champion in a town that has recently seen the Flyers in the Stanley Cup, the Eagles in the Super Bowl and the Phillies win the World Series will be tremendous for both Parx and WPT.”
The date of the 2012 WPT Parx event will be released later this year.
Check out the entire WorldPokerTour Season X schedule at WorldPokerTour.com.
Pencil It In
According to a press release, the EPT London "Festival of Poker" — the third stop of the eighth season of the PokerStars European Poker Tour — kicks off on Sept. 30 and runs through Oct. 6. Thirty-one events will occupy the eight-day schedule with buy-ins that suit every bankroll. Well, almost.
"I’m so excited that the EPT London Festival of Poker is just around the corner. It will mark a year since I joined Team PokerStars Pro and it was one of the best series of poker tournaments I’ve played in," said Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree.
On top of the £5,000+£250 Main Event, players can look forward to the £2,150 European 8-Game Championships, the £5,000 Heads-Up event, and a £20,500 High-Roller event. If those buy-ins are a little steep for you, then you could check out the £330 No-Limit Hold'em Turbo "Win the Button" event, or even the £120 No-Limit Hold'em Hyper Turbo.
Every EPT London tournament will take place at the Hilton London Metropole; cash games will take place at the Grosvenor Victoria Casino.
“We are all looking forward to another fabulous EPT London in conjunction with the Grosvenor Victoria Casino. As always we welcome all players to the 24/7 cash games in the Vic Poker Room. Courtesy cars will run between venues continuously for players’ convenience," said Martin Ramskill, general manager of the Grosvenor Victoria Casino.
Check out the entire EPT London Festival of Poker schedule at EuropeanPokerTour.com.
FairPlayUSA Adds to Advisory Board
FairPlayUSA announced on Tuesday that it had added to its advisory board. Mike Sexton joined FairPlayUSA and now sits on the advisory board along with Greg Raymer, Internet safety expert Parry Aftab, and former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge.
"Americans should be able to play poker online in the privacy of their homes knowing that the games are safe and fair," said Sexton. "FairPlayUSA is committed to ensuring a strict regulatory framework for online poker, and I am pleased to be part of its advisory board."
If you're not familiar with FairPlayUSA, it is a grassroots coalition that has set out to educate the public and policymakers about online poker.
"We're honored that Mike has agreed to join our Board of Advisors and help carry our message of the importance of bringing integrity and safety to online poker," said Marisa McNee, executive director of FairPlayUSA. "As FairPlayUSA grows as an organization, our message of strict regulation, child and consumer protection, and support of law enforcement will continue to resonate with key policymakers."
Read the press release for more.
We've told you about the Jose "Girah" Macedo dramabomb, so you know that Daniel "jungleman12" Cates and Haseeb "INTERNETPOKERS" Qureshi were also implicated.
After the drama, CardRunners parted ways with Qureshi and released a statement saying, "Effective immediately, CardRunners has decided to part ways with Haseeb Qureshi. While Haseeb is a talented instructor, he has shown poor judgement in using a stakee's poker account for his own play. We've informed Haseeb of this decision and it is final."
Qureshi took to his blog to tell his side of the story. Yes, we know it's TL;DR, but we read the whole thing to give you the CliffsNotes version. Qureshi admitted to playing under Macedo's account, which resulted in Macedo's disqualification from the BLUFF Challenge. He then goes on to detail how Macedo's scam unfolded and what he did to break the news to the people who were scammed.
"When Jose's Lock account got locked once we reached Gibraltar and I spoke with Jungle in person, we agreed that we should pay via bank wire to ensure that everyone involved received their funds immediately without worry. We wanted to be as amenable as we could to those who got scammed, recognizing that we were in a position of authority, and spent most of that night cursing Jose for being so f***ing stupid and working out the details with the group," he wrote.
Read Qureshi's entire blog at CardRunners.com.
Chino Rheem Dramabomb
A few days ago, Will Molson started a thread on TwoPlusTwo that outlines a situation he's in with Chino Rheem. According to Molson, he transferred Rheem and Michael Mizrachi $20,000 to buy into the EPT London High Roller last year. There was a mix-up with the transfer on PokerStars and the two ended up getting $40,000 each. While Mizrachi paid back the money shortly after the event, Molson has yet to see his money from Rheem.
It seems that Molson isn't the only player Rheem owes money to. Tom "durrrr" Dwan replied in the thread that he is also owed money. Joseph Cheong, 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event third-place finisher, also is owed money.
Cheong wrote, "I also don't want anyone else getting scammed so I'll say this: he has also scammed me for $40k and I know others in the same spot. The poker world is full of borrowing and lending money, so when a well-known player comes to you with believable collateral, it's hard not to lend money. For me, the collateral he offered was that he had a piece of the Grinder at the WSOP Main Event last summer. The Grinder confirmed this for me. But clearly it was offered to multiple people and I never saw a dime back."
It seems that this issue was brought to the attention of the Epic Poker League standards of conduct committee, and Mike "Timex" McDonald, who is on the committee replied to the thread on behalf of the League.
"We compiled a list of all players who we believed had previously conducted themselves in a way that if continued would lead to their elimination from the league and personally reminded each individual that they will not be allowed to participate in the league if their future behavior is the same as their past behavior.
I don't want to talk about any specifics, but I will say that people who are poor representatives of the game of poker will not last very long in this league and the EPL will publicly 'out' people who are kicked out of the league rather than simply tell them not to show up and keep it hush-hush."
TwoPlusTwo.com has the whole thread for your reading pleasure.
Are You Livin De Life?
And because we just can't get enough (and you probably can't either), here's one of our favorite videos of the week.
We'd like to give a shoutout to TwoPlusTwo for this gem you're about to watch.
According to the YouTube page, A. Samuels "is a 55-year-old casino executive with a passion for hip-hop music."
Phil Ivey makes a cameo in the video and lyrics at around the 3:15 mark. And with lines like this, "MJ, Ivey, Shaq, and AI, the bosses looked at me and said damn you fly," how can it not be a hit?
This not only gave us a laugh today, but also made us scratch our heads. Did this guy lose a prop bet or is he actually serious?