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sabato 16 ottobre 2021

Lazrus wins 2021 WSOP $1,500 Millionaire Maker

(credits: WSOP)
The 2021 World Series of Poker crowned a new gold bracelet winner at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino on Wednesday in Event #17: $1,500 Millionaire Maker No-Limit Hold'em, a tournament that attracted 5,330 players and offered up a $3,428,280 prize pool. The PokerGO live-streamed final table contained two former bracelet winners, despite the huge field. In the end, it was Daniel Lazrus collecting his second WSOP bracelet this year, claiming victory for $1,000,000.

Lazrus won his first bracelet a few months ago online in the WSOP Event #28 $3,200 No-Limit Hold'em High Roller Championship ONLINE. For the new two-time champ, winning a live event at the WSOP was even better.

"This one feels much more special," said Lazrus after the win. "It feels more legitimized than online did, just because it was a different atmosphere. This makes me happy with the decision I'm making of putting a lot of time into poker. The first was an achievement, this feels like THE achievement. I didn't realize it yet but this is a much greater feeling, I can't even begin to describe it."

Lazrus, 31, really only started taking poker seriously two years ago.
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2021 World Series of Poker in review: Week two

The 52nd annual World Series of Poker (WSOP) wrapped up its second week of play at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino with thrilling wins and new champions crowned. With over 5,300 participants in just the Millionaire Maker event and over 20 gold bracelets already awarded, week two of the WSOP delivered some exciting events and game-winning hands including the debut live iteration of the Flip & Go format and a heart-racing finale in the $1,500 Millionaire Maker event.

Poker fans and interested media can tune into the weekly WSOP virtual press conference on Friday, 15 October at 12 p.m. PST where host Tiffany Michelle will dive deeper into this week’s milestone events with special guests, bracelet winners and more. This week’s virtual press conference can be viewed on the WSOP YouTube channel

Week 2 Highlights

- Phil Hellmuth Denied 16th Bracelet as Anthony Zinno Wins His 3rd in the $10K Stud Championship

Anthony Zinno, a three-time WSOP bracelet winner and former World Poker Tour Player of the Year, earned a new gold bracelet after beating out two Poker Hall of Famers and denying crowd favorite Phil Hellmuth his 16th gold bracelet.- DJ Alexander Captures First WSOP Bracelet in Event #20: GGPoker Flip & Go ($180,665)

The popular online Flip & Go format made its live debut at WSOP on Oct. 10, offering players a chance to quickly move on to the next table in a single hand. After seven hours of play on Day 2, DJ Alexander emerged victorious, earning his first WSOP gold bracelet and $180,665 in cash.- Pete Chen Wins His First WSOP Bracelet in the Ultra-Deepstack Online Event

Pete Chen claimed his first WSOP gold bracelet after defeating “Selvastar7” in a heads-up showdown with a river paired ace-jack, earning him $82,559. Chen’s victory marks a career-high online score bringing his total tournament earnings to $661,618.- John Monnette Wins Fourth WSOP Bracelet after 11 Hours of Play in the $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship

John Monnette snags his fourth WSOP bracelet on Oct. 10, winning a total $245,680 and handing defeat to Nate Silver heads-up.- Jason Koon Snags His First WSOP Bracelet in $25K Heads Up Championship

American Poker Pro and new GGPoker ambassador Jason Koon wins intense face-off with Gabor Szabo, snagging his first-ever WSOP bracelet for $243,981.
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sabato 25 settembre 2021

Poker progressive win at The Venetian Las Vegas

Tuesday evening, 21 September, a guest at The Venetian Las Vegas was dealt a million dollar hand. The guest, who wished to remain anonymous, was playing Ultimate Texas Hold’em and was dealt a spade royal flush. The guest made the $5 side bet making them eligible to win the mega tier of the resort’s Millionaire Progressive for $1,042,938.

In late 2018, The Venetian Resort launched one of the largest table games progressives in the city. A player becomes eligible for the mega tier of the Millionaire Progressive, which begins at $1 million and increases incrementally, once the player makes the $5 side bet. To win, the player must be dealt a natural spade royal flush, and a millionaire is born! The progressive is available on several table games: Ultimate Texas Hold’em, Three Card Poker, Let it Ride, Crazy 4 Poker, and Mississippi Stud in both The Venetian and The Palazzo® casinos. The Millionaire Progressive has minted eight millionaires since inception.
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BetMGM names MMA personality Ariel Helwani as brand ambassador

BetMGM, a leading sports betting and digital gaming company, announced today the signing of mixed martial arts journalist Ariel Helwani as a brand ambassador. Helwani, an award-winning media personality, will integrate BetMGM into his promotional content and also be featured in upcoming BetMGM marketing campaigns, social media content and promotions, as well as fan events.
"Sports betting has always been intertwined with the mixed martial arts world and now, with its availability in more states, I'm excited to work hand-in-hand with BetMGM to deliver unique insights into the sports betting world," said Helwani.

Over the course of his career, Helwani has worked with major sports outlets including ESPN and SB Nation. He currently hosts The MMA Hour for Vox media as well as The Ringer MMA Show podcast, breaking down the latest fights across MMA, boxing and pro wrestling. Helwani has been the recipient of the World MMA Award Journalist of the Year award for 10 consecutive years.

Matt Prevost, Chief Revenue Officer, BetMGM, said, "Ariel has played a prominent role over the years in growing MMA to the masses. His extensive knowledge and signature reporting style makes him a tremendous addition to the BetMGM team."
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sabato 18 settembre 2021

AGA announces Gaming Hall of Fame inductees14 September 2021

Today, the American Gaming Association announced the Gaming Hall of Fame classes of 2020 and 2021, recognizing leaders who have distinguished themselves through significant contributions to the gaming industry.

“Each of these pioneers has left a unique, indelible mark on our industry,” said AGA President and CEO Bill Miller. “Under their leadership, tribal gaming has boomed, professional sports leagues have embraced sports betting, and the gaming industry is thriving despite the challenges we’ve faced over the past year and a half.”

Since its establishment in 1989, the Gaming Hall of Fame has honored an annual class of industry leaders until last year when the selection and event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Both the Class of 2020 and 2021 will be honored during the invitation-only Chairman’s Reception featuring the Gaming Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at the Global Gaming Expo.

“This year’s honorees have been key players in proving that gaming is a world-class entertainment experience,” added Aristocrat Technologies CEO and AGA Chairman of the Board Trevor Croker. “We’re proud to recognize them and the important role they’ve played shaping gaming into the dynamic industry it is today.”

Hall of Fame honorees are selected by an independent panel of gaming executives. This year’s selection committee members include:

Joe Bertolone, Executive Director, ICGR at UNLV
Kirsten Clark, Executive Director, International Association of Gaming Advisors
Mary Cheeks, President and General Manager, Jamul Casino
Trevor Croker, CEO, Aristocrat Technologies and Chairman, AGA
Christie Eickelman, Vice President, Global Marketing, GLI and (former) President, Global Gaming Women
Alan Feldman, Board Chairman, International Center for Responsible Gaming
Brian Hansberry, President, Delaware North, Gaming
Steve Sutherland, President and CEO, Konami Gaming Inc.
Virginia Valentine, President and CEO, Nevada Resort Association
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PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker crowns Main Event champions

The 20th edition of PokerStars prestigious World Championship of Online Poker has come to a close as the biggest WCOOP ever, awarding a massive $126,543,330 in prize money to the PokerStars community.

Taking place from August 22 to September 15, the series attracted more than 1.4 million entries across the 102-event schedule and exceeded its original $100 million guarantee. The six Main Events awarded a total of $18.4 million.

Key highlights include:

PokerStars Ambassadors Spraggy and Tonkaaaa both won the second WCOOP titles of their careers on the same day. Tonkaaa took down Event-75-H for $108,729 and Spraggy won Event 83-H for a total of $67,968.

Brazil once again secured the most WCOOP wins with a massive 57 titles under their belt.

The Player of the Series went to Talal ‘raidalot’ Shakerchi from the UK.

‘raidalot’ also won the High leaderboard for a prize of $15,000. The Medium leaderboard winner was ‘FONBET_RULIT’ for $10,000, and the Low leaderboard was won by ‘ekvilibryst’ for $5,000.

And it’s a hat trick for ‘raidalot’ who secured three WCOOP 2021 wins, alongside Yuri ‘theNERDguy’ Martins of Brazil. ‘theNERDguy’ also became the first player ever to win three titles in back-to-back WCOOPs, having done so in both 2020 and 2021. 13 players managed to secure two WCOOP 2021 titles.

As well as the coveted WCOOP title and prize money, every WCOOP champion will receive a newly designed WCOOP trophy to commemorate their win. More than $1 million in value was added by PokerStars through giveaways and routes to qualify for the community.

Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Michigan the Championship of Online Poker is well underway running until September 27 and featuring a total guaranteed prize pool of $4.5 million across the three state championships. The Galactic Series is also taking in France, Spain, and Portugal until September 26 with a 303-event schedule and more than €10 million in guaranteed prize money.
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sabato 4 settembre 2021

Rivers Casino Schenectady poker room to reopen

Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady announced today that it will reopen its poker room this Wednesday, 1 September 2021. The Rivers Casino poker room has been closed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March of 2020. The poker room’s hours of operation will be from 10 a.m. until 2 a.m. daily.

“One of the questions we’ve been asked the most is when will our poker room will be reopened, and we’re thrilled to announce today that it is finally coming back,” said Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady General Manager, Rick Richards. “The poker room is extremely popular and a big part of what makes for a fun and exciting gaming experience at the casino, and we couldn’t be happier to reopen it for our guests.”

The poker room is the last of the casino’s major gaming amenities to be reopened since the casino opened back up in September of 2020. It joins the casinos gaming floor, with slots and live table games, and the Rivers Sportsbook, in offering guests a complete gaming entertainment experience. The Rivers Casino poker room includes 16 tables and offers a variety of poker games.

Managing the poker room is Elliott Schecter who has spent nearly three decades as a dealer, room leader, and tournament director across the country including Nevada and Florida, and, most recently, Ohio, and Michigan. For the past 10-years Elliott has been the “Call the Floor” columnist and a contributing editor at Ante Up Magazine. Pending New York State Gaming Commission approval, Elliott has exciting promotions planned for the poker room including a Bad Beat Jackpot, High Hand Jackpots and a fun, new sports-themed Hot Seat promotion during NFL football games.

Rivers Casino’s current daily hours of operation are from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. Downtime is being used for intensive property-wide deep cleaning in addition to the continuous sanitizing taking place throughout each day. Masks are optional for fully vaccinated guests. Guests who are not vaccinated, or only partially vaccinated, from COVID-19 must continue to wear a mask.

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Relax Gaming celebrates landmark deal with PokerStars

Relax Gaming, the iGaming aggregator and supplier of unique content, has penned a deal with leading global betting, gaming and entertainment brand PokerStars.

Set to encompass numerous markets, the agreement will give the operator group’s enormous international player-base access to its award-winning catalogue, including player favorites Temple Tumble, Iron Bank and the hugely popular Money Train 2.

Alongside its own high-quality games, PokerStars will be able to select content from Relax’s 50-plus hand-picked aggregated partners including Fantasma Games, ReelPlay, and 4ThePlayer, made possible by its hugely successful Powered By Relax and Silver Bullet partnership programs.

The deal is set to significantly boost Relax’s exposure across key jurisdictions across Europe, with Italy and Spain to be high-priority markets for both partners as the esteemed supplier looks to continue expanding its extensive tier one presence.

Commenting on the deal, Daniel Eskola CCO at Relax Gaming said the new partnership offered important added visibility and underlined the provider’s rapid market expansion and ambitious strategy for the year.

He added: “It’s always a pleasure to partner with the world’s leading online brands that are making a huge impact in the market through innovation and a quality offering.

“PokerStars is an operator with enormous status and reach. I’m sure the addition of our extensive portfolio will only benefit that further as they continue to expand and differentiate themselves from the competition.”
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sabato 28 agosto 2021

BetMGM receives Arizona license

BetMGM has received its official state license from the Arizona Department of Gaming, enabling everyone in Arizona access to its leading mobile sports betting app the moment legalized sports betting goes live.

“It is an exciting day here at BetMGM to get the official sign off to launch on day one of sports betting in Arizona,” said BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt. “Through our partnerships with Gila River and the Arizona Cardinals, as well as the benefits of being connected to MGM Resorts properties nationwide, we have many exciting things in store for sports fans in Arizona.”

Pre-registration for the BetMGM app will open in Arizona on August 28th. In addition to the upcoming debut of its industry-leading mobile sports betting platform, BetMGM plans to open retail sportsbooks at the three Arizona Gila River properties and at State Farm Stadium, home of the Cardinals.
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WSOP to require proof of full vaccination

The World Series of Poker announced that anyone attending the 2021 World Series of Poker tournament and $10,000 No-Limit Hold’em World Championship, best known as “The Main Event,” will be required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The event returns to live play at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino with the policy in effect beginning Thursday, 30 September through Tuesday, 23 November.

“This is not a decision we have taken lightly–it is made with no agenda beyond protecting player eligibility and the operations of a unique televised gaming event,” said Ty Stewart, WSOP Executive Director. “The nature of poker is to be in close proximity with your opponents for extended periods of time, and a seat at the World Series of Poker is a commitment for both our company and the participants. We want players to be excited for their return to the WSOP, while offering the greatest level of protection and limiting complications during the tournament this fall.”

Participants will be required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 one time, upon first registration, to become eligible to participate in WSOP events, including bracelet events, deep stack tournaments, satellites and live action games.

The WSOP will make use of CLEAR’s free mobile app and Health Pass feature. Participants who successfully add their proof of full vaccination through CLEAR's Health Pass may go directly to the registration cage tellers within the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino Convention Center. WSOP will also provide an on-site center to verify alternate documentation including physical vaccination cards, and state or country-specific health passes.

To be considered “fully vaccinated” against COVID-19, participants must receive their final vaccine dose 14 days prior to start date. This policy is inclusive of all participants, press, spectators and vendors.

Consistent with current CDC guidelines and state mandates, all attendees and Team Members will be required to wear masks. Additionally, with the new policy, fully vaccinated WSOP participants who may have been exposed to a person who has tested positive will not be required to leave the tournament and quarantine if they remain asymptomatic since the time of exposure.

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sabato 24 luglio 2021

William Hill ready for football season to start

With the 2021 football season just over a month away, William Hill Sportsbook & Racebook is rolling out two Nevada football contests both with potential seven-figure payouts, including the nation’s premier $1 million College Pick’em contest and the return of the popular Pro Pick‘em contest rounding out the lineup.

With a guaranteed prize pool of $1 million cash, the 2021 College Pick‘em contest costs $1,000 to play, with a maximum of five entries allowed. Players choose eight games against the spread from a menu of designated games, with the season’s top record earning at least a $500,000 cash reward.

Each entry into the Pro Pick‘em contest costs $25, and up to 15 entries are allowed per customer. Each week, players will pick the winner of all Sunday and Monday pro football games, with a $10,000 weekly prize paid to the entry with the most winners. The entry with the most winners at season’s end will collect a $20,000 cash prize. New for 2021, there is a $1 million cash bonus if the season-long Grand Prize winner finishes with at least 215 wins.

Registration is now open. The deadline to register for the College Pick’em is Saturday, 11 September 2021. Entries for Week 1 of the Pro Pick‘em contests must be made by Sunday, 12 September 2021. Pro Pick’em entries can be purchased each week after that date.

Players may register and place their weekly entries at any of the full-service William Hill Sportsbooks throughout Nevada.
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Second WSOP gold bracelet win for Ruben

On Wednesday night, the 2021 World Series of Poker Online Event #21: $600 PLO 6-Handed attracted 281 players who rebought 270 times. The 1,551-entry field generated a $297,540 prize pool and after 11 hours of play, Florida native Bradley "drstrange7" Ruben captured a $61,148 top prize and his second gold bracelet.

Ruben, who is a professional poker player and real estate investor in the Sunshine State, cashed 11-times last year in the GGPoker portion of the WSOP online bracelet events for $288,376.

His best performance came from Event #62: $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha when he claimed his first WSOP bracelet and an online best $220,160.

After Garry "GoKnightsGo" Gates exited as the bubble boy in 67th place, the in-the-money eliminations came at a steady pace which included WSOP bracelet winner Ari "PalmTreeB" Engel (59th - $1,131), Shannon "Aulophobia" Shorr (35th - $1,398), Andrew "WATCHGUY42" Lichtenberger (22nd - $2,261), Jason "TheBigGift" Gooch (12th - $3,600), Mark "Nostradonkus" Liedtke (9th - $4,761), and Anirudh "WeLikeToPrty" Seth (7th - $6,457).

With six players to start the final table, one of them had to be the first to fall and after a few levels went by that person was Dylan "thedogsofwar" Wilkerson. Wilkerson was heads-up against Michael "BrockLesnar" Holtz after a queen-high flop and Wilkerson called off his stack with a pair of jacks. Wilkerson was ahead but Holtz turned a king to eliminate him in sixth place.

A few hands later, Holtz continued with another elimination after he turned two-pair to send Troy "troyrlee" Lee home in fifth place.

Ben "WhyIsGamora" Yu, along with Ruben, were the only two players at the final table who already had a WSOP bracelet to their name, but Yu's hope of securing another came up short after he failed to crack Ruben's queens and fell in fourth place.

With the final three players sitting fairly even, the action was slow for the first few levels until Alex "OrcinusOrca" Foxen decided to gamble and called off his stack on the turn holding the nut flush draw but was set up by Ruben in third place.

The heads-up battle saw Ruben hold the majority of the chips in play and he made quick work of Holtz to earn his second WSOP bracelet.
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sabato 10 luglio 2021

Caesars Palace unveils plans for main entrance renovation

Already one of the most iconic resorts in the world, Caesars Palace is not resting on its laurels. Instead, it embarks on a multimillion-dollar renovation of the original main entrance, main casino and porte-cochère to create an extravagant entryway, redesigned gaming areas and a new lobby bar. Construction is slated to begin in early July, with most of the project set to be complete by New Year’s Eve.

The main entrance to the property will be entirely rebuilt from the ground up resulting in an arrival experience fit for a Caesar, matching the glamour of the property’s iconic hotel lobby. Once completed, guests will be welcomed by a dramatic and soaring dome and barreled ceiling over a stunning 15-foot tall statue of Augustus Caesar. The project also includes two new state-of-the-art gaming pits, which will flank the enhanced entrance, a beautiful new lobby bar and a renovation of the property’s legendary domed table games floor.

“Caesars Palace brought a sense of grandeur to the Las Vegas Strip when it was built in 1966, and we’re proud to continue that legacy with a full reimagining of our main entrance,” said Sean McBurney, Caesars Entertainment Regional President. “Completely rebuilding the front entrance of one of the world’s most iconic destinations is no small task, and we’re excited to get started and create a stunning new visual welcome for our guests.”
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Iowa sportsbooks post $111 million in June

Iowa’s pace of sports wagering dropped for the third consecutive month in June, even as revenue jumped and the pace of betting per day held firm. The mostly positive month closed the book on a fiscal year that brought dramatic growth and more than $1.2 billion in wagers in spite of a pandemic and in-person registration requirements that slowed betting for much of 2020, according to analysts from PlayIA.

“The year brought significant challenges to Iowa’s sportsbooks, which made the results all the more impressive,” said Jessica Welman, analyst for the Network, which includes “The best news is that with the pandemic’s effects on the industry waning, and online registration firmly in place, the last year is only a glimpse of Iowa’s true potential.”

Iowa’s online and retail sportsbooks accepted $111.2 million in June, according to official data released late Thursday. That is down 3.2% from $114.9 million in May. The pace of betting remained $3.7 million per day over the 30 days of June, matching the $3.7 million per day over the 31 days in May.

Net operator revenue rose to $8.4 million in June, up 37.4% from $6.1 million in May. June’s handle resulted in $568,501 in tax revenue.
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sabato 3 luglio 2021

This Week in Gambling: US poker set to explode again

It's a great week of gambling news for online poker in America. After years of claiming that web based poker was illegal, the U.S. Department of Justice has finally given up its crusade to criminalize the activity. Now, states are free to regulate online poker and set up pacts across borders. That means we are set for a new online poker explosion.

When it comes to U.S. online poker and gambling, the U.S. Department of Justice has finally raised the white flag. They will not appeal their most recent loss in the Federal Wire Act case, and that means we could be in for an explosion of legal online poker across the country.

This all began when the New Hampshire Lottery sued the Justice Department back in 2019 after they had changed their opinion on the Wire Act. That change would have made web based poker and casino games across state lines a Federal crime, and threatened lotteries as well.

The DOJ lost that case when a judge decided that the 1961 Wire Act did, in fact, only apply to bets placed on sporting events… and even then, only those bets which crossed state lines. The Justice Department appealed that decision and lost a second time earlier this year.

After losing the case in the appellant process, the time to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was limited to 150 days. That timeline expired on 21 June, and the DOJ released a statement that day which read quite plainly: “The government is not planning to seek Supreme Court review of the First Circuit’s decision”. Now Pennsylvania online poker and Michigan online poker could be set for an online gambling explosion with cross border play.
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