World Series of Poker Europe

The Nightly Turbo: NFL Referee Scrutinized for WSOP Play, PokerStars Closes Deal, & More

Nightly Turbo

PokerStars formally closed its deal with the Department of Justice on Thursday. What does it mean for the future of Full Tilt Poker? We'll cover that story and more in this edition of the Nightly Turbo.

In Case You Missed It

On Thursday, Marvin Rettenmaier became the first back-to-back champion on the World Poker Tour. Read about his latest win in our WPT Cyprus recap.

With his WPT win, will Rettenmaier take the lead in the Global Poker Index? Mickey Doft takes a look at the biggest movers and shakers in this week's GPI rankings.

Reid Young made his second appearance on the Strategy with Kristy podcast this week. Reid analyzed three interesting hands from cash-game sessions.

Poker pro William Reynolds always provides an entertaining interview. On this week's PokerNews Podcast, Reynolds and the crew discussed Macau, Annie Duke, PokerStars and Full Tilt, and special Jacuzzis.

How complicated was the deal between PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and the Department of Justice? Chad Holloway sat down with FTP attorney Anne Madonia to find out about the negotiation process and more.

PartyPoker started beta-testing its own variant of fast-fold poker on Thursday. Find out about Fast Forward in out piece here at

NFL Tackles WSOP Issue

When Thursday's National Football League preseason game between the San Diego Chargers and the Green Bay Packers kicks off, Shannon Eastin will become the first woman to officiate a game in the league's history. Eastin, 42, is one of the replacement refs hired as a result of the ongoing contract dispute between the NFL and its referees.

But according to a recent report by NBC Sports, Eastin's past as a poker player could have created some controversy for the league. A source close to the situation says that the locked-out NFL referees planned to bring attention to the fact that Eastin played in the World Series of Poker in 2006 and 2007. The NFL prohibits any form of gambling and has been a major opponent of the activity since the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) was passed in 2006.

The following text appears in the expired NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement, which applies to its replacement referees:

Gambling is an unacceptable activity for Game Officials in the National Football League. Such activity constitutes conduct detrimental to the integrity of, and public trust in, the NFL. Because it is the responsibility of the Game Officials to ensure the fairness of NFL play, including the complete confidence of the fans in the legitimacy of the game, it is critical that NFL Game Officials maintain the appearance of the highest ethical conduct.

The league issued a statement to Pro Football Talk on Thursday, explaining that a background check was conducted on all of its referees: “The NFL does extensive background checks on prospective officials, including the current group of replacement officials,” NFL spokesman Michael Signora said. “All of them have passed the NFL’s rigorous screening process, including Shannon Eastin. Past participation in an event such as a poker tournament does not disqualify a person from consideration as an NFL game official.”

Eastin has cashed twice at the World Series of Poker, with her best result coming in a $1,500 no-limit hold'em event in 2007. Eastin finished 17th after losing a head-to head confrontation against Phil Hellmuth, who went on to win the event and his 11th bracelet. PokerNews' reporting of her elimination hand can be found here. Eastin also took 67th place in the 2006 Ladies Event.

The NBC Sports report came shortly after the NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA and NCAA filed suit against the state of New Jersey over a proposed bill that would allow sports betting within state lines. The NFL argues that New Jersey is not permitted to offer sports gambling under the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, a federal law that limits betting on collegiate and professional games only to specific areas of Nevada, Delaware, Oregon and Montana.

The initial report can be found at

Gone 'Til November

PokerStars' purchase of Full Tilt Poker through the Department of Justice was officially completed on Thursday, paving the way for the relaunch of FTP and repayment of "rest of world" customers within 90 days.

PokerStars made its initial payment of $225 million to the U.S. government this week. The remainder of the $547 forfeiture will be paid over the next three years, and PokerStars says the $184 million owed to non-U.S. FTP customers will be made available within the next three months.

The newly managed Full Tilt Poker will relaunch by Nov. 6, 2012. Shyam Markus, the poker-room manager at Full Tilt Poker, addressed several questions regarding the site in a thread at TwoPlusTwo on Thursday.

Read the story here at for more.

EPT Announces High Roller Awards

Last week, the European Poker Tour renewed its partnership with Shamballa Jewels as the official bracelet sponsor of the EPT Season 9 High Roller and Super High Roller events.

On Thursday, the tour added even more incentive to partake in the High Roller tournaments. Starting this season, PokerStars will sponsor the EPT High Roller of the Year award. The honor will go to the player who produces the best results over the 16 events, which include three Super High Roller events in Barcelona, Monaco and the Bahamas.

“High Stakes poker action is as exciting as any sport in the world and features the best players competing against each other and those with enough confidence and cash to take on poker’s elite players,” said EPT President Edgar Stuchly. “These high stakes tournaments provide high-drama, deep strategy and potentially life-changing rewards.”

The first EPT High Roller will begin on Friday, Aug. 17 in Barcelona. As of Thursday, 37 players were confirmed for the event, and organizers are optimistic that at least 50 will participate.

For more on the European Poker Tour, visit

LAPT Medellin Under Way

The PokerStars Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) kicked off in Medellin Wednesday with the first of two Day 1 flights. Day 1a attracted 115 runners, 43 of whom advanced to Friday's Day 2 after 10 hours of play.

For the second straight year at LAPT Medellin, Team PokerStars Online member Freddy Torres finished his Day 1 flight as the chip leader. Torres bagged 122,000 chips at the end of the day, barely edging out Fellipe Nunes' 120,600. Others near the top of the Day 1a leadboard were Omar Andres Rodriguez (111,800), Peter Gregory Ramirez Corner (99,400), and Andrew Korn (93,100).

Among the notables who participated in the event were Chris Moneymaker, Leo Fernandez, John Tabatabai, and Sorel Mizzi, who was eliminated late in the day when his {K-}{Q-} couldn't run down an opponent's {A-}{2-} after all the chips went in preflop.

Here's a look at the top 10 stacks from Day 1a:

1Freddy Torres122,000
2Fellipe Nunes120,600
3Omar Andres Rodriguez111,800
4Peter Gregory Ramirez Corner99,400
5Andrew Korn93,100
6Harry Gonzalez86,600
7Jaime Fonseca84,900
8Luis Fernando Salas77,200
9Gustav Schuldt Langner71,200
10Mop Khayr Jr69,400

Day 1b got under way on Thursday with a new field of hopefuls. We'll be providing daily recaps from LAPT Medellin in the Nightly Turbo, so be sure to check back for updates.

For live reporting from the event, visit the PokerStars Blog.

Goodbye From Cyprus

With Marvin Rettenmaier's historic win on Thursday, the World Poker Tour Merit Cyprus Classic came to a close. PokerNews' Lynn Gilmartin took a look back at the exciting week of poker on and off the felts.

Follow PokerNews on Twitter for up-to-the-minute news.

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