Weekly Online Poker News
© 2006 Randy Saylor  

This new weekly feature will cover all aspects of the poker world, including new developments in online poker, results and schedules for the biggest live poker tournaments, and other interesting news. Sit tight while we bring the entire poker world directly to your screen!

September 15: Peter Dicks freed from custody

Peter Dicks, then chairman of Sportingbet plc, was released from custody by Queens criminal court judge Gene Lopez. Dicks was detained on his arrival in the United States on an extradition warrant issued by the state of Louisiana. Louisiana authorities had issued arrest warrants for some fifty executives of online gaming companies with clients located in that state, including (Pacific Poker) and Party Gaming (Party Poker, Empire Poker).

In a move considered to be a defeat for opponents of online gambling, the judge ruled that the extradition warrant was too weak to continue to detain Dicks. He was originally arrested by the Port Authority of New York upon his arrival in the United States, but had been freed on $50,000 bond, pending extradition to Louisiana.

Mr. Dicks has since resigned his position with the company in an effort to prevent further legal troubles.

September 15: Card Player video podcast reaches 100th show milestone

The increasingly popular video podcast show The Circuit, featuring insightful poker talk with a good mix of humor, reached its 100th show milestone. Hosts Scott Huff, Joe Sebok, and Gavin Smith keep the show lively, and regular guests Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Erick Lindgren, Mike Matusow, and Joe Hachem keep it educational.

The show is available for download from the homepage and the iTunes website.

September 16: WCOOP debuts at Poker Stars

Poker Stars offered a $100,000 guarantee to Event #1 of the fifth annual World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). Presumably this was to attract enough players to the field for a fixed-limit Razz tournament. They miscalculated.

Almost 1300 players entered this tournament, pushing the prize pool to $259,400.

The tournament lasted almost thirteen hours until “Nabokov” filled an eight low on sixth street to beat his opponent’s nine low. The win was good for $58,365. Recent World Series of Poker champions Greg Raymer and Joe Hachem competed. Raymer finished just out of the money and Hachem finished 60th for $648.50.

September 17: WCOOP event 2 awards $320,865

Again Poker Stars shattered any notions of a guaranteed prize pool. With the guarantee set at $1.5 Million, the $500+30 tournament drew 4495 entries to exceed the guarantee by 50 per cent.

Two noted online tournament players fared well. Eric “Rizen” Lynch made it to 89th place for almost $3400. Bryan “micon” Micon bubbled the final table. His 10th place finish was good for $10,788.

Thirteen-plus hours after the start, it was down to two players for the bracelet. The leader offered a $290,000 - $250,000 chop, with first place to receive the remaining $30,865. This was apparently a big mistake, since “Rambo5” had a 4-1 chip lead over LUNOID, and first place would have awarded $365,000 without a deal. Mistake or not, the tournament ended a few minutes later, and Rambo5 was $320,000 richer (or $45,000 poorer than he should have been).

September 17: Nobody wins Full Tilt Poker $500,000?

Apparently Full Tilt Poker programmers have a sense of humor, or at least a sense of irony. Full Tilt’s monthly $500+30 $500,000 Guaranteed tournament awarded more than $115,000 to the winner. Full Tilt Poker professional endorser Toto Leonidas made the final table to the delight of the railbirds, but managed only eighth place. The screen name of the winner? “or not.”

The greeting to players logging in to the tournament lobby? “Congratulations, or not.”

September 17: Party Poker exceeds guarantee, UltimateBet falls short

Online poker players looking for an overlay in a large tournament might want to watch UltimateBet’s $200+15 $200,000 Guaranteed tournament. Only 764 players signed up, so the tournament had a $35,740 overlay even if the entry fees are considered. We wonder if Phil Hellmuth is required to make this up personally?

Party Poker fared much better in its big weekly tournament offering. Despite the same start time as the Poker Stars WCOOP event, Party still attracted 5015 players, just exceeding the required number for an overlay. First place winner gnash cashes for over $155,000.

September 18: Carlos Mortensen makes quarterfinals

Carlos Mortensen outlasted Phil Ivey and Daniel Negreanu to snag the last seat in the quarterfinals of the Poker Superstars Invitational, shown on Sundays on Fox Sports Net. Mortensen joins Johnny Chan, Todd Brunson, Jeff Shulman, Antonio Esfandiari, Mike Matusow, Gus Hansen, and Freddy Deeb in the final eight.

The Poker Superstars Invitational format will then divide the eight into two tables of four. Each table plays a separate tournament. Each winner advances to the semifinals. The three non-winners from each table then play each other again to determine the third and fourth semifinalists. Mortensen will be matched with Deeb, Esfandiari, and Chan. Brunson, Shulman, Matusow, and Hansen form the other group of four.

Weekly Poker News Continued

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