23 January 2004

"I've often thought, if I got really hungry for a good milk shake, how much would I pay for one? People will pay a hundred dollars for a bottle of wine; to me that's not worth it. But I'm not going to say it is foolish or wrong to spend that kind of money, if that's what you want. So if a guy wants to bet twenty or thirty thousand dollars in a poker game, that is his privilege."

Jack Binion

Time for a few poker news.
Harrah's had announced a few days ago that they would maintain the WSOP. They have just confirmed that it will take place where it's due to, at the Binion's horseshoe. And with a $20 million prize pool we're in for some good poker action!Harrah's to Continue World Series of Poker
By the way, I second Pauly on the suggestion to create a fund to send Iggy to the WSOP as the poker bloggers representative. Seriously, that'd be fun.

If you still aren't convinced that Televised poker has had an enormous influence on the exploding popularity of poker, both online and Brick & mortar, consider the following extracts from a recent article:
"-From 4-6 p.m. ET on Super Bowl Sunday, while CBS is into its fifteenth or sixteenth hour of pre-game features, NBC will air the World Poker Tour Tournament of Champions from the Bellagio in Las Vegas.
-“Revenues are up 30-35 percent,” says Doug Dalton, the director of the poker room at the Bellagio. “We know it’s because of television because a customer will sit at a game and ask, ‘When can I bet all of my money, like on television?’
-Shulman’s magazine [cardplayer] and newsletter, once a specialty publication privately distributed and catering to the professional player, is suddenly mainstream and headed for a newsstand near you.
“We went five years when our newsletter went out to 3,000 people a month,” Shulman says. “In December, it went out to 16,000 people. This month, it went out to 28,000. Our Internet site went from 800 people a day to 10,000 a day."
-“During prime time every night, there are 100,000 Americans playing poker on the Internet.”

This and more in No bluff — poker is the real TV deal
I can't resist the temptation to add one more quote from the article:
"Larry showed up one day babbling about the game he’d watched the night before the way a 12- year-old tells his friends about discovering the Playboy magazine in his father’s closet"
...Poker, the best alternative to sex!

And finally I was intrigued by the announcement by the WPT of the introduction of an "action clock". Mike Sexton can't find enough words to praise it in his latest cardplayer instalment. Is slow play really an issue? Or is this just a trick to make the life of the TV crews simpler by having less stuff to edit?

[plug warning] If you enjoy reading this blog, please consider using this link to open an account on Partypoker. You'll get $25 credited on your account when you deposit, so it's a win win. thank you[/plug warning]

In our male dominated poker blog world, please welcome the journal from "poker babe", replete with photos and all!
Poker babe poker Game Diary (warning: heavily advertising based)
Poker babe works as a prop player at the Bycicle casino in Los Angeles. Me thinks this is probably some form of marketing site, but it's from a lady, so I have to do the courteous thing!

22 January 2004

Should pokercode rename his blog "Cask ale and poker"?

Here is an extract of an email he sent me:
"I'm a BIG fan of your ale. I've made the trip across the pond 4 times just to sit in a pub and drink cask conditioned ale. Love the stuff and you cannot find it here (Americans don't have the patience to produce such a good beer).

One of my new dreams is to play poker in London as I drink cask ale! "

Well, I gues I need to make an official invitation for a london based poker blogger tourney a la . Cask ale for drinks (only during breaks of course) and non vegan meal to accompany the party!

This will come down as the most useless post on this blog, but nevermind. I was just scrolling through the referrers and discovered an entry coming from the following Google Search: +"Al Sharpton" +"Jenna Jameson" -Lieberman -Kerry -Edwards -Clark -De.
Did I miss something in the US presidential election race? Or is this a scoop waiting to be unveiled? What the heck?

A few excellent posts on this poker blog of the day:
Check it out.

Also, Pauly is in great form, check out his hilarious "madison Kid" script. Like Phil Hellmuth or not, you can't take away from him that he IS entertaining!

Poker is the new black

Following yesterday's announcement that Ultimatebet will sponsor the Newmarket classics horseracing comes this interesting analysis from the Independent:
Racing: Online poker firm raises stakes for the Guineas
"However, John Davis, a director of the course who announced the deal yesterday, said: "We have to recognise there are other forms of gambling and we've got to work with them. The synergies between poker and racing are strong."

Greig Pearson, of Ultimatebet.com, added: "I think the idea that racing should not be working with a sponsor from another sector of the gaming market is flawed, because by looking at joint marketing initiatives we can both introduce our customers to something that they may not have tried before."

The deal even includes a Celebrity poker tournament! Well Poker may not quite be the new religion yet, but it is definitely the new black!

21 January 2004

Watch out partypoker, competitors are getting wiser! Last week party announced their sponsorship of the lingerie bowl, which is clearly a questionable association. Ultimatebet in the mean time were busy finalising a deal that will put them in front of the million of horse racing fanatics in the UK.
Online Poker Site UltimateBet.com Crosses Finish Line with $1 Million Title Sponsorship of England's Historic Horse Races
Following the recent Betfair/Cryptologic deal, it seems that the online poker room marketing managers have finally awaken to the strong correlation between sports betting and poker playing. In two words: skills and thrills.
It seems Ultimatebet paid $1 Million for the sponsorship deal. It still does blow my mind that businesses that are mostly 2 to 3 years old have already managed to grow their turnover to a level that allows then to buy prime nationwide media. There ain't no dot com crash in the online poker world!

Poker blog link of the day goes to The Poker Code, the start of an odyssey into online poker. Here is an extract of the recount of his first online real money play:
"All of a sudden, my heart almost jumps out of my chest. My palms start to sweat. I just bet .50 (read: fifty cents) and I’m about to pass out. What? I have no qualms dropping 3k on a home theater receiver. But I almost puke making a .50 bet (read: fifty cent)??"

20 January 2004

How would you like to have the celebrity poker showdown queen Nicole Sulivan appear as the queen of spades on your next deck of cards? Well, that may not be possible right now, but you can already get your hands on cards displaying the mug shots of celebrities who have been arrested for various offenses. Includes the like of Hugh Grant, Eminem and Dennis Rodman!
More in : In the cards

Short short blog today, just to add a new poker blog link: Royal Poker Blog is about "Discussions in Poker, family, and life --- working to make them all fit".
Royal is currently on a 10 000 hand quest at the low limit tables on party. Interesting read.

19 January 2004

You know something is big when journalists have to write about it even when they have nothing to say (Not that this is much different to this blog, but at least I have a poker passion to fall back on as justification...).
Nevertheless, Poker night at home isn't the same after new shows is just too good to miss. Here's an extract as a teaser:
"Player No. 1: "Whose turn is it to bet?"

Player No. 2: "Well, I dealt, so you open."

Player No. 1: "OK, so I open, but do I bet?"

Player No. 2: "It's the same thing, but you don't have to bet. You can just check."

Player No. 1: I did just check and I don't have anything. So I guess I don't want to bet."

Player No. 3: "Waah!"

Player No. 4: "Maybe he's hungry."

Player No. 5: "No, haven't you noticed? He always does that when he's sitting on a pair of jacks or better. I fold."

Player No. 1: "Can I open now?"

In a much more serious tone, but still in the "got to write a goddam poker article" series comes
Poker draws new players, thanks to TV.
"Nothing is better than playing around a table with a bunch of your buddies that you've known since high school, and watching the rest of the table burst out in laughter after you realize that your high card ace bluff just got crushed by a pair of twos," he said. "

Really, really got to get some friends around the table again, there is nothing to replace the warmth and fun of a poker playing evening with your mates! Maybe I should take a leaf out of Iggy's book and organise a local NL tourney in London!

Poker blog link of the day is from a newcomer, encouraged by Iggy: Openers: A Poker Blog

"I'm interested in the game, both its practice and its theory, and there are some questions we could ask. One that leaps to mind is whether a political liberal, a softie as it were, can even be a good player. Poker after all is intensely capitalistic (to paraphrase Jack Lemmon [I think], "Poker is all the terrible things that made America great"); and it is a capitalism that thrives at it utmost when it's unregulated (pot-limit, and even more so no-limit). So can a liberal play with anything more than mediocre skill? "

"Poker is the game closest to the western conception of life, where life and thought are recognized as intimately combined, where free will prevails over philosophies of fate or of chance, where men are considered moral agents and where - at least in the short run - the important thing is not what happens but what people think happens."
John Luckacs, "Poker and the American Character" (1963)

Honour to the brits in this first poker link of the new week, with an extensive article about the british "late night poker" show coming to the US on Fox sports. Forget Las Vegas, poker television was born in Splott - Cardiff in Wales. Discover where it all started and how it's about to cross the pond in Poker nation.

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